Iam getting confused between reflexive and emphatic pronouns.so can anyone explain me them with examples?

We use a reflexive pronoun when we want to refer back to the subject of the sentence or clause. Reflexive pronouns end in “-self" (singular) or “-selves” (plural).
There are eight reflexive pronouns, namely myself, yourself, himself, herself, itself, ourselves, yourselves and themselves.
Few instances of the same are:
· He was ashamed of himself after his misconduct at school;
· Please help yourselves;
· Infants are unable to look after themselves; etc.
Emphatic pronouns, on the other hand, are used to just emphasise the action of the subject. For instance,
1. He himself ordered the birthday cake;
2. I consulted the property dealer myself, etc.
Kindly note that an emphatic pronoun can be removed from the sentence and the core meaning would not be affected. A reflexive pronoun, on the other hand, is vital. The sentence wouldn’t make complete sense or wouldn’t seem logical if you remove the reflexive pronoun.
He himself cut the cake. He cut the cake.
He cut himself. He cut …what?
Thus, I hope the above explanations and the instances helped you understand the difference between the two.

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Reflexive and Emphatic Pronouns, Secondary English Grammar

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Reflexive pronouns are formed ny the addition of the suffix self (singular) or selves (plural) to simple pronouns such as my , your , her , him , it , them and our...

When the subject and the object refer to the same person , a reflexive pronoun is used for the object....

I cut myself .. (here the subject and the object refer to the same person - I)

You cut yourself.. (here the subject and the  object refer to the same person - you..)

she cut herself... (here the subject and the object refer to the same person - she...)

NOTE :when self is used independentally , it is a noun , not a pronoun...

eg - an honest man keeps his self free from all vices...



When reflexive pronouns are used to put emphasis on a particular noun they are called emphatic pronouns....

the emphatic pronouns cannot be used as sunjects... it is therefore  wrong to say :

John and myself went there..

I invited herself in party...

The correct are :

  • John and I went there..
  • I invited her to party....



a pronoun is a reflexive one if the action of the subject reflects upon the doer... Emphatic pronouns , on the other hand , are used just to emphasize the action of the subject...

Eg :

  • He cut himself.. (Reflexive :here the subject and the object refer to the same person...

He himself cut the cake... (Emphatic  : here the emphatic pronoun himself merely puts emphasis on the noun he..)

Note : If the reflexive pronoun in a sentence is replaced by the reciprocal pronoun ''each other'' the meaning of the sentences changes drastically....

Compare :

John and Peter blamed themselves for the loss.. (John blamed himself and Peter blamed himself..)

John and Peter blamed each other for the loss... (John blamed Peter and Peter blamed John..)


Hopee it helps...


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