Tag Archives: Intensive pronoun

Reflexive Pronoun

Reflexive Pronoun: used when the subject and direct object are the same, or subject and the object of a prepositional phrase are the same, as an intensive pronoun to make a statement stronger with respect to who or what is responsible for something, in command (imperative) sentences where the subject ‘you’ is omitted. Also as intensive pronouns

Function: show that the verb activity is done by, to or the subject. This emphasizes the subject does the activity without help or alone.

Sentence Position:  after the verb, after the preposition in a prepositional phrase.

subject and direct object same
Example

I need to care of myself now that I live away from my parents’ home.

subject and the object of a prepositional phrase are the same
Example

Danny traveled to Paris by himself.

as an intensive pronoun to make a statement stronger with respect to who or what is responsible for something
Example

Students themselves need to clean the classrooms.

in command (imperative) sentences where the subject ‘you’ is omitted
Example

Help yourselves to the workbooks at the back of the classroom.

Key Words

Singular Plural
myself ourselves
yourself yourselves
herself, himself, itself themselves

Level: beginner, intermediate.

Common Learner Difficulties:

1) using a reflexive pronoun as a subject

Yourself needs to get to class on time.

Correct: You need to get to class on time.

Also See: direct object, imperative sentence, intensive pronoun, prepositional phrase, pronoun, noun, subject, verb.

Intensive Pronoun

Intensive Pronoun: emphasize information in a sentence.

Function: reflexive pronoun is used to make a statement stronger with respect to who or what is responsible for something.

Sentence Position:  either directly after the noun it modifies or after the direct object.  Much like with adjectives, intensive pronouns are not needed in sentences for the sentences to make sense.

Singular Plural
myself ourselves
ExamplesI myselflove grammar!I made the cake myself.  I didn’t buy it.
yourself yourselves
ExamplesDid you yourself write this essay?Would you please do it yourselves?
herself, himself, itself themselves
The exam must be written by students themselves.Sara approved the budget herself.

Level: intermediate.

Common Learner Difficulties:

1) putting the reflexive pronoun in the wrong position in the sentence for the intended meaning

I made myself the pizza.  (intended meaning, ’I made the pizza without help from other people.’ Meaning stated ‘I made the pizza to eat alone, not to share with other people.’

Correct: I made the pizza myself.

Also See: object, pronoun, reflexive pronoun, noun