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Can I say? Hello dear native speakers I have a grammatical question regarding the placement of prepositions in relative clauses. I know this sentence is correct : Thr man with whom I talked is nice. But can I say : The man whom I talked with is nice. I mean is that possible to separate the preposition and whom?
Jun 14, 2019 7:46 PM
Answers · 9
Although "The man with whom I talked" is grammatically correct, it makes the speaker sound like Queen Victoria - at least 100 years out of date. Nowadays, we would say "The man I talked to." (I use 'talk TO' rather than 'talk WITH' because I'm British, but using 'with' is correct in American English and is becoming popular among the younger generation in the UK). Using 'whom' in any context except a VERY formal essay or public speech is best avoided. Because of this, I'll give you a different example. "The place at which I stopped." (Grammatically correct, but horribly formal) "The place I stopped at." (Also grammatically correct, and much more relaxed. "The restaurant to which I went." (VERY VERY formal) "The restaurant I went to." (much better) "The restaurant that I went to." (also possible - it's the speaker's choice to use 'that' or leave it out).
June 14, 2019
“Whom” is overly formal, and not commonly used anymore. “The man (who) I talked with is nice.” is correct.
June 14, 2019
Both versions are grammatically correct. I agree with Sheena and Irene that both "with whom" and "whom ... with" are overly formal, though. You'll rarely see either of these structures used except in very formal writing. From a purely grammatical standpoint, though, they are both fine. Separating the preposition from the relative pronoun is fine. Sheena has already given a few of these, but here's another example, using "which" instead of "whom." "The pen with which I'm writing is red." (grammatically correct, but very formal) "The pen which I'm writing with is red." (okay, but the word "which" is unnecessary) "The pen I'm writing with is red." (correct, and common)
June 14, 2019
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