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Thread: one's usage

  1. #1
    arnasarutis21 is offline Newbie
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    Lightbulb one's usage

    Hello, I've registered here only for one problem.
    When do people use "one's" in English language?
    What does "one's" mean?
    I tried to find out through Google, but unfortunately I didn't find correct answer, so now I came here to find out everything about word "one's"

    Below are several examples.

    One's a brunette, one's a red-head, and one's a blonde.


    Control over one's day, one's life, one's own destiny are not possible here.

    One's a werewolf, one's a vampire and one's a ghost.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: one's usage

    One's a brunette, one's a red-head, and one's a blonde.
    This is a contraction of 'one is'.

    "One's been seen with Tom Cruise: - a contraction of 'one has'.

    Control over one's day, one's life, one's own destiny are not possible here.
    This is the BrE possessive for the rather formal pronoun 'one'.

  3. #3
    arnasarutis21 is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: one's usage

    Thank you, you have helped me a lot, but I want to ask you one more question.

    May you explain me one more time?
    to wash one’s hands

  4. #4
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    Default Re: one's usage

    Quote Originally Posted by arnasarutis21 View Post
    May Will/would/can/could you explain me one more time?
    'to wash one’s hands'
    This is very formal. Most people would say 'wash your hands':

    It is important to wash your hands after going to the toilet.

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    SoothingDave is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: one's usage

    The thought is that the pronoun "you" should be avoided in formal writing. This is, I believe, to stress that the writing is not personal to the person who is reading it, but meant to apply to all.

    If I say "Make sure you wash your hands before you eat" it can sound like this is a command or advice only for the particular reader. For you, that is.

    To make it general, it is written "One should make sure to wash one's hands before eating." This makes it a general, impersonal statement.

    I stress that this is "formal" writing as I learned it many decades ago. I don't know if that rule about avoiding "you" is still considered valid. But that is the idea.

  6. #6
    arnasarutis21 is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: one's usage

    Thanks for thoughts, but even though I know almost all English grammar I can't express my ideas in English correctly, because lots of people in the internet use incorrect English language I'm talking about YouTube, forums, yahoo etc. Wherever you will go you find incorrect language =) Except British news and this forum =)

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