The position of direct and indirect object pronouns

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The position of direct and indirect object pronouns

Indirect object pronouns Pronombres CI and direct object pronouns Pronombres CD are placed:

  • For the most part, in front of the verb.

Le doy unas llaves (a Betty).

I’m giving her some keys (to Betty).

Los tengo en el bolso (los cigarrillos).

I have them in my bag (the cigarettes).

  • After the verb: in the affirmative imperative form.

Dale unas flores (a Carolina).

Give her some flowers (to Carolina).

Míralos (a ellos).

Look at them (Ana and Teo).

  • Before or after the verb: In sentences that contain an auxiliary verb and a main verb.

Las voy a dejar en la nevera. / Voy a dejarlas en la nevera (las cervezas).

I’m going to leave them in the fridge (the beers).

In the construction estar (to be) + a gerund (which expresses actions currently taking place):

Nacho le está dando unas llaves. / Nacho está dándole unas llaves (a Magda).

Nacho is giving her some keys (to Magda).

Estoy viéndolo. / Lo estoy viendo (a Nacho).

I’m looking at him (Nacho).

Note: In sentences with several object pronouns, the indirect object pronoun is placed before the direct object pronoun:

Magda te da las maletas. Magda te las da.

Magda is giving you the suitcases Magda is giving them to you.


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