A pronoun has the following three properties, the `person`, the `gender` and the `number` just as a noun has.

Of these, gender and number can be understood quite easily from the pronouns themselves, as `He` is of masculine gender and singular number, `She` is feminine and singular etc. But, when it comes to the person there may be a doubt about which belongs to the Ist person and which to the II nd and so on. I wonder if the following could possibly help to understand this aspect. The three `persons` are Ist, IInd and IIIrd person.
Singular                                    Plural            Possessive[singular]  Possessive[plural]
I Person: I                                   We                My                           Our
II Person: You                             You                Your                         Your
IIIrd Person: He, She, It.                They           His, Her, Its                  Their

The definition of the first person is the Person speaking; of the second person as the Person spoken to and of the third person as the Person spoken of. It is known that in conversations[among people, or, in stories etc] there can be three people referred to; one is the person speaking, the second is the person spoken to and the third can be the person who may, or, may not be present there physically, but, who is spoken about.  To illustrate this let us suppose there are three people who are called A, B and C respectively. Let us suppose that A says to B ` I want to go there`. Now, A refers to himself as `I` and he is the person speaking so, `I` is the first person according to the definition. Let us now suppose that he asks B ` Do you want to come?`. B is the person spoken to by A and he is referred to as `you` so `you` is the second person by definiton. Now, suppose A leaves and C comes along and B tells C that A wanted to go there. He says ` He wanted
to go there`. He is speaking about A who is not physically present and,  so, `He` is the third person by the definition of the IIIrd person. We must try to understand the plural and possessive forms as well from these definitions. Then there are also the accusative forms as well such as Me, Him, Her, Us etc which should also be understood. Please tell me what you think of this illustration.


That was very nicely explained, though to get it across learners one would have to lay out the example graphically so that visual learners can benefit from it. Thanks for sharing

Add new comment

Log in or register to post comments