Learning Hindi Grammar – Using Pronouns

Hindi, a language belonging to the Indo-Iranian sub-group of the Indo-European family of languages, is one of the official languages of India. It is mainly spoken in Northern India, but is also spoken and understood in other parts of the country. Hindi grammar is called “Vyakaran”.

Pronouns in Hindi are called “Sarvanam”. Like pronouns in English and other languages, Hindi pronouns perform the task of making the language easier to use.

Characteristics of Hindi Pronouns

In Hindi, the first person, second person and third person pronouns all have a single gender. There is no “he” and “she” difference as in the English language. It is the verb that, upon conjugation, usually indicates the difference in gender.The first person pronouns and second person pronouns are indicated by personal pronouns. The third person pronouns are indicated by demonstrative pronouns.

Hindi pronouns have accusative and genitive cases. Hindi pronouns do not have vocative cases.

There are five main types of pronouns in Hindi

1. Personal pronouns, known as purush vachak sarvanam

2. Demonstrative pronoun, known as nischay vachak sarvanam

3. Indefinite pronoun, known as anischay vachak sarvanam

4. Relative pronoun, known as sambandh vachak sarvanam

5. Interrogative pronoun, known as prashna vachak sarvanam


Personal Pronouns

There are three types of personal pronouns – First Person, Second Person and Third Person.

First Person Pronouns, also known as Uttam Purush, are –

  • Mai (I)
  • Mai Ne (I)
  • Mera (My/Mine)
  • Hum (Us/We)
  • Humara (Ours)

“Hum” and “Humara” are sometimes used as “I” and “Mine”. It was common in the days of the royalty – a royal person always referred to himself/herself as “Hum”. It is still common in some areas nowadays, particularly in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. For example – “Hum nahi karange” (I won't do it/We won't do it).

Examples –

  • "Mai ga raha hoon" (I am singing)
  • "Mai ne kavita likhi" (I wrote a poem)
  • "Mera kutta kala hai" (My dog is black)
  • "Hum banaras jane wale hain" (We are going to Banaras)
  • "Humara ghar Lucknow main hain" (Our house is in Lucknow)

Second Person Pronouns, also known as Madhyam Purush, are –

  • Tum (You)
  • Tu Ne (You)
  • Tumhara (Yours)
  • Tera (Yours)
  • Aap (You, formal, singular and plural)
  • Aap Ne (You, formal, singular and plural)

“Tum”, “Tu ne”, “Tumhara” and “Tera” are informal second person pronouns and may be used for friends, family, children and pets. “Aap” and “Aap ke” are formal second person pronouns and are used on formal occasions, to address strangers, seniors and authority figures. They are also quite often used between family members. This is mostly seen in Northern India, where parents may use “Aap” when addressing their children. For example – “Beta, aap khaoge?” (Son/daughter, will you eat?)

Examples –

  • "Tum mere sath aaoge?" (Will you come with me?)
  • "Tu ne khana khaya?" (Have you eaten?)
  • "Tumhara nam kya hai?" (What is your name?)
  • "Tera ghar kahan hai?" (Where is your house?)
  • "Aap ka nam kya hai?" (What is your name?)
  • "Aap ke kyun taklif ki?" (Why did you trouble yourself? Actually, a polite form of 'Oh, it really wasn't necessary, you shouldn't have bothered'. Taklif is an urdu word for trouble or bother)

Third Person Pronouns, also known as Anya Purush, are –

  • Woh (He/She/They)
  • Uska/Uski (His/Her)

Examples –

  • "Woh bazaar gaye hain" (They have gone to the market)
  • "Woh pathshala ko gaya/gayi hain" (He/She has gone to school)
  • "Uski aaj exam hai" (Today is his/her exam)

Demonstrative Pronouns

Demonstrative pronouns indicate a particular person or persons or a particular thing or things.

  • Yeh (This/He/She/It)
  • Woh (That/He/She/It)
  • Ye (These) Ve (Those)

Examples –

  • "Yeh mera ghar hai" (This is my house)
  • "Woh uska ghar hai" (That is his/her house)
  • "Ye log wahan rahate hai" (These people stay there)
  • "Ve log kal jayenge" (Those people will leave tomorrow)

Indefinite Pronouns:

Indefinite pronouns indicate general rather than particular people and things.

  • Koi (Someone)
  • Kuch (Something)
  • Kuch bhi (Anything)
  • Sab kuch (Everything)
  • Sab log (Everyone)

Examples –

  • "Koi ja raha hai" (Someone is passing/going)
  • "Kuch karna hoga" (Something must be done)
  • "Kuch bhi chalega" (Anything will do)
  • "Sab kuch karke dekho" (Try everything)
  • “Sab log aayenge” (Everyone will come)

Relative Pronouns:

Relative pronouns give the relation between words, people and things.

  • Jo (Who)
  • Jiski (Whose)
  • Jaisa (Like)

Examples –

  • “Jo kal aayega, usko dena" (the one who comes tomorrow, give it to him)
  • "Jiski chal hathi jaisi" (Whose walk is like that of an elephant)
  • "Uske jaisa koi nahin" (There is no one like him)

Interrogative Pronouns:

Interrogative pronouns ask questions about people and things.

  • Kaun (Who)
  • Kya (What)
  • Kisko (Whom)

Examples –

  • "Kaun banega crorepati?" (Who will be a millionaire?)
  • "Kya baat hai?" (What is the matter?)
  • "Kisko phal diye?" (Whom did you give the fruit to?)