[ it-self ]
/ ɪtˈsɛlf /
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a reflexive form of it1: The battery recharges itself.
an emphatic appositive of it1, which, that, this, or a noun: which itself is also true; Even without flowers, the bowl itself is beautiful.
(used as the object of a preposition or as the direct or indirect object of a verb): The chameleon's ability to change color is a protection for itself.
its normal or customary self: After much tender care, the puppy was soon itself again.



Were you ready for a quiz on this topic? Well, here it is! See how well you can differentiate between the uses of "was" vs. "were" in this quiz.
Question 1 of 7
“Was” is used for the indicative past tense of “to be,” and “were” is only used for the subjunctive past tense.

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Origin of itself

before 1000; Middle English; Old English hit self.See it1, self

usage note for itself

See myself.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for itself

British Dictionary definitions for itself

/ (ɪtˈsɛlf) /


  1. the reflexive form of it 1
  2. (intensifier)even the money itself won't convince me
(preceded by a copula) its normal or usual selfmy cat isn't itself today
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