from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • pro. Used to refer to the man or boy previously mentioned or implied.
  • pro. Used to refer to a male animal.
  • pro. Usage Problem Used to refer to a person whose gender is unspecified or unknown: "He who desires but acts not, breeds pestilence” ( William Blake).
  • n. A male person or animal: Is the cat a he?
  • n. The fifth letter of the Hebrew alphabet. See Table at alphabet.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • pro. Refers to a male person or animal already known or implied.
  • pro. Refers to a person whose gender is unknown.
  • pro. Refers to an animal whose gender is unknown.
  • n. The game of tag, or it, in which the player attempting to catch the others is called "he".
  • n. The name of the fifth letter of many Semitic alphabets (Phoenician, Aramaic, Hebrew, Syriac, Arabic and others).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • The chemical symbol for helium.
  • pro. The man or male being (or object personified to which the masculine gender is assigned), previously designated; a pronoun of the masculine gender, usually referring to a specified subject already indicated.
  • pro. Any one; the man or person; -- used indefinitely, and usually followed by a relative pronoun.
  • pro. Man; a male; any male person; -- in this sense used substantively.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • A personal pronoun of the third person, the form he being nomiuative singular masculine.
  • A. Masc. sing.
  • Nom. he. [Colloq. or dial. also e, also ha, a (see a), ⟨ ME. he, heo, ha, ho, a, e, ⟨ AS. hē = OS. he, hi, hie = OFries. hi, he = MLG. he, LG. he, hei = Dutch hij = Goth. *his (= Icel. hann = Sw. Dan. han): see further in etym. above.]
  • Poss. (gen.) his (hiz). [Colloq. or dial. also is, ⟨ ME. his, hys, is, ys, ⟨ AS. his = OFries. his(= OS., etc., is, from another root: see etym. above).] Of him: now always merely possessive, and preceding the noun, but originally also nsed objectively with certain verbs. By a confusion of the genitive suffix -es, -is with this possessive form of the personal pronoun, the suffix came in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries to be often written separately as his: as, Artaxerxes his crown, etc. For this use, see under his. For the neuter his, see C .
  • Obj. (dat.) him. (Colloq. or dial. also im, ⟨ ME. him, hym, ⟨ AS. him, hym = OFries. him = Dutch hem (= MLG. im, em, LG. em = OHG. imo, MHG. ime, im, German ihm = Goth. imma, from another root: see etym. above).] This form, originally only dative, is also used as accusative, having displaced the original form for the accusative. See . For the neuter him, see C .
  • Conversely, him is often used, colloquially, for he in the predicate: as, it is him; like “it is me” for “it is I.” See I.] Obj. (acc.) him. [A substitution of the dative form him, or an accom. to him of the earlier form, ME. hin, hine, ⟨ AS. hine = OFries. hini, hine (also him, hem)(cf. OS. ina = OHG. ina, MHG. ine, German in, German ihn = Goth. ina, from another root: see etym. above).] See above.
  • B. Fem. sing.
  • Nom. he, ho, hoo (now only dialectal, the form she, of different origin, being used in literary English). [English dial. also e, a; ⟨ ME. he, hi, hie, heo, ha, hoe, ho, hue, a (also zeo, zho, zoe, ze, these forms affording a transition to the use of scheo, scho, sche, she, whence mod. E. she, q. v.), ⟨ AS. heó, hió, hié, hī = OFries, hio, hiu (for other Teut. forms, see she).] She.
  • Poss. (gen.) heraldry [English dial. also er; ⟨ ME. her, hir, here, hire, hur, hure, ir, ⟨ AS. hire, hyre = OFries. hiri = Dutch harer (cf. MLG. er, ir, LG. er = OHG. ira, iro, MHG. ire, German ihr = Goth. izōs, from another root: see etym. above).]
  • Obj. (dat.) heraldry [English dial. also er; ⟨ ME. her, hir, hyr, here, hire, hure, hur, ⟨ AS. hire, hyre = OFries. hiri = Dutch haar (cf. OS. iru = MLG. er, ir, LG. er = OHG. iru, MHG. ire, ir, German ihr = Goth. iza, from another root: see etym. above).]
  • Obj. (acc.) heraldry [English dial. also er; ⟨ ME. her, hir, hyr, substituted (as also the masc. dat. for acc.) for the orig. acc., ME. heo, hi (also hise, his, is), ⟨ AS. hie, hi = OFries. hia (for other Teut. forms, see she).]
  • C. Neut. sing.
  • Nom. it. [English dial. also hit (rather as a corrupt aspiration of the prevalent it than a survival of the orig. form hit), early mod. E. also yt, ⟨ ME. it, yt, et, hit, hyt, ⟨ AS. hit, hyt = OFries. hit = Dutch het (cf. OS. it = MLG. it, et, LG. et = OHG. iz, ez, MHG. ez, German es = Goth. ita = Latin id, etc., from another root: see etym. above).]
  • Poss. its, formerly his. [The poss. form its is first recorded in print in 1598. It is formed from it by the addition of the common possessive (genitive) suffix -s, of nouns, the nom. and obj. form it being also used for a time in the possessive without a suffix. The substitution arose when the orig. neut. poss. his, which had the same form as the masc. poss. his, began to be regarded as masc. only, thus giving it, when used properly as neut., the appearance of a personification. Earlier mod. E. his, hys, ⟨ ME. his, hys, ⟨ AS. his, in form like the masc. his: see A .]
  • Obj. (dat.) it. [This is a substitution for the orig. him, the nom. and acc. it being so frequent (by reason of the numerous idiomatic uses of the word) that the dative gave way to the accusative, while in the masc. and fem. the accusative gave way to the dative. Early mod. E. him, ⟨ ME. him, hym, ⟨ AS. him, etc., in forms like the masc.: see A .]
  • Obj. (acc.) it. [⟨ ME. it, hit, et, ⟨ AS. hit, etc., in forms like the nom. See above.]
  • D. Masc., fem., and neut. pl. [Obsolete or colloquial (see , below), the form they, of different origin, being used in literary English.] Nom. he, hi. [ME. he, heo, hio, hi, hie, ha, hue, etc., ⟨ AS. hī, hīe, hig, heó, hió = OFries. hia (in other Teut. forms from a different root, represented by she).] They: displaced in modern English by they (which see).
  • Poss. (gen.) her, here. [Now only dial.; ⟨ ME. here, hire, hure, huere, hare, hore, heore, ⟨ AS. hira, hyra, heora = OFries. hiara.] Their: displaced in modern English by their (which see, under they).
  • Obj. (dat.) hem, em, 'em. [Common in early mod. E., in which it came to be regarded as a contr. of the equiv. them, and was therefore in the 17th century often printed 'hem, 'em; in present use only colloq., written 'em (see 'em); ⟨ ME, hem, ham, hom, heom, hemen, ⟨ AS. him, heom = OFries. hiam, him, himmen, etc. (cf. Goth. im, from another root: see etym. above).] Them. See they.
  • Obj. (acc.) hem, em, 'em. [⟨ ME. hem, hom, etc.; a substitution for the orig. he, hi, etc. (same form as the nom.), the dative having displaced the accusative here as in the singular (see A ). See above.] Them. See they.
  • For the reflexive and emphatic form of he, see himself.
  • This one; that one.
  • n. A male person; a man: correlative to she, a woman.
  • n. A male animal; a beast, bird, or fish of the male sex: correlative to she, a female animal.
  • A sound made in calling, laughing, etc.: as, He! he! an archers' word of call.
  • n. The fifth letter () of the Hebrew alphabet, corresponding to the English h. Its numerical value is 5.
  • n. The chemical symbol of helium.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a very light colorless element that is one of the six inert gasses; the most difficult gas to liquefy; occurs in economically extractable amounts in certain natural gases (as those found in Texas and Kansas)
  • n. the 5th letter of the Hebrew alphabet


Middle English, from Old English .
Hebrew , of Phoenician origin.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English he, from Old English  ("he"), from Proto-Germanic *hiz (“this, this one”), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱe-, *ḱey- (“this, here”). Cognate with Scots he ("he"), Eastern Frisian hi ("he"), West Frisian hy ("he"), Dutch hij ("he"), Low German he ("he"), Danish han ("he"). Related to here. (Wiktionary)
Transliteration of various Semitic letters, such as Phoenician 𐤄 (h), Hebrew ה (h) and Syriac ܗ (h, "hē"). (Wiktionary)



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  • Supposedly WeirdNet just doesn't do pronouns. Maybe they're too common for its notice.

    July 16, 2008

  • Another bizarre definition. Isn't something missing? viz. third person singular nominative pronoun.

    July 16, 2008

  • Nullibiquitous is He (Is there a character minimum for usernames here? I wonder if He's even Possible.)

    July 10, 2008

  • He who shall not be named.

    June 21, 2008

  • He who?

    June 21, 2008

  • He. Chemical element symbol for Helium.

    December 16, 2007