The original sentence is

The apple which is lying on the table is mine

Can I shorten it to be

The apple lying on the table is mine

I saw a expression describing RELATIVE CLAUSE on the random website, and they were like

if the relative pronoun is followed by a verb, the relative pronoun is a subject pronoun, subject pronoun must always be used

But I think it's not the same thing, right?

First one is relative clause in opposition to the abbreviated sentence using participle clause grammar, is it not?

  • By the way,I posted this question using my phone. And i cannot find any formatting option or button as opposed to computer version.i mean,english stack exchange APP.
    – 오준수
    Aug 15, 2015 at 7:03
  • 2
    Maybe you did this on your phone, but you can still use an upper-case "I" for the first person pronoun. Please don't use "I posted this on my phone" as an excuse for sloppy posts.
    – J.R.
    Aug 15, 2015 at 9:02
  • 1
    This is called Whiz-Deletion; for example, see english.stackexchange.com/a/50971/11482. Aug 15, 2015 at 10:18
  • "...on a random website", BTW.
    – TimR
    Aug 15, 2015 at 13:22
  • If the meaning of either phrase is the same, I would leave it out. In the first example, I would use that instead of which, but that is another topic.
    – user3169
    Aug 15, 2015 at 16:35

2 Answers 2

  1. The apple which is lying on the table is mine.

  2. The apple lying on the table is mine.

Both the sentences are grammatically correct; there's no difference in meaning. In the first sentence, "which is lying on the table is mine" is a relative clause.

In the second sentence, "lying on the table" is the reduced relative clause. You can reduce a relative clause by omitting the relative pronoun and the auxiliary verb when the main verb in the relative clause is progressive.

  • The first sentence is not grammatically correct. It should be: "The apple, which is lying on the table, is mine." Nov 14, 2015 at 1:26
  • CluelessJoeJackson, the relative clause " which is lying on the table" is a defining relative clause for which you don't use commas.
    – Khan
    Nov 14, 2015 at 2:00
  • I think we need more context. Is there more than one apple? Nov 14, 2015 at 2:14

They are both grammatically correct and both are not what a native English speaker would say. A more natural expression is:

The apple on the table's mine.

  • I'd use the second one, actually (although maybe without 'lying').
    – Deusovi
    Nov 13, 2015 at 15:17

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