Subject Pronouns

English Grammar

The subject of a sentence is a person or thing that performs the action of the verb.

Subject pronouns are used to replace the subject (person or thing) of a verb.

We do NOT normally say:

  • John is tall and John is intelligent.

Saying the word "John" twice is repetitive and does not sound natural.

We replace the Subject (John) that appears the second time with a subject pronoun to avoid repetition (and in this case to avoid saying the name John again.)

So we would say:

  • John is tall and he is intelligent.

We replace the second "John" with the Subject Pronoun "He".

What are the subject pronouns in English?

These are the subject pronouns we use in English

Singular or Plural - Who? Masculine or Feminine
I Singular - first person masculine or feminine
You Singular - second person masculine or feminine
He Singular - third person only masculine
She Singular - third person only feminine
It Singular - third person object / thing / animal
We Plural - first person masculine or feminine
You Plural - second person masculine or feminine
They Plural - third person masculine or feminine

When do you use IT?

IT is normally used when we refer to objects, things, animals or ideas (and not normally people).

  • The dog is big. It is also hairy. (It = the dog)
  • My bed is small but it is comfortable. (It = my bed)

Sometimes when we don't know the sex of a baby (we don't know if it is a boy or girl), then we can use IT.

  • Their baby is very small. It only weighs 2 kilos. (It = the baby.)

We use IT we when talk about the time, weather or temperature.

  • It is five o'clock (= the time is five o'clock)
  • It is cold today. (= the weather is cold today.)
  • It is 30º outside right now. (= the temperature is 30º outside right now)

Subject Pronouns Chart

Here is a chart with cartoons showing the different Subject Pronouns we use in English:

Subject Pronouns in English

Next activity

See our notes about Object Pronouns to compare the difference.

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Last Updated: 19 December 2014
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