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How do you address more than one person?

If there was one person, you would say

You are awesome!

and if there was 2 male people/animals, you could say

You guys are awesome!

and same with the female.

But what if there was a male and a female? Would you just say you are awesome? Can 'you' be used to address a group? Any help would be appreciated.

  • 1
    I' be careful with the term "guys" or "girls", this might be not appropriate in every setting. It's rather informal and targeted towards a younger audience. There is an age bracket, where it could be understood as disrespectful. But I wouldn't dare to give a defintitive age here, as I would most certainly tread on s.o.'s toes. – Stephie Dec 28 '14 at 18:17
  • Just use a relevant number. you two are awesome. – Joe Dark Dec 28 '14 at 19:26
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It depends on the level of formality, and the regional dialect of the people you are speaking to.

In the Southern dialect of American English, the plural of "you" is "y'all". Because "y'all" is not Standard English, it is not formal. (On the other hand, when addressing a group that includes one or more females, "y'all" is more accurate than "you guys", and therefore at least as formal as "you guys").

Two Standard English translations of "y'all" are "you" (as suggested by Stephie) and "all of you" (when you need to unambiguously use the plural of "you").

My preference is "y'all", even though this usage is not common where I live.

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"You" is the pronoun for second person singular and plural see wikipedia, for example.

So the phrase

You are awesome.

is fine when addressing a group - which per definition means multiple persons / plural.

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In Ireland we say yous, yis or ye, yous two over there, who are yis going with, were are ye going (ye is more used in the Midlands (farmer region))

  • While that's very interesting, I suspect that the questioner is most interested in something that would be usable with any English-speaking audience. Irish English is a fascinating dialect all of its own, though - you guys have some great vocabulary. – SamBC Mar 29 at 10:36
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While

You are awesome!

is OK ("you" means both singular and plural), it might be ambiguous. Which one is awesome? Only one? Or only two of them? Or all? You noticed this correctly.

I would make use of the word "people" for that in a general context. In special occasions, you may use other words: colleagues, sisters, ...

You people are awesome!

or even better:

You two are awesome!

Of course, replace "two" with the appropriate number. I would use a number only if the number is very small and counting is trivial.

I would never use:

You 23 people are awesome!

  • I wouldn't use "You people are awesome!" if I was only speaking to two people. (I think "You two are awesome!" would be a much better alternative.) – J.R. Mar 30 at 13:08

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