Overheard: Word of the Day

Jul 1 2008   12:08PM GMT

Quiz: Writing for business, July 1

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse

Which is correct?

__________ you hire will need at least three years of ASP.NET and AJAX development experience.
a. Whoever
b. Whomever

Answer
The answer is b.

Explanation

These pronouns take a different case depending on whether the relative pronoun is used as a subject or an object. To determine whether to use who or whom, turn the sentence into a question. If you can answer the question with the word “he,” use who. If you can answer the question with the word “him,” use whom.*

Who/whom will you hire? You will hire him. (You wouldn’t say “you will hire he.”)

*An easy way to remember when to use who or whom is by noting that the word “him” ends in the letter “m.” So does the word “whom.”

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