I’m currently in learning mode. I’ve been working hard to sharpen my language skills and writing skills in order to stay on top of my game. In order order to do so, I’ve been scouring the web for insight and came across this post via Joanna Goodard’s blog. It goes into the top 20 common English grammar mistakes.
My favorites are the use of “who” and “whom” and “fewer or less”
Fewer and Less
“Less” is reserved for hypothetical quantities. “Few” and “fewer” are for things you can quantify. e.g., The firm has fewer than ten employees. e.g., The firm is less successful now that we have only ten employees.
Who and Whom
This one opens a big can of worms. “Who” is a subjective — or nominative — pronoun, along with “he,” “she,” “it,” “we,” and “they.” It’s used when the pronoun acts as the subject of a clause. “Whom” is an objective pronoun, along with “him,” “her,” “it”, “us,” and “them.” It’s used when the pronoun acts as the object of a clause. Using “who” or “whom” depends on whether you’re referring to the subject or object of a sentence. When in doubt, substitute “who” with the subjective pronouns “he” or “she,” e.g., Who loves you? cf., He loves me. Similarly, you can also substitute “whom” with the objective pronouns “him” or “her.” e.g., I consulted an attorney whom I met in New York. cf., I consulted him.
But, don’t you feel that if you used “whom” in a conversation you would come off a bit snobby?