Chinese Pronouns

Chinese Pronouns List & Pinyin: Verb – BE 我是 (I am) and HAVE 我有 (I have)



Chinese Pronouns: Verb to Be and Verb to Have in Mandarin

We learn the Chinese Pronouns in singular and plural forms together with the English verb to be and verb to have as an elemental start to learning the Chinese language. Once you know the fundamental “BE ” and the “HAVE ” words to use together with the Chinese Pronouns, you can start forming a few Chinese sentences about yourself and other people after this lesson.

The definition of personal pronouns are as follow: –

I, You, He, She, It, We, They, Me, Him, Her, Us and Them

Singular Chinese Pronouns

“I” in Chinese:  Mandarin

The Chinese Pronouns must be the first few characters that you learn especially   Chinese which means “I” in English. You will see later how we develop Chinese and other Chinese Personal Pronouns into Chinese Possessive Pronouns and Chinese Reflexive Pronouns which are English equivalent.

“I” in Chinese
“I am” in Chinese我是。。。Wǒ shì…
“I have” in Chinese我有。。。Wǒ yǒu…


You in Chinese:  Nín (Formal) and Mandarin

Similar to some European languages such as French and Dutch (but not English), the You in Chinese carries two different forms. One is a standard Chinese pronoun 你 . The other 您 Nín is a more polite way of addressing someone who is older, more senior in authority or one whom you do not know.

“You” in Chinese你,您Nǐ, Nín
“You are” in Chinese你是。。。您是。。。Nǐ shì…  Nín shì…
“You have” in Chinese你有。。。您有。。。Nǐ yǒu… Nín yǒu…

 

He, She, It in Chinese: 他,她,它 | Mandarin

Next, comes the third-person singular in Chinese. One single Chinese Pinyin with the same tone, , has 3 Chinese characters which are .

He” in Chinese is a masculine singular pronoun for a man
She” in Chinese is a feminine singular pronoun for a woman
It” in Chinese is to describe an animal or another non-living thing



Plural Chinese Pronouns

We in Chinese: 我们 Wǒmen Mandarin

The Chinese plural for all personal pronouns is rather easy to learn and recognise. Add the Chinese character men to all the singular Chinese pronouns above to become plural. 我 will thus become 我们 Wǒmen.

The Pinyin  men is a neutral tone with no accent mark on the Chinese vowel.

“We” in Chinese我们Wǒmen
“We are” in Chinese我们是。。。Wǒmen shì…
“We have” in Chinese我们有。。。Wǒmen yǒu…

 

Formal You in Mandarin: 您们 Nínmen

It is worth noting that the formal singular You in Mandarin  Nín does not carry a plural form 您们 Nínmen. If you want to express politeness referring to a few people at the same time, here are some alternatives.

Two of you您两位Nín liǎng wèi
Three of you您三位Nín sān wèi
(Number) of you您 + Chinese Numbers + 位Nín x wèi
A few of you您几位Nín jǐ wèi
Ladies and Gentlemen各位先生女士Gèwèi xiānshēng nǚshìmen

 

Plural You in Chinese: 你们 Nǐmen

If you are a Chinese beginner, you may wish to avoid using the “You formal” plural term if it confuses you. Stick to the “traditional You” below.

“You” in Chinese Plural你们Nǐmen
“You are” in Chinese Plural你们是。。。Nǐmen shì…
“You have” in Chinese Plural你们有。。。Nǐmen yǒu…

 

They in Chinese: 他们她们它们 | Tāmen

Similarly, add a 们 Men behind the three  – . For a mixed-gender group, always use 他们 as the Chinese plural. 她们 is only for a group of females.

They” in Chinese他们,她们,它们Tāmen
They are” in Chinese他们是。。 她们是。。 它们是。。Tāmen shì…
They have” in Chinese他们有。。 她们有。。 它们有。。Tāmen yǒu…


Chinese Pronouns List

The table is a summary of the Chinese Pronouns list.

I
我们WǒmenWe
………Nín……………….You (Formal)
You (Informal)
你们NǐmenYou (Plural)
He
他们TāmenThey (Plural, Men, Mixed Genders)
She
她们TāmenThey (Plural, Women)
It
它们TāmenThey (Plural, Animals, Non-Living Things)

 

Plural for Other Terms

The usage of the plural 们 Men is not only for Chinese Pronouns but also for other groups. The Chinese Pronouns list are a few examples and non-exhaustive.

孩子HáiziChild
孩子们HáizimenChildren
老师LǎoshīTeacher
老师们LǎoshīmenTeachers
学生XuéshēngStudent
学生们XuéshēngmenStudents
同学TóngxuéClassmate
同学们TóngxuémenClassmates
同事TóngshìColleague
同事们TóngshìmenColleagues



Chinese Pronouns Sentences with BE and HAVE

Gender – Man and Woman in Chinese

Are you a male or a female?

你是男的还是女的?
Nǐ shì nán de hái shì nǚ de?


This question is weird (and perhaps rude) to ask someone that you can see, isn’t it? If you cannot see a person and want to know a person’s gender over an email or social media platform, this would be the question to ask.

Another instance is when someone is pregnant or just given birth, and you want to find out the baby’s gender. Therefore, you ask “Is it a boy or a girl? 是男的还是女的?Shì nán de háishì nǚ de?

Male, Female男,女Nán, Nǚ
Man, Woman男人,女人Nánrén, Nǚrén
男子,女子Nánzǐ, Nǚzǐ
Boy, Girl男孩,女孩Nánhái, Nǚhái
男孩子,女孩子Nán háizi, Nǚ háizi
Male Students, Female Students男生,女生Nánshēng, Nǚshēng



Chinese Pronouns + Verb to BE  Shì

(I am, He is, She is, It is, We are, You are, They are)

The English Verb to Be in Chinese is  Shì. The negation Chinese word is 不是 Bùshì.

I am a woman. You are a man.

我是女人,你是男人。
Wǒ shì nǚ rén, nǐ shì nán rén.


He is a boy. She is a girl.

他是男孩(子),她是女孩(子)。
Tā shì nán hái (zi), tā shì nǚ hái (zi).


I am in China for a holiday. She is here to work.

我是来中国度假的。她是来这里工作的。
Wǒ shì lái zhōng guó dù jià de. Tā shì lái zhè lǐ gōng zuò de.


We are Asians. You are Americans (Plural).
They are Europeans.

我们是亚洲人。你们是美国人。他们是欧洲人。
Wǒ men shì yà zhōu rén. Nǐ men shì měi guó rén. Tā men shì ōu zhōu rén.


They are here to look for me.

他们是来这里找我的。
Tā men shì lái zhè lǐ zhǎo wǒ de.


It is a cute dog.

它是一只可爱的小狗。
Tā shì yī zhǐ kě’ài de xiǎo gǒu.



Chinese Pronouns + Verb to HAVE 有 Yǒu

(I have, He has, She has, It has, We have, You have, They have)

The English Verb to Have in Chinese is  Yǒu. The negation Chinese word is 没有 Méiyǒu.

I have a job.

我有工作。
Wǒ yǒu gōng zuò.


You have many friends.

你有很多朋友。
Nǐ yǒu hěn duō péng yǒu.


She has money to buy a house.

她有钱买房子。
Tā yǒu qián mǎi fáng zi.


We have two children.

我们有两个孩子。
Wǒ men yǒu liǎng gè hái zi.


You have very good results (Plural).

你们有很好的成绩。
Nǐ men yǒu hěn hǎo de chéng jī.


They have a few questions to ask you.

他们有一些问题想问你。
Tā men yǒu yī xiē wèn tí xiǎng wèn nǐ.

 

Next Lesson on Asking Questions with Chinese Pronouns + BE and HAVE

Learn to ask simple questions in Chinese with Affirmative Questions, Negative Questions and Affirmative-Negative Questions using the Chinese Pronouns with BE and HAVE in this lesson.

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