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Who or Whom Options
Koh Elaine
Posted: Saturday, February 9, 2019 3:54:57 PM
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Joined: 7/4/2012
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Who/Whom can you see in the photo?

Which is the correct pronoun?

Thanks.
FounDit
Posted: Saturday, February 9, 2019 6:18:38 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

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Koh Elaine wrote:
Who/Whom can you see in the photo?

Which is the correct pronoun?

Thanks.


From TFD:

whom (huːm)
pron
the objective form of who, used when who is not the subject of its own clause: whom did you say you had seen?; he can't remember whom he saw.
[Old English hwām, dative of hwā who]

Usage: It was formerly considered correct to use whom whenever the objective form of who was required. This is no longer thought to be necessary and the objective form who is now commonly used, even in formal writing: there were several people there who he had met before. Who cannot be used directly after a preposition – the preposition is usually displaced, as in the man (who) he sold his car to. In formal writing whom is preferred in sentences like these: the man to whom he sold his car. There are some types of sentence in which who cannot be used: the refugees, many of whom were old and ill, were allowed across the border

I would say 'who'. Using 'whom' would sound a bit posh, as the British would say.


We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
Koh Elaine
Posted: Saturday, February 9, 2019 8:07:26 PM
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Joined: 7/4/2012
Posts: 4,960
Neurons: 20,489
Thanks, FounDit.
Romany
Posted: Saturday, February 9, 2019 8:34:47 PM
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Joined: 6/14/2009
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Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom


In BE it wouldn't be considered correct to use "whom" as its used in your original sentence.

And "There were several people there who he had met before." wouldn't be considered "proper". But those who wouldn't say "whom he had met..." would say: "There were several people there that he'd met before." Equally incorrect, but more common that "who he had met..."

However, I would (and do) say it in sentences such as "...the man to whom he sold his car."
Koh Elaine
Posted: Saturday, February 9, 2019 9:10:15 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/4/2012
Posts: 4,960
Neurons: 20,489
Thanks, Romany and FounDit.

Like Romany, I would use 'whom'.

Do Americans use 'who' instead?
BobShilling
Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2019 2:02:41 AM
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Joined: 4/1/2018
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Location: Beroun, Stredocesky, Czech Republic
Romany wrote:
In BE it wouldn't be considered correct to use "whom" as its used in your original sentence.


My (elderly) generation of speakers of BrE consider it correct. However, most of these days would find it rather stilted (or 'posh' as FD called it).
Koh Elaine
Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2019 12:43:52 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/4/2012
Posts: 4,960
Neurons: 20,489
Thanks, Bob.
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