Daily Grammar

Lesson 144

Parts of the Sentence - Pronouns

Pronouns take the place of nounsA noun is a word that names a person, place, thing, or idea. Examples: man, city, book, and courage.  Source: Lesson 16Personal 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.

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. 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.

Possessive pronouns never have apostrophes, but possessive nouns do. Do not confuse the possessive personal pronouns its, your, and their with the contractions it's (it is, it has), you're (you are), and they're (they are).


Instructions: Tell how each italicized pronoun is used in these sentences.

1. My choice would be he.

My choice would be he.
 - predicate nominative, nominative case

2. She helped us, Jeff and me.

She helped us, Jeff and me.
 - subject, nominative case
 - direct object and appositive, objective case

3. You have visited him before.

You have visited him before.
 - subject, nominative case
 - direct object, objective case

4. The losers are you and he.

The losers are you and he.
 - predicate nominative, nominative case

5. It could have been they.

It could have been they.
 - subject and predicate nominative, nominative case

© 1996 Word Place, Inc.