In grammar, a person is the way of referring to someone taking part in an event, such as the person talking, the person being talked to, the person being talked about. Grammatical persons are accomplished by pronouns, words used to take the place of a noun, in order to make speech easier.
The first person is the speaker referring to himself or herself. The second person is the person whom someone is speaking to or writing to.
Persons[change | change source]
|I||First person singular (This comes from the person speaking)||-|
|We||First person plural (This comes from a person part of a group)||-|
|You||Second person singular or plural (This comes from a person talking directly to someone.)||-|
|He||Third person masculine singular / third person gender-neutral singular||masculine (only for men or boys)|
|She||Third person feminine singular||feminine (only for women or girls)|
|It||Third person neutral singular (This comes from a person talking about something that has no gender)||-|
|They||Third person plural / third person gender-neutral singular (the singular usage is commonly accepted)||-|
Effect on nouns[change | change source]
Very few nouns are second-person nouns because people do not usually talk directly to things like tables. In fact, in English, just about the only kind of nouns that are second-person is a small group of pronouns that can be seen in the table below.
Sometimes, a person's name is used in the second person, but that's usually just with a baby. For example, instead of saying "you sit here", one could say "Charlie sits here".
Effect on verbs[change | change source]
In English grammar, people do not usually have to do anything special to the verb if they use a second-person noun as a subject. In fact, the verb be is the only verb that has a special form for the second person: are. In other languages such as French though, verbs change in different ways to match the subject. In this table, tu and vous are the second-person pronouns. We can see how the verb parler (talk) changes when people use them.
|Present||Simple Past||Imperfect||Simple Future||Present||Imperfect||Present||Present|