Q: I know someone who thinks he knows everything about English. This
person says the most widely tolerated grammatical error is “Me too.”
He insists it should always be “I too.” Is this true?
A: “Me” is a much misunderstood pronoun. Perhaps the most common
grammatical error in English is using “I” where “me” would be correct.
For example, in a sentence like “He told John and I a story,” the
pronoun should be “me,” not “I.”
In standard English, “me” is an object pronoun. “Me” is technically
incorrect only when it’s being used as a nominative (or subject)
pronoun – that is, when it’s the subject or implied subject of a
So “me” is impeccably correct in cases where it’s the implied object
of an elliptical (or incomplete) sentence like “Me too.”
For example, if we say, “She invited us to the party,” and you
respond, “Me too,” you’re using “me” correctly. “Me too” is an
elliptical way of saying “[She invited] me too.” Here, “I too” would
be incorrect. You’d never say “She invited I too.”
Or if we say to someone else, “Here’s a gift from us,” and you
respond, “Me too,” then you’re using “me” correctly. “Me too” is an
elliptical way of saying “[It’s from] me too.” Here, “I too” would be
incorrect. You’d never say “It’s from I too.”
On the other hand, if we say, “We’re hungry,” and you respond, “I
too,” you’re technically correct though unnaturally formal (more on
In this case, “I too” is an elliptical way of saying “I
[am hungry] too.”
There are other kinds of constructions in which the choice of “me” and
“I” in short elliptical phrases may depend on whether a subject or an
object is implied. We wrote a blog
about this last year.
So much for what’s technically correct and incorrect. The truth is
that few people say “I too,” and for good reason. Even when it’s
correct (and often it isn’t), it’s stiff and formal sounding.
As we’ve written before on the blog, the use of “Me
for “I too” is an extremely common idiom and a natural development in
The reason is that English speakers generally choose “me” over “I”
when a pronoun is the subject of an elliptical, verbless sentence,
never mind what’s technically correct.
In a short reply without a verb, “I” seems unnaturally stiff to most
people, including us. If it seems stiff to you too, use “Me too.”