For 'whoever' likes grammar.... Or wants to look it up!


Staff member

I acknowledge this is probably a silly question, but I'm quite put out at the moment because of it.

Which sentence uses personal pronouns correctly?

1) Whoever touches Caesar's property will answer to Caesar.

2) Whomever touches Caesar's property will answer to Caesar.

Please do rely on grammar for an answer if possible, since things sometimes always 'sound' good. And many of us native English speakers don't really learn grammar... but I need what's grammatically correct here.

If anyone has an opinion it'd be interesting to hear, and even if not and you don't like grammar.... well join the club! lol



Junior Member

Rule 1.
To determine whether to use whoever or whomever, here is the rule:
him + he = whoever
him + him = whomever

Examples: Give it to whoever/whomever asks for it first.
Give it to him. He asks for it first.
Therefore, Give it to whoever asks for it first.
We will hire whoever/whomever you recommend.
We will hire him. You recommend him.
him + him = whomever We will hire whoever/whomever is most qualified.
We will hire him. He is most qualified.
him + he = whoever

Rule 2. When the entire whoever/whomever clause is the subject of the verb that follows the clause, look inside the clause to determine whether to use whoever or whomever. Examples: Whoever is elected will serve a four-year term.
Whoever is elected is the subject of will serve.
Whoever is the subject of is.
Whomever you elect will serve a four-year term.
Whomever you elect is the subject of will serve.
Whomever is the object of you elect.


Junior Member
My husband, the granmmer/english guru says Whoever...I like the sound of Whomever....listen to him! lol! I flunked english comp....and I was born here! lol!


Staff member

Aww thank all of you! It's such a bother, and I also tried to reserve judgment on this until I had people say what they thought so it wouldnt be prejudiced... since I also said whoever but was testing the waters to see what others thought...

For whomever, even if I take to understanding it (since it's written as the right answer apparently) ... I don't understand how it reaches that conclusion! So it's being reviewed it looks like...

hassana elkoussi

Junior Member
Salam alaikum sister,

The right answer is in sha Allah "whoever' simply because " who" is used to refer to subjects, whereas " whom" is used to refer to objects. :hearts:
( though "whom" has become a bit outmoded )



Smile for Allah
I love grammar, and I love English. I used to be in honors English in college.... ah, good old days.

The proper usage is Whoever.

An easy rule of thumb is to substitute "WHO" with "HE" and "WHOM" with "HIM" and see what sounds correct.

So.. by this rule:

1. He touches Caeser's property
2. Him touches Caeser's property.

I'm sure you'll agree that 1 sounds better. Therefore, it's Whoever. :) Hope it helped, inshaAllah.

sister herb

Official TTI Chef
:lol: I am member in one forum whose admin is english teacher in university and many its members are his students or english teachers in some other places. I need to ask this question in there... as that place is already full of english grammar.

Actually sometimes I feel myself very uneducated when they are for example discussing about great dramas of Shakespeare...


Seeking Allah's Mercy

Qul HuwaAllahu Ahud!
i'll say it's the first one as it sOuNdS okay to me =D.

hehe lol don't take my word on that.i HaTe grammer and i've never quite paid attention to it's rules.that's why my posts usually confuses you guy^_^sorry!

:wasalam:wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu


Praise be to Allah!
Wa `alaykkum salaam wa rahmatullaah. Jazakillaah khairaa for thread, it just showed me how rubbish I am at english ¬_¬ (I thought it was whomever, cos it sounds good lol)

Wassalaamu `alaykkum


Staff member
Assalaamu 'alaykum wa rahmatullaah

BarakAllaahu feek, don't feel too bad, although it's interesting that 'whomever' sounds good lol... I don't think I've ever used that in a real sentense!

As in, instead of saying, "Give it to whomever you like best" I'd probably say, "Give it to whoever you like best." Although the former would be grammatically correct I believe.

And after having debated a tutor, and looked up enough websites and things to give me a headache... I've realized that there's even differences of opinions lol. Like literal debates have cropped up in asking if this is a case when it should be 'whoever' or 'whomever' ... since the point stands at whether it is an objective or subjective clause:

Beginning a dependent clause with who, whoever, whom, or whomever
Pronoun case in a dependent clause is determined by its function in the clause, no matter how that clause functions in the sentence. If the pronoun acts as a subject or subject complement in the clause, use "who" or "whoever." If the pronoun acts as an object, use "whom" or "whomever."

And it was interesting to note - when I told the person about the grammar rule of "He/Him" to find these out, she admitted that if used that way it would be 'whoever' but that because the book said whomever, and apparently it's an objective clause on there ... with "Ceasar's property" being the subject, it's correct. It ended up going around in circles honestly but alhamdulillaah now another person will review it.

I just wanted to see what the general feeling here was though! And honestly, in 'modern english' ... whomever has become a bit defunct.

Here are the general rules, as outlined in Garner's Modern American Usage:
If a verb follows "-ever," the correct choice is "whoever." Example: They praise whoever performs well. (The verb "performs" follows "whoever.")

If the word that follows the "-ever" is not a verb, the correct choice is "whomever." Example: He criticizes whomever he dislikes.

Garner adds, "If you're unsure of the correct word, choose 'whoever'; even when the objective 'whomever' would be strictly correct, the 'whoever' is at worst a casualism (in other words, not bad except in formal contexts)."



Exams:Duas please!

You can say 'whoever' as in the first example, the second is inherently incorrect.

Alternatively, if you want to sound a bit fancier 'whomSOever' also makes sense! But not 'whomever'. In any circumstances. Please.