It were/was they/them who did that.

There are 4 possible variations of this sentence - but grammatically correct obviously only one. Which is the right way to say this sentence and others alike?

  • 1
    "It was they / them who did that". The nominative "they" is very formal, while almost everyone says "them".
    – BillJ
    Apr 1, 2018 at 17:02
  • 1
    You could also say, "It was them! They did it!"
    – godel9
    Apr 2, 2018 at 0:26

2 Answers 2


Less than four. The subject "it" requires only "was" here (being a singular pronoun) having no connection with conditional sentence.

So the rest are

It was them/they who did that.

  • "Fewer" than four.
    – user103227
    Oct 17, 2019 at 10:15

Most people say "It was them".

A couple of centuries ago, some grammarians made up rules to make English more like Latin (and sell more grammar books), and taught people that it should be "It was they": generations of teachers have taught that form, and some people still say it.

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