- An independent clause.
- A dependent clause (also called a subordinate clause).
A dependent clause:
- Has a subject.
- Has a verb.
- Is not a complete sentence without an accompanying independent clause.
The noun clause
- Takes the place of a noun as a:
- subjective complement
- objective complement
- direct object
- indirect object
- object of a preposition
- Cannot be moved around a sentence and still make sense.
- Is necessary to complete the sentence; it cannot be eliminated.
- Is never punctuated with a comma (unless it is an appositive).
- Begins with:
- An interrogative (What I call 'W'-words):
- who (whoever, whom, whomever) [n.]
- what (whatever) [n.]
- whose [adj.]
- which [adj.]
- when [adv.]
- where [adv.]
- why [adv.]
- how [adv.]
- An expletive:
- that can sometimes be implied, even though it may not actually appear in the sentence
- whether or not
- To test a noun clause, you can sometimes replace the noun clause with a pronoun or noun.
The noun clause as a subject
Whoever wins the championship goes to the Super Bowl.
(Test sentence: Someone goes to the Super Bowl)
The noun clause as a direct object
John knew Bill was good at baseball.
(Test sentence: John knew something)
Jill was asked which car she wanted.
(Test sentence: Jill asked something.)
Jill asked when she could go home.
The noun clause as an indirect object
You should give whoever wins the game the trophy.
(Test sentence: You should give someone the trophy)