Cleft sentence

From Teflpedia

A cleft sentence (/kleft sentəns/) is a sentence consisting of (at least) two clauses, one of which is a cleft clause. They are used for emphasis, and transform a short sentence into as longer, more emphatic form.


Type Structure Example
It cleft it + be + noun + relative pronoun + verb "It was you who stole my ring"
Wh- cleft What + noun + Verb(s) + be "What you need is a haircut", or "What she should do is get a life"
? The + noun + defining relative clause + [be] * "The pub (that/which) my friends like is over there"
  • "The bloke who/that spilt my drink is over there"