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  7.1 Position of the personal pronouns

We already know the personal pronouns, we have already used them very often. We have mentioned that Italian as well as English belongs to the few languages without declension, the relationship between the objects is defined through prepositions. But if the nouns are presented by pronouns, this relationship is established through declension, the form of the words changes. The table below shows us once again the whole system.

English iItalian
I io
you tu
he lui
she lei
we noi
you voi
they (masculine) loro
they (feminine) loro
You (polite, sing., masc.) lei***
You (polite, sing., fem.) lei
You (polite, plural, masc.) loro / voi****
You (polite, plural, fem.) loro / voi

English Italian
me mi
you ti
him gli
her le
us ci
you vi
them loro/gli
them loro/gli
you le** / (gli)*
you le / (gli)
you vi / loro / (gli)*
you vi / loro / (gli)

English Italian
me mi
you ti
him lo
her la
us ci
you vi
them li
them le
you la
you la
you li (auch vi)
you le (auch vi)


* In colloquial speech gli can be used in plural for dative as well, for masculine and feminine. Le, dative, becomes always gli if used combined with a direct object.
** Only the personal pronouns in singular accusative are apostrophized, in other word lo / la.

L' apetto alle tre. => I expect you at three o' clock.
but: Li aspetto alle tre. => I expect you at three o' clock.

There is no apotrophization neither with le.

Ieri le ho dato dieci euro.
Yesterday I gave her 10 euros.

*** Lei is the third person singular feminine as well as the formal form for third person plural (feminine and masculine). You may wonder, whether the adjectives are feminine as well when we talk to a man, but that's not the case.

woman: Lei è molto simpatica. <=> You are a nice person.
man: Lei è molto simpatico. <=> You are a nice person.

**** One could also think that if we use voi (second person plural) instead of loro (third person plural) for the polite form the verb is in the third person plural anyway. That's not the case. If you use voi as a polite form the verb is in the second person plural as well.

Do you have a problem?
Loro hanno un problema?
Voi avete un problema?

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