Hello, my fabulous people!
Today’s topic is one that causes much confusion, even though it’s a really simple concept. At the risk of sounding like a total nerd (which I am and love it very much), let’s talk about the difference between who and whom.
a review of basic sentence structure
When we are talking about a sentence, you have (1) a subject and (2) a predicate. Generally, the subject is at the beginning of the sentence (there are exceptions, but that can be another blog post). It also usually appears before the verb (action word).
For example: She boarded the train to Paris to meet him at Gare du Nord.
In the above sentence, the verb (action word) is boarded. Since this is a simple, general example, it follows that “She” is the subject of the sentence (i.e. the person, place, or thing that is doing something). Everything else, from the verb to the final period is the predicate (i.e. “boarded the train to Paris to meet him at Gare du Nord.”)
So when do I use who and when do I use whom?
If you’re referring to the subject of a sentence, use who. (Who boarded the train to Paris?)
If you’re referring to the object of a sentence, use whom.
But Fairy Godwriter, you think. What is the object of a sentence? Simply put, the object is the person or thing affected by the subject. As a recap, the object in our sentence is “him”, because “She is traveling to Paris to meet him. Therefore, you would ask: She boarded the train to Paris to meet with whom?
Subject: Who is doing the action? = Who?
Object: Who is affected by the action = Whom?
That is all, my dearest readers. I hope this wasn’t too confusing.
Have a wonderful day/evening, wherever in the world you are.
The Fairy Godwriter