Tuesday, August 23, 2011

GR - embedded questions part 1

In this three-part series of GrammarReminder, we're going to practice embedded questions. These are questions that become part of (embedded into) a larger sentence. This is one of those grammar points that really stands out if you don't say it correctly, so let's learn how to say it right! Ready?

The rule is simply to switch the position of the subject and the verb so the question essentially becomes a sentence. The embedded question can either be part of a statement or a question, as you'll see in the following examples.

like this:
1. Who is he?
as an embedded question: Do you know who he is?
2. Where are they from?
as an embedded question: I'm not sure where they're from.
3. How does he get to work?
as an embedded question: I'll ask him how he gets to work. [The auxiliary verb "does" disappears because we normally don't use it in an affirmative sentence.]
4. What time did they arrive?
as an embedded question: Could you tell what time they arrived? [The auxiliary verb "did" disappears, and we simply use a verb in the past tense.]
 5. Where have you been?
as an embedded question: Please tell me where you've been.

Stay tuned for parts 2 and 3, which will review how to embed yes-or-no questions and provide more examples. Have you signed up for our email updates? Simply scroll down the right margin, enter your email address, and get our lessons automatically delivered to your inbox!

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