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Dorian E. Gray israfel at eircom.net
Sun Jan 25 15:48:55 EST 2004


  Melissa said..
  >
  > Does someone want to explain the may/might thing so I can explain why the
  > misuse is wrong to all the benighted souls I deal with?  That, like the use
  > of "whom," is one of those things for which I do not know the rules.

  I can't help on may/might, but I do know who/whom.

  Whom is used for the object of the sentence (I think!), and the quick&dirty
check is to recast the offending bit of text into a 3rd person statement: if
who/whom then becomes "him", use "whom".  If "he", "who".

  Example:  "That's the man [who|whom] I gave the documents to."  (Ignorning
other yucky aspects of the sentence!)  Recast:  "I gave the documents to...him!"
Ta-daa, we use "whom" here.

  Again: "That's the man [who|whom] I said killed the cat."  Recast:  "I
said...he! killed the cat."  Ta-daa, we use "who" (and that phrasing is one
where people very often use "whom" erroneously).

  Until the sky falls on our heads...

  Dorian.
  --
  Dorian E. Gray
  israfel at eircom.net

  "[My rule] for keeping my temper in order, is never to leave it too long with
another person."
  - Horace Walpole

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