Pronoun is a word that is used instead of a noun, which has already been mentioned or is already known. Pro means ‘for’, so the word pronoun’ means a word used for a noun.
Compare the following two groups of sentences:
1. Suhasini is a good girl.Suhasini always comes first. Suhasini obeys the teacher. Everybody praises Suhasini.
2. Gaurika is a good girl. She always comes first. She obeys the teacher. Everybody
You will notice that the second set of sentences sounds better. It Is easier and nicer to
say ‘She’ or ‘her’ than to repeat the noun ‘Suhasini’ every time. She or ‘her has been used
in place of noun ‘Suhasini’. ‘She’ or ‘her’ is a Pronoun.
Kinds of Pronouns
Pronouns can be classified into the following categories:
1. Personal Pronoun
2. Possessive Pronoun.
3. Demonstrative Pronoun
4. Interrogative Pronoun.
5. Reflexive Pronoun.
6. Emphatic Pronoun
7 Relative Pronoun.
8. Indefinite Pronoun.
9. Distributive Pronoun
1. Personal Pronouns:
Study the following sentences:
I am playing.
We are playing
You are playing
He is playing
She is playing
They are playing
Here, I. we, you, he she, they are called Personal Pronouns because they stand for the following three persons
• Person or persons speaking, as and I and we.
• Person or persons spoken, to as You.
• Person or persons spoken. of as He,She. They, etc.
So, there are three types of personal pronouns: First Person, Second Person and Third
Forms of Personal Pronouns: Most of the Personal pronouns have different forms according to their number, gender and case. The forms of the Personal pronouns are set out below:
First Person (Masculine Feminine)
Second Person (Masculine or Feminine)
Third Person (Masculine or Feminine)
2. Possessive Pronouns:
Possessive Pronouns are those pronouns that indicate possession or relationship.
This car mine.
That shirt is here.
Pronouns as Mine, ours, yours, his, hers, theirs are possessive nouns.
3. Demonstrative Pronouns:
Demonstrative Pronouns are those pronouns that point out something.
This is my pen.
These are my books.
That is my house.
Those are your books,
In the above sentences, this, these, that,those, such are used to point out i.e
demonstrate the object or objects for which they are used. This and these refer to things near at hand. That and those refer to things lying at a distance. They are, therefore,
4. Interrogative Pronouns:
Interrogative Pronouns are those that are used for asking a question.
1. Who made that noise?
2. What is the matter?
3. Which is your book?
4. Whom do you want to see?
5. Whose is this pen?
The pronouns who, what, which, whom, whose are used for asking question. They are, therefore, interrogative pronouns.
5. Reflexive Pronouns:
Reflexive Pronouns are those that refer back to the subject.
1. I blame myself for it.
2. We often talk to ourselves.
3. He hanged himself.
4. You will enjoy yourselves.
5.The horse has hurt itself.
6. She put herself to trouble for nothing.
7.They always talk about themselves.
The pronouns myself, ourselves, yourself, yourselves, himself, herself, themselves,itself in these sentences behave like objects of the verbs, but they refer to the same persons as the subjects of the verbs. Therefore, these are reflexive pronouns.
6. Emphatic Pronouns:
Emphatic Pronouns are those that are used for putting emphasis on the subject.
1. I myself was there.
2. We ourselves served the guests.
3. He himself told me this.
4. She herself insulted me.
5.They themselves went there.
6. The town itself fell.
The pronouns myself, ourselves, yourself, himself, herself, themselves, itself in these sentences are used with a noun or pronoun for the sake of emphasis. They are, therefore,called emphatic pronouns.
7. Relative Pronouns:
Relative Pronouns are those that refer to the nouns or pronouns mentioned before. These pronouns join two sentences and refer back to nouns going before them.
1. This is the man who stole my purse.
2. This is the boy whose nature is good.
3. This is the girl whom the teacher praised.
4. This is the horse which won the race.
5. This is the house that Jack built.
In the above sentences, the words who, whose, whom, that, which join two sentences are also used for the noun man, boy, girl. house, horse, respectively, which are used before them in the sentences. They are, therefore, called relative pronouns.
Use of Relative Pronouns:
Relative Pronouns are used in the following situations:
• Who is used for persons nouns or pronouns) only. It may refer to singular or plural nouns or pronouns.
1. The boy who works hard succeeds.
2. The man who saw the tricks were surprised.
3. He who is honest is loved by all.
4. They never fail who die in a great cause.
• Which is used for animals and non-living things. It may refer to singular or plural
1. The horse which won the race is Vikram’s.
2. The horses which we bought are not good.
3. The book which you gave me is interesting.
4. The pens which we lost have been found.
• That is used for persons, animals and things.It may refer to singular or plural nouns.
1. He is the wisest man that ever lived.
2. These are the boys that can be trusted.
3. This is the ring that I lost yesterday.
4. These are the books that I have read.
• Whom is also used for persons.
1. The lady whom you met in the market is my mother.
2. The boys to whom you gave oranges are my nephews.
• Whose is used both for persons and things.
1.The chair whose leg is broken is mine.
2. The children whose parents are doctors are very intelligent.
8. Indefinite Pronouns:
Indefinite pronouns are those that refer to persons or things in general and don’t point to anyone or anything in particular.
1. One must not criticise others.
2.Some are born great.
3. All are not invited to today’s party.
4.Few men are rich.
5. Many of them fell sick due to overeating.
6. Anybody can come and watch the hockey match.
7. Nobody knows what is going on.
8. There is someone at the door, go and see who is there.
9. Distributive Pronouns:
Distributive Pronouns are those that refer to persons or things taken a single or in a group. It is always singular and is followed by a singular verb.
Each of the boys deserves to pass with good marks.
Everyone of you must come to my birthday party.
You can take either of the boys.
Either of you can do this job.
Each of them worked hard.
Neither of the statements is true.
When speaking about more than two persons or things, any, no one, none should
1. Any of these dresses can be taken.
2. No one offered to help.
3. None But fools would do it.
Note: Each, either and neither when followed by singular nouns are used at adjectives and are hence called distributive adjectives.
1. Each girl got a prize.
2. Neither song is popular.
3. At either bank of the river was a boat.
Reciprocal Pronouns are used to denote reciprocity or mutuality of actions done by the subjects. There are called reciprocal pronouns as they reciprocate the actions done by the two persons or things (subject of a sentence). In a sentences, the reciprocal pronoun comes after the verb.
Neha and Namita should have love and cooperation with each other.
The two rivals accused each other of corruption and foul deals.
The twins love and completely understand each other.
They all spoke against one another.
“Each of you should recite this poem as your turn comes.” said the teacher.
Use of the Pronoun ‘It’
The pronoun ‘It’ is used in the following situations:
To refer to animals or non-living things.
It is a nice lamp.
I have a horse. It is brown in colour.
To Refer to time, weather, temperature and distance.
It is Saturday today.
It will be summer in the next month.
It was 25°C in the morning.
It is just 40 kilometres to Mumbai.
In interrogative and exclamatory sentences:
Who is there behind the tree?
What a wonderful drama it is !
To emphasise something:
It was my mother who inculcated values in me.
It is a true friend who helps in time of need.
To Use as a subject before the verb to be.
It’s my turn now.
It is never too late to learn something.
Agreement of pronoun with the noun
As you know pronouns are used in place of nouns, so they must agree with nouns. This agreement follow certain conditions:
• The pronouns must agree with the gender and number of the nouns for which they
Namitha is a good girl, She is very innocent.
There were three boys in the field. They were playing cricket.
If two or more singular nouns are joined by ‘and, then the personal pronouns for them is used in plural form.
Sneha and Maria are friends. They are very good singers.
Mohan and Johnson working hard. They have to win the prize
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