It vs. Is

Difference Between It and Is


There are several differences between the usage of “it” and” is” in English Grammar. This article will discuss a few of them.

First and foremost, the word “it” is what is known as a demonstrative pronoun meaning it conveys characteristics of a subject that you have already discussed before. For example, if you have told someone about how pretty a dress is, then in your next sentence if you mean to talk more about the same subject, you can use “it” to replace the subject and say “It is red.”

On the other hand, the auxiliary verb “is” is what is known as an indirect verb that denotes the meaning “ to be present”. It is from the root “to be”. If you say “She is in Melbourne” then you mean that the girl is currently in Melbourne whereas if you say “ The pen is on the table” then you are conveying that the pen is still at the table while you are speaking.

Apart from the usage given above, the word “it” is also used to denote a general idea like in “It is bad to tell a lie.” While the word “is” may be used in present continuous tense such as “ She is staring at me” which tells us that she is still doing the staring while you are telling us about it.

Lastly, the auxiliary verb “is” may also be used in confirming sentences like “Yes it is” where in the use of the word “it” is such that it is a particle that puts emphasis on the confirmation.


  • “It” is used as a demonstrative pronoun. This is to talk further about a subject that’s already been discussed before.
  • “Is” is an auxiliary verb used to denote a present action or description.
  • “It” may be used to convey a general idea.
  • “Is” may be used to convey present continuous tense.
  • “Is” may be used in confirming sentences while “it” may be used to put emphasis on the confirmation.