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    Reflexive Pronouns

    Why do the first person and second person reflexive pronouns (myself/yourself) use the possessives my/your and all the others use the objectives her/him/it/them?

    I [my] me myself
    you [your] you yourself
    she her [her] herself
    he his [him] himself
    it its [it] itself
    they their [them] themselves

    Is there an explanation or is it just a grammar rule?

    Thank you.

  1. Soup's Avatar
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    English Teacher
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    Re: Reflexive Pronouns

    No grammatical rule. Just the history of English. It's a process called paradigmatic regularization. For example, Old English (O.E.) meself became Middle English (M.E.) myself because other pronouns in that grammatical category had similar forms, like herself:
    Online Etymology Dictionary

    O.E., from phrase ic me self, where me is "a kind of ethical dative" [OED], altered in Middle Ages from meself on analogy of herself, with her- felt as gen.; though analogous hisself remains bad form.

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