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Reciprocal pronouns

Level: intermediate

We use the reciprocal pronouns each other and one another when two or more people do the same thing.

Peter and Mary helped each other.
     =
Peter helped Mary and Mary helped Peter.
We sent one another Christmas cards.
     =
We sent them a Christmas card and they sent us a Christmas card.
They didn't look at each other.
     =
X didn't look at Y and Y didn't look at X.

We also use the possessive forms each other's and one another's:

They helped to look after each other's children.
The group of students often stayed in one another's houses.

Note that we do not use reciprocal pronouns as the subject of a clause.

Reciprocal pronouns 1

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Be careful!

Reciprocal pronouns and plural reflexive pronouns (ourselves, yourselves, themselves) have different meanings:

John and Fred killed each other.
      =
John killed Fred and Fred killed John.
John and Fred killed themselves.
      =
John killed himself and Fred killed himself.

Reciprocal pronouns 2

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Comments

sorry I just have a remark about the lesson of the reciprocal pronoun each other and one another so as I understand the each other for two people and one another for more than two so I just wanna make things to be clear the examples on the lesson are wrong,we should say Peter and Mary helped each other and the second example we sent one another christmas cards so if I'm wrong plz give me the right answer

I have the same doubt

all of lessons are good

it's easy to do........

if we can use each other as well as one another why it considered wrong at the questions above !!!!

Hello,
Even though many people ignore this rule, it can be useful to know it exists. Many students will do grammar tests that are more strict than everyday language use. Others will write essays and articles where it's important to use a very correct style of English.
Best wishes,
Adam
The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you, now I am remembering what I learned at elementary school

 great

 So if i understand well, I can use "each other" as well as " one another" and I can't be wrong ?

Hello emeerica
Yes, these days most English speakers would consider it ok to use each other or one another interchangeably.
But you may meet some people who still think the traditional way is the correct one.
I hope this helps
All the best
helen
The LearnEnglish Team 

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