Object Pronouns for intermediate learners

Pronouns that can take the place of an object are called object pronouns. In this article, you will get to know different kinds of object pronouns.

Object Pronouns in the English Grammar

What Are Object Pronouns?

Object pronouns (also called objective pronouns) are basic and important structures in English and they function as the receiver of the action in the sentence.

They are used instead of object nouns in sentences to avoid repetition. We have seven object pronouns in English. Study the table below:

English Object Pronouns

Object Pronouns
1st Person Singular Me
2nd Person Singular You
3rd Person Singular (Female) Her
3rd Person Singular (Male) Him
3rd Person Singular (Non-human) It
1st Person Plural Us
2nd Person Plural You
3rd Person Plural Them

Look at the following examples:

She gave me her pancakes.

I took her to the library yesterday.

They told us to wait here for the professor.

He read 'Alice in Wonderland' to me last night.

Warning!

When using a pronoun to replace an object noun in a sentence, it is important to use an object pronoun rather than a subject pronoun.

I gave her my stuff to carry. (Not I gave she…)

Third Person Singular Pronouns

When we want to refer to singular object pronouns, we must pay attention to the object noun's gender. In the list below are all third-person object pronouns and their uses:

  • Him (Male)
  • Her (Female)
  • It (Non-human)

Now, Take a look at the following examples:

That is my book. I won't let you touch it.

As you can see, 'it' refers to the book which is an object.

Sara is my cousin. I like her a lot.

How to Use Them

We have three important kinds of objects in English which are listed below:

Direct Objects

In a sentence, direct objects are nouns on which the action is done. In other words, the direct object is the thing or person that the verb is acting upon. Look at the following examples:

I saw him at the park.

'him' is the direct object of the sentence

We finished it on time.

Indirect Objects

An indirect object is a noun or pronoun that indicates to or for whom or what the action of the verb is done in a sentence. Unlike a direct object, the indirect object is not the main recipient of the action, rather, it identifies the person or thing that benefits from or is affected by the action. Carefully study the examples below:

Give me my stuff, Angela!

Here the highlighted one is the indirect one.

Ask her the questions.

Objects of a Preposition

These objects come after prepositions in sentences. Prepositions are words that indicate the relationship between a noun or pronoun and other elements in a sentence, such as location, time, or direction. Common prepositions in English include 'to,' 'for,' 'about,' 'with,'. Take a look at the following examples:

They told me about it.

She gave her address to me.

Tip

Object pronouns can be coordinated in a sentence to refer to different objects that receive the action of the verb. When two or more object pronouns are used together, they are referred to as coordinated objects.

He told my sister and me to keep our mouths shut.

They set deadlines for my students and me for our projects.

Warning!

Be careful! We use object pronouns because nouns were objects in sentences. If they were subjects, it would have been like this:

My friend and I are heading to the beach. (Not my friend and me… )

The Second Person Object Pronouns

In English, both object pronouns for second person singular and second person plural are the same. Whether we want to address one person or a thousand people, the object pronoun is always you. Look at the following examples:

I want to tell you that the teacher will not come to school today.

Here, the sentence is about a group of people in a class.

I want you to know that everything will be alright.

Here, only one person is addressed in the sentence.

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