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English Grammar and Exercises for ESL learners.


There is often confusion about the use of who and whom.
Who and whom are pronouns.
Who is a subject pronoun, in the same way as 'he/she/they'.
Whom is an object pronoun, in the same way as 'him/her/them'.

In the sentence "John loves Julie." :

 John is the subject of the verb 'love'

 Julie is the object of John's affection.

Simple rule : If you can substitute 'he/they', use 'who'.
If you can substitute 'him/them', use 'whom'.

Subject Verb Object
Tom loves Julie
Who loves Julie?
Tom loves whom?


 Who

We use 'who' when it is the subject of a verb, that is, when it refers to the person
takes an action.

 Julie played tennis. Julie is the subject of the verb 'to play'.

 To find out the name of the player, we ask a question using 'who'.
Who played tennis? Julie played tennis.

 Who can also be used as the subject of a non-identifying clause:

 There's Mr. Jones who bought the house next door.


 Whom We can use 'whom' as the object of a verb.many of. it is more usual to ask :  Who did you play with?  Whom is always used when it is preceded by quantifiers such as all of.  Formal English : Whom did you see?  Everyday English : Who did you see?  In formal English. . few of. but it is very formal and not often used in spoken English. both of. several of. etc. most of whom remained seated. For example: • He addressed the spectators. whom is used directly after a preposition:  With whom did you play?  In informal conversational English.