Pronouns are often used to make our
writing more interesting. They are used in the place of nouns.
Pronouns can say who owns something, this is called a possessive pronoun (more about them later).
John went to the shop and he bought some sweets.
is the pronoun, it is used in the place of John.
We can use pronouns as long as it is clear whom we are talking about.
Here is a bad example:
John and Peter went to the shop. On the way they met Mark. "We are going to the shop. Are you coming?" he said.
In the sentence above we have 4 pronouns
but one makes us unsure of who we are referring to.
Can you guess which ones are the pronouns and which one is not clear?
John and Peter went to the shop. On the way they met Mark. "We are going to the shop. Are you coming?" he said
They, we, you and he are the pronouns. It is the pronoun he that causes the problem because we do not know who spoke!
refers to John and Peter (they met Mark).
We are going to the shop refers to John and Peter again.
Are you coming? - you refers to Mark.
When we talk about he in "he said" we are not clear about who is speaking.
Read the passage again and see if you see what I mean.
Here is a list of common pronouns:
you she it we us I they them her
Here is a list of possessive pronouns:
Mine yours his hers theirs ours
Can you put the pronouns in these sentences?
David liked to dive into the pool, David liked to try and touch the bottom of the pool.
The two boys ran after Tim and Bob very fast, the two boys nearly caught Tim and Bob.
Jim saw the coat on the floor, Jim knew that it was his coat.
David liked to dive into the pool, he liked to try and touch the bottom of it.
He= David it = the pool
The two boys ran after Tim and Bob very fast, they nearly caught them.
They = the two boys chasing them = Tim and Bob being chased
Jim saw the coat on the floor, he knew that it was his.
He = Jim his = coat
Here is a short passage, see if you can spot the pronouns and to what are they referring. You will see how easy it is and this will help you when you are trying to take meaning from a piece of writing. Good luck!
The sky had been full of clouds earlier in the day, they had been large, dark and full of rain. The sun however had been able to warm the sky and they had disappeared very quickly. The seagull now raced across the open sky.He was feeling free and happy and he could see for miles. His reflection in the still, calm waters below giving him company in his flight westward across the sea.