Using “that” instead of “who”, as a relative pronoun?

When referring to a person, why would anyone use “that” instead of “who”? For example: “The musician that won the award is very creative.” instead of: “The musician who won the award is very creative.” To me, using “that” in this case sounds like saying: “It won the award”, which sounds somewhat disrespectful. What am … Read more

Is it who, whom or, that?

For the phrase, “… more than those that have come before.” what is most correct? Is it who, whom or, that? Answer Whom should be used to refer to the object of a verb or preposition. When in doubt, try this simple trick: If you can replace the word with “he”’ or “’she,” use who. … Read more

Using ‘that’ to refer to a clause

I was studying about the uses of that where I stumbled upon this common mistake pertinent to the use of ‘that’. For e.g: The goalkeeper blocked two penalty kicks in the second half, and that made his team win the match. This usage of that is wrong as ‘that’ can’t refer to an action, such … Read more

Difference between “that’s not you” and “you’re not you”

My understanding is “you’re not you” means “you’re not yourself”, while “that’s not you” is something I would use for example if we were looking at a photo. Is that right? Can you explain why “that” changes the meaning of the sentence? Is it because “that” is a “demonstrative pronoun”? What other situations would you … Read more

Is it grammatically acceptable to start a sentence with “That that…”

This is something that I’ve recently had someone tell me is not grammatically correct. Now, to be honest, it’s not something I would likely ever use in everyday language but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not perfectly acceptable. So, as an example: That that you have eaten is poisonous. This is similar (in my mind) … Read more

When is it okay not to use “that”

Consider: “Note that there are two characteristics in the agent.” versus “Note there are two characteristics in the agent.” The only difference is [that] (2) drops the “that“. Which is correct, or are both okay? I’ve always used (1) but (2) sounds okay to me as well, and it is shorter which I like. Answer … Read more

“That these … makes” – why “makes” and what is the role of “that”?

I have the following sentence: That these skills are transferable makes them especially beneficial. My question is “simple”: Why makes? (Of course, because of that.) But, does that mean something – the fact? Can we put that in other places in this sentence? Answer Let’s first distentangle that sentence: That these skills are transferable is … Read more