Level: beginner

We have both subject pronouns and object pronouns:

Subject Object
I me
you you
he him
she her
it it
we us
you you
they them

We use subject pronouns as the subject of a verb:

I like your dress.
You are late.
He is my friend.
It is raining.
She is on holiday.
We live in England.
They come
from London.

Be careful!

English clauses always have a subject.

His father has just retired. > He was a teacher. (NOT Was a teacher.)
I'm waiting for my wife.She is late. (NOT Is late.)

The imperative, which is used for orders, invitations and requests, is an exception:

Stop!
Go away.
Please come to dinner tomorrow.
Play it again, please.

If there is no other subject, we use it or there. We call this a dummy subject.

We use object pronouns as the object of a verb:

Can you help me, please?
I can see you.
She doesn't like him.
I saw her in town today.
We saw them in town yesterday, but they didn't see us.

and after prepositions:

She is waiting for me.
I'll get it for you.
Give it to him.
Why are you looking at her?
Don't take it from us.
I'll speak to them.

Subject and object pronouns 1

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Subject and object pronouns 2

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he, she and they

We use he/him to refer to men, and she/her to refer to women. When we are not sure if we are talking about a man or a woman, we use they/them:

This is Jack. He's my brother. I don't think you have met him.
This is Angela. She's my sister. Have you met her before?
You could go to a doctor. They might help you.
Talk to a friend. Ask them to help you.

he, she and they 1

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he, she and they 2

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you and they

We use you to talk about people in general, including the speaker and the hearer:

You can buy this book everywhere. = This book is on sale everywhere.
You can't park here. = Parking is not allowed here.

We use they/them to talk about institutions and organisations:

They serve good food here. (they = the restaurant)
Ask them for a cheaper ticket. (them = the airline)

especially the government and the authorities:

They don't let you smoke in here. 
They are going to increase taxes.
They are building a new motorway. 
They say it’s going to rain tomorrow.

you and they 1

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you and they 2

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it

We use it to talk about ourselves:

  • on the telephone:

Hello. It's George.

  • when other people cannot see us:

It's me. It's Mary. (Mary is knocking on the door.)

We also use it to talk about other people:

  • when we point people out for the first time:

Look. It's Paul McCartney.
Who's that? I think it's John's brother.

  • when we cannot see someone and we ask them for their name:

Hello. Who is it? (someone answering the phone)
Who is it? (someone about to answer the door)

it

MultipleChoice_MTkxMTI

 

Comments

Hello,
Which form of the pronoun is correct after ‘like’ ?
Children like he should be taught...
Or
Children like him should be taught...

Regards,
Petals

Hello Petals,

In cases like these, 'like' is a preposition, and pronouns go in their object form after prepositions. Therefore, the correct sentence is the second one (with 'him').

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello, everyone. I see some non-native learners find some difficulty about pronouns, but anyway, English pronouns are very "logical" and easy to grasp. Our language, Japanese are not logical, in a way since Japanese has no personal pronouns at all. I used to be a Japanese teacher for foreigners and we teach them "わたし(watashi)" is "I", but it is NOT, in fact. There are more words meaning "I" in Japanese and we use one of them depending on who speaks, where that person speaks, to whom that person speaks etc. We do not have one common pronoun as "I" in Japanese and this makes even us, native Japanese, confused in some cases. Best wisher for non-native English learners!

Thanks Peter or Kirk. I want to ask...

"Don't worry, he's a bit strange sometimes. Just ignore him"
I have a mistake at this sentence. My answer is "just ignore it" cause I mean that just ignore a bit strange. "just ignore it" is right ?

"Have you talked to a lawyer?
They can tell you your rights."
we ask "have you talked to a lawyer", "a" word is special in this case to press the question, right?, if not why we add "a" word in the question? if we ask "have you talked to lawyer" is ok ?

Hello mitykg,

I don't see a mistake in your first sentence. 'him' is better than 'it', because he is what is strange, not some inanimate object.

In English, we usually use an article ('a' or 'an', or 'the') before a profession. In this case, 'a' is best because we're not speaking about a specific lawyer that has already been mentioned. If you omitted the 'a' the sentence would not be grammatically correct.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello, i have a question......Where do you want these bags? Shall I put it over here ?

True or false. If false, can you give me explanation. Thank you

Hello caerdydd1234,

I'm not sure what you mean by 'true or false', but I guess you are asking if the sentences are grammatically correct or not. The answer is that there is a grammatical mistake. The noun 'bags' is plural and so you need to say 'them' not 'it' in the second sentence:

Where do you want these bags? Shall I put them over here ?

After you click 'Finish' you can click 'Show answers' to see what the correct answer to each question in the task is.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,
you write "If there is no other subject we use it or there. We call this a dummy subject."
but I think you need to write "them" and not "there" :)

Hello poli.gianfranco,

Thanks for telling us about this, but it is correct. An example of 'there' as a dummy subject is 'There are many tourists in Rome'. Does that make sense?

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,

I m facing difficulty in identifying subjective and object pronouns in questions.
Can you please tell me which are subjective and object pronouns in below sentences?

1. What would you all like to eat?
2. You get a money.
3. John, do you need any help?

Thanks
Harini

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