The tone with which he spoke drained Rhonin of all animosity - Warcraft: War of the Ancients #1

Why did "with" placed in the position like this? As my personal's knowledge the word "with" can be deleted, without any change in the meaning of the sentence. Am I right?

  • You may find "pied-piping" in this answer helpful. Jan 22 '16 at 16:54
  • You don't speak a tone, you speak with a (certain) tone. You can refer to the tone: I don't like the tone of your answer or tone of your voice, but you would say I don't like the tone with which you spoke to me.
    – GoDucks
    Jan 22 '16 at 16:59

Unfortunately, no.

"The tone with which he spoke drained Rhonin of all animosity." [correct]

The prepositional phrase "with which he spoke" modifies "The tone," and becomes part of the complete subject ("The tone with which he spoke"). A native speaker would never say "The tone which he spoke," because "the tone" refers to how something was said in this instance, how it was spoken. However, if you wanted to eliminate the prepositional phrase, you could correctly write,

"His tone drained Rhonin of all animosity." [also correct]

Does this difference make sense to you? Here are two more examples in response to your comment.

"The force with which he hit him killed his opponent." [correct]


"The finesse with which he wielded his sword was unequaled among men." [correct]

  • So how can I use "with" in others circumstance? Which the same as this.
    – vietphi
    Jan 22 '16 at 16:30
  • 1
    I added two more examples to my answer. Do these help? Jan 22 '16 at 16:51

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