Using stress pronouns in compound subjects and objects (unlike English)

Look at these examples:

Jean et moi sommes allés au cinéma
Jean and I went to the cinema

Marie a invité Jean et moi au mariage
Marie invited Jean and me to the wedding

Marie et lui vont venir me voir.
Marie and he are going to come and see me.

Ma femme et toi êtes meilleures amies.
My wife and you are best friends.

Hugo et eux ne s'entendent pas.
Hugo and they don't get along.

Toi et moi sommes plus que des amis.
You and I are more than friends.

When referring to groups including pronouns (Martin and I, me and you, he and she,...), in French you always use stress pronouns (moi, toi, lui, elle, nous, vous, eux, elles)

You won't use subject pronouns (je/tu/il/elle/nous/vous/ils/elles) nor object pronouns (me/te/le/la/l'/nous/vous/les).

 

Note: In English we use subject pronouns (John and I went to the cinema) or object pronouns (Mary invited John and me to the wedding) accordingly.
French uses the same set of stress pronouns instead.

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

Hugo et eux ne s'entendent pas.
Hugo and they don't get along.


Jean et moi sommes allés au cinéma
Jean and I went to the cinema


Ma fille et elles jouent ensemble.
My daughter and they play together.


Ma femme et toi êtes meilleures amies.
My wife and you are best friends.


Toi et moi sommes plus que des amis.
You and I are more than friends.



Marie et lui vont venir me voir.
Marie and he are going to come and see me.


Marie a invité Jean et moi au mariage
Marie invited Jean and me to the wedding


Q&A

CrystalMaiden

Kwiziq community member

21 April 2018

2 replies

In English: We use subject pronouns, really? Didn't know that.

My daughter and they play together.

I thought it was, " them, " not, " they, " in English. I'm confused. I'd use Hugo and them, never Hugo and they. Huh?

Chris

Kwiziq community member

21 April 2018

21/04/18

Yes, you are correct. That's as close as you can come to a stress pronoun in English.


My brother and me -- Mon frère et moi.
My brother and I (sounds a bit stilted) -- Mon frère and je (plain wrong).


-- Chris (not a native speaker).

Jamie

Kwiziq community member

23 August 2018

23/08/18

The reality is that in spoken English and in all but the most formal written English, we DO say "John and me went to the store." People say that it's not logical to do so, because "me" is acting as a subject. But no language except for an artifical one is perfectly logical like that. John McWhorter talks about this a lot in his books on English; he discusses "John and me" in "Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue," among others.

John

Kwiziq community member

26 March 2018

6 replies

John W

Chris

Kwiziq community member

26 March 2018

26/03/18

Please repost your question here. -- Chris.

John

Kwiziq community member

27 March 2018

27/03/18

I find it confusing that Jean et moi can be translated as 'Jean and I' as well as 'Jean and me' (I thought the latter was incorrect English)

Chris

Kwiziq community member

27 March 2018

27/03/18

Hi John,


Indeed, "John and me" is incorrect English, even though frequently heard in colloquial English. However, there does exist in English a kind of parallel to the French stress pronouns. Here is what I mean:


"Hey, you!" - "Who, me?" -- In this case "who, I" would be unnatural. In this case "I" is replaced by "me" which functions as a kind of stress pronoun for "I". This works for other persons as well:


I -- me
you -- you
he/she/it -- him/her/it
we -- us
you -- you
they -- them


It's curious, but in English the use of the stress pronouns also seems to depend on the position within the sentence:


"My brother and I are going out." -- correct.
"My brother and me are going out." -- incorrect.
"Me and my brother are going out." -- correct.
"I and my brother are going out." -- incorrect (or at least awkward).


So your question has more to do with English than with French.


-- Chris (not a native speaker).

Marnie

Kwiziq community member

21 August 2018

21/08/18

Chris, you would NEVER say "Me and my brother are going out".  That is incorrect.  The only way to say this is "My brother and I are going out".  "I and my brother are going out" IS awkward but it's not incorrect.


Jamie

Kwiziq community member

23 August 2018

23/08/18

This just isn't true! See John McWhorter and a host of other linguists on this.

Marnie

Kwiziq community member

23 August 2018

23/08/18

He's American. Any English linguists in that host?   


My brother and I are subject pronoun(s), so when they are the subject, use I. My brother and me are object promoun(s). Use when they are the object.


 "My brother and I walked down the street." Or "My brother and me walked down the street." ? Knockout "my brother" and see how it sounds. "I walked down the street." Or "Me walked down the street." 

Shruti

Kwiziq community member

4 March 2018

2 replies

And marie et he are going to come and see me. Here he is placed with lui? Not with il

Chris

Kwiziq community member

5 March 2018

5/03/18

Hi Shruti,


you need the stress pronoun "lui" here. Even in English you would say: "Marie and HIM" which is the English version of a stress pronoun. 


-- Chris (not a native speaker). 

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

5 March 2018

5/03/18

Bonjour Shruti !


While in English, you could nowadays use colloquially either he or him in subject groups, in French, you can only use the stress pronoun lui.


See our related lesson:
https://kwiziq.learnfrenchwithalexa.com/revision/grammar/how-disjunctive-stress-pronouns-are-used-in-both-compound-subjects-and-objects-unlike-english


Bonne journée !

Shruti

Kwiziq community member

4 March 2018

2 replies

Why There is toi et elle devez prendre une décision.?

Chris

Kwiziq community member

5 March 2018

5/03/18

Hi Shruti,


again, this is a case of stress pronouns. "Toi" is the stress pronoun for "tu" and "elle" is the same as personal and stress pronoun. 



You and her -- Toi et elle  


you and him -- Toi et lui  


She and them -- Elle et eux



-- Chris (not a native speaker). 

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

5 March 2018

5/03/18

Bonjour Shruti !


Same case here as previously.
While in English, you could nowadays use colloquially either you/she or you/her in subject groups, in French, you can only use the stress pronouns toi/elle.


See our related lesson:
https://kwiziq.learnfrenchwithalexa.com/revision/grammar/how-disjunctive-stress-pronouns-are-used-in-both-compound-subjects-and-objects-unlike-english


Bonne journée !

Stewart

Kwiziq community member

13 November 2017

2 replies

I'm confused as to when to use 'êtes' and sommes: Ma femme et toi ÊTES and Toi et moi SOMMES.

Laura

Kwiziq language super star

13 November 2017

13/11/17

Bonjour Stewart,

Êtes is used when the subject is vous or a combination of words that equal vous: ma femme et toi (my wife and you = you) = vous.

Sommes is used when the subject is nous or a combination of words that equal nous: toi et moi (you and I = we) = nous.

You might like to reveiw this lesson: https://kwiziq.learnfrenchwithalexa.com/my-languages/french/view/406

Stewart

Kwiziq community member

13 November 2017

13/11/17

Thank you ... problem solved!
Stewart

Sandra

Kwiziq community member

29 April 2017

2 replies

question on toi & moi

Why is the answer toi & moi and not nous as the rest of the sentence is avons compris la meme chose. I thought only nous went with avons?

Gruff

Kwiziq language super star

29 April 2017

29/04/17

Hi Sandra, the question asked for the correct French for "You and I understood the same thing".

Just as in English, this is a first person plural situation (e.g. You and I are)

Hope that helps.

Johanna

Kwiziq community member

4 September 2018

4/09/18

Why is you being translated as toi instead of vous? Toi is the familiar form but there is no indication here that you and I are on a familiar level. I have that question throughout the lesson whenever you was translated as toi

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