|3. Relative Pronouns|
A relative pronoun comesat the beginning of a relative clause. A relative clause is a subordinate clause that tells us more about the noun in the main clause. The relative clause comes immediately after the noun. Relative pronouns are that, which, who, whom, whose, whatever, whichever, whoever, whomever, etc. That and which refer to animals and things. That may also refer to people. We use the relative pronouns who and whom for people, and whose for people and things.
In the above sentence, the relative pronoun is that and it introduces the relative clause (in bold). ‘I know the dog’ is the main clause. The relative clause that bit my cat tells us something about the noun dog.
We use that and which in almost the same way as we use who, but they refer to things, not people. There is a difference in using which and who. After which, we can use a verb, a pronoun or a noun. After who, we usually use a verb.
We use who as a relative pronoun to refer to people. In the last sentence, who refers to man which is a noun in the main clause, and it begins the relative clause who is my dad’s best friend. We can use who to join two sentences.
We use whom to make a statement about human beings. It is used in place of who (a) when it is the object of a verb or (b) when it comes after a preposition.
(a) The man whom they caught was sent to prison.
We use whose to show possession or relationship for both people and things.