We are debating the use of Whoever vs Whomever in this sentence "Thanks to whoever fixed this".

What is the correct form? - Thanks to whoever fixed this - Thanks to whomever fixed this!

Any explanation will be highly appreciated.



There is some confusion here because whomever is used as an object. However, in the case the object of the sentence is not just "whomever/whoever" but the phrase "whoever did this".


The simplest and easiest rule to follow for using whomever is this one:

  • Don't ever use whomever. Ever.

Here are two good reasons for this rule (which you will not find in most grammar books):

  • Native speakers don't know how to use whomever correctly, and make mistakes all the time.
  • Whoever works in all situations, just like who works instead of whom in all situations.

There used to be well-understood grammar rules for usage of whom and its ilk. They are no longer well-understood because they have not been taught in Anglophone educational systems for a century.

Nowadays many English speakers (at least in the USA) think that whom (and whomever) are just fancy versions that one should use when being extra formal and official, sort of like dressing up special for church on Sunday. That's silly, of course, but many people believe it and practice it in their own speech.

Many of them would in fact be willing to correct anyone who used whom or whomever wrongly, by their standards. This means that even if you do know how to use these words correctly, and do so, somebody will be mentally correcting your grammar. And this is not the only silly grammatical rule around, as who knows better than ELU participants?


Thanks to whoever fixed this is correct.

Whoever or whomever will head up a dependent clause that is an island unto itself. The clause is not affected by its role in the sentence (which could be—for example—subject, subject complement, or object).

In the clause, whoever will be a subject or a subject complement. Whomever will be an object.

In your sentence, the clause whoever fixed this is preceded by a preposition, so the clause is the object of a preposition.

Ignore that.

Pull the whole clause out and make sure it works by itself . . .

It's going to need a subject, a verb, and whatever else is necessary to make it complete. Like this:

Thanks to whoever fixed this.

whoever fixed this = he fixed this

Whoever (like he) is the subject of the verb, fixed is the verb, and this is the object of the verb. Good to go. Put the clause back where you found it.

Let's try something a little different:

Give thanks to whomever you see.

whomever you see = him you see = you see him

*You is the subject of the verb, see is the verb, and whomever (like him) is the object of the verb. Good to go. Put the clause back where you found it.

One more thing . . .

Thank you, whoever you are.

whoever you are = he you are = you are he

*Whoever is a subject complement for you. (When a pronoun follows a linking verb as a subject complement, it will be a subject pronoun.)

Clauses can get complicated, and it can be hard to figure out what's a subject and what's an object. If you're in that deep, refer to @JohnLawler's answer.

Further reading: ‘Whoever’ vs. ‘Whomever’

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