Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between She and Her

She vs Her

“She” and “her” are both gender specific pronouns. A pronoun is a word that is used in place of a noun. This can better be explained with an example. For instance:

Nancy scored good marks. She is intelligent.
In the above example, “Nancy” is a proper noun, and “she,” which is used in replacement of the proper noun, is a pronoun.

This is Martha’s pen. Give her the pen.
Here, “Martha” is a proper noun, and “her” is used in place of the proper noun.
Pronouns may be differentiated into three types, namely; subjective, objective, and possessive. While “she” and “her” are pronouns, the usage and treatment of both are different.

She
“She” is a subjective pronoun. When the pronoun is the subject of a sentence, then it is called a subjective pronoun. The subject pronoun may simply replace the noun in a simple sentence. Some other examples of subject pronouns are: I, he, you, it, etc.

Alice is beautiful.
She is beautiful.

Her
“Her” is a possessive pronoun. It is a possessive form of “she.” “Her” is also used as the object of a verb and preposition. For instance:
It is Sarah’s pen.
It is her book. (Possessive pronoun.)
Give her the pen. (Object of a verb.)
Give it to her. (Object of a preposition.)
In some situations, both “she” and “her” may be used in the same sentence. For instance,
Sally is Susan’s dentist.
Sally is her dentist.
She is her dentist.

In this case, “Sally” is the subject and “Susan” is the object. So they are similarly replaced by the subject and object pronouns, namely, “she” and “her.” Here, “she,” is the subject with “dentist” and “her,” the object.

On similar terms:
The jury nominated her as the best actress.
Here, being “nominated” is an action (a verb), and “her” is the recipient of the action (a direct object).
However, there is much confusion regarding the use of “she” and “her.” In a few cases there is a fine line between the right and wrong usage, as in:

This is she.
This is her.

Here both “she” and “her” may be used interchangeably. While “This is she” is a more informal usage; “This is her” is technically correct.
Summary:

1.“She” is an object pronoun while “her” is a possessive pronoun.
2.“She” is used for the subject of the sentence while “her” is used for the object of the sentence.


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2 Comments

  1. Glad to have found this page. While I am not classically trained in the subject of English, I feel qualified to analyze improper grammar usage in others. I have a young nephew on my wife’s side who has been taught from a young age to use “her” in place of “she” because my Wife’s Mother, and thus my Wife’s sister think its cute; particularly the use of “her is ___.” I find it ridiculous, and think it makes him look like a fool. He is in preschool but there should be no prescriptions against when to begin using and hearing proper grammar. To my surprise (or not) when I began to correct him this morning at my house, my wife jumped vociferously to the defense of her Mother and Sister. Though my wife will soon possess a teaching degree with a Minor in English, she stated that children his age don’t know any better, and if you try to correct his use of pronouns, he will stop using them all together; unsaid was the end result of that correction is the use of more formal language for speaking which I do not consider improper. After further discussion of why I (instinctively) knew it was not proper, she continued that “most” school children his age use grammar in the same manner. Note, this is not an occasional use of “her” in place of “she,” it is constant as apparently no one has ever corrected his language. I must say, I am stunned. I have several step- nieces and nephews (in my family) who do not come from the most intelligent stock; I have never heard them confuse that particular usage.

    I think it is a sad state of education when the most basic, instinctual grammar skills are omitted from a child’s “imitate and repeat” phase of language development in favor of being considered “cute” or for the entertainment of others.

  2. ` It was many and many a year ago,
    In a kingdom by the sea,
    That a maiden there lived whom you may know
    By the name of ANNABEL LEE;
    And this maiden she lived with no other thought
    Than to love and be loved by me.

    I was a child and she was a child,
    In this kingdom by the sea;
    But we loved with a love that was more than love-
    I and my Annabel Lee;
    With a love that the winged seraphs of heaven
    Coveted her and me.

    And this was the reason that, long ago,
    In this kingdom by the sea,
    A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling
    My beautiful Annabel Lee;
    So that her highborn kinsman came
    And bore her away from me,
    To shut her up in a sepulchre
    In this kingdom by the sea.

    The angels, not half so happy in heaven,
    Went envying her and me-
    Yes!- that was the reason (as all men know,
    In this kingdom by the sea)
    That the wind came out of the cloud by night,
    Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.

    But our love it was stronger by far than the love
    Of those who were older than we-
    Of many far wiser than we-
    And neither the angels in heaven above,
    Nor the demons down under the sea,
    Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
    Of the beautiful Annabel Lee.

    For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams
    Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
    And the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes
    Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
    And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side
    Of my darling- my darling- my life and my bride,
    In the sepulchre there by the sea,
    In her tomb by the sounding sea.
    Edgar Allan Poe

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