I think these clauses are both noun clauses but I'm not sure . I have doubts that the first one might be an adjective clause.

I don't agree with the idea that money makes happiness.

(I think its a noun clause that acts as an appositive , but it also might be an adjective clause: I'm not sure)

I don't agree with that money makes happiness

This clause seems weird to me (but I'm sure its a noun clause, though I don't know what's wrong with it ).

  • The second one should be "I don't agree that money makes happiness" without the "with" in there, because using "with" shows that you agree "with something", meaning that you need an object
    – kirillandy
    Feb 10, 2020 at 10:53
  • ... or 'I don't agree with the idea that money makes happiness', the first example. Saying what incorrect sentences etc 'should be' is often guesswork. Feb 10, 2020 at 11:16
  • It is a guess on my part, Edwin, I'll admit, but it was the only option that didn't add redundancy to the question. Your sentence is exactly the same as chada azzouzi's first, so the 2 sentences in the question would've had exactly the same form (as you've pointed out), and, seeing how there were two examples given, I suspect chada azzouzi wanted it to stay that way... "Should be" was a little presumptuous of me, I apologize
    – kirillandy
    Feb 10, 2020 at 11:34
  • Thank you guys for responding. Feb 11, 2020 at 17:00

1 Answer 1


Formally, "that money makes happiness" in the first one is a finite CLAUSE. Thinking of it in terms of WORD classes doesn't help. This syntactic constituent doesn't bear any resemblance to adjectives and hardly any with nouns (only insofar as it specifies the head noun, in a manner similar to noun phrase appositives)

"That money makes happiness" is a type of a complement clause that is very common not only with nouns but with verbs and adjectives as well. Your sentence can be rephrased as:

I don't believe that money makes happiness.

In this sentence the that-clause is made a verb complement, instead of a noun one in the original sentence.

The that-clause complement of a noun shouldn't be confused with a relative-clause noun modifier. The function of the that-clause noun dependent in "I don't agree with the idea that money makes happiness" is quite different from that in "I don't agree with the idea that she proposed".

  • thank you so much for your response I appreciate it. Feb 11, 2020 at 17:00
  • I'm glad I could help chada azzouzi!
    – user97589
    Feb 11, 2020 at 17:40

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