#EngVocab: Thou, Thee, Thy, Thine

“Ask and thou shalt receive.”

This sentence has been my mantra for most of my adulthood. It always reminds me that to achieve something, I must be ready to fight for it.

This article is discussing the archaic (old, no longer used) form of ‘you,’ that is ‘thou,’ along with its variations, ‘thee,’ ‘thy,’ and ‘thine.’

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As you might have guessed, the word ‘thou’ is a second person singular pronoun. It’s an old-fashioned, poetic, or religious version of ‘you.’ ‘Thou’ is the nominative/subjective case, meaning it’s a subject pronoun.

Example:
“Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.”

Meaning:
“You should not lie or spread rumours about your neighbours and the people around you.”

What do we do if we need to address more than one person?
We use ‘ye.’

Example:
“I forgot to introjuice him to ye.” – William Makepeace Thackeray in Vanity Fair (1837).

Our Indonesian followers might be familiar of the Dutch version of this word, ‘jij,’ as it has similar pronunciation.

So, what is ‘thee?’
‘Thee’ is the accusative and dative form of ‘thou,’ which means that it is the object pronoun, the receiving end of an action.

Example:
“I salute Thee, oh, Mother of the Universe.”

Meaning:
“I pay my respects to You, oh, Mother of the Universe.”

Possessive pronouns ‘thy’ and ‘thine’
If we want to refer to something that is owned by the second person, we use ‘thy,’ the possessive adjective pronoun of ‘thou.’ If the possession starts with a vowel, we use ‘thine.’

Example:
“Honour thy parents.”
“Thine eyes shall behold strange things in this land.”

Meaning:
“Honour your parents.”
“Your eyes will see strange things in this land.”

Compiled by @alicesaraswati for @EnglishTips4U on Sunday, 13 June 2021.

RELATED ARTICLE(S):
#EngClass: Reciprocal Pronoun
#EngClass: Reflexive Pronouns
#EngClass: “They’re,” “Their,” “There”
#EngTrivia: “One”/”Ones” As Pronoun
#GrammarTrivia: ‘You,’ ‘One,’ and ‘They’ As Impersonal Pronouns

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