February 20, 2006

For Who the Bell Tolls

The person to who I sent this article, for who I have the greatest respect, and after who I may end up naming my first child (that is, if I ever have one, and if said child happens to be female, that's what I may name she) responded: "him tolls for thou!" It took I around five minutes or so to realize what her was getting at.

(via Bookslut.)

Posted by Dr. Frank at February 20, 2006 06:35 PM | TrackBack

I love and hate you at the same time. I love that you make me think and I hate that when I do so it usually points out another one of my many inadequacies.

I know I'll continue to misues it but here is a simple explanation of the correct usage of the words in qustion:
If you can replace a word with "he" or "she," then it is the subject of the sentence and you should use "who." If you can replace the word with "him" or "her," it is the object and you should use "whom."

Posted by: Zaphod at February 20, 2006 08:29 PM

The who/whom debate is a topic with respect to which everyone is entitled to their own opinion.

Posted by: Aaron at February 20, 2006 09:45 PM

any particular reason my post was removed? it said, "So I really like The Whom? Good to know" - I don't know why that would be deleted. It was a joke, like... The Who is the object in that phrase, so techincally it should be The Whom. Ha? Was that offensive somehow?

Posted by: chris riordan at February 21, 2006 01:40 PM

You mean "at which what was her getting."

Posted by: josh at February 21, 2006 01:41 PM


I think you have the who/whom explanation right, although I think a lot of the problems arise in relative clauses in which the clause as a whole is the object of the main verb in a sentence, but the relative pronoun is the subject of the verb in the clause. Example: "I really hate whoever keeps pointing out my misuse of the word 'whom'." People are often tempted to say "whomever" because "hate" takes a direct object, and in fact you would say, "I really hate him," not, "I really hate he." But in this instance it's the clause as a whole (everything from "whoever" to "'whom'") that is the object of "hate," and the case of the relative pronoun ("whoever") is determined by its relationship to the verb in the clause ("keeps"). Since the pronoun is the subject of the verb "keeps" the pronoun should be "whoever," not "whomever." That is, you would say "He keeps pointing out," not, "Him keeps pointing out."

There, doesn't that help clear everything up?

Posted by: Nick at February 21, 2006 06:52 PM
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