Prepositional Pronouns In Spanish: What You Need To Know

prepositional pronouns spanish

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In this post, we are going to do a dive deep into Prepositional Pronouns in Spanish.

Just to refresh your memory, a pronoun is a word or phrase that is used as a substitute for a noun or a noun phrase that was previously mentioned in the same context.

Let’s start with a simple example of how a personal pronoun works:

  • Ana is an excellent student. She really enjoys learning new things – Ana es una estudiante excelente. A ella le gusta muchísimo aprender cosas nuevas

In this example, the personal pronoun she is used to substitute the original noun Ana.

Now that we have refreshed what we mean by pronouns, it’s time to explore when and how Spanish prepositional pronouns are used.

When To Use Spanish Prepositional Pronouns

You already know what a pronoun is.

A preposition is what we use to indicate the relationship between two words or phrases, and will often express how these words are connected in terms of location, direction or time.

Some examples of prepositions are: above (sobre, encima de), across/to (a través de), of (de), on (en, sobre, encima), for (por, para), with (con), etc.

Now, Prepositional Pronouns are words that appear after a preposition, and their ultimate goal is to work as the object of a preposition.

For example, if I was to say “the light is above me”.

Here, the preposition is above, and the prepositional pronoun is me.

In Spanish, most prepositional pronouns are similar to personal pronouns, except for me (mí) and you (tí).

For example,

  • Those two people are working for me – Esas dos personas trabajan para 
  • The new student is seated next to you – El estudiante nuevo está sentado al lado de ti

How To Use Prepositional Pronouns

The first thing you will need to form a prepositional phrase is a preposition, such as: de (of), con (with), sin (without), for (para, por).

(ps, we wrote an extensive list of Spanish prepositions here)

Secondly, you are going to add a suitable pronoun that corresponds to the noun, person or thing we are referring to.

Prepositional pronouns are formed when a preposition is followed by a pronoun (e.g. to me, for us, next to him etc).

Let’s take a simple example:

  •  Mi mamá siempre habla de ti – My mum always talks about you.

Now we’ll break it down.

Subject Adverb Verb Preposition Prepositional Pronoun
Mi mamá siempre habla de ti
My mum always talks about you

Below is a list of Prepositional Pronouns, and an example of how they are used.

Prepositional Pronoun English Example English
me El regalo es para The present is for me
ti you El regalo es para ti The present is for you
él him El regalo es para él The present is for him
ella her El regalo es para ella The present is for her
usted you El regalo es para usted The present is for you
ellos them El regalo es para ellos The present is for them
ellas them El regalo es para ellas The present is for them
ustedes you all El regalo es para ustedes The present is for you

As mentioned before, apart from the “yo” and “tú” forms, prepositional pronouns are exactly the same as personal pronouns.

The pronoun mí” carries a written accent which is not necessary for pronunciation, but it helps to distinguish it from the possessive adjective “mi (my)”.

Ps. here is a list of the most commonly used verbs with prepositions.

Spanish Prepositional Pronouns: The Exceptions

Of course, like many concepts in Spanish, there are certain exceptions to the aforementioned rules.

In this case, there are three instances when the regular prepositional pronouns we listed will not be used.

1) Prepositions followed by Personal Pronouns

When you use any of the below prepositions, you need to replace the  and ti pronouns with yo and respectively

Preposition English
entre between
excepto except
hasta including
incluso even, including
menos except
salvo except
según according to

Examples

  • The problem is between you and me – El problema es entre  y yo
  • Everyone will attend to the meeting except you and them – Todo el mundo irá a la reunión excepto  y ellas
  • The party was at Daniela’s place. Everyone was having a blast except my girlfriend and me – La fiesta fue en la casa de Daniela. Todo el mundo la estaba pasando genial salvo mi novia y yo
  • Many people, including me, believe in Santa Clause – Muchas personas creen en San Nicolás, hasta yo

2) Using conmigo (with me) or contigo (with you)

For phonetic reasons, when we use the preposition con (with) along with the mi (me) or ti (you) pronouns, you replace them with conmigo (with me) and contigo (with you)

Let’s see some examples of this.

  • Do you want to dance with me? – ¿Quieres bailar conmigo?
  • They will go with you to Panama, won’t they? – Ellos irán contigo a Panamá, ¿cierto?
  • Ernesto and her sister are training with me – Ernesto y su hermana están entrenando conmigo

3) “Si” used as a Prepositional Pronoun

When you make a statement where the subject and the object are referring to the same person or people, the word  may be used as an él/ella/usted, or ellos/ellas/ustedes to form a prepositional pronoun.

In this case,  means “himself,” “herself,” “itself,” “yourself,” or “themselves.”

For example.

  • Melissa bought a new house for herself in Buenos Aires – Melissa compró una casa nueva en Buenos Aires para

Nevertheless, this exception is the least common, since native speakers will typically use reflexive verbs to convey the idea of himself/herself/themselves.

  • Melissa bought a new house for herself in Buenos Aires – Melissa se compró una casa nueva en Buenos Aires

Prepositional Pronouns In Spanish: Exercises

Choose the correct Prepositional Pronoun in each sentence

  1. Luis y yo queremos ir contigo / conmigo / con nosotros a la fiesta
  2. Los zapatos azules y la camisa de cuadros son para mi /  /
  3. Según ti / contigo /  no existen los duendes
  4. Entre contigo y conmigo / tú y mí / tú y yo, esta fiesta está aburridísima
  5. Todos quieren conocer sus cantantes favoritos, excepto ella y yo / ella y mí / ella y ti
  6. Ellos deberían aprender a confiar más en nosotros /  / contigo
  7. Mi mamá siempre me decía que podía contar con él / nosotros / ella
  8. Los niños no querrán despedirse de usted / yo /
  9. Nancy estaba hablando tú y yo / conmigo / ti y conmigo cuando recibió la llamada de su amiga
  10. Ellos se han olvidado de ti y de mí / tú y yo / contigo y conmigo. Por eso estoy tan triste

Answers

  1. Luis y yo queremos ir contigo a la fiesta
  2. Los zapatos azules y la camisa de cuadros son para
  3. Según  no existen los duendes
  4. Entre tú y yo, esta fiesta está aburridísima
  5. Todos quieren conocer sus cantantes favoritos, excepto ella y yo
  6. Ellos deberían aprender a confiar más en nosotros
  7. Mi mamá siempre me decía que podía contar con ella
  8. Los niños no querrán despedirse de usted
  9. Nancy estaba hablando conmigo cuando recibió la llamada de su amiga
  10. Ellos se han olvidado de ti y de mí. Por eso estoy tan triste

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