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Questions tagged [pronouns]

A pronoun is a word that is used instead of a noun or noun phrase.

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10 votes
1 answer
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When to use an object pronoun or a possessive adjective before a gerund

The rule says that we can use a possessive adjective or an object pronoun before a gerund. Is there a rule that says when to use each or are they interchangeable? Some say that it's wrong to use an ...
Vic's user avatar
  • 3,674
16 votes
3 answers
14k views

“...than I am” vs. “...than me”

I read an English grammar article in which the author talked about the correct use of pronouns. He writes: If the extended sentence is “She’s more likely to ask him than I am,” in which the ...
jeysmith's user avatar
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12 votes
3 answers
2k views

Grammatical number agreement in a complex phrase using singular "they"

Answering another question, I used the following phrase: Your reader is [...], but they are a busy person. I have two difficulties here: In the first phrase, a reader, being singular noun, ...
Be Brave Be Like Ukraine's user avatar
12 votes
4 answers
5k views

Using plural or singular verb after "neither" and "none"

With reference to "Neither", "none", "no one" + [of them] + verb-s None of the above sentences is strictly correct. Neither of the above sentence/sentences is/...
Sudhir's user avatar
  • 2,005
11 votes
3 answers
62k views

Should I write "X and I", "X and me", "I and X", or "me and X" in a conjoined object?

A question was asked in one of my friend's interview. The question was to determine the right form from the below sentences. Q. Correct form of English: Samuel was with Susan and I ...
Mistu4u's user avatar
  • 6,415
28 votes
3 answers
102k views

it vs. this vs. that

I've never understood what is the difference between the subject pronoun "it" and the demonstratives "this" and "that". To be precise, I understand well the difference ...
Virtuous Legend's user avatar
9 votes
2 answers
4k views

Difference between myself and by myself

Could you please explain me which option should I use? I would like to have a green house with rare plants from all over the world. I could take care of them (myself / by myself)? And why?
Ann's user avatar
  • 319
18 votes
5 answers
171k views

anyone vs someone. Which one?

Has someone seen my bag? Has anyone seen my bag? Which one is grammatically correct and Why? Which one should I use at this place? Can you give some more examples?
hellodear's user avatar
  • 1,158
13 votes
5 answers
206k views

Its or Their to refer to a company?

The company will issue (their, its) annual report next month. In this case, should I use "its" or "their"?
Sebastien Sim's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

Where to find what "this" and "that" refer to?

I read from somewhere a long time ago that "that" refers to something that was mentioned earlier, while "this" refers to something that is going to be mentioned. But I saw some examples where "this" ...
Tim's user avatar
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35 votes
6 answers
56k views

Grammatical gender of the word "child"

I've been taught that a child is gender-neutral noun. But in the textbook on linguistics I've been reading, the noun is used as feminine. For example, a sentence in the book goes like this: The child ...
V.Lydia's user avatar
  • 757
30 votes
9 answers
7k views

How to deal with unknown genders in English?

When I start a sentence with words like "someone" or "somebody", I don't know how to choose the right pronoun at the end of the sentence. Examples: If anybody asks you about the money, tell (Him - ...
Michael George's user avatar
15 votes
4 answers
5k views

What exactly is the word "there" in an existential construction? And related questions

Consider the example below: "There was a cat under the table." There have been numerous questions asked that have involved the topic of existential constructions and the word "there" that is used ...
F.E.'s user avatar
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11 votes
2 answers
4k views

Is it always necessary to repeat the pronoun before each verb?

Is it always necessary to repeat the pronoun before each verb? For example, do I need always to say: She called me and she said X or can I use a shorter one She called me and said X ?
Cjxcz Odjcayrwl's user avatar
10 votes
3 answers
24k views

Can an 'adverb' modify 'nouns/pronouns'?

While answering to this question here, very interesting discussion took place with CopperKettle. It's absolutely right that adverbs modify many things, but nouns/pronouns. But then, expressions ...
Maulik V's user avatar
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1 vote
4 answers
51k views

"it" or "he/she" for animals

can i use it for animals in the following sentece? 1- I have a dog named Don. It is a very good dog. I know most people would use "he" instead of "it" in the following context and my grammar book ...
user254288's user avatar
  • 1,242
11 votes
4 answers
8k views

Is referring to people as "it" considered rude?

In Japanese, referring to people as "it" considered rude. Instead of "it", We say "that person" or information of the person (ex. a person who wares a blue shirt). In English, Is referring to people ...
ra1ned's user avatar
  • 629
9 votes
4 answers
2k views

“It” vs. “that”

Is this sentence correct? I did it yesterday, but I’m not going to do it again. I’m not sure about it. Should I replace “it” with “that”? I did it yesterday, but I’m not going to do it ...
user3920's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
3k views

Can I refer to an ant as "she"?

In a long text about a foraging ant, would it be correct to refer to the ant always as "she" instead of "it"? For example, She wanders aimlessly until she finds a pheromone trail. A foraging ant ...
vsz's user avatar
  • 554
8 votes
3 answers
24k views

"By oneself" versus "on one's own"

Is there any difference between these three pairs? If there is, is it the same difference? I did it by myself. I did it on my own.   He lives by himself. He lives on his own. &...
sergio's user avatar
  • 83
5 votes
6 answers
19k views

Using “she” pronoun to refer to a ship

Why—and based on what—do we use “she” with “ship” in the English language? Why do we consider a ship female when we know that it is not alive?
rozz's user avatar
  • 53
4 votes
3 answers
3k views

Tom is taller than I? [duplicate]

In this question, in one of the comment threads the following was stated Tom is taller than me" or "Tom is taller than I am" — both are correct. "Tom is taller than I" is WRONG` (link) Which I'...
Voo's user avatar
  • 150
3 votes
2 answers
4k views

"It's cold today" -- what term do linguists use to call "it" when it's used as the subject of a sentence, but has no real antecedent?

Could you please remind me what term linguists and the grammar people use to call it when it's used as a subject pronoun, but the funky thing is that it doesn't really refer back to anything in ...
Michael Rybkin's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
45k views

"It is" or "it are"

Does it always agree with a singular verb? For example, does one say (i) or rather (ii)? (i) It is the birds he is chasing away. (ii) It are the birds he is chasing away.
Bram Vanroy's user avatar
23 votes
7 answers
10k views

Can "he" and "man" refer to all genders?

All men must die, but death can vary in its significance. The ancient Chinese writer Sima Qian said, "Though death befalls all men alike, it may be weightier than Mount Tai or lighter than a ...
user avatar
7 votes
4 answers
15k views

Why is 'where' an adverb and not a pronoun?

A: Where are you going? B: I am going to school. Where took the place of school and something that takes the place of a noun is a pronoun. So, why isn't where a pronoun?
aarbee's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
3k views

Is there a way to refer to a person (using a pronoun) without mentioning a sex? [duplicate]

I just found myself in situation that I am telling about someone who added to me in Skype: because of the nickname I think that it is a girl and used all the time the word «she». But as she didn't say ...
Hi-Angel's user avatar
  • 163
4 votes
3 answers
241 views

3 ambiguous pronouns by Justice Antonin Scalia

Source: *Agency For International Development Et Al. v. Alliance For Open Society International, Inc., Et Al, Justice Scalia's dissent [Start from last para on p 19 of 25 of this PDF.] The First ...
user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
6k views

Can a ship or a car be a "he"?

In English, especially in a poetic description, ships and cars are referred to as "she". Maybe their owners compare their beauty and elegance with those of women, but what if a female owner wanted ...
Victor B.'s user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
2k views

Use of each and every

Practically every part of the banana tree is used by man. I think this sentence is correct but my grammar book say there should be each instead of every. I know we can't use every as a pronoun but in ...
starun008's user avatar
  • 1,755
2 votes
2 answers
4k views

difference between "it" vs "this" vs "that"

Can any native speaker tell me whether I should use it, this, or that in the following context? John: Have you ever seen the movie "Titanic"? Me: Yes, It/this/that is a great movie. To me, '...
user266865's user avatar
1 vote
4 answers
17k views

Is using "someone" in a question correct?

When reading about someone on the OALD, I saw the following note: The difference between someone and anyone is the same as the difference between some and any. Look at the notes there. The note ...
apaderno's user avatar
  • 20.9k
1 vote
3 answers
237 views

What do these pronouns indicate?

To one as young as you, I'm sure it seems incredible, but to Nicolas and Perenelle, it really is like going to bed after a very, very long day. After all, to the well-organized mind, death is but the ...
Listenever's user avatar
  • 24.2k
1 vote
4 answers
3k views

With the phone ringing: "I don't know who it is" or "I don't know who they are"?

Your phone is ringing and your daughter picked up the phone but she hasn't answered the call. Then do you ask her: Who is it? or Who are they? And when she tells you, would she say: I don'...
learner's user avatar
  • 5,928
22 votes
3 answers
44k views

Each other's / each others'

This always nags me... I would prefer a logical as well as a grammatical explanation of it. We enjoyed each other's company. We enjoyed each others' company. Which one is correct? Why is the ...
Neil D'Silva's user avatar
18 votes
5 answers
4k views

Can adjectives modify a pronoun like "rich they", "poor you" and "beautiful I"?

I want to modify a pronoun with adjectives like "rich he", "poor they" and "beautiful I". Can I do that? For example, can I say "I saw rich him driving a supercar", "Poor you can't buy foods enough", ...
Yuuichi Tam's user avatar
  • 2,419
9 votes
2 answers
727 views

"It's difficult organising me" or "It's difficult organising myself"

I have been studying the use of the pronouns me, myself and I. I am fairly confident in tests, but there are some sentences that does not feel "right" to me (being a a native speaker myself). Maybe ...
aiwl's user avatar
  • 224
9 votes
1 answer
59k views

How to use "any of"

Am I using any of correctly in these sentences? Any of its members are admitted. Any of its members is admitted.
Minimus Heximus's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
113k views

What is difference between 'it' and 'this'?

Please explain to me which are correct/natural: This is my wife. / It is my wife. This is my cat. / It is my cat. This is the worst building. / It is the worst building. This is beautiful. / It is ...
Dmitry's user avatar
  • 125
8 votes
2 answers
746 views

Wow! Nice! I smelled you baking cake!

Which one is grammatical? "Wow! Nice! I smelled you baking cake!" "Wow! Nice! I smelled your baking cake!" Both of them are acceptable, maybe?
Damkerng T.'s user avatar
  • 27.2k
7 votes
1 answer
804 views

Is 'his not having a name' grammatical correct?

As I read the following paragraph out of the book Breakfast at Tiffany's on page 39, She was still hugging the cat. "Poor slob," she said, tickling his head, "poor slob without a name." "It's a ...
Henry Wang's user avatar
  • 1,891
7 votes
2 answers
4k views

"Without his telling me" vs. "Without him telling me"?

I was reading a book and encountered this sentence (emphasis added by me): I know it without his telling me. Despite being grammatically correct, it seemed a little strange to me. What came ...
Mahm00d's user avatar
  • 799
5 votes
4 answers
53k views

Whom did she invite or Who did she invite?

Whilst in most cases, I'm clear using who or whom but this is one of the sentences bothering me! Whom/who did she invite? Whom did she invite looks very very natural to me. The general rule (...
Maulik V's user avatar
  • 66.1k
5 votes
3 answers
13k views

"as much as me" & "as much as I"

Sentence 1: He doesn't earn as much as me. Sentence 2: He doesn't earn as much as I. In sentence 1, the second "as" is a preposition so it is followed by an object pronoun. In sentence 2, the second ...
April's user avatar
  • 3,023
5 votes
3 answers
6k views

which vs what usage

Which determiner, which or what, to use for some situations, like these: What month is it? What school are you attending now? or Which month is it? Which school are you attending now? I ...
adityasrivastav's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
515 views

"Andrew looked at him in the mirror": can "him" refer to Andrew?

(1) Andrew looked at him in the mirror. (2) Andrew looked at himself in the mirror. Does (1) include (2)’s possibility? Or does him in (1) only refer to someone other than Andrew?
Listenever's user avatar
  • 24.2k
4 votes
3 answers
53k views

'For me' vs 'For myself'

[Source:] Myself is used as the object of a reflexive verb (“I hurt myself”), as an intensifier (“I myself will go”), and can be used in absolutive clause (“for my wife and myself it was a happy time”)...
user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
794 views

What's the meaning "them" here?

I've confused about the word "them" in the middle of the sentence: They know all about them Westovers in Idaho. Could you please tell me what the meaning of "them" here is? Does it mean "they ...
Peace's user avatar
  • 5,164
2 votes
3 answers
462 views

Using a plural possessive pronoun for a singular noun?

I am aware that this structure is called "distributive plurals". However, after much research, I feel no closer to the answer. I am writing for a website where the gender of the Members is ...
StackOverflow's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
6k views

using "them" or "it" as a pronoun for uncountable noun

I'm an English learner. I have a question relating to using pronouns. Here's my example sentence: Yesterday I bought some furniture for my kitchen. Some of them is so expensive. I don't know if ...
Huong's user avatar
  • 149