who telephoned

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simonaj

Senior Member
italian, Italy
I have another question: "Who telephoned to"? or " Who telephoned?"
Are these sentences correct?
Thanks.
 
  • GenJen54

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    Here's a "real life" scenario. Let's say I'm cooking dinner when the phone rings. My husband picks up the phone and talks for a while.

    When he comes into the kitchen, I might ask something like:

    Who phoned?
    Who was on the phone?

    Who phoned to
    is not correct.Who telephoned is correct, but just not really colloquial. In fact, I don't know that I've ever heard anyone say that.
     

    Catbat

    Member
    England - English
    Who telephoned? works as a whole sentence. Who telephoned to? needs more afterwards, for example, who telephoned to say they were arriving?
     

    Catbat

    Member
    England - English
    GenJen54 said:
    Here's a "real life" scenario. Let's say I'm cooking dinner when the phone rings. My husband picks up the phone and talks for a while.

    When he comes into the kitchen, I might ask something like:

    Who phoned?
    Who was on the phone?

    Who phoned to is not correct.Who telephoned is correct, but just not really colloquial. In fact, I don't know that I've ever heard anyone say that.
    Yes, I agree. although telephoned is just the longer version of 'phoned, not a different word. Xx
     

    simonaj

    Senior Member
    italian, Italy
    Then maybe I didn't understand:"who telephoned" is not colloquial but "who phoned"?
    And if I called someone and my mother want to ask who I called, she should say: Did you phone? Is it correct?
    Thank you again.
     

    mariposita

    Senior Member
    US, English
    And if I called someone and my mother want to ask who I called, she should say: Did you phone? Is it correct?

    If you did the calling she would say:
    Who did you call?
    Who did you phone?
    Who was that on the phone?
    Who were you on the phone with?
    With whom were you on the phone? (If she's an English teacher.)

    If someone called you:
    Who called?
    Who phoned?
    Who was that on the phone?
    Who were you on the phone with?
    With whom were you on the phone? (If she's an English teacher.)

    In the US, we don't really use to phone or to telephone (though we understand it just fine). We just say to call, or to make a call, or to use the phone.
     

    GenJen54

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    Catbat said:
    Yes, I agree. although telephoned is just the longer version of 'phoned, not a different word.
    Hi Catbat,

    I was simply trying to point out the colloquial use of the word. Most often (at least where I am from), we use phone, not telephone, in everyday speech.

    While I agree that it is a shortened version of telephone, you might wish to note that it has achieved status as a stand-alone (without the tele - as listed in WR's very own dictionary here.
     
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