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Who or whom

 
 
Reply Wed 27 Dec, 2017 09:52 am
Should I use "who" or "whom" in the following question?

Who/Whom do you like best?

Thank you
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Type: Question • Score: 1 • Views: 383 • Replies: 7
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Setanta
 
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Reply Wed 27 Dec, 2017 10:11 am
Most native speakers of English would probably say "Who," but "Whom" is correct. It's easy to determine by answering such a question, and using the same form in your question. For example:

He said that.

For which the question would be: Who said that?

Give it to her.

For which the question would be: Give it to whom?

If you can substitute he or she, then use who. If you can substitute him or her, then use whom. Who is the subjective--the pronoun to use when it is the subject of the sentence; whom is the objective, the pronoun to use when it is the object of the sentence.

As I've already noted, many native speakers of English use who when they should use whom.
layman
 
  -3  
Reply Wed 27 Dec, 2017 11:17 am
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:

As I've already noted, many native speakers of English use who when they should use whom.


But I'm one whom wouldn't, eh? I never use "who" and always say "whom," because I think it makes my ass sound smart, ya know?
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paok1970
 
  0  
Reply Wed 27 Dec, 2017 01:50 pm
@Setanta,
Should I say or write, "To whom was the letter addressed?", "Whom was the letter addressed to?" or "Who was the letter addressed to?"

Thank you
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Wed 27 Dec, 2017 09:19 pm
@paok1970,
You can use either of the first two.
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layman
 
  -2  
Reply Thu 28 Dec, 2017 04:37 am
@paok1970,
paok1970 wrote:
"Whom was the letter addressed to?" or "Who was the letter addressed to?"

Thank you


Winston Churchill wrote:
“From now on, ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which I will not put.”


In case it's not clear to you, Churchill was was showing, in a humorous way, how misguided it is to slavishly follow grammatical "rules."
layman
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 28 Dec, 2017 06:03 am
@layman,
To elaborate, the simplest way to convey the thought Churchill is expressing is to say "That's something I won't put up with."

Trying to structure the sentence in an awkward, stilted way in order to avoid "ending a sentence with a preposition" is folly.
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TheParser
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Dec, 2017 10:15 am
@paok1970,
Here is one "easy" way to decide whether it should be "who" or "whom": Rearrange the words in your mind.

1. "Who/whom do you live with?" In your mind, think: "You do live with who/whom?" You know that "with" is a preposition, so you need the objective form ""whoM" after a preposition.

2. In your mind, think: "You do like who/whom best?" You know that the objective form follows a verb such as "like." Therefore: "WhoM do you like best?"

*****



If you wish to speak traditionally "correct" English, you may wish to use "whom" whenever it is called for.

*****

CAREFUL! Here is a sentence that will confuse even people who usually speak "correct" English.

"Give this book to whoever/whoMever answers the door."

Some people will say "whoMever," for they think: "I know that 'to' is a preposition, so I need 'whoM.' "

In fact, we need "whoever," for it is the subject of the verb "answers."
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