Missing ‘it’

The missing subject 'it'

In English, every sentence needs a subject. With that I mean EVERY sentence. This rule does not apply to every language. The missing subject ‘it’ is therefore very common. 

“Es necesario estudiar todos los días” is fine in Spanish, but translate it to English and it sounds a little odd. “Is necessary to study every day”.  – you guessed it, we are missing the pronoun it

It is necessary to study every day”.  

That is why it sometimes causes confusion and frustration when learning English. However, it is not as complicated as you may think.

Let’s have a look.

Is raining this weekend.
Is a very boring film.
Is a beautiful beach.

It is raining this weekend.
It is a very boring film.
It is a beautiful beach.

What is a subject?

A subject in a sentence is a person or thing that completes the action of the verb. Then we have subject pronouns. Subject pronouns are the words that can replace the subject’s name, object or thing. 

For example: “Alfredo is a great student”.
The subject is ‘Alfredo’ and can be replaced by ‘he’.
He is a great student”. Now ‘he’ is the subject.

The subject pronoun is also used to avoid repetition. 

“Alfredo is a great student and Alfredo picks up things very fast”. 
“Alfredo is a great student and 
he picks up things very fast”. – sounds more natural, right?

What other subject pronouns do we have?

I
You
He
She
It
We
You
They

singular 1st person singular 2nd person singular 3rd person singular 3rd person singular 3rd person
plural 1st person
plural 2nd person
plural 3rd person

So, when do we use ‘it’!?

‘It’ does not always carry a meaning. It is simply used to complete the sentence. As you know now, every sentence needs a subject, so we use ‘it’ to make it a whole. ‘IT’ is therefore also called a dummy subject.

Questions, doubts, still unclear?

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