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ESL Medium Quiz

You, Them and Us - Pronouns

Quiz playing is a wonderful way to increase your knowledge of English as a Second Language. Remember that all of our ESL quizzes have titles that are both friendly and technical at the same time… In the case of this quiz you might like to tell your friends about “You, Them and Us” but no doubt your teachers will talk about the “Pronouns quiz”! If you hear a technical term and you want to find a quiz about the subject then just look through the list of quiz titles until you find what you need.

You, them and us are all pronouns.

This is a chance to remind yourself of most of the standard English pronouns, and where they fit within the scheme of the language. It isn't a matter of 'you, them and us'; we're all trying to communicate together in this language!

  1. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    'Have ... ... never been to Ireland?' 'Neither have ... ... .'
    'Have' will not match with 'he' or 'she', so the middle two Answers can only be wrong; Answer 4 does not make a great deal of sense, though the grammar works acceptably. (It certainly isn't impossible to write nonsense that still 'follows the rules'!)
  2. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    No-one apart from ... ... and ... ... will ever know what has happened here today.
    Both pronouns are governed by the preposition '(apart) from ...'; you can't (accurately!) say 'apart from I', nor any other of the wrong Answers.
  3. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    'I've put new tyres on the back wheels of my car, and ... ... running nicely now.'
    Few people these days would call a car 'she' (even as a fond joke; it's rather sexist and old-fashioned, suggesting that a car is somehow equivalent to a wife or partner ~ and cars do not have a gender, as nouns do in many other languages) ... so Answer 2 would not be good here.
    Answer 1 suggests the new tyres rather than the car as a whole; Answer 4 doesn't seem to mention the car at all!
  4. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    'This time next week ... ... will be digging up the road again.'
    Unfamiliar and/or unknown and/or official people ~ whether one or several, on any particular occasion ~ are usually referred to as 'they' in English; we do not use the singular equivalent of a French 'on'- or German 'man'-form. 'One' is rather formal and also considered a bit pompous ('One has to have one's privacy').
    If we are complaining about something that is being officially imposed, we would blame 'them': 'The next thing they'll want us to do, is give up our British three-square-pin electric plugs.' ( ... 'them foreigners [in Brussels or elsewhere]' ... please don't take it personally!)
    'Digging up the road' = 'digging it open and working under the surface' ; not equivalent to 'digging, up the road' ( = if go some way along the street, you will see them digging there instead of right here').
  5. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    'There hasn't been a parcel delivered for ... ... while I was out this morning, has ... .. ?'
    'For me ... there has' are the key phrases here. We would not use 'it' (or anything else) to represent the parcel, if we already have 'there is' (or an equivalent phrase) in the context.
  6. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    'It is up to ... ... to give ... ... all the time ... ... needs.'
    The last two pronouns need to match ('her / she') which is not the case with any of the other Answers; the first one needs not only to make sense, but to be in the right form after 'to ...' (and again, none of the other Answers fits in this way).
  7. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    ' (...) So I said to ... ... , I hope that's the last ... ... 'll be seeing of ... ... .'
    Whatever the context, 'to her' and 'of them' are the only phrases that fit.
  8. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    ' ... ... does not have the same coloured eyes as either of his parents ; ... ... wonder !'
    There seems to be a fairly obvious 'he ... his ... ' agreement in the front half of the sentence.
    The fact ('it') about the non-matching eyes is what causes surprise, not the person ('he').
    We might say 'it makes one wonder' (i.e., anybody who thought about it might find it peculiar), but more often in informal speech English would say 'you', here.
  9. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    'Have you seen my gardening shoes anywhere?'
    'Aren't those ... ... over in the corner, next to ... ... boots?'
    In everyday speech we would probably say 'those are them' (rather than 'those are they' / 'they are those').
    None of the other second halves makes much sense; we don't know who 'he' or 'she' are in Answers 3 and 4.
  10. Pick the answer which most clearly, sensibly and accurately fills the gap/s.
    'Who's managed to answer all these Questions?'
    ' ... ... ; ... ... have !'
    Answer 3 is the only one that fits here, and we hope it's true!

Author: Ian Miles

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