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Direct and Indirect Object Pronouns

Direct and Indirect Object Pronouns in Spanish

Using direct and indirect object pronouns in the same sentence can be difficult.

To help you, here is a post about how to use these pronouns.

Find a list of examples with audio to better understand the concepts and to practice your listening skills. Additionally, you will find a list of links where you will be able to practice the concepts explained here.

NOTICE: some of the links in this posts are affiliate links. If you purchase something, I will receive a commission. However, your purchase price will remain unchanged.

What are direct and indirect object pronouns in Spanish?

First, we will review the direct and indirect object pronouns.

DOPS: direct object pronouns.

IOPS: indirect object pronouns.

DOPsIOPsENGLISH
Me
Me
Me
Te
Te
You (informal)
Lo

La
Le
Him, her it (masculine, feminine), you (formal,
masculine, feminine)
Nos

Nos
Us
Os
Os
You all (informal, Spain)
Los

Las
Les
Them
You all (formal)

Where do we put direct and indirect object pronouns in a sentence?

In Spanish, you can find a direct object pronoun and an indirect object pronoun in the same sentence.

When this happens, the pronouns follow the same placement rules as single object pronouns.

CONJUGATED VERBS

When both pronouns are in the same sentence (in affirmative statements, negative statements, and questions) the indirect object pronoun comes first.

EXAMPLES
  • Ella me lo manda.→ She sends it to me.
  • ¿Me lo manda ella?→ Does she send it to me?
  • Ella no me lo manda.→ She doesn´t send it to me.

PROGRESSIVE TENSES

With present participles the pronouns can go before the form of estar or attached to the end of the present participle.

EXAMPLES
  • Pepe me lo está comprando.→ Pepe is buying it for me.
  • Pepe está comprándomelo.→ Pepe is buying it for me.

VERB + INFINITIVE

In verb + infinitive constructions the pronouns can either go before the first verb or attached to the infinitive.

EXAMPLES
  • Mi amigo te lo tiene que arreglar.→ My friend has to fix it for you.
  • Mi amigo tiene que arreglártelo.→ My friend has to fix it for you.

COMMANDS

With commands, the pronouns are attached to the end of the verb in affirmative commands and placed before the conjugated verb in negative commands.

EXAMPLES
  • ¡Mándamelo ahora!→ Send it to me now!
  • ¡No me lo mandes ahora!→ Don´t send it to me.

NOTE: When object pronouns get tacked on a verb, you have to add an accent to maintain the stress of the verb.

How to Use the Se Pronoun

When both pronouns start with the letter “l” the indirect object pronoun is substituted for se.

In other words, the indirect object pronouns le and les change to se when they go before the direct object pronouns lo, la and los.

This is done to avoid a tongue-twisting effect.

Before substitutionAfter substitution
Le loSe lo
Le laSe la
Le losSe los
Le lasSe las
Les loSe lo
Les laSe la
Les losSe los
Les lasSe las
EXAMPLES
  • Les di los regalos a los niños.→ I gave the presents to the children.
  • Se los di.→ I gave them to them.
  • ¿Le has escrito la carta a tu madre?→ Have you written the letter to your mother?
  • ¿Se la has escrito?→ Have you written it to her?

Direct and Indirect Object Pronouns in Spanish Practice

Gap Fill Exercises
Oral Practice
Quizzes
Written Practice

Final Thoughts

Hopefully this post helps you understand direct and indirect object pronouns in Spanish.

I recommend that you practice with the examples here and try to make up some on your own. Also, check out the exercises that you will find in the links mentioned above.

If you need to, I can help you practice these pronouns by using them while having a conversation during our online Spanish conversation classes.

Additionally, we can practice in the comment section below by answering the following questions and filling the blank spaces:

  • ¿Le has dicho la verdad? Sí, ______ he dicho.
  • Voy a decirle lo que pienso a mi amigo:
    • ______ voy a decir o voy a decír___.
  • ¡Mándale la carta a tu hermano!
    • Mánda______.

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