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themselves - definition and synonyms

 
 
 
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pronoun themselves pronunciation in American English /ðəmˈselvz/
Themselves is a reflexive pronoun, being a reflexive form of they. It can be used especially in the following ways:
as an object that refers to the same people that are the subject of the sentence or that are mentioned somewhere earlier in the sentence: They prepared themselves for the struggle ahead.We ask people questions about themselves.
after a plural noun or the pronoun “they” for emphasis: It is the party leaders themselves who make the decisions.
 
  1. 1
    used for showing that the people or things that do something are also affected by it or involved in it
    They have no weapons to defend themselves.
    The Republicans are divided among themselves about how to spend the money.
    The couple had been saving up to buy themselves a house.
    Synonyms and related words
  2. 2
    used for referring back to a group of people already mentioned in the same sentence
    Dr. Jeffers’ book should give readers a better understanding of themselves.
    Synonyms and related words
    1. a.
      used instead ofhimselforherselffor referring back to a singular subject of a sentence, especially when the subject is a word such aseveryone,” “someone,” oranyone
      Everyone should just help themselves to the food.
      Synonyms and related words
  3. 3
    used for emphasizing that a particular group of people are the ones that you are referring to, and not any others
    The two youths died in a fire that they themselves had started.
    No one knows more about crime than the criminals themselves.
    Synonyms and related words
    1. a.
      used for emphasizing that a particular group of people do something without help from anyone else
      The kids prepared the whole breakfast themselves.
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