Adverb clauses are subordinate clauses which do the function of an adverb in a sentence. Like a simple clause, it also has a subject and a predicate. It may modify a verb, adjective, or adverb in the Independent Clause.
Read the following examples:
- They may sit wherever they like.
- Ruhani will succeed if she works hard.
- Nobody likes Tina because she is arrogant.
The words in italics in the above example are the adverb clauses. Just like an adverb, adverb clause also answers questions like how, when, why, and where.
Adverb clause shows a relationship between the independent clause and the adverb clause itself. It can show the following relationships:
1. Adverb Clause of Time:
Adverb clauses of time are introduced by the subordinating conjunctions like when, whenever, while, after, before, since, as etc.
- When Tom finished his work, he called me.
- You friends can ask for help whenever they need it.
- You can write while I am talking.
- John came after the movie had ended.
- Write it before you forget.
- They took all the precautions this time since three previous attempts had failed.
- Fatima watched me as I approached her.
2. Adverb Clause of Place:
These clauses are introduced by the subordinating conjunctions such as: where, whereas, everywhere etc.
- Everywhere Peter goes, he takes his smartwatch.
- Peter has kept the smartwatch where he can find it again.
- I will join you wherever you choose to eat.
3. Adverb Clause of Purpose:
Adverb clauses take subordinating conjunctions like so that, in order that and lest.
- They will give you a code so that you can unlock the safe.
- The code was made in order that all the member feel secure.
- Ryan was concerned lest anyone should think he was unprofessional.
4. Adverb Clause of Condition:
Adverb Clauses of Condition are introduced by subordinating conjunctions like if, whether, unless.
- If Sonia likes it, she will tell me.
- If it rains don’t allow the students to go outside.
- Serena seemed undecided whether to accept or reject the offer.
- Unless you switch off the internet you will keep getting the email notifications.
5. Adverb Clause of Reason:
These clauses are introduced by subordinating conjunctions such as: because, as, since, if, even if etc.
- Matthew showed up late because there was a lot of traffic.
- As I was not at home, they spoke to my father.
- Since Marshal is not at the office, I will ask Matthew to take the message.
- If you have a suggestion, write on the board.
- Try every possible way even if it daunts you.
6. Adverb Clause of Contrast:
Adverb Clauses of Contrast are introduced by the subordinating conjunctions such as: even though, although, whereas, while.
- Even though the number of students increased a few new colleges were built over the decade.
- Ryan says he has a new football jersey, although we have never seen him wear it.
- This lion cub survived through the storm, whereas the other cubs could not survive.
Note that whenever the dependent clause is used after the Independent a comma is used to separate them. But when the order is revered no comma is used.
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