When a child loses his baby tooth

lagoo

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Feb 5, 2017
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Chinese
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China
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China
When a child loses his baby tooth, they put it under the pillow before going to sleep.


This sentence comes from a TV drama, and I am puzzled why in the main clause the word "they" is used instead of "he".
 

Rover_KE

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Jun 20, 2010
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England
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Because girls do it too. The sentence should begin 'When a child uses their baby tooth ...'

'They/them/their' are standard third person singular pronouns when the person's gender is unknown.

If you don't like the sound of that, say 'When children lose baby teeth, they put them under the pillow for the Tooth Fairy'.
 
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