Dependent Clause: Definition and Examples of Dependent Clauses

What is a dependent clause? One of the commongrammatical elementsyou are likely to come across in the English language is a dependent clause. Hearing this phrase, it might be difficult to understand what exactly it is. In this article, we are going to take a look at the definition of what a dependent clause is as well as seeing some examples to show how this clause works withina sentence.

Dependent Clause

What Is a Dependent Clause?

A dependent clause is one that relies on being used with another clause, usually anothertype of clause,independent clause. When used on its own, a dependent clause will notcreate a full sentenceand needs further information to turn it into one.

Dependent Clause Examples

We are now going to take a look at a few examples of these dependent clauses in order to further understand how they work. The following sentences will show the dependent clause highlighted in bold.

  • When the aeroplane landswe will get off it.
  • Because I cannot go to the concert,you can have my ticket.
  • He can write much more neatlythan his girlfriend can.
  • If you work on Saturday, I will look after your children for you.
  • You can sleep in my spare room,whenever you are in town.
  • Though I had never thought about it until nowthe song did sound like one I had heard before.
  • I am not totally certainhow he won the race.
  • This is the catwho has gone missing.
  • Autumn is the seasonwhen the leaves fall from the trees.
  • My sister is the onewho lives in thatcottage.
  • These are the peoplewho we met on holiday.
  • My father didn’t tell mewhy he said those things.
  • They were lost and were not surehow they would find their way.
  • What she believedwas not what happened.
  • My brother doesn’t knowif he can drive there.
  • We will give the best seats towhoever arrives the earliest.
  • What the man didwas not useful to the situation.
  • The prize will be given towhoever wins the race.
  • She finally finished her college courseafter many years of studying.
  • Where is the milkwhich was in the fridge?
  • The actor,who starred in the film, was very talented.
  • The bicyclewhich you sawbelongs to my son.
  • Whenever I am in RomeI speak Italian.
  • If you can give me a good reason,I will let you borrow my car.
  • When the car returns,we can go home.
  • Because my alarm did not go off this morning,I was late for work.
  • When we arrived at the party, we were offered a drink.
  • If I do not pay my tax bill, I will be charged a fee.
  • If the weather is hot tomorrowwe can go to the beach.
  • When I read this bookI feel happy.
  • Does anybody knowhow long the train will be?
  • My husband no longer plays footballbecause he hurt his leg.
  • The event cannot startuntil the president arrives.
  • I am trying to think aboutwhat will happen next in the drama series.

Dependent Clause Infographic

Dependent Clause Pin

Last Updated on February 2, 2020

4 thoughts on “Dependent Clause: Definition and Examples of Dependent Clauses”

  1. I was just looking up the meaning of ‘independent/ dependant clauses’ and ‘modial verbs’, I am ashamed to say. Ashamed, as I am English..born in England…and I even have an English degree . I am SOOO glad English is my 1st language because I’m rubbish at learning languages and would never have been able to learn it as a 2nd one!
    一件事所有学生学习英语应该先w…Most people who speak English as a first language DO NOT KNOW how to speak it properly. Do not know the terms (or that there even ARE terms!) for different word and sentence forms and structures. I imagine we know less words / have a smaller vocabulary than you already do, after being a student for 6 months.
    As is probably the case in your first language, no-one actually speaks English the way it is is more colloquial and slang ..which is fine ..but what really isnt that most (1st Lang) English speakers use tenses incorrectly or get them muddled, NEVER use borrow/lend the correct way round (personal peeve!) , always say “can” instead of “may” …which is more than just about ‘polite wording’
    and in general have NEVER had ONE single lesson at school in regards to using grammar correctly! How bad is that?! So congratulations to all ‘students’ of the English Language. No matter how badly u may think you speak will be better than most English people!!


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