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Parts of Speech - Pronouns

  • The pronoun is a word used in place of a noun, mostly to avoid repetition of nouns in a sentence
  • Nouns name objects, but pronouns mention objects without naming them. For example:
    • Noun – John told Jane to disappear
    • Pronoun – He told her to disappear
Kinds of Pronouns
  • Personal Pronouns: This helps us
    • to refer to ourselves when speaking (first person). For example, I, we, us, me, etc.
    • to refer to others/things (third person). For example, he, she, they, them, it, etc.
  • Relative Pronoun: It connects a dependent clause to the main clause in a sentence. They include who, that, which, whom, which, whose. For example:
    • The lady, who came last, is my aunt. Here ‘who’ is a relative pronoun while who came last is a relative clause
    • That is the house that John built
  • Possessive Pronoun: This denotes that something belongs to somebody. For example, mine, his, theirs, its, yours, hers, etc.
    • The book is mine
  • Reflexive Pronoun: This indicates that the doer of an action is also the receiver of the action. For example, herself, himself, itself, etc.
    • Jane cut herself
  • Interrogative Pronoun: This is used to ask questions. For example, what, who, which, why, how, etc.
    • What has the boy done?
  • Demonstrative Pronouns: This is used to identify the person or thing being referred to. For example, these, those, this, that
    • These are the books requested by Jane
Correct Use of Pronouns
  • Pronouns which are used as subjects, I, we, you, she, they, who, etc., are called Nominative Pronouns. For example:
    • I sell many books
    • We have a large garden
  • Pronouns used as complements to a verb. For example:
    • It is I
    • It is we (not us)
    • The boy is supposed to be he (not him)
    • The girls were thought to be they
  • Pronouns used as objects to verbs, me, him, her, us, you, etc., are called accusative pronouns, i.e. they can never be used to begin a sentence but are always at the receiving end of the action. For example:
    • John visits me every Sunday
    • The captain wants you
    • Olu did not write her
  • Pronouns used as objects of prepositions. For example:
    • He looks at me with wonder
    • John said much about him
    • Please send the book to us
  • Pronouns used after adjectives. For example:
    • She is as tall as he is (not him)
    • Andrew is older than I am (not me)