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Declension of personal pronouns. The singular number

Hello, dear student!

Today I would like to talk about the declension of personal pronouns in cases. For a start, let's look at the table of singular personal pronouns:

Case Singular number
Nominative я (I) ты (you) он (he) она (she)
Genitive (у) меня (у) тебя (у) него,
(у) неё,
Dative мне,
ко мне
к тебе
к нему
к ней
Accusative меня,
на меня
на тебя
на него
на неё
Instrumental мной (ою),
со мной
с тобой
с ним с нею,
с ней
Prepositional обо мне о тебе о нём о ней

As the table shows, it is rather difficult to memorize and use this rule but first of all you should learn what question one or another case answers.

Nominative: Кто? Что? (Who? What?)
Genitive: Кого? Чего? (Whom? What?)
Dative: Кому? Чему? (Whom? What?)
Accusative: Кого? Что? (Whom? What?)
Instrumental: Кем? Чем? (By whom? With/by what?)
Prepositional: О ком? О чём? (About whom? About what?)

When we decline prepositions in cases, we begin to understand one of the forms – as the table shows, some prepositions have 2 forms, e.g. "у неё/её". What does it mean and how to use this construction in speech and writing properly? Let's look at the example:

У неё красивая шляпа [u niyo krasivaya shlyapa] - She has a beautiful hat.
- for a start, let's determine the case – у кого? – у неё. This is the genitive case because this question corresponds to this case. It is clear from the context that a beautiful hat is in possession of a woman or a girl, probably she wears it now.

Compare another statement:
Её шляпа лежит на столе [Iyo shlyapa lizhit na stale] - Her hat is on the table.

In the example given, the word "её" is also correspond to the genitive case but here we can implicitly determine that the hat belongs to someone and is situated somewhere.

If you use the preposition before the pronoun "она" (she) in speech, you should use "у неё".
But if you want to say that, for example, some subject belongs to the pronoun "она", you should use – "её" (her).

Ручка её [ruchka iyo] - Her pen (grandmother's, girl's, mother's etc.)

Next pronoun which sparks interest of a foreigner is "тобой/тобою".
Memorize please, it is correct to say:
Я горжусь тобой [ya garzhus' taboj] - I am proud of you.

However, you can use the following form in colloquial language:

Я болен тобою [ya bolen taboyu] - I am crazy about you (Russian kind of idiom)

- this sentence has a metaphorical meaning. In some way it is an idiom which means, a person thinks about someone a lot or he is so keen on somebody that just can't live without this person.

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