Daily Grammar

Lesson 138

Parts of the Sentence - Pronouns

Pronouns take the place of nouns. Personal pronounsPersonal pronouns refer to (1) the speaker or speakers, (2) those spoken to, or (3) those spoken about.  Source: Lesson 21 have what is called case. Case means that a different form of a pronoun is used for different parts of the sentence. There are three cases: nominative, objective, and possessive. Many mistakes are made in the use of nominative and objective case pronouns. Memorizing each list will help you use them correctly.

Nominative case pronouns are I, she, he, we, they, and who. They are used as subjectsThe subject tells who or what about the verb.  Source: Lesson 91, predicate nominativesA predicate nominative or predicate noun completes a linking verb and renames the subject. It is a complement or completer because it completes the verb. Predicate nominatives complete only linking verbs. The verb in a sentence having a predicate nominative can always be replaced by the word equals.  Source: Lesson 102, and appositivesAn appositive is a word or group of words that identifies or renames the noun or pronoun that it follows. It is set off by commas unless closely tied to the word that it identifies or renames. ("Closely tied" means that it is needed to identify the word.) An appositive can follow any noun or pronoun.  Source: Lesson 128 when used with a subject or predicate nominative.


Objective case pronouns are me, her, him, us, them, and whom. They are used as direct objectsA direct object receives the action performed by the subject. The verb used with a direct object is always an action verb. Another way of saying it is that the subject does the verb to the direct object.
Source: Lesson 109
, indirect objectsAn indirect object is really a prepositional phrase in which the preposition to or for is not stated but understood. It tells to whom or for whom something is done. The indirect object always comes between the verb and the direct object. Example: She gave me a gift.  Source: Lesson 191, objects of the prepositionA preposition is a word that begins a prepositional phrase and shows the relationship between its object and another word in the sentence. A preposition must always have an object. A prepositional phrase starts with a preposition, ends with an object, and may have modifiers between the proposition and object of the preposition.  Source: Lesson 71, and appositives when used with one of the objects. (We will learn about indirect objects and objects of the preposition in later lessons.) (You and it are both nominative and objective case.)

Possessive case pronouns are my, mine, your, yours, his, her, hers, its, our, ours, your, yours, their, and theirs. They are used to show ownership.


Instructions: Choose the correct form of the pronoun and tell why you chose it.

1. (Who, Whom) did you send?

Whom did you send?
  - direct object, objective case

2. The man saw (them, they) outside.

The man saw them outside.
  - direct object, objective case

3. Had the girls met (he, him) before?

Had the girls met him before?
  - direct object, objective case

4. The boss helped (we, us), Tom and (I, me).

The boss helped us, Tom and me.
  - direct object and appositive, objective case

5. I saw (she, her) at the door.

I saw her at the door.
  - direct object, objective case

© 1996 Word Place, Inc.