Unit 0

Subject personal pronouns

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Introduction

Pronouns [pronombres] are those words that replace nouns (people, animals, events, or things) to avoid repetition.

Subject personal pronouns [pronombres personales sujeto] replace to the subject to which they refer.

Form

Subject personal pronouns are used instead of the subject – they are distinguished by number (singular and plural) and gender (masculine and feminine). Within a sentence, they are placed in the subject position.

Subject personal pronouns are: yoél/ella/usted*, nosotros/-asvosotros/-as y ellos/ellas/ustedes and they are divided according to gender and number in the following way:

Masculino Femenino
1.ª sing. yo yo
2.ª sing.
3.ª sing. él ella
1.ª pl. nosotros nosotras
2.ª pl. vosotros vosotras
3.ª pl. ellos ellas

They are usually omitted in a sentence when the verbal form corresponds to the subject since the verbal form can understand the subject, and it is not necessary or acceptable to mention it. The subject personal pronouns are also not used with the impersonal form of the verb haber (hay).

* There are polite pronouns used in a formal context (with strangers, older people, superiors) to express respect. The singular form used is usted, and the plural form used is ustedes. These pronouns coincide with the verbal form of the third person.

Example

  1. Yo tengo el pelo azul;
  2. ¿Has visto los dos gatitos de María? No, ella no me los ha enseñado;
  3. ¿Tu hijo habla inglés? Sí, él es muy listo;
  4. Nosotros somos daneses, ¿y vosotros?
  5. Ellas tocan tres pianos y ellos tocan una guitarra;
  6. ¿Aún no ha venido el chico nuevo alemán? No, él siempre se retrasa.

Use

Subject personal pronouns are used:

  1. To denote or represent people, animals, or things;
  2. To refer to facts that are already known to the speaker and listener;
  3. To answer questions referring to the subject;
  4. To express a contrast between two subjects;
  5. To emphasize who/what is doing an action;
  6. Instead of the subject referred to in the sentence.

Summary

Subject personal pronouns are used as the subject of the verb or avoid repetition of the person or thing mentioned above. They are differentiated according to number (singular, plural) and gender (masculine, feminine) and are placed before verbs. In Spanish, there is also a polite form (usted, ustedes).

They are: yo, tú, él, ella, usted, nosotros/as, vosotros/as, ellos, ellas, ustedes.

For example:

– «Ella va al instituto.»Ella is the subject of the action and can be omitted («va al instituto»).

– «Jorge está en casa. Ana acaba de hablar con él = Él of the second sentence refers to Jorge of the first sentence.

NOTE: Subject personal pronouns are not used much because most of the time, the subject can be understood by the form of the verb.

Check the contents of the {Form} section. Then move on to the {Example} section, which shows you the usage in context.

Exercises


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Español (original) | français | Italiano | Polskie

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