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Oh dear...what a day I'm having!


I posted some time ago (in a different thread that I can't find to bring back to life) about a student of mine writing me a letter and using 'text' language.


Well, today I have had two of the most appalling grammatical emails from a buyer from one of the top retail stores in the country. (I'm reluctant to name names for obvious reasons)


After sending off artwork to her which has taken me two days to complete, this is the comment I received back - which I am to act on...????



Can you change from been tonal






and that was literally it :shock:




Just what is happening to being able to write full, correct (and polite) sentences?



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I think I'm more annoyed that I didn't even get a,


'Dear Gina,


I have received your artwork - thankyou'



Well, I've done the only thing I can, and passed the buck to the company who pay me to freelance for them. They can sort it out and delegate accordingly, once they've decifered her coded email :?

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My local Asda has big signs advertising Brolleys to borrow in bad weather :evil:

I can't remember the who and whom rule properly, and don't want to post duff info- so I'll check out in "Eats, Shoots and Leaves", great book for dipping into, especially for people like me who do make the odd grammatical error :oops: . If I can find the definitive answer I'll post again later- unless of course someone beats me to it. Sheila's good at her grammar, so maybe she'll be along with the answer soon.

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"Who and Whom


The number of people who use "whom" and "who" wrongly is appalling. The problem is a difficult one and it is complicated by the importance of tone, or taste. Take the common expression, "Whom are you, anyways?" That is of course, strictly speaking, correct - and yet how formal, how stilted! The usage to be preferred in ordinary speech and writing is "Who are you, anyways?" "Whom" should be used in the nominative case only when a note of dignity or austerity is desired. For example, if a writer is dealing with a meeting of, say, the British Cabinet, it would be better to have the Premier greet a new arrival, such as an under-secretary, with a "Whom are you, anyways?" rather than a "Who are you, anyways?" - always granted that the Premier is sincerely unaware of the man's identity. To address a person one knows by a "Whom are you?" is a mark either of incredible lapse of memory or inexcusable arrogance. "How are you?" is a much kindlier salutation.


The Buried Whom, as it is called, forms a special problem. That is where the word occurs deep in a sentence. For a ready example, take the common expression: "He did not know whether he knew her or not because he had not heard whom the other had said she was until too late to see her." The simplest way out of this is to abandon the "whom" altogether and substitute "where" (a reading of the sentence that way will show how much better it is). Unfortunately, it is only in rare cases that "where" can be used in place of "whom." Nothing could be more flagrantly bad, for instance, than to say "Where are you?" in demanding a person's identity. The only conceivable answer is "Here I am," which would give no hint at all as to whom the person was. Thus the conversation, or piece of writing, would, from being built upon a false foundation, fall of its own weight.


A common rule for determining whether "who" or "whom" is right is to substitute "she" for "who," and "her" for "whom," and see which sounds the better. Take the sentence, "He met a woman who they said was an actress." Now if "who" is correct then "she" can be used in its place. Let us try it. "He met a woman she they said was an actress." That instantly rings false. It can't be right. Hence the proper usage is "whom."


In certain cases grammatical correctness must often be subordinated to a consideration of taste. For instance, suppose that the same person had met a man whom they said was a street cleaner. The word "whom" is too austere to use in connection with a lowly worker, like a street-cleaner, and its use in this form is known as False Administration or Pathetic Fallacy.


You might say: "There is, then, no hard and fast rule?" ("was then" would be better, since "then" refers to what is past). You might better say (or have said): "There was then (or is now) no hard and fast rule?" Only this, that it is better to use "whom" when in doubt, and even better to re-word the statement, and leave out all the relative pronouns, except ad, ante, con, in , inter, ob, post, prae, pro, sub, and super.


James Thurber:

Ladies' and Gentlemen's Guide to Modern English Usage"


Best I can do with very little time!

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Oh, wait for me! I've only just logged on, and I (sadly :wink: ) love this discussion!

As someone with the albatross of R.P. I'd rather not have my accent, really Dan, but its hard to drop.:oops: Two people in the last year have said I should be on the radio, as I have the voice for it. (Notice they didn't say television, they obviously don't think I have the face for that!)

Not that one (!) can learn to speak properly by following BBC radio, the grammar isn't always correct, nowadays.


Everyday can be either one or 2 words, depending on context. What shall I wear to the party? Oh, just your everyday clothes will be fine.


Who or whom, I do know, but will have to think of some examples and post again. Hope you can all wait for that. I know you love my uncomplicated explanations! :roll: But Dan, you are correct in not using whom if not sure. To me it grates when it is used incorrectly, but an ommission is acceptable! 8)

Oh, the company of fellow pedants. Bliss!

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:P Well, I've never been taught the rules formally, so this is just my informal interpretation.

Some examples do sound archaic, accepted language has changed a lot in a couple of generations, so to speak in the "correct language" of our forefathers can actually sound stilted or pretentious now. So I wouldn't overdo it. But, here we go;


Try to avoid ending a sentence with "to" or "with"


Who did you go to the party with? xxx

With whom did you go to the party? 8)


Whose party are you going to? xxx

To whose party are you going? 8)


Who does this pen belong to xxx

To whom does this pen belong? 8)


There are tech.language terms for this, but I thought you'd all :roll::roll:

if I went any further.


Another horrible misuse is "myself" instead of "I". Its usually self important, as in...

Myself & my business partner decided to open a restaurant. xxxx

My business partner & I decided to open a restaurant. 8)


Nowadays, I don't use whom every time wot I shud, because then no one will speak to me! :wink:

It depends to whom I am talking 8)

(It depends who I am talking to) :shock:

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Oh, the company of fellow pedants. Bliss!


Did you mean me? :lol::lol: When the forum was still small I used to correct other people's spelling :shock: I've stopped doing that now :oops:


.....and then I made a memorable typo which SarahJo will come and repeat :roll:


........and I don't type like wot I orta either anymore :?

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