French Stressed Pronouns (Exercises and Grammar)

You can go directly to the exercises if you are already familiar with the grammar

There are different areas of application for these pronouns. For example, did you notice that vous, nous, elle and elles are the same as personal pronouns?

They might be the same, but their meanings can change. We will look at the reason for this in this article.

Let’s begin by looking at some common areas of application .


After prepositions (avec, sans etc.)

It is common to use these pronouns after prepositions. So, before looking at the examples, let’s define a preposition.

You can think of them as small words that help us to create sentences. For instance:

  • Avec – With
  • Sans – Without
  • Dans – In
  • Avant – Before
  • Après – After
  • Pour – For

There are many different prepositions. We will use the prepositions above for our sentences.

  • Elle fait tout pour (preposition) lui (stressed pronoun) – She does everything for him.
  • Il est parti sans eux – He left without them.
  • J’écoute de la musique avec lui –  I listen to music with him.
  • Je suis allé au cinéma sans toi– I went to the cinema without you.
  • La vie est difficile sans elles – Life is difficult without them.
  • Tu veux vivre chez moi ou chez lui? – Do you want to live with me or him?
  • Elle habite loin de nous – She lives far from us.

These sentences are quite basic. You could say that it’s very important to know when to use stressed pronouns to express yourself correctly.

Let’s go ahead and look at other important areas of application.

Emphasize the meaning (of something)

So, how does this work in practice?

  • Moi, je n’aime pas les fruits de mer – (Me), I don’t like seafood.
  • Toi, tu travailles trop – (You), You work too much.
  • Lui, il n’est pas le bienvenu – (Him), He is not welcome.

This structure of a phrase is much more common in French than in English.

In fact, it can be difficult to find an appropriate translation in English.

Let’s look at 3 additional examples:

  • Vous les filles, vous n’étiez pas censé être là – You girls, you were not meant to be here.
  • Lui? Il ne voulait pas venir avec nous – Him? He didn’t want to come with us.
  • Nous? Nous n’avions jamais envie de participer  – We? We never had the desire to participate.

C’est (It is)

C’est (it is) is a very common expression in French. You can also use it to talk about the past.

In this case, you need to use the imperfect tense of the verb: C’était – It was.

You need to use the stressed pronouns in relation to C’est when talking about persons.

For instance:

  • C’est lui – It’s him.
  • C’est moi – It’s me

We can also put these 2 sentences in the past tense (the imperfect tense):

  • C’était lui – It was him.
  • C’était moi – It was me.

In the examples above, we have referred to one single person. Therefore, we need to use the plural version of the expression (Ce sont) if we want to refer to several persons.

For instance:

  • Ce sont eux – It’s them.
  • Ce sont elles* – It’s them.

* We refer to a group of only women when using elles.

Last but not least, it should be mentioned that there is not really a big difference between c’est and ce sont.

Native French speakers sometimes use c’est even if they are referring to a group of people.

Additional areas of application

Possession is another area of application. You could say:

  • Ces valises sont à toi – These suitcases are yours.
  • La maison est à moi – The house is mine.
  • Le monde est à toi* – The world is yours.

*I think that this is the title of a movie .

We will also use the stressed pronouns when making comparisons:

  • On est plus fort que lui – We are stronger than him.
  • Elle est plus rapide que toi – She is faster than you.
  • Je suis plus intelligent qu’eux* – I am smarter than them.
  • Vous êtes plus gentil qu’elles* – You are nicer than them.

* We remove an e from que in these 2 phrases. There is a logical reason for this. Without removing one e we would be forced to pronounce 2 vowels one after the other.

This does not sound very good.

You could try pronouncing this phrase:

  • Je suis plus gentil que eux.


  • Je suis plus gentil qu’eux.

I’m sure that you will find the second one easier to pronounce.

Last but not least, it should be mentioned that we use the stressed pronouns followed by the common French word “Chez”.

It can be difficult to find an English translation for “Chez”. However, in this context, we’ll use the translation “at someone’s place”.

  • Nous allons manger chez moi ou chez lui? – Are we going to eat at my place or at his place?
  • Chez eux –  At their place.
  • Chez moi – At my place.
  • Rendez-vous chez lui – Let’s meet at his place?
  • Tu veux aller chez eux ou rester chez toi? – Do you want to go to their place or stay at home (your place)?



Stressed pronouns will probably not be the biggest challenge in your French studies. However, memorizing pronouns like “lui” and “eux” can be difficult.

Let’s look at a couple of common mistakes:

  • Lui n’est pas là (wrong)
  • Il n’est pas là (correct)


  • Lui ne veut pas venir (wrong)
  • Il ne veut pas venir (correct)


  • Ils, ils ne sont pas sympas (wrong)
  • Eux, ils ne sont pas sympas (correct)


  • Je suis plus fort qu’ils (wrong)
  • Je sus plus fort qu’eux (correct)

It is a good idea to learn them by heart. For instance, you could create different sentences with “chez”. It will help you to get used to their spelling and their meaning.

Last but not least, remember that preposition are linked to stressed pronouns. For instance:

  • Je ne veux pas aller sans lui: I don’t want to go without him.
  • Il ne va pas bien sans elle: He is not doing well without her.
  • Ce soir, je vais aller sans eux et je ne vais pas rentrer avant toi: Tonight i’ll go without them and I won’t go home without you.

Do you have any questions regarding the content of this article? If so, please leave me a comment.

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