[ her-self ]

  1. an emphatic appositive of her or she: She herself wrote the letter.

  2. a reflexive form of her: She supports herself.

  1. (used in absolute constructions): Herself still only a child, she had to take care of her four younger brothers and sisters.

  2. (used as the object of a preposition or as the direct or indirect object of a verb): She gave herself a facial massage. He asked her for a picture of herself.

  3. (used in comparisons after as or than): She found out that the others were even more nervous than herself.

  4. her normal or customary self: After a few weeks of rest, she will be herself again.

Origin of herself

before 1000; Middle English hire-selfe,Old English hire self.See her, self

usage note For herself

See myself.

Words Nearby herself

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use herself in a sentence

  • She herself had worn them in her youth, and they were the proper bonnets for "growing girls."

  • Hilda, trembling at the door, more than half expected Mr. Orgreave to say: "You mean, she's invited herself."

    Hilda Lessways | Arnold Bennett
  • None other would dare to show herself unveiled to a stranger, and a white man at that.

    The Red Year | Louis Tracy
  • She took the fan from Madame Ratignolle and began to fan both herself and her companion.

  • And once more, she found herself desiring to be like Janet--not only in appearance, but in soft manner and tone.

    Hilda Lessways | Arnold Bennett

British Dictionary definitions for herself


/ (həˈsɛlf) /

    • the reflexive form of she or her

    • (intensifier): the queen herself signed the letter

  1. (preceded by a copula) her normal or usual self: she looks herself again after the operation

  1. Irish and Scot the wife or woman of the house: is herself at home?

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012