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If 'helper' means 'someone who helps', then what is 'someone who got helped'? Whom does the helper help? Is there any term to define it?

migrated from linguistics.stackexchange.com Jul 29 '15 at 19:36

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    This is better asked on English Language & Usage than Linguistics, which concerns itself with inquires which span language boundaries. Language-specific questions should be amass on the language-specific stacks. (And the short answer to your question is helpee, at least informally). – Dan Bron Jul 29 '15 at 10:24
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    Someone is bound to suggest "helpee." See english.stackexchange.com/questions/260651/…. for extensive discussion. – ab2 Jul 29 '15 at 19:52
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    You're not looking for an antonym; that means something opposite to helper (e.g. hinderer) – Charon Jul 29 '15 at 19:57
  • It's interesting because there exists the word refugee, for those seeking refuge - I feel like there should be a word like aidee. – Charon Jul 29 '15 at 20:02
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There isn't really a single word in English that means exactly what you are looking for. 'Beneficiary' can be used if the help is financial in nature, for example, or 'recipient' if the help involves giving something (object, money, advice etc.), but it depends on the context.

For a completely generic term, I think you can't get much more concise than 'one who is helped' or 'recipient of help' I'm afraid.

  • To my knowledge, there is no financial constraint or subtext on "beneficiary". This word can naturally be used to name someone who has received help, just as "beneficence" can be used to label aid generally. This appears to agree with the general definition provided by Merriam-Webster: "a person, organization, etc., that is helped by something : someone or something that benefits from something." – scottb Jul 29 '15 at 23:19

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