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they

See definition of they on Dictionary.com
  • pron.nominative plural pronoun
  • pron.nominative singular pronoun

synonyms for they

  • we
  • you
Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is a synonym for they?

We don’t traditionally think of they as having synonyms, but there are several situations in which it can replace—or be replaced with—another word, phrase, or series of words.

Plural people and things

They is perhaps most commonly used as a plural pronoun referring to multiple people, as in Seven people made reservations, and they all showed up at the same time. It can also refer to multiple things, as in I moved the packages so they wouldn’t fall off the table. 

A singular person

They also has a long history of being used to refer to an unspecified individual or to a person whose gender and other personal details are unknown or irrelevant, as in If a student is absent, they must bring in a note when they return to school. Sentences like this sometimes use constructions like he or she, but the use of they has become very common in such instances, with many people preferring they as less awkward and more inclusive.

Nonbinary gender expression

A use of they that has become more widespread is as a personal pronoun for those who identify as nonbinary or whose gender identity exists between or beyond the spectrum of strictly male or female. Grammatically, it’s used in the same way as the gender-specific terms like he and she, but it’s gender-neutral. You can learn more about this below.

themselves

In some cases, the word themselves is used as another way of saying they or another form of it. It’s sometimes used in place of they or them after the words as, than, and but, as in They saw girls no older than themselves. It can also be used as an emphatic form of they or them, as in They—the students themselves—wrote the lesson. Singular forms include themself or theirself.

What word can I use instead of they?

What does it mean to use they/them pronouns?

What kind of pronoun is they?

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How to use they in a sentence

There was a certain difficulty in obtaining the necessary funds without announcing precisely what they-were for.
HYACINTHGEORGE A. BIRMINGHAM
A rose from the cottage of Mavis Clare?a rose from the garden of Eden!they are one and the same to me!
THE SORROWS OF SATANMARIE CORELLI
"Reckon I could hold my own agin most of they-uns if I only had a new-fangled gun," returned the boy.
HARPER'S ROUND TABLE, OCTOBER 1, 1895VARIOUS
What a noble illustration of the tender laws of this favoured country!they let the paupers go to sleep!
OLIVER TWIST, VOL. I (OF 3)CHARLES DICKENS
Father declared that he could not lift his feet-they seemed sealed to the ground, and he felt that he must go back.
PRECIOUS MEMORIESVARIOUS
Six syllables are like six figures-they get you dizzy when you commence fooling with them!
AMAZING GRACEKATE TRIMBLE SHARBER
After this trip my name was changed to ‘They-know-that-Leader.’
PAWNEE HERO STORIES AND FOLK-TALESGEORGE BIRD GRINNELL
What about your hands and face-they go with the clothes, don't they?
THE WHITE MOLLFRANK L. PACKARD
Then, with disappointment depicted in every line of his suddenly weary body, he gloomily stammered: "Th-th-th-they've gone home!"
THE BRASS BOUND BOXEVELYN RAYMOND
These friends are down there as a sort of permanent arrangement—stop-as-long-as-they-like sort of thing.
THE CRUISE OF THE MAKE-BELIEVESTOM GALLON
SYNONYM OF THE DAY
OCTOBER 26, 1985
Choose the synonym for future
capacitor

WORDS RELATED TO THEY

  • he
  • it
  • she
  • sie
  • they
  • ve
  • xe
  • you
  • ze
  • zie
Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.