How to Analyse and Understand a Clause

Clause Analyses or “analisi logica” in Italian is for important for demonstrating understanding of content that you are reading. Understand the clause of a paragraph, how clauses are written and how they are formed are important to not only being a student, but reading any sort of descriptive work or literature such as a book, magazine or article. It is no understatement to say that identifying a clause, understanding a clause is not only a helpful skill in reading and understanding literature, but also in understanding how to write clauses for yourself.

To analyze a clause one most first understand what exactly it is that a clause is. It can be a little tricky to understand what a clause is, but the definition is a group of words that function as a part of speech including a subject and a verb. This is a bit complicated, so let’s simplify this definition a bit. Basically the cause is like a part of the sentence which illustrates what the subject has (adjective/noun) or is doing (verb/adverb). For example, take this sentence, “The red dog took a bit of the bagel”, the clause in this sentence illustrates the action of the subject (the red dog) “took a bite of the bagel”. Another example would be, “The car is shiny and red.” In this sentence there is no verb or adverb, but rather a noun and adjective which is describing the subject, “the car”. So, the clause is, “shiny and red”.

Once one has a firm understanding of what clauses are, then analyzing them becomes a rather simple and menial task. What does your clause say about the subject? How does it tie into the context of the sentence or paragraph to form a neatly worded sentence? What is the writer attempting to say about subject? All of these questions are important to ask when reviewing or analyzing a clause.