evaluative relative clause ‘… which is good’

In the English Grammar Profile, B2 Point 100 in the category of CLAUSES is hard to find formally as it is more USE related as the relative clause:

refers to a whole clause or sentence, often to express an opinion or evaluation or give a reason.

This is also found in PEARSON’S:

  • GSE 61 B2 non-defining (non-restrictive) relative clauses to make a comment.
  • He was late, which was unusual.
  • It’s raining, which is really annoying.

To start to locate a formal way into finding possible usage, we can start by looking for an adjective to the right, as is found in the 3 EGP example sentences:

,_, which_DDQ is_VBZ a_AT1 good_JJ thing_NN1
,_, which_DDQ is_VBZ very_RG important_JJ
,_, which_DDQ were_VBDR all_DB really_RR brilliant_JJ

A search in iWeb for:

which _V _A _J _N

1 WHICH IS A GOOD THING 6726
2 WHICH IS A GREAT WAY 1762
3 WHICH IS THE BEST WAY 1287
4 WHICH IS A GOOD SIGN 904
5 WHICH IS THE MAIN REASON 879
6 WHICH IS THE ONLY WAY 869
7 WHICH IS A NICE TOUCH 859

But it‘s very politewhich is a very nice touch.

listen

8 WHICH IS A BIG PLUS 795
9 WHICH IS A HUGE PLUS 641
10 WHICH IS A GREAT THING 623
11 WHICH IS A GREAT PLACE 611
12 WHICH HAS ITS MAIN OFFICES 591
13 WHICH GOES A LONG WAY 562
14 WHICH PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE 553
15 WHICH IS A BIG DEAL 541
16 WHICH IS A REAL SHAME 539
17 WHICH IS THE WHOLE POINT 536
18 WHICH IS THE ONLY THING 501
19 WHICH IS A BIG PART 464
20 WHICH IS A GOOD IDEA 464

B1: huge, main, role, touch
B2: deal


which _VB _R _JJ

1 WHICH IS VERY IMPORTANT 3627
2 WHICH IS VERY SIMILAR 1887 (this usually refers back to a noun)
3 WHICH IS MORE IMPORTANT 1794
4 WHICH IS NOW AVAILABLE 1675
5 WHICH IS VERY GOOD 1619
6 WHICH IS PRETTY GOOD 1518
7 WHICH IS VERY USEFUL 1405
8 WHICH IS PRETTY COOL 1333
9 WHICH IS ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT 1279
10 WHICH IS ALSO AVAILABLE 1265
11 WHICH IS MOST LIKELY 1188
12 WHICH IS SO IMPORTANT 1091
13 WHICH IS VERY CLOSE 1067
14 WHICH IS VERY HELPFUL 1024
15 WHICH IS VERY DIFFERENT 1019
16 WHICH IS VERY EASY 986
17 WHICH IS MORE LIKELY 967
18 WHICH IS REALLY NICE 955
19 WHICH IS TOO BAD 934

Joey, I am old, and I have spent most of my life doing the same damn thing, which is too bad for mebut it‘s good for you.

listen

20 WHICH IS REALLY GOOD 923

B1:

helpful, likely, similar

 


which _VB _D _RR _JJ

1 WHICH ARE ALL REALLY GOOD 11 (very low frequency)
2 WHICH ARE ALL READILY AVAILABLE 11 (not evaluating)


A search in COCA for:

, which _V _JJ .

1 , WHICH IS GREAT . 227
2 , WHICH IS GOOD . 177
3 , WHICH IS FINE . 107
4 , WHICH IS NICE . 105
5 , WHICH IS IMPORTANT . 60
6 , WHICH IS TRUE . 56
7 , WHICH WAS GREAT . 53
8 , WHICH WAS TRUE . 51
9 , WHICH IS AWESOME . 46
10 , WHICH IS INTERESTING . 44
11 , WHICH WAS GOOD . 43
12 , WHICH IS AMAZING . 35
13 , WHICH IS RIDICULOUS. 35

They‘ll sometimes also say, ” If I can’t see the person, how do I know they‘re working?”

 which is ridiculousbut that‘s one of the excuses that managers give.

14 , WHICH IS WONDERFUL . 34
15 , WHICH IS UNUSUAL . 33
16 , WHICH IS UNDERSTANDABLE . 32
17 , WHICH IS WEIRD . 31
18 , WHICH IS ABSURD . 28
19 , WHICH IS ILLEGAL . 28
20 , WHICH IS UNFORTUNATE . 28

B2 vocabulary:

absurd, illegal, ridiculous, understandable, unfortunate, weird

 


It is too wide a search for iWeb or NOW corpora so a search on COCA for ‘, which _vb’ + collocate _j:

1 GOOD 2337

1 , WHICH IS GOOD 664
2 , WHICH WAS GOOD 187

1 , WHICH IS A GOOD 399
2 , WHICH WAS A GOOD 102

1 , WHICH IS A VERY GOOD 38

2 IMPORTANT 1391
3 GREAT 1307

We just bought a house in Montauk, which is really great because we both like the outdoors.

listen

4 DIFFERENT 848
5 AVAILABLE 749
6 BIG 722
7 TRUE 713
8 SUPPOSED 653
9 FINE 637
10 COMMON 614
11 ONLY 611
12 NICE 560
13 BAD 539
14 LIKELY 526
15 SIMILAR 520
16 RESPONSIBLE 473
17 UNUSUAL 451
18 HARD 443
19 DIFFICULT 439
20 INTERESTING 428

From here we can return to iWeb:

1 , WHICH IS GOOD FOR 3698


2 , WHICH IS GOOD . 2224
3 , WHICH IS GOOD , 1701
4 , WHICH IS GOOD NEWS 1605
5 , WHICH IS GOOD BECAUSE 1007
6 , WHICH IS GOOD ENOUGH 402
7 , WHICH IS GOOD TO 371
8 , WHICH IS GOOD IF 247
9 , WHICH IS GOOD AS 209
10 , WHICH IS GOOD SINCE 205

1 , WHICH IS A GOOD THING 3687
2 , WHICH IS A GOOD SIGN 596
3 , WHICH IS A GOOD WAY 281
4 , WHICH IS A GOOD IDEA 259
5 , WHICH IS A GOOD START 136

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