Pronouns : Demonstrative Pronouns

Pronouns : Demonstrative Pronouns

As with all pronouns, demonstrative pronouns replace nouns.

Demonstrative pronouns are used to replace nouns (people or objects) that have been previously mentioned to that the listener/reader can understand from the context of the conversation/text.


The demonstrative pronouns are this, that, these, and those.

A demonstrative pronoun used in context enables us to tell whether the noun it replaces is something singular or plural and whether that thing(s) is/are close at hand or at some distance.

This and that replace singular nouns.

This represents something close at hand:

  • This is very pretty.

That represents something further away:

  • That is massive!
These and those replace plural nouns.

These represents something close by:

  • These look delicious.

Those represents something further away:

  • Don’t buy those.

This, that, these, and those can also be Demonstrative Adjectives, which modify nouns or pronouns.

In this situation they cannot stand alone or replace a noun but rather indicate exactly which noun is being considered:

  • This milk is out of date.
  • That dog is in a sorry state.
  • Those oranges are very juicy.
  • These pencils all beed to be sharpened.