Spanish Indirect Object Pronouns

Beginner Spanish - Level A2

Overview

An indirect object is the person or thing for whom an action is being or has been performed, usually indicated in English by the words “to” or “for.”

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Indirect Object Pronouns in Spanish

The indirect object pronouns indicate the noun to who and for whom and action is intended. It also represents the action by which or to which is being done.

Yo le doy clases                             I give him classes.

Yo le compro el vestido                 I buy the dress from him.

Yo no le escribo la carta                 I do not write the letter for him.

The indirect object pronoun le is placed before the verb that is conjugated. If the word “no,” is present, it is written before the indirect object pronoun le.

There are several meanings for the word le: to him; to her; to you (formal sing); and of les: to them (masc. The indirect object pronoun. Le means: to him, to her, to you, and les: to them (masc. Fem.) to you (by adding these in most cases however, you can use them to emphasize the indirect object pronoun.

El me trae la comida a mí,             He brings me the food.

Le (to him, to her, to you) is clarified by adding a mí, a ella, a él , or a Ud; Les (to them, to you formal pl) is clarified by adding a ellos, a ellas, a uds.

All forms of indirect object pronouns

Luis me da el libro 

(a mi)  

Luis gives the book to me  

Te da   

(a ti)  

to you

Le da  

(a el)  

to him       

Le da

(a ella)  

to her 

Le da     

(a ud.)  

to you

Luis nos da el libro

(a nosotros) 

Luis gives the book to us.

Os da      

(a vosotros)  

to you (you all)

Les da     

(a ellos)       

to them (masc)

Les da  

(a uds.)  

to them (fem)

 

Note all the meanings of le: to him; to her; to you (formal singular) les: to them (masc + fem) to you (formal plural.)

Indirect object pronouns in the attached position.

  1. Señorita escríbale una carta. Miss, write to her a letter.
  2. Para escribirle necesito papel.     To write to him, I need paper.

The indirect object pronouns are attached to affirmative commands just like the direct object pronouns. Indirect object pronouns are written before negative commands, and conjugated verbs, the same as with direct object pronouns.

If a conjugated verb is followed by an infinitive, the indirect object pronoun may be written either before the conjugated verb or attached to the end of the infinitive.

Laura no le quiere hablar.   Laura does not to talk to him.

Laura no quiere hablarle.     Laura does not want to talk to him.

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Writing Exercises

Write an answer in a complete sentence in Spanish, using the right indirect object pronoun. Include the word cues in parenthesis.

 

Example: ¿A quién le vendes ese perro? To whom do you sale the dog? (Juan)

Le vendo ese perro a Juan. I sale the dog to John.

 

  1. ¿A quién le lees ese libro?

       (a Thomas) _________________________________________________.

  1. ¿A quién le pides dirección?

       (a la hermana)_______________________________________________.

  1. ¿A quién le vendes el coche?

       (a Rosita)___________________________________________________.

 

Rewrite the sentence changing the position of the indirect object pronoun. Use the plural form when needed.

 

No quiero hablarle     I don’t want to speak to him.

No le quiero hablar.

 

  1. No deseo leerles._________________________________________.
  2. No quieren vendernos _____________________________________.
  3. No puedo llevarte _________________________________________.
  4. ¿No debemos decirle?_________________________________.
  5. No les quiero comprar _________________________________.
  6. No te pueden ayudar __________________________________.

Answer key:

  1. Le leo el libro a Thomas; 2. Le pido dirección a la hermana. 3. Le vendo el carro a Rosita.
  2. No le deseo leer. 2. No nos quieren vender. 3. No te puedo llevar. 4. No le puedo decir. 5. No quiero comprarles. 6. No pueden ayudarte.

Vocabulary

Te doy un regalo - I give you a present

Le compro un anillo - I buy a ring for him.

Le da un ataque - He suffers an attack.

Nos da la manzana - He gives us the apple.

Os da dinero - He gives you money.

Les da una pelota - He give them a ball. (him)

Les da un vestido - They give her a dress. (her)

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