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or (Archaic) one's self

[wuhn-self, wuhnz-] /wʌnˈsɛlf, wʌnz-/
a person's self (used for emphasis or reflexively):
One often hurts oneself accidentally.
be oneself,
  1. to be in one's normal state of mind or physical condition.
  2. to be unaffected and sincere:
    One makes more friends by being oneself than by putting on airs.
by oneself,
  1. without a companion; alone.
  2. through one's own efforts; unaided:
    to become a millionaire by oneself.
come to oneself,
  1. Also, come to. to regain consciousness.
  2. to regain one's self-possession; come to one's senses.
Also, come to one's self.
Origin of oneself
1540-50; shortened form of one's self Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for oneself
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It is a regard, an esteem for oneself, too great to allow one to stoop to anything base or mean.

    Explanation of Catholic Morals John H. Stapleton
  • There is no more reason to believe in oneself than in the external world.

  • But it was easier to state a law than to obey it; easier to inspire others with faith than to hold fast to it oneself.

  • How can one seek wretchedness for oneself with such obstinacy?

    Fruitfulness Emile Zola
  • Guiltless in regard to one who is no more; accountable to oneself and one's fellow beings.

    Creditors; Pariah August Strindberg
British Dictionary definitions for oneself


  1. the reflexive form of one (sense 20), one (sense 21)
  2. (intensifier): one doesn't do that oneself
(preceded by a copula) one's normal or usual self: one doesn't feel oneself after such an experience
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
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Word Origin and History for oneself

1540s, one's self. Hyphenated 18c.; written as one word from c.1827, on model of himself, itself, etc.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with oneself
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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