Can't we use "you and I" here?


It's a line taken from One Direction's song History.

You and me got a whole lot of history

Shouldn't we use "You and I" instead of "You and me" in above sentence.


Posted 2016-10-21T08:11:59.250

Reputation: 834


Possible duplicate of Should I write "X and I", "X and me", "I and X", or "me and X" in a conjoined object?

– FumbleFingers Reinstate Monica – 2016-10-21T15:14:57.557

2Song lyrics often stretch or break grammatical rules. – J.R. – 2016-10-21T15:50:27.183



Certainly we can, in standard English we should, and in formal English you must.

The issue is the difference between formal/standard English and informal/non-standard English . Formal English says that 'you' and 'I' are both the subjects of the sentence, and must be in subject (or nominative) form. But many people speaking informally sometimes say (or write) 'you and me' in this situation, and in some non-standard varieties of English most (or all) people usually (or always) say (or write) it.

A second difference between formal/standard and informal/non-standard English in this sentence is 'have' v 'have got' v 'got'. Formal English (especially in BrEng) would use 'You and I have a lot of history', Standard English would use 'You and I have got' and informal/non-standard English might use (in approximate order of informality/non-standardness) 'You and I got', 'You and me have got' or 'You and me got'.

If you want to choose one of these, 'You and I have got' is probably the most standard/neutral.


Posted 2016-10-21T08:11:59.250

Reputation: 6 681


Yes, you should use you and I

The sentence actually has two clauses

You got a whole lot of history


Me got a whole lot of history

The predicate in the second clause then had an ellipsis to form a compound sentence

You and me got a whole lot of history

Look, me is the subject in the second clause. So you should use the subjective form( I). However, you and me is acceptable for lyricism purpose. Maybe they want it to rhyme with another word.


Posted 2016-10-21T08:11:59.250

Reputation: 7 435

1The choice of phrase is not governed by rhyme here. "You and me" is colloquial English, and "got a whole lot of history" is an informal way of saying that two people have had a relationship for a long time, one with "ups and downs", not always perfect. If two people have experienced a lot together; have fallen out, have patched things up, have fallen out again, and patched things up again, one of them might say "You and me got a whole lot of history". – Tᴚoɯɐuo – 2016-10-21T10:44:36.727

@TRomano Yes, it's true. You and me is typically used informally. But I'm sure it's also for rhyming purpose. Because could be superfacially rhymes with you and me. – user178049 – 2016-10-21T12:42:39.830