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Pronouns

Pronouns

by Owen Fourie

A Useful Tabulation for Easy Reference

A pronoun is a word that stands in the place of a noun.

Put simply, you would not say or write,

Emma likes Emma’s car (unless there are two distinct people of the same name in the same place at the same time, but even then it will sound odd).

It would be far better to use a pronoun and say,

Emma likes her car (and let a further statement clarify the fact if it is a different Emma’s car, but ordinarily we would take this to be referring to the one and only Emma’s car).

The following tabulation is intended for your benefit as you study personal pronouns. It will also serve as a reference point for the next post in which we’ll consider pronoun-antecedent agreement.


ENGLISH PRONOUNS

First Person & Second Person

including possessive pronouns and possessive adjectives (having similar forms to pronouns but serving as adjectives)

Person

First Person

Second Person

Number Singular Plural Singular Plural
Gender
Subject I we you you
Object me us you you
Possessive mine, my ours, our yours, your yours, your
Reflexive / Intensive myself ourselves yourself yourselves

ENGLISH PRONOUNS

Third Person

including possessive pronouns and possessive adjectives (having similar forms to pronouns but serving as adjectives)

Person

Third Person

Number Singular Plural Relative
Gender Masculine Feminine Neuter
Subject he she it they who
Object him her it them whom
Possessive his, his hers, her its, its theirs, their whose
Reflexive / Intensive himself herself itself themselves

In this tabulation, you can easily identify the person (first, second, or third) and the number (singular or plural) of a pronoun and how it is used (as subject, object, possessive, reflexive or intensive).

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If you need help with any grammar problem, ask here. How are you learning English Grammar? How useful are grammar textbooks to you? How would you describe them—clear, confusing, boring? What confusing experiences have you had with pronouns? Do you have any useful insights? What are your particular struggles? Your comments, observations, and questions are welcome.

Here are more articles to help you with English words, grammar, and essay writing.

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