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Reply to "Which modifying a clause"

Thank you, David, for clarifying that sentential "which" will not work as the object to a preposition no matter how lexicalized the verb phrase containing the preposition is. I guess the sentence I proposed above could then be changed to:

- The father got into a physical altercation with the mother, which situation the child could not put with.

@Jacob B. posted:

Am I right in thinking that the comma before "which" would be optional?

I personally think the comma can be used or omitted depending on whether the relative clause is interpreted as non-restrictive or as restrictive:

  • The father got into a physical altercation with the mother, which the child was present for. (The father got into a physical altercation with the mother, and the child was present for it.)
  • The father got into a physical altercation with the mother which the child was present for (There was one particular physical altercation between father and mother that the child was present for.)
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