Intensive Pronouns | Grade 5 English Learning Concepts | Orchids
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Pronouns

Concept: Intensive Pronouns

Definition:

  • An intensive pronoun is a kind of a pronoun that emphasizes on one or more than one noun or pronoun.
  • In a sentence, an intensive pronoun is placed after the noun or pronoun.
  • It is defined as a pronoun that ends with the singular form ‘self’ or plural form ‘selves’.

Types of Intensive Pronouns:

An intensive pronoun can refer to one or more than one pronoun. It can be divided into two types singular intensive pronoun and plural intensive pronoun.

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a) Singular Intensive Pronouns:

1. If an intensive pronoun refers to one person, it is a singular intensive pronoun. The suffix ‘self’ is found in the words

2. Singular intensive pronouns are myself, himself, herself, yourself, and itself.

Example:

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  • We used the intensive pronoun ‘herself’ to emphasize the pronoun ‘she’, and it was positioned right after the pronoun.
  • Notice even if we omit ‘herself’ from the sentence, it makes a complete sentence. We used ‘herself’ just to put emphasis on the pronoun. Using the word ‘herself’ could mean that she completed a task on her own or she completed a task which she wouldn’t normally finish.

b) Plural Intensive Pronouns:

1. If an intensive pronoun refers to more than one person, it is a plural intensive pronoun.

2. Plural intensive pronouns are ourselves, themselves, and yourselves.

Example:

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  • The intensive pronoun ‘themselves’ is used to emphasize the plural pronoun ‘they’, and ‘themselves’ is placed right after the pronoun ‘they’.
  • ‘Themselves’ is the plural intensive pronoun because it refers to more than one person.
  • In this example also, if we remove ‘themselves’ from the sentence, it will still make a meaningful sentence. We used ‘themselves’ to stress the pronoun.

Exception:

1. Intensive pronouns are sometimes confused with reflexive pronouns; however, they differ in terms of their usage.

Example:

a) Rasesh bought the ice cream for himself.

b) Rasesh himself has bought the ice cream.

In the first example, the ‘himself’ adds information to the part of the sentence and changes the meaning. ‘Himself’ is the object in the sentence. Hence, it is a reflexive pronoun. In the second example, the ‘himself’ adds emphasis to the sentence without which the sentence makes complete sense.

2. Sometimes, intensive pronouns can be positioned away from the noun they refer to.

Example:

Sonam wrote the poem herself.

3. Sometimes, they may not be connected with the subject but some other noun in the sentence.

Example:

Jitesh felt his effort itself was not good enough to finish the work.

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