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Personal pronouns

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:

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


Subject and object pronouns 2


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


he, she and they 2


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


you and they 2



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)





hello, there I am glad to come across this site. I hope i will learn many things on this site. My first question, what is the difference between a clause and a sentence? Second question is what is an object in English?
Thanks in advance.

Hello stanzin22,

A clause is defined in linguistics as follows:

A clause is a grammatical unit that:

includes, at minimum, a predicate and an explicit or implied subject
expresses a proposition.

In other words, a clause contains a verb and a subject (or a verb form which implies a subject, such as an imperative) and expresses an idea. Sentences are made up of one or more clauses.


There are various definitions of 'object'. In simple terms, direct objects are the things which the verb acts upon, in contrast to subjects, which are the things which perform the verb action. Thus in the sentence 'The dog chased the cat' we can see a subject ('The dog'), a verb ('chased') and an object ('the cat'). We distinguish direct and indirect objects, and also prepositional object. For more information take a look at this page.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

thanks Peter for your quick reply

Hi every one
I have Question
is it correct to say :She is waiting me ? or i have to say She is waiting for me

Hi ahachemi,

You need to say 'waiting for' in this sentence.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team


I joined now to the this web. how many it takes to learn English?

Hello Issa,

Welcome! I'm afraid that how fast you learn depends on so many things that I don't know about you that I really can't answer your question. If you haven't already looked at them, I would suggest you try our Getting started and Frequently asked questions pages for advice on how to get the most out of our site. You're also welcome to ask any more questions you have -- the more specific, the better!

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

A very useful website. I certainly can learn and share this with my students

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I work for the Secretaría de Educación Pública, in the CECATI 115, in Toluca. I teach electricity, but for the next scolar cycle I would like to be able to teach some of English to my students.

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¿Thank you very much!

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