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Posts Tagged ‘personal pronouns’

by Jake Beus

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October 19th, 2011

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Spanish Subject Pronouns

A subject pronoun replaces a noun that names the subject in a clause or sentence. You place a subject pronoun at the beginning of a clause or sentence and before the verb. Pronouns replace nouns that are understood either because of previous use or from context. Here are the Spanish subject pronouns (also called personal pronouns) in English and Spanish.

I | yo
you | tú (informal)
you | usted (formal)
he | él
she | ella
we | nosotros (masculine)
we | nosotras (feminine)
you (as in you all) | vosotros (informal, masculine)
you (as in you all) | vosotras (informal, feminine)
they | ellos (masculine)
they | ellas (feminine)
you (as in you all) | ustedes (formal)

I will write more about Spanish verb conjugation in a future post, but for now it is important to understand that Spanish verbs must be conjugated. I suggest trying out the Visual Link Spanish Verb Courses so that you can master Spanish verb conjugation. You can get a free 7-day trial download and have access to the courses for 7 days by visiting the Visual Link Spanish Free Trial Download page.

It is often not necessary to say or write the subject pronoun in Spanish, because the conjugated form of the verb indicates the subject. In Spanish, it is only necessary to include the subject pronoun for one of the following reasons:

1. Clarity. In the third person, including the subject pronoun allows you to differentiate between él and ella or ellos and ustedes. Look at these examples:

They need to listen. | (Ellos) necesitan escuchar.
You (all) need to listen. | (Ustedes necesitan escuchar.
He needs to listen. | (Él) necesita escuchar.
She needs to listen. | (Ella) necesita escuchar.

2. Emphasis. To emphasize the difference between two subjects, even though they are both understood, include the subject pronoun. Look at these examples:

I live in an apartment, but you live in a house! | ¡Yo vivo en un apartamento, pero tú vives en una casa!
I want to learn Spanish, but you want to learn French. | Yo quiero aprender español, pero tú quieres aprender francés.

I hope you learned at least a little bit! There will be more Spanish grammar lessons coming soon!

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