Singular or plural

July 26, 2012

This is a gloss on my previous post, a bit of a further explication of “We are at peace.  You have redeemed us,” and to whom that “you” was addressed.

In modern English, the pronoun “you” is ambiguous as to its number: it’s second person, but it can be singular or plural, whether used as subject or object.

Yesterday’s “you” that I heard was plural.  It was spoken by a plurality to a plurality.  I knew it wasn’t addressed to me because of its sounding like an echo, but I probably should have clarified here that I also heard it as a plural, that it seemed to me, when I was trying to put it into language and figure out what I was “hearing” (it was internal hearing), that it was spoken to a group — it had that broader focus.  But as I indicated yesterday, I don’t know who that group was or how big.

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