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4 votes
Accepted

How should I refer to a person without identifying them? Can I use 'one'?

Somebody is in the drawing room or There is somebody in the drawing room expresses your meaning better than "one is in the drawing room". Merriam-Webster explains the meaning of somebody: &...
Stuart F's user avatar
  • 10.4k
4 votes

Should an antecedent of "everyone" take "their" or "his" or "our" as its corresponding possessive pronoun?

Your test is unfair, because there is no single answer that everyone would agree upon. Everybody, along with everyone, traditionally uses a singular pronoun of reference: everybody must sign his ...
michael.hor257k's user avatar
3 votes

What is the possessive form of “neither”?

Your intuition has misled you. The possessive of neither is formed in the ordinary way. Here's a nice example: Neither's opinion was expressed in public ; neither's was known to the other....
deadrat's user avatar
  • 44.7k
3 votes
Accepted

Style of grammar in which one does not refer directly to people?

In the first example, you are using the passive voice, which allows you to avoid specifying the agent of the action. In the second example, you are not using the possessive, but you are still using ...
J. Siebeneichler's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Is 'you' acceptable here, or should it be 'he'?

Either "one" or "you" fits here, but "he" does not fit, semantically. It is not grammatically incorrect to use "he" here, but that gives a different meaning from what is no doubt intended. If you ...
Drew's user avatar
  • 15.2k
2 votes

What type of pronouns are "other" and "another"?

"Other" and "another" are not pronouns despite what some dictionaries may say. "Other" is a common noun. It differs from a pronoun in that it can take determiners such as ...
BillJ's user avatar
  • 13.3k
2 votes

Is 'each other' used correctly when talking about sets of more than two people?

"We have a christian duty to serve each other. Is this statement correct**?** Because each other is used for two persons and one another for more than two persons. This seems to be an invented "rule" ...
Greybeard's user avatar
  • 42.6k
2 votes

What is it called when indefinite pronouns are used as determiner?

What is it called when indefinite pronouns are used as determiner? E.g. “Familiarize yourself with everything Apple.” Everything is not a determiner. It is a pronoun. “Everything Apple” = all things ...
Greybeard's user avatar
  • 42.6k
2 votes

something the matter (strange word order: indefinite pronoun + noun)

As a practical matter, I wouldn't recommend trying to analyze the grammar of "something the matter" in terms of "the matter" being a noun phrase. It looks like one, but I don't ...
herisson's user avatar
  • 82.6k
1 vote

Why is an "a" article being used here? I would use "the" instead

Why is an "a" article being used here? The article describes a specific one-of-a-kind bill that saves the country from a default, not just some random bill. Shouldn't "the" be used ...
phoog's user avatar
  • 6,017
1 vote

How should I refer to a person without identifying them? Can I use 'one'?

I think either someone or somebody could be used, so either Someone is in the drawing room. or Somebody is in the drawing room. work equally well. You could then use they to refer to that person ...
Neal's user avatar
  • 231
1 vote

What is it called when indefinite pronouns are used as determiner?

My view is that in the phrase Familiarize yourself with everything Apple the word 'Apple' is used as a modifier. Think of an Apple device, an Apple style, a quintessentially Apple way of doing ...
Chris Sanders's user avatar
1 vote

Can we use the indefinite pronoun “someone” as a possessive pronoun “someone’s”? (not only as a possessive determiner)

You can use 'someone' in the possessive case. In the crowd, I accidentally stood on someone's foot.
Kate Bunting's user avatar
1 vote

something the matter (strange word order: indefinite pronoun + noun)

You're dealing with an idiom. something be the matter (with X) is a verbal idiom that means 'something is wrong, broken, sick, or otherwise out of order'. It can be applied to machines, emotions, ...
John Lawler's user avatar
1 vote

Should an antecedent of "everyone" take "their" or "his" or "our" as its corresponding possessive pronoun?

The words everyone and everybody aren't about a specific person, so the (also gender-specific) his part is off. But the phrase is general, so our part is also not right. I would say Everyone wants ...
Weather Vane's user avatar
  • 21.4k
1 vote

What possessive is used when "everybody" is the antecedent?

Animacy, not Gender If you don’t know what someone’s gender is, you cannot call them an “it”, for “it” is not about gender. It is therefore ungrammatical in English to use its to refer to a human ...
tchrist's user avatar
  • 136k

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