Can a subjective relative pronoun be omitted?

0

(1) It was you [ that ] I wanted to meet. (relative pronoun: objective) (2) It was you that told me to say so. (relative pronoun: subjective)

I understand you can definitely omit the objective relative pronoun that in sentence (1). Can you also omit the subjective relative pronoun that in sentence (2)? I do not think so. Could you help me clarify it? Thank you always.

DeborahJeong

Posted 2018-02-12T17:58:48.723

Reputation: 601

Question was closed 2018-02-13T21:13:38.713

This has been addressed here many times; the first seems to be this question

– StoneyB on hiatus – 2018-02-12T19:38:39.530

Answers

1

You can omit the pronoun if it's the object of the relative clause, but you can't omit it if it's the subject.

It was you that I wanted to meet -> I wanted to meet (you)

It was you that told me to say so -> (You) told me to say so

In the first case, "I" is the subject, and the main clause and the connecting pronoun establish the object of the relative clause, so you can omit the pronoun. In the second, the main clause establishes the subject, and you can't say

*It was you told me to say so

Maciej Stachowski

Posted 2018-02-12T17:58:48.723

Reputation: 6 370