Tuesday, September 16, 2008


This phrase is so important to proper grammatical health that I submit that a body one cannot live without it.

The phrases "It is I" and "It is me" have long been the cause of controversy.

Little Billy visited his grandmother and was standing in front of her dressing mirror, saying, "Yes, that's me."
"Billy," said his grandmother, "You should say "That is I.""
Little Billy said, "Well it may be I, but it looks like me."

Little Billy was right in his conclusion. for me is the object of the preposition unto understood.
In the vernacular, both "It is I" and "It is me" are used, and "It is me" finds greater favor with the masses. But many grammarians are against it. They insist that one must always say "It is I," never "It is me," and that the same course must be followed with every personal pronoun following the verb to be, and in apposition with its subject. That's right. It's an appositive. Remember that from high school?

This same sort of error is commonly made with such phrases as "She is better looking than me," in which, if the elliptical verb were supplied, the correct construction would readily be seen to be "She is better looking than I (am)."

Does this make sense? Let me know.

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