www.scots-online.org — Wir Ain Leed - Relative Pronouns
 Veesit oor Facebook page.  
 
Site Map
Relative Pronouns

Relative pronouns introduce information referring to the previous part of the sentence (clause). In the sentence:

The kemp that wun the gowd medal wis awfu prood.
The champion who won the gold medal was extremely proud.

The clause 'that wun the gowd medal' provides information relative to the 'kemp'.

These relative clauses are introduced by relative pronouns.

The relative pronoun for male and female, and each case is that (who, which, that) often contracted to 'at, which is not to be confused with the preposition at.
The relative pronouns wha (who) and wham (whom) are Anglicisms found in more formal writing and speech.

Thay are aw gluttons that little guid gets.
All who get little good are gluttons.
The chield that steys neist door.
The fellow who lives next door.
The fowk that's comin tae veesit.
The people who are coming to visit.
Gie't back tae thaim that's aucht it.
Give it back to those who own it.

That may be made possessive by adding 's

The rinners that's feet is sair.
The runners whose feet hurt.
The man that's dug dee'd.
The man whose dog died.
The laddies that's baw's tint.
The boys whose ball is lost.
The wifie that's washin wis duin.
The woman whose washing was finished.

Shadow pronouns appear in constructions such as that plus a possessive pronoun.

The lad that his dug's deid.
The boy whose dog is dead.
The wifie that her messages is tint.
The woman whose shopping is lost.
The man that his darg's duin.
The man whose work is done.

Sometimes the relative pronoun is omitted. Prepositions are frequently omitted at the end of a sentence.

Thare's no mony fowk (that) steys in thon glen.
There are not many people who live in that valley.
Ma freend's a dochter (that) uised tae be in the schuil.
My friend has a daughter who used to be at school.
We haed this Soothren lass (that) cam tae wir schuil.
We had this English girl who came to our school.
The machine (that) ye milk the kye (wi).
The machine with which you milk the cows.
Thare's juist the ane o us (that's) been tae Cupar afore.
There's only one of us who has been to Cupar before.
The shap (that) A bocht it (frae).
The shop from which I bought it.

Whilk is now obsolete in speech but still occurs in literature. Consequently the sense of 'which' may be conveyed by the use of that or the use of the conjunction an. often as an that or but that, with, if necessary, a corresponding recasting of the sentence.

The pat wi whilk the maid byles watter.
The pat that the maid byles watter wi.
The pot in which the maid boils water.
The wirkers howkit a sheuch in whilk the foonds wis liggit.
The wirkers howkit a sheuch, that the foonds wis liggit in.
The workers dug a trench in which the foundations were laid.
He said that he haed tint it, whilk wisna whit he wantit tae hear.
He said that he haed tint it, an that wisna whit he wantit tae hear.
He said he had lost it, which was not what he wanted to hear.
The moniment that is ower thare is twa hunder year auld.
The monument which is over there is two hundred years old.
Allowa, that many fowk haes written aboot, is Burns’ cauf-kintra.
Alloway, about which many people have written, is Burns’ birthplace.
He said they war gaun oot, but that wis no whit she wantit tae dae.
He said they were going out, which was not what she wanted to do.
He wis cairyin his belangins, an mony o thaim wis braken.
He was carrying his belongings, many of which were broken.

© 1996 - 2015