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A Simple Grammar Question

spetsspets 214 replies22 threads Junior Member
edited October 2005 in College Admissions
Which of the following would be correct as far as the use of "myself" and "me" are concerned. (Also, sidenote: is the comma necessary?)

He understood the concept, whereas Ben and younger version of myself did not.

He understood the concept, whereas Ben and younger version of me did not.

Danke sehr!
edited October 2005
6 replies
Post edited by spets on
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Replies to: A Simple Grammar Question

  • CLeighDrieCLeighDrie 271 replies9 threads Junior Member
    The first one looks right to me, but I'm not 100% sure
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  • ilikenoodlesilikenoodles 158 replies10 threads Junior Member
    The sentence is grammatically ok as shown in the first version. The difference between myself and me in this case is mostly stylistic, and I think it's a bit better with "myself." Also, you might want a "the" in between "and" and "younger."
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  • spetsspets 214 replies22 threads Junior Member
    Haha, yes. The absence of "the" is merely a typo :)
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  • warblersrulewarblersrule 10195 replies175 threads Super Moderator
    The first sentence is NOT correct. "Myself" is a reflexive pronoun, and it should generally only be used if "I" comes before it in the sentence. :)

    Thus, the correct sentence is:
    He understood the concept, but Ben and the younger version of me did not.

    or

    He understood the concept, but Ben and the younger I did not.
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  • synsyn 272 replies17 threads Junior Member
    warblers is correct; if it helps, I'd just like to add some more info:

    Myself, like warblers said, is a reflexive pronoun. When the subject and the object of a sentence are the same, then the object must be in the reflexive case:

    I gave it to myself.
    I hit myself.
    You understand yourself.
    The dog chases itself.

    (Excuse the sentences.)

    It can also be used in the emphatic case:

    I myself read the book.
    I looked over it myself.

    A general rule of thumb is that if you don't have an object, or, if you do, and the object is different from the subject, then you shouldn't be using a reflexive pronoun (I'm disregarding the emphatic case).

    In this particular case, you are introducing a new clause, as you are using either the conjunction "whereas," or "but." A clause has its own subject and predicate.

    Ben and younger version of myself did not (understand the concept).

    Ben and you make up and the plural subject, and they should both be in the subjective case: I, you, he/she/it, we, you (pl.), they. This is what happens in warbler's example of "Ben and the younger I did not." However, in your example, you use the preposition "of," which requires the objective case:

    of me
    of you
    of him/her/it
    of us
    of you (pl.)
    of them
    (of whom—just for fun.)

    So, putting all of this together...

    You start with your main clause: "He understood the concept,"
    You introduce your subordinate clause with a conjunction, either "whereas," or "but."
    You start with your subject, understanding when to use the subjective or objective pronoun: "Ben and the younger version of me," or "Ben and the younger I."
    You complete your verb: "did not."

    Throughout all of this you realize that you aren't using the objective or emphatic case, and therefore you don't need to use a reflexive pronoun.

    So there are a lot of little things that go towards putting this sentence together. It's not exactly a simple grammar question if you disregard your ear and actually try and figure it all out :)

    If I got anything wrong, please correct me.
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  • spetsspets 214 replies22 threads Junior Member
    Wow, thanks fellas.
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