Who Knows?

Okay, here it is: Who in clauses gets seriously tricky sometimes, and the easiest way to figure it out is to do a little rewrite in your head.

  • My new boyfriend, whom I met online…Clue: I met he? Nope. I met him. So whom. Him/whom.
  • Give the money to whoever comes to the door…Clue: It’s not what you may think. To whom? Afraid not. Logical, but wrong. Who is the subject of the phrase “comes to the door,” so it is not inflected.

In a very teensy nutshell, that’s all you need to know. I said it would be ugly, but it’s really not. Difficult, maybe, but worth it. Mental gymnastics won’t do a thing for your abs, but you will impress other smart people, which is also difficult, and also worth it.

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