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Why do we say 'most of whom' instead of 'most of who?'

I was editing a paper today, and I came across this and although I've always always seen 'most of whom' in any sort of writing before, it just doesn't seem right.

"...the offices will be used for assistants, most of whom will be students.'

If we're saying that 'whom' is the object here, where is the subject for 'will be?'

Is 'most' the subject? or is 'the assitants?' You would never say '...the offices will be used for assistants whom will be students,' it's obvious that the 'who' replaces 'the assistants' as the subject, and therefore we use 'who.'

No matter how I look at it, it seems that 'most of' should just be an adverb to the phrase, and 'who' should become the subject for the verb 'will be.'

My two cents? Most professional writers learn informally the difference between 'who' and 'whom' and are very quick to throw 'whom' when a preposition is involved.

Am I missing something here?
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Comments  
'Whom' is the object of the preposition 'of'.
Yes, there are a few occasions when one would say "of who": "I was not aware of who Mr. Jones was" = "I was not aware of (Mr. Jones was who)." Your analysis is very thought-provoking. Yes, you could say: The offices will be used by assistants who are students. = Only assistants who are students will be allowed to use the offices./The offices will be used by assistants, who are students.=All the assistants are students. Your sentence, however, seems to be different. It consists of two sentences: The offices will be used by assistants + Most of the assistants will be students. To combine them, you say "The offices will be used for assistants, most of whom (the assistants) will be students." In fact, you could say: The offices will be used for assistants, of whom (the assistants) most will be students.
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If we're saying that 'whom' is the object here, where is the subject for 'will be?'

Is 'most' the subject? Yes.

or is 'the assitants?' No.
_______

... will be used for assistants. Most of them will be students.

them becomes whom when you make the second sentence a relative clause.

We wouldn't say "most of they will be ..." (the analog for "most of who will be") -- although you seem to be suggesting that we should.

Emotion: smile

CJ
"... will be used for assistants. Most of them will be students.

them becomes whom when you make the second sentence a relative clause."

That's a great example, CJ, thank you!

Paul
Prepositions don't take objects. In classical languages the relative pronoun takes the case appropriate to the clause which contains it. As such a prescriptive grammarian might argue that in this case the nominative, who, is indeed correct. But I would follow usage and use 'of whom'.
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AnonymousPrepositions don't take objects.
Most grammarians today find it useful to consider the noun following the prepositin as a prepositional object.
AnonymousAs such a prescriptive grammarian might argue that in this case the nominative, who, is indeed correct.
No grammarian that I know of would argue that '...most of who will be students' is the correct form. Whilst many people, especially speakers of British English, would happily use 'most of who', the prescriptivist would insist on 'most of whom'.
"the case appropriate to the clause which contains it" should be " the case appropriate to the clause THAT contains it"
Anonymous"the case appropriate to the clause which contains it" should be " the case appropriate to the clause THAT contains it"
Which is perfectly acceptable in BrE,
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