These and those are pronouns that often cause confusion for students learning the English language. They both refer to people and objects when there are more than one, but students tend to make mistakes when using these pronouns in conversation or during tests. This article aims to clarify the differences between these and those, ultimately removing any doubts from the reader’s mind.
To start with, these and those are the plural forms of the pronouns this and that.
When discussing objects that are either in your hand or nearby, you use these to refer to them. Consider the following examples:
• These are my parents.
• Paint these walls with red color.
• All these books are mine.
It becomes evident that you should use these to refer to people and objects when they are physically or temporally closer to you.
‘Those’ is a pronoun that is the plural form of that and is used for objects and people who are away from the speaker, either temporally or physically. You can use those for your parents standing in the same room when referring to them to your friend by pointing in their direction. If you have misplaced something and are looking for it inside your room, you have to use those in the following manner:
• Have you seen those long boots?
Another thing to remember with those is that it is a pronoun used to discuss things that are not in your possession.
- ‘These’ is a plural form of this, while ‘those’ is a plural form of that.
- ‘These’ is used for things and people who are close by.
- ‘Those’ is used for people, objects, and ideas that are physically and temporally at some distance from you.