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The Imperative with Pronouns Posted by on Nov 21, 2011 in Spanish Grammar

The imperative is used to give, offer, ask, advise, order, beg and demand. Here are some examples:

Ask: Préstame tu libro, solo por un ratito, ¿sí? (Lend me your book, just for a while, will you?)
Order: Salgan de ahí que es muy muy peligroso. (Get out of there because it’s too dangerous.)
Offer: Coma algunas aceitunas, pues están deliciosas. (Eat some olives, because they’re delicious.)
Advise: No te preocupes, que todo se arreglará. (Don’t worry, things will work themselves out fine.)
Beg: ¡Ay, mamá! Por favor, déjanos ir al baile. (Come on, Mom! Please, let us go to the dance.)
Demand: Quédese en silencio o deberá retirarse. (Be quiet or you will have to leave.)

Let’s review the basic imperative forms with the verb hablar (to speak), comer (to eat) and abrir (to open).


habla – no hables
come – no comas
abre – no abras

Usted
hable – no hable
coma – no coma
abra – no abra

Nosotros
hablemos – no hablemos
comamos – no comamos
abramos – no abramos

Vosotros
hablad – no habléis
comed – no comáis
abrid – no abráis

Ustedes
hablen – no hablen
coman – no coman
abran – no abran

There are also a few irregular verbs in the tú person worth remembering:

poner (to put) – pon
venir (to come) – ven
tener (to have) – ten
salir (to leave) – sal
decir (to say) – di
hacer (to do) – haz
ir (to go) – ve
ser (to be) – sé

– Sometimes the imperative form comes with an object pronoun. They go after the verb and they’re written as only one word: ¡Ayúdenme! (Help me! – plural you)

– With reflexive verbs in the 2nd person plural (vosotros) the D is removed: Callad + os = Callaos. (Shut up!)

– When a verb has two objects, the first one is the indirect object and the second one is the direct object: Por favor, trae la chaqueta y pónmela. (me = on me, la = the jacket)

– It is very common in Spanish to repeat the indirect object:

Señora, ¿les doy el postre a las visitas? -Sí, dáselo, por favor. (se = to the guests, lo = the dessert)
¿Puedo mostrarles la casa a mis amigos? -Claro, muéstrasela. (se = to my friends, la = the house)

– A verb that doesn’t have a tilde can have it, when accompanied by a personal pronoun, if the general rules require it:

Compra el libro. Cómpralo.
Da el libro a tu hermano. Dáselo.

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About the Author: Adir

English / Spanish teacher and translator for over 20 years. I have been blogging since 2007 and I am also a professional singer in my spare time.