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Thread: Whom and Who

  1. #1
    Gilles L is offline Junior Member
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    Default Whom and Who

    Dear Teacher,
    Please let me know if the following sentence is grammatically correct:<

    -John met a girl whom he had been thinking of for months

  2. #2
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    Barb_D is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Whom and Who

    Probably "the" girl unless many girls had occupied his thoughts.
    Don't forget to end with a period/full stop.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  3. #3
    Gilles L is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Whom and Who

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Probably "the" girl unless many girls had occupied his thoughts.
    Don't forget to end with a period/full stop.

    Thank you for your reply.
    My concern is most oriented towards the proper utilisationof "WHOM"

    can we say:<
    1) John met the girl he had been thinking of for months ? or
    2) John met the girl whom he had been thinking of for months ?

  4. #4
    Barb_D's Avatar
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    Default Re: Whom and Who

    Both are fine.
    So is the use of "who" since these days "whom" tends to be used only when it comes immediately after a preposition.
    Please get into the habit of proper end punctuation.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  5. #5
    bhaisahab's Avatar
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    Default Re: Whom and Who

    I'd prefer "John met the girl he had been thinking of for months" or, less likely"John met the girl of whom he had been thinking for months".

  6. #6
    TheParser is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Whom and Who

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilles L View Post
    My concern is most oriented towards the proper utilisationof "WHOM"

    NOT A TEACHER


    Hello, Gilles:

    May I congratulate you on your wish to use "who" and "whom" correctly?

    This matter also confuses many native speakers. In 2012, many speakers do, indeed, use "who" except in certain

    "obvious" cases. For example, when you start a letter with: To whom it may concern.

    Since you want to use those words correctly, just remember:

    WHO = subject position.
    WHOM = object position.

    *****

    "John met the girl ____ he had been thinking of for months."

    1. Let's rearrange the parts of the sentence.
    2. John met the girl he had been thinking of ___ for months.
    3. As you can see, the blank space follows a preposition. Thus, we need "whom."

    4. Many (most?) people say, "Who do you eat lunch with at work every day?"
    That is: You do eat lunch with ___ at work every day? (Now you can see why "whom" is correct.)

    *****

    But be very careful. Sometimes people who want to use the words correctly make mistakes.

    _____ did you say is calling?

    Let's put it in non-question order: You did say ___ is calling. (As you can see, "who" is correct because it is the SUBJECT of "is calling.")

    *****

    Perhaps in speech, it is not horrible if you use "who" when you "should" use "whom." But in writing (when you have

    time to think), it might still -- even in 2012 -- be appreciated by your readers (especially your college professor!) if

    you used "whom" whenever appropriate. IMHO.


    HAVE A NICE DAY!

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