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Parts of Speech: Pronouns

Updated on December 4, 2014

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Pronouns makes speeches interesting.
Pronouns makes speeches interesting. | Source

Definition of Pronouns

Pronouns are words that are used as substitutes for nouns or noun phrase. There are different kinds of pronouns.

Kinds of Pronouns

1. Personal Pronouns refer to the person speaking, person being spoken to, or person or thing spoken of. This is divided into three forms. The forms of personal pronouns are discussed below.

a. First Person refers to the speaker.

Example of Pronouns in First Person


Sentence examples for First Person

Singular :

▪ I am a singer.

▪ My table is clean.

Plural :

▪ We are singers.

▪ Our tables are clean.

b. Second Person refers to the person being spoken to.

Example of Pronouns in Second Person

Note: The singular and plural forms of the second person pronouns are the same.

Sentence Examples for Second Person

Singular : You are eating pasta.

Plural : You are all eating pasta.

The sentence examples for singular form means only one person is eating pasta while the plural form means there are more than one person are eating pasta.

c. Third Person refers to the person or thing being spoken of.

Example of Pronouns in Third Person

Except it and its, the rest of the personal pronouns in third person refer to persons.

Sentence Example for Third Person

Singular : She is attending the meeting.

Plural : They are attending the meeting.

2. Compound Personal Pronouns

Some personal pronouns like my, her, him, your, them, our and it are added with self (singular) or selves (plural). These combined words are called compound personal pronouns. When using these compound personal pronouns, antecedents must be employed. An antecedent is a noun for which a pronoun stands.

This shows the antecedent and compound personal pronoun in a sentence.
This shows the antecedent and compound personal pronoun in a sentence. | Source

3. Interrogative Pronouns

Interrogative pronouns introduce questions. What, which, who, whom, and whose are interrogative pronouns. Check the given examples for more information.

Sentence Examples for Interrogative Pronouns

Here are some sentence examples.

▪ What is your favorite movie?

▪ Which font style do you prefer to apply?

▪ Who is your father?

▪ Whom shall say is calling?

▪ Whose book is this?

4. Demonstrative Pronouns

Demonstrative pronouns point out a specific person, place, or thing. This, that, these, and those are demonstrative pronouns. This (singular) and these (plural) refer to person or thing being pointed out nearby or just mentioned. On the hand, that (singular) and those (plural) refer to person or thing in far distance or not present.

Sentence Examples for Demonstrative Pronouns

▪ This is my computer.

▪ That is my computer.

▪ These are my phones.

▪ Those are my phones.

An orange is pointed out by the speaker.
An orange is pointed out by the speaker. | Source

5. Indefinite Pronouns

Indefinite pronouns refer to non-specific person, place, or thing.

Example of Indefinite Pronouns According to Type

anybody, anyone, everybody, everyone,
someone,everyone, no one
nobody, somebody,
each, either
each, other, neither, either
each, other, neither, either

Example of Indefinite Pronouns According to Number

no one

6. Relative Pronouns

Relative pronouns connect groups of words to another idea in a particular sentence. The relative pronouns are that, which, who, whom, and whose. Read the given examples hereunder.

Sentence Examples for Relative Pronouns

▪ The doctor whom Sheila admires is from Canada.

▪ Diether gave me the perfume that I wanted to buy for my birthday.

▪ The police caught the gangs who recruited children to sell drugs.

7. Possessive Pronouns

Possessive pronouns are pronouns that show ownership. The common possessive pronouns are my, mine, your, yours, his, hers, its, ours, theirs and whose. To understand more about possessive pronouns, the sentence examples are provided below.

Sentence Examples for Possessive Pronouns

▪ This is my phone.

The pronoun my indicates ownership of the phone.

▪ This phone is yours.

The pronoun yours indicates ownership of the phone.

Using an apostrophe to the above said pronouns do not indicate possession.

▪ It’s a meaningful song.

“It’s” does not show ownership. It is a contraction of the words “it” and “is”.

For some pronouns, an apostrophe and s are used to display ownership. The indefinite pronouns like anyone, everybody, someone and many more are added with an apostrophe and s in the end to show ownership.

Example of Possessive Indefinite Pronouns

another’s spoon
someone’s notebook
anyone’s book
no one’s hope
everybody’s house
everyone’s journey
nobody’s choice
others’ wives

8. Gender Pronouns

Gender pronouns are pronouns that refer to gender. There are four gender pronouns in grammar. These are masculine, feminine, common and neuter genders.

Example of Gender Pronouns

"He" and "She" are used to label rest rooms.
"He" and "She" are used to label rest rooms. | Source

9. Number Pronouns

Number pronouns are regarded as singular or plural depending on their use. When the pronouns all, any, some, and none refer to a number, they are regarded as plural. When they refer to quantity or a mass, they are regarded as singular.

Sentence Examples for Number Pronouns

Singular Form:

▪ There is no spare paper in the supply office. All of it has been used already.

Plural Form:

All members are marching.

10. Compound Antecedent Pronouns

Compound antecedent pronouns can be singular or plural. If both antecedents are singular and refer to different persons or things, the compound antecedent is regarded as plural. Same rule applies when one of the antecedents is plural. Therefore, the pronoun that refers to the compound antecedents must be plural as well.

On the other hand, if both antecedents are singular and refer to the same person, place or thing, the compound antecedent is regarded as singular. A singular pronoun must also be used.

Sentence Examples for Compound Antecedent Pronouns

Singular Sentence:

▪ Toni and Alex will have their concert next year.

▪ Toni, Alex and the Maroon 5 members will have their concert next year.

Plural Sentence:

▪ The manager and owner of the restaurant gave 30% discount for his dine-in costumers yesterday.

▪ The science teacher and subject coordinator refuses her friend for a lunch date.

11. Pronouns for Collective Nouns

Pronouns for collective nouns can also be singular or plural in form. Singular pronouns are used when the members of the collective noun are acting as unit or as one. On the other hand, plural pronouns are used when the members of the group are acting independently. Read the examples below.

Singular Sentence Example:

▪ The class performed its dance number.

Plural Sentence Example:

▪ The class performed their respective dance number.

Check your Understanding about Pronouns

© 2014 Pinky de Garcia

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    • sweetpikez profile imageAUTHOR

      Pinky de Garcia 

      5 years ago

      Hello, Frank!

      Thanks for visiting my hub and leaving a comment of appreciation.

      Best regards.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      5 years ago from Shelton

      academically useful hub.. good share my friend

    • sweetpikez profile imageAUTHOR

      Pinky de Garcia 

      5 years ago

      Hi, kim!

      I agree with you. Adults like us tend to forget the basic. Thanks for the comment.

      Best regards.

    • sweetpikez profile imageAUTHOR

      Pinky de Garcia 

      5 years ago

      Thanks online4!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      For whom was this created? Smiles. I know lots of folks who could use a pronoun review- myself included. Great Job!



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