Sentence Diagrams

Sentence 4

Gov. George W. Bush, who recently advocated DNA testing to "erase any doubts" from some death penalty cases, said yesterday he would probably delay the looming execution of a convicted killer whose attorneys are fighting for new DNA tests.

          - Mark Babineck, Associated Press (published on June 1, 2000, in Louisville, KY, in The Courier-Journal, page A4)

Lesson 4: Pronouns take the place of nouns. There are several different kinds of pronouns, two of which are personal pronouns and relative pronouns. Subject forms of the personal pronouns are I, you, he, she, it, we, and they; object forms are me, you, him, her, it, us, and them; and possessive forms are my, mine, your, yours, her, hers, his, its, our, ours, their, and theirs. The possessive forms function as adjectives and are diagrammed as such (more about this when we discuss modifiers). There are only five common forms of the relative pronoun in English: who, whom, whose, which, and that. A relative pronoun has an antecedent in its sentence, that is, a noun or pronoun that precedes it in the sentence and to which it refers. In Mr. Babineck's sentence, the relative pronoun who has as its antecedent Gov. George W. Bush, while the antecedent of the relative pronoun whose is killer. In a sentence diagram, a broken line is drawn between a relative pronoun and its antecedent.
Apologia pro descriptione mea: 1. The word death is a noun functioning as an adjective modifying a noun functioning as an adjective, penalty. If death penalty is considered the equivalent of a single word, then it can be diagrammed on a single line as an adjective modifying cases. I chose not to do this when I was unable to find death penalty in Webster's Unabridged. 2. The x at the top of the diagram shows that the expletive that has been omitted before the indirect statement.
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