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    #1

    Somebody who vs somebody that

    Hey,

    I know that in defining relative clauses we will use who/that for relating to people and which/that to objects.

    Though, I hesitate whether it holds good for phrases including somebody/something/anybody/anything.

    Is it grammatical to say:

    "I think Diana finally met somebody who is great" as well as "I think Diana finally met somebody that is great"?

    or

    "A screwdriver is something which is used for turning screws" as well as "A screwdriver is something that is used for turning screws"?

    An answer by a native speaker will be most appreciated.

    Thanks for your attention and time.

    Waawe

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    #2

    Re: Somebody who vs somebody that

    Hello,

    will a kind person reflect upon my question?

    Thank you in advance.

    Waawe

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    #3

    Re: Somebody who vs somebody that

    I consider myself kind, but I'm not a native speaker, which is a problem.

    Michael Swan (Practical English Usage, 3rd edition) writes (p.478): that is especially common after quantifiers like all, every(thing), some(thing), any(thing), no(thing), none, little, few, much, only, and after superlatives.

    Have you got anything that belongs to me? (more natural than ...anything which...).

    I've found no information as to 'somebody that/who'. I'd never say 'somebody that'; it feels wrong to me.

    A teacher or a native speaker will comment on the matter.
    Last edited by Verona_82; 24-May-2011 at 09:03. Reason: wrong title

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    #4

    Re: Somebody who vs somebody that

    Quote Originally Posted by Verona_82 View Post
    I consider myself kind, but I'm not a native speaker, which is a problem.
    But at least you responded to the question = and helpfully, too.

    Michael Swan (Practical Grammar in Use, 3rd edition) writes (p.478): that is especially common after quantifiers like all, every(thing), some(thing), any(thing), no(thing), none, little, few, much, only, and after superlatives.

    Have you got anything that belongs to me? (more natural than ...anyting which...).

    I've found no information as to 'somebody that/who'. I'd never say 'somebody that'; it feels wrong to me.

    A teacher or a native speaker will comment on the matter.
    According to the corpora, 'somebody who' is four times as common as 'somebody that'. This is possibly why 'that' feels wrong to you - you haven't seen it so much. It's fine, but stick with 'who' if you prefer.

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