We have both subject pronouns and object pronouns:
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.
|English clauses always have a subject.
The imperative, which is used for orders, invitations and requests, is an exception:
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.
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.
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 organizations:
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.
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)