a man who/no matter who/whoever

avidsuper

Senior Member
Japanese
Here is a test item on the attributive clause:

______ breaks the law will be punished.
A) anyone B) one C) a man who D) no matter who (and for the matter, E. whoever-- I offer the option for dicussion)

The answer provided is C, but why D is not ok? And how about "Whoever"? Is it ok to say "whoever breaks the law will be punished"?
 
  • velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    Your suggestion of "whoever" is much better. "A man" sounds a little strange, and it would be frowned on since it seems to exclude women and children.

    I don't think D is quite grammatical. I would go for:
    "No matter who breaks the law, they will be punished."
     

    avidsuper

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    Your suggestion of "whoever" is much better. "A man" sounds a little strange, and it would be frowned on since it seems to exclude women and children.

    I don't think D is quite grammatical. I would go for:
    "No matter who breaks the law, they will be punished."
    Thank you, velisarius! So "no matter who" and "whoever" are not always interchangeable? I thought they are. How about in the sample sentence that you gave? Can we say "whoever breaks the law, they (he or she) will be punished"?
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    Can we say "whoever breaks the law, they (he or she) will be punished"?
    "They/ he or she" is superfluous here.

    I think that in D it is required, and they aren't quite interchangeable.

    No matter who comes to my party, he will be admitted - even if he hasn't been invited.
    Whoever comes to my party will be admitted - even if he hasn't been invited.
     

    avidsuper

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    "They/ he or she" is superfluous here.

    I think that in D it is required, and they aren't quite interchangeable.

    No matter who comes to my party, he will be admitted - even if he hasn't been invited.
    Whoever comes to my party will be admitted - even if he hasn't been invited.
    All is clear. Thank you very much!
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top