Definition: Ante (not anti) means before. The root cedere means to go. The antecedent goes before the pronoun. It is the noun that the pronoun replaces. A pronoun must match, or agree, with its antecedent in number, person, and gender.
Singular nouns must match with singular pronouns. Plural nouns must match with plural pronouns.
President Lincoln delivered Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in 1863.
Some of the marbles fell out of their bag.
When writing about yourself, use I, me, we, or us. When writing directly to someone, use you. When writing about someone (or something) else, use he, she, it, him, her, they, or them. Use it when you don’t know the gender of the thing you’re talking about.
Either Mary or Louise will bring her husband.
She gave her client some helpful legal advice.
When writing about men, use he, him, and his. When writing about women, use she and her. If you don’t know the gender, use he or she, him or his, or his or her. Only use they and their if the antecedent is plural.
Neither the daughter nor the mother will bring her husbands.
One of the women put her briefcase under the seat.
Find out pronoun from the examples for exercise:
- All of the sugar is still in its wrapper.
- After the trip, all found their way back to the ranch.
- All of the voters cast their ballots on Tuesday.
- The police officer asked both of the witnesses they had seen the killer’s face.
- Neither of the man looked as if he wanted the job.
- Nobody wants his or her name slandered.
- After many years, I saw my former husband again.
- He saw his history professor.
- The clubs are holding their meetings today.
- The class must turn in their assignments by Friday.