What are pronouns

What are pronouns? Pronouns replace nouns. A different pronoun is required depending on two elements: the noun being replaced and the function that noun has in the sentence. In English, pronouns only take the gender of the noun they replace in the 3rd person singular form. The 2nd person plural pronouns are identical to the 2nd person singular pronouns except for the reflexive pronoun.

Subject Pronoun
Object Pronoun
Possessive Adjective (Determiner)
Possessive Pronoun
Reflexive or Intensive Pronoun
1st person singular
I
me
my
mine
myself
2nd person singular
you
you
your
yours
yourself
3rd person singular, male
he
him
his
his
himself
3rd person singular, female
she
her
her
hers
herself
3rd person singular, neutral
it
it
its

itself
1st person plural
we
us
our
ours
ourselves
2nd person plural
you
you
your
yours
yourselves
3rd person plural
they
them
their
theirs
themselves
SUBJECT PRONOUNS
Subject pronouns replace nouns that are the subject of their clause. In the 3rd person, subject pronouns are often used to avoid repetition of the subject's name.
EXAMPLES
  • I am 16.
  • You seem lost.
  • Jim is angry, and he wants Sally to apologize.
  • This table is old. It needs to be repainted.
  • We aren't coming.
  • They don't like pancakes.
OBJECT PRONOUNS
Object pronouns are used to replace nouns that are the direct or indirect object of a clause.
EXAMPLES
  • Give the book to me.
  • The teacher wants to talk to you.
  • Jake is hurt because Bill hit him.
  • Rachid recieved a letter from her last week.
  • Mark can't find it.
  • Don't be angry with us.
  • Tell them to hurry up!
POSSESSIVE ADJECTIVES (DETERMINERS)
Possessive adjectives are not pronouns, but rather determiners. It is useful to learn them at the same time as pronouns, however, because they are similar in form to the possessive pronouns. Possessive adjectives function as adjectives, so they appear before the noun they modify. They do not replace a noun as pronouns do.
EXAMPLES
  • Did mother find my shoes?
  • Mrs. Baker wants to see your homework.
  • Can Jake bring over his baseball cards?
  • Samantha will fix her bike tomorrow.
  • The cat broke its leg.
  • This is our house.
  • Where is their school?
POSSESSIVE PRONOUNS
Possessive pronouns replace possessive nouns as either the subject or the object of a clause. Because the noun being replaced doesn't appear in the sentence, it must be clear from the context.
EXAMPLES
  • This bag is mine.
  • Yours is not blue.
  • That bag looks like his.
  • These shoes are not hers.
  • That car is ours.
  • Theirs is parked in the garage.
REFLEXIVE & INTENSIVE PRONOUNS
Reflexive and intensive pronouns are the same set of words but they have different functions in a sentence.
Reflexive pronouns refer back to the subject of the clause because the subject of the action is also the direct or indirect object. Only certain types of verbs can be reflexive. You cannot remove a reflexive pronoun from a sentence because the remaining sentence would be grammatically incorrect.
EXAMPLES
  • I told myself to calm down.
  • You cut yourself on this nail?
  • He hurt himself on the stairs.
  • She found herself in a dangerous part of town.
  • The cat threw itself under my car!
  • We blame ourselves for the fire.
  • The children can take care of themselves.
Intensive pronouns emphasize the subject of a clause. They are not the object of the action. The intensive pronoun can always be removed from a sentence without changing the meaning significantly, although the emphasis on the subject will be removed. Intensive pronouns can be placed immediately after the subject of the clause, or at the end of the clause.
EXAMPLES
  • I made these cookies myself.
  • You yourself asked Jake to come.
  • The Pope himself pardoned Mr. Brown.
  • My teacher didn't know the answer herself.
  • The test itself wasn't scary, but my teacher certainly is.
  • We would like to finish the renovation before Christmas ourselves.
  • They themselves told me the lost shoe wasn't a problem.

Share this

Related Posts

Previous
Next Post »