The use of demonstrative adjectives and pronouns in English

EFL/ESL Grammar: Rules, use, and practice

How to use  demonstrative adjectives and pronouns in English 

Demonstrative adjectives 

Demonstrative adjectives are this, that, these, and those. They can be used to point to people, objects, and things.

“This” and “that” are used with singular nouns.

This” refers to close things, objects, and people.


  • This man is my father.
  • This girl is my sister.
  • This book is mine.

“That” is used with things that are not close (farther away).

  • That blue car is mine.
  • That house is ours.
  • That man over there is my uncle.

“These” and “those” are used with plural nouns.

These” refers to close things and close people.

  • These girls are my daughters.
  • These books are mine.
  • These papers aren’t mine.

Those” refer to the things and people that aren’t close (farther away).

  • Those books over there are mine.
  • Those boys at the corner are my close friends
  • Those people next door are my family.

Demonstrative pronouns

Demonstrative pronouns are this, that, these, and those. They are used to refer to things and people. The difference between demonstrative pronouns and demonstrative adjectives is that: demonstrative pronouns are the subject of the sentence.

  • This is my brother.
  • This is my book.
  • That is my uncle.
  • That is my house.
  • These are my parents.
  • These are my games.
  • Those are my friends.
  • Those are my pens.

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