Questions tagged [antecedents]

Pro-forms (such as pronouns) may take their meaning from an earlier word or phrase. That earlier text is the antecedent of the pro-form.

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What is the antecedent of 'which' in this sentence?

Is it a hurricane or the preceding clause, My village was hit by a hurricane? Sometimes it feels it doesn't matter what the antecedent is, just like this case. But I want to know if there is any rule ...
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What does "it" in "What's it like" refer to?

In Memento (2000), Burt speaks to Leonard: That's the thing. I have this condition. BURT Condition? LEONARD I have no memory. BURT Amnesia? LEONARD No. It's different. I have no short-term memory. I ...
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Sentences With Multiple Antecedents

Below I have provided three examples sentences with multiple antecedents and their respective pronoun(s). So, my question is as follows: How do I determine which antecedent the pronoun refers to? ...
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Confused about "That and the fact that"

The passage is from a book review entitled "Top 6 Books About Gangsters" by Rod Reynolds. Sprawling and complex, yet exquisitely plotted, it’s the pathos Ellroy imbues in his tough guys ...
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Does a subject “it” refer to the preceding subject or preceding object if both might fit semantically?

In a technical text, I once wrote a sentence similar to the following one: As the aforementioned notion of the maximal doodad is based on the long thingum, this notion targets extended hickeys, such ...
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I am not sure how antecedents and plurals work. when you are talking about "criticisms"

I am very open to any constructive criticisms, as they make you better. Is it okay if I say criticisms and they in one sentence?
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People aren’t inanimate features of a building

For example, if you were afraid of standing on balconies, you would start on some lower floors and slowly work your way up(literally) to higher ones. Facing your fears isn’t as easy or tidy when it ...
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What does "one" refer to in: “one that is subsequently rejected…”?

Here is a sentence from an LSAT: It draws an analogy between semiplaning monohulls and conventional ships that constitutes an objection to the argument's main conclusion, one that is subsequently ...
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What do the pronouns “that” and “its” refer to within the enclosed text?

I have been try­ing to un­der­stand this sen­tence, but it is a lit­tle too com­pli­cated for me to un­der­stand: In­di­vid­u­als ap­pear to have a knee-jerk re­flex­ive re­ac­tion to be­ing ex­...
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2 votes
2 answers
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What does this "which" refer to in this sentence?

The following sentence is from Il Principe by Niccolò Machiavelli. What does this 'which' refer to in this sentence? And what does this sentence mean? I thought this 'which' might refers to punishment,...
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What is the referent of "it" in "under it"?

The following quote is from Mansfield Park by Jane Austen: Mr. Crawford, approaching Julia, said: "I hope I am not to lose my companion, unless she is afraid of the evening air in so exposed a ...
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Referring to something in the last sentence with "This"

Is it clear what "This" refers in the following text? When someone runs out of ideas and reaches an impasse, they should confer to an experienced consultant. This is the key to break the ...
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Which word is "they" referring to?

Which word is they referring to in the following sentence? Children make circles because they are perfect. Is it referring to Children or circles? And why?
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I wonder if "that needs to be addressed" is modifying "a potential distraction" or "offices"

In a recent employers’ survey a wide variety of computer functions have/has been identified as a potential distraction in offices that needs to be addressed. I'm confused here whether the modifier &...
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What does "this" refer to in the passage?

If it refers to our progress in understanding, what is the difference between our progress in understanding and the progress of knowledge? He was disappointed that scientific progress has not cured ...
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Who does "they" refer to in this sentence?

“I never wanna be the guy who stops loving someone for loving the way that they want to love” Who does "they" refer to, "the guy" or "someone"? P.S. This sentence is ...
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Does this refer to 'to reward inventors~'?

Or, does it refer to 'the original rationale for granting patents'? Patents and copyright laws grant too much credit and reward to individuals and imply that technology evolves by jerks. Recall that ...
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Can that refer to plural?

In the following sentence, does that refer to plural approaches? The consequence is that non-scientific approaches to reality — and that can include all the arts, religion, and personal, emotional ...
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"something that you wear on your hands in the winter that rhymes with kittens"

Can anyone tell me which sentence below is correct? I'm thinking of something that you wear on your hands in the winter that rhymes with kittens. v.s I'm thinking of something that you wear on your ...
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What does "they" refer to in this sentence?

WHEN A CRICKETER reaches 100 runs, they have the chance to reflect on what they have achieved, but also to take a “fresh guard” so they are ready for the challenges that await. As we know "they&...
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one of those sheeple who has/ have

The sentence below is an example for the word sheeple offered by BBC Learning English: My brother's one of those sheeple who has to follow the latest fashions. I suppose who refers to one so it is ...
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What are the correct pronouns for referring to someone whom I have never met in person when the gender is apparent?

I want to mention someone whom I know of only by references on the Internet such as forums and blogs(clarification: I want to write about the person, not to write to the person). This person uses a ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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What does "they" in the phrase, "the best they can" point to?

This sentence is grabbed from a website: A teacher's primary goal is to teach students the best they can about the things that are in our textbooks and more important, how to show respect for one ...
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4 answers
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Can his be used for feminine nouns

In the following sentence Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday met his mother Heeraben in Gandhinagar on the occasion of his 69th birthday. His is used for mother. Is it correct?
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Adjectival clause construction

My brother brought the bread from India that you have eaten. You have eaten the bread that my brother brought from India. Is the that antecedent of the bread above in both sentence or there ...
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Can relative clauses be placed not just after the antecedent?

In order to keep the colony size down, a predator is introduced which keeps the colony size by eating bacteria. The idea was interesting which she put forward. Can relative clauses follow its ...
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"Those were among the few times" in "Hillbilly Elegy"

English is not my mother tongue. So many times I have problems understanding exact meaning of it. While I was reading Hillbilly Elegy, I found a word quite confusing. I thought about losing my ...
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How to understand the use of 'only' in this context

The king and queen rushed the girls to the trolls, mysterious healers who knew about magic. A wise troll named Grand Pabbie saved Anna by removing her memories of Elsa's magic. He explained that she ...
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mistake or mistook?

I saw the following sentence, and am wondering whether "mistake" should be replaced with "mistook." Plastic bags have been found in the guts of dead sea turtles, which mistake them for jellyfish. ...
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4 votes
5 answers
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There was a farmer had a dog, but which one was named Bingo?

There was a farmer had a dog, and Bingo was his name-o. From these words alone (so, without appealing to different versions, translations, likelihoods of names, etc.), is there some way to decide ...
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1 answer
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can possessive of a noun come before the noun

I have been having some problem with this sentence. In Blood Creator, his greedy nature and obsessiveness are used as the most significant traits in the characterization of James. As you can see ...
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What does "it" mean in these lines? [duplicate]

Can you please help me understand to which noun do it [pronoun] refers to in the below sentences? He is the murderer. Later it was found he is not. The it in the second sentence: " Later it...", ...
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What does "it" refer to in, "Strange as it may seem..."?

I have a sentence below and some say it means "the Sahara" but I doubt it as it doesn't make sense if it does. Does anyone have any idea about it? Strange as it may seem, the Sahara was once an ...
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When a relative pronoun has two possible antecedents, how do you choose the right one?

In this sentence, "someone like you who is..." , 'someone' is the antecedent of relative pronoun, 'who' . But can you explain why 'you' cannot be the antecedent of the relative pronoun, 'who'...
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What is the antecedent in this excerpt?

Passage excerpt from a TOEFL question: "... These laws are universal in their application, regardless of cultural beliefs, geography, or climate. If pots have no bottoms or have large openings in ...
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3 answers
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How do I understand a sentence without subject and verb in novels?

She was meant to stay indoors but everything looked varnished and bright after the rain, so she put her coat on and went outside, then came back in and slung the camera over her shoulder. Through ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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Is the given sentence grammatically as correct with the THEM as it is without it?

If you happen to know who took the picture, we'd be happy to give due credit. If you happen to know who took the picture, we'd be happy to give them due credit. Are both the sentences grammatically ...
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0 votes
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Preposition together with "which"

I lived in France for 2 months during which time / during which / during I was in vacation The world war II, during which / during which time many people were killed, ended in 1945 When do we ...
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Can you clear my these doubts of movie review article?

Source The men unleash the brutal side and battle it out to win their lady love. Here 'it' does not refer to 'brutal side'.Am I right? It is difficult to root for the characters even as the ...
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2 votes
2 answers
379 views

'To whom it may concern' : What's 'it'?

'To whom it may concern' : I've always thought that it referred to this current writing (directed at the party whom this writing may concern). Am I right? If so, then technically, does it lack an ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Confusing 1920 uses of 'it' and 'which' by R. H. Tawney?

In modern industrial societies the great mass of property consists, as the annual review of wealth passing at death reveals, neither of personal acquisitions such as household furniture, nor of the ...
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Are “those things that …” the “two things” mentions before?

“To one as young as you, I’m sure it seems incredible, but to Nicolas and Perenelle, it really is like going to bed after a very, very long day. After all, to the well-organized mind, death is ...
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3 votes
2 answers
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What’s the antecedent for this which?

A breeze ruffled the neat hedges of Privet Drive, which lay silent and tidy under the inky sky, (1) the very last place you would expect astonishing things to happen. (Harry Potter and the ...
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