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Hi

I was wondering if anyone could help me out with a question about when to use "that"

I know the rules about when to use that rather than who or which (i.e. when talking about a person or a thing) but I need to know more about when you should and shouldn´t use it in sentences such as:-

I think that it will rain tomorrow - I think it will rain tomorrow

They both sound fine to me. Is there a rule about such usage or can you use it indifferently?

Many thanks for any help

Regards

Nicola
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NicmarjelIs there a rule about such usage or can you use it indifferently?
I don't know of any case where that particular usage of that is required, so I'd say you can use it indifferently.

CJ
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When writing in a paper, if you can avoid using 'that' and the sentence still works, then take it out. Thats my teacher's policy anyways.
Thanks for your suggestions.

Basically I found a rule which says that "that" is necessary when it is the object of a sentence but when it is the subject of a sentence you don´t have to use it.

Also I found this which helps somewhat to describe when to use that

Rule 1.

Who refers to people. That and which refer to groups or things.



Examples:

Anya is the one who rescued the bird.

Lokua is on the team that won first place.

She belongs to an organization that specializes in saving endangered species.

Rule 2.

That introduces essential clauses while which introduces nonessential clauses.

Examples:

I do not trust products that claim "all natural ingredients" because this phrase can mean almost anything.

We would not know which products were being discussed without the that clause.

The product claiming "all natural ingredients," which appeared in the Sunday newspaper, is on sale.

The product is already identified. Therefore, which begins a nonessential clause.

NOTE:

Essential clauses do not have commas surrounding them while nonessential clauses are surrounded by commas.

Rule 3.

If this, that, these, or those has already introduced an essential clause, you may use which to introduce the next clause, whether it is essential or nonessential.

Examples:

That is a decision which you must live with for the rest of your life.

Those ideas, which we've discussed thoroughly enough, do not need to be addressed again.

NOTE:

Often, you can streamline your sentence by leaving out which.

Example:

That is a decision which you must live with for the rest of your life.

Better:

That is a decision you must live with for the rest of your life.

Sorry I got that rule the wrong way round

That is not necessary when it is the object but it is necessary when it is the subject! Emotion: surprise)
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NicmarjelSorry I got that rule the wrong way round
It doesn't matter because you're dealing with the wrong rule anyway.

The rules you quoted are for that used as a relative pronoun. that is not a relative pronoun, but a complementizer, in your original question about usages like I think that ... Complementizer that can always be omitted.

CJ