Skip to main content

Replies sorted oldest to newest

It is only my opinion, but I think that a lot of teachers would be pleased by your "good" English if you said, "He is the person to whom I gave the car."

But I think that most Americans would find  such a sentence too formal.

They might  simply say: "He's the person I gave the car to."

If they did use the relative pronoun, they might say, "He's the person who [instead of the correct "whom"] I gave the car to."

I second TheParser's answer. There is a difference in level of formality, of course, with "He is the person to whom I gave the car" being at one extreme and "He is the person I gave the car to" at the other.

Relative pronouns do not work well as indirect objects; indeed, indirect objects do not work well as relativized elements. That's why "He's the person (whom) I gave the car" does not work well, even though we can say "I gave him the car."

So, when using a relative clause, be sure to change from the double-object construction ("I gave him the car") to the preposition construction ("I gave the car to him"), whether or not you front "to."

A "that"-relative is another option; but if you use "that," you must strand "to":

  • He is the person that I gave the car to.
  • He is the person to that I gave the car.
Last edited by David, Moderator

I second TheParser's answer. There is a difference in level of formality, of course, with "He is the person to whom I gave the car" being at one extreme and "He is the person I gave the car to" at the other.

Relative pronouns do not work well as indirect objects; indeed, indirect objects do not work well as relativized elements. That's why "He's the person (whom) I gave the car" does not work well, even though we can say "I gave him the car."

So, when using a relative clause, be sure to change from the double-object construction ("I gave him the car") to the preposition construction ("I gave the car to him"), whether or not you front "to."

A "that"-relative is another option; but if you use "that," you must strand "to":

  • He is the person that I gave the car to.
  • He is the person to that I gave the car.

Very clear! Thank you.

Can you help me with the other questions from the previous threads? 

Last edited by GBLSU

Add Reply

×
×
×
×
Link copied to your clipboard.
×