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5. Subject Pronouns

Subject pronouns are what we usually put at the beginning of a sentence (I, you, he, she, etc). The following are the subject pronouns in Spanish:





You (singular informal)


You (singular formal)






We (males or a mixture of males and females)


We (all females)


You (plural)


They (males or a mixture of males and females)


They (all females)

Sound Click here to listen

Here are some things to remember:

‘Tú’ (you) is used to address people you know very well (good friends, relatives, children…)

 (you) is used to address people you meet for the first time or are not very familiar with.

 is the plural form of both ‘Tú’ and ‘Usted’.

This is the way it works in Latin America. In Spain, the rules are a bit different. Since this course focuses on Latin American Spanish, we won’t confuse you with too much extra material.

Now let’s try a few example sentences with the subject pronouns above. We will be introducing you to the verb ‘hablar’ which means ‘to speak’. We will go into a lot more detail about verbs later but for now, the only thing you need to know is that verbs in Spanish change a lot more with the subject pronoun than they do in English.

Yo hablo español – I speak Spanish
Tú hablas inglés – You (informal) speak English
Usted habla italiano – You (formal) speak Italian
Él habla francés – He speaks French
Ella habla portugués – She speaks Portuguese
Nosotros hablamos alemán – We speak German
Nosotras hablamos ruso – We (all females) speak Russian
Ustedes hablan chino – You (plural) speak Chinese
Ellos hablan hebreo – They speak Hebrew
Ellas hablan árabe – They (all females) speak Arabic

Sound Click here to listen

Notice how the verb ‘hablar’ ‘to speak’ changed to ‘hablo’, ‘hablas’, ‘habla’, ‘hablamos’ or ‘hablan’ depending on the subject pronoun. We cover this in a lot more detail in our section on verbs.