English Pronouns: An Introduction for English Language Learners

This course is designed to be simple to learn English for Chinese students.

This article explains pronouns in English for language learners and includes areas such as personal pronouns, subject and object pronouns and first, second, third person singular and plural.

Many news items and social media use pronouns or talk about the correct pronoun for gender identity ( (man, woman, transgender etc.) but this has nothing to do with English grammar or improving your English skills.


  • Pronouns replace or refer to a noun (noun phrase)
  • John was at work all day, he was tired.
    • he refers to the noun John
  • Emma had a cup of coffee, she drank it then went out.
    • she refers to the noun Emma, it refers to the noun phrase ‘a cup of coffee’

Personal Pronouns

  • I am happy
  • You and I are learning English
  • You have a nice bag
  • She is my friend
  • He plays soccer
  • It is a cat
  • We like ice cream
  • They are students
  • She and he are siblings
  • We love our parents











she / he / it


Subject S - Verb V - Object O

Sentences in English have a S-V-O structure

  • Subject – is doing (the verb)
  • Object – (then verb) is doing to this
  • subject  –  verb  – object
  • John   played with   the ball
  • He   was sleeping in   the bed
  • A woman   is watching   TV

Subject Pronouns

pronouns shown by people

Subject pronouns are used as the subject of a sentence – I, you, he, she, it, we, they

  • I went to school
  • She was there
  • It was red
  • We went together
  • They were cold

Object Pronouns

Object pronouns are used as the object of a verb: me, you, him, her, it, us, them

  • The ball hit me
  • It is up to you
  • The car is owned by him
  • The cat looked at us
  • Share the cake between them

Image source: https://7esl.com/english-pronouns/

Possessive Pronouns

like a noun

  • mine
  • ours
  • yours
  • hers
  • his
  • its
  • theirs

like an adjective

  • my
  • our
  • your
  • her
  • his
  • its
  • their
  • to possess is to own
  • No ‘ in possessive pronouns

full list of types of pronouns

Image source: https://7esl.com/english-pronouns/

  • That book is my book – used as an adjective
  • That book is mine – used like a noun
  • Mine is the red one – used like a noun
  • That is Jon’s cat (Jon is a proper noun)
  • That is his cat (his used as a possessive adjective)
  • The cat is his. (his is used as a possessive pronoun)

Reflexive pronouns

  1. I hurt myself when I fell off the bike.
  2. She looked at herself in the mirror and smiled.
  3. He always talks to himself when he’s alone
  4. The cat is grooming itself.
  5. You need to believe in yourself to succeed.
  6. They cooked dinner themselves last night.
  7. We should be proud of ourselves for finishing the project on time.

refers to the same thing

  1. I – myself 
  2. She herself
  3. He –himself 
  4. The cat –itself
  5. You – yourself
  6. They –themselves
  7. We – ourselves 

Relative Pronouns

put phrases together

  • that
  • who
  • which
  • whom
  • whose
  • where
  • The book that I am reading is very interesting.
  • The person who won the race is my friend.
  • The car, which is blue, belongs to my brother.
  • This is the house where I grew up.
  • She is the one whom we chose as the team captain.
  • The cake that you baked was delicious.
  • The movie, which was released last week, received great reviews.
  • The man whom I met yesterday is a famous actor.
  • The dog that barks loudly lives next door.
  • The project, which took months to complete, was a huge success.


That is all for pronouns but if you want to learn more then return to parts of speech.