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Possible Duplicate:
“It is they who lied” or “it is them who lied?”

Why does "most of..." take an object pronoun, such as them, and not they? Do all prepositional constructs do this?

marked as duplicate by tchrist, MetaEd, Kristina Lopez, cornbread ninja 麵包忍者, Robusto Jan 22 '13 at 1:31

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It's because when a single pronoun follows a preposition it's in the accusative case.

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    Right. In fact, they only occurs as the subject of a tensed clause; for any other use, them is the preferred form. – John Lawler Jan 21 '13 at 20:08
  • @JohnLawler, even when used as a predicate nominative? I think that may be true for spoken English, but for written, it seems a little unusual. – thang Jan 21 '13 at 20:33
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    It was they at the door? Naah. – John Lawler Jan 21 '13 at 20:36
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    @thang. When a personal pronoun is the subject predicative of a clause it is normally accusative. For example, 'Who’s making all that noise?’ ‘I’m not sure, but I think it must be them again.’ However, it is in the nominative when it is postmodified, as in It is they who are to blame for this. – Barrie England Jan 21 '13 at 20:53
  • That's a pet peeve of mine. – Malvolio Jan 21 '13 at 22:02

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