Reflexive Pronouns: Definition, Uses, and Examples

Reflexive Pronouns! Have you learned about this term? Learn the definition of reflexive pronouns and their uses and example sentences.

Reflexive Pronouns

Reflexive Pronouns: Definition, Uses, and Examples

The term reflexive means “bend back.” They must refer back to a specific noun in the same sentence. The noun to which the reflexive pronoun refers back is called the antecedent. For example, “The boy saw himself in the mirror.” Here, the reflexive pronoun himself can only refer back to its antecedent boy.

They end in -self or -selves and are an easily recognizable pronoun group. These pronouns are sometimes called compound personal pronouns. Here is the list of reflexive pronouns, both singular and plural.

PersonSingular Reflexive PronounsPlural Reflexive Pronouns
First PersonMyselfOurselves
Second PersonYourselfYourselves
Third PersonHimselfThemselves

Reflexive Pronoun Examples Sentences

The singular and plural reflexive pronouns end with –self and –selves, respectively.

Singular Reflexive Pronouns Example Sentences

  • She imposes herself. 
  • I fixed the broken window myself. 
  • You served yourself. 
  • She doesn’t sееm herself these days.
  • I absented myself from the school.
  • He did the work himself.
  • I taught myself how to drive.
  • She availed herself of the opportunity.
  • He cut himself while he was shaving.
  • The older man sat in a corner, talking to himself.
  • It sees itself in the mirror.
  • Don’t get angry. Control yourself!
  • I sing that song myself.
  • She baked the birthday cake herself.
  • The mother feeds the baby, not it can feed itself.

Plural Reflexive Pronouns Example Sentences

  • The students enjoyed themselves.
  • The wedding ceremony was great. We enjoyed ourselves very much.
  • If you want something new to eat, help yourselves.
  • They can prepare themselves a packed lunch if they like.
  • We must ask ourselves some questions.
  • Mom will not be at home tomorrow, so you will all have to cook for yourselves.
  • Older men often talk to themselves.
  • John and his sister built their house themselves.
  • Can he repair the car, or must we do it ourselves?
  • They really enjoyed themselves last night.
  • They often deceive themselves.

Uses and Rules of Reflexive Pronouns

Some verbs such as wash, shave, afford, complain, rest, relax, stand up, get up, wake up, bring, take, concentrate, meet, etc., do not usually take а reflexive pronoun.


  • Не got up and shaved.
  • I went out and took a parcel with me.
  • What time shall you meet?
  • I feel great after taking a shower.
  • Why don’t you try and concentrate?
  • It’s good to relax.

But when you talk about children or animals, we can use а reflexive pronoun with wash.

  • I am teaching my son how to wash himself.

We cannot use them as subjects or objects of verbs unless they are preceded by pronouns or nouns concerned.


  • You and she reached the stadium in time. (Not yourself and she)
  • They will write the application for me and my friend. (Not for myself)

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