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an exclamation of surprise or inquiry
an indication of sly amusement, used esp in electronic communication
he1(hi; unstressed i)
pron. nom. he, poss. his, obj. him; pron.
1. the male person or animal being discussed or last mentioned; that male.
2. anyone (without reference to sex); that person: He who hesitates is lost.n.
3. any male person or animal; a man: hes and shes.adj.
4. male (usu. used in combination): a he-goat.
[before 900; Middle English, Old English hē (masculine nominative singular); c. Dutch hij, Old Saxon hē, Old High German her he; see his, him, she, her, it]
usage: Traditionally, the pronouns he, his, and him have been used generically to refer to indefinite singular pronouns like anyone, everyone, and someone (Everyone who agrees should raise his hand) and to singular nouns that do not indicate sex: Every writer hopes he will produce a bestseller. This generic use is often criticized as sexist, although many speakers and writers continue the practice. Various approaches have been developed to avoid generic he. One is to use plural forms entirely: Those who agree should raise their hands. All writers hope they will produce bestsellers. Another is to use the masculine and feminine singular pronouns together: he or she, she or he; he/she, she/he. A common practice in speech is to use forms of they to refer to such antecedents: If anyone calls, tell them I'm not home. See they. Forms blending the feminine and masculine pronouns, as s/he, have not been widely adopted. See also they.
n., pl. hes or hehs.
1. the fifth letter of the Hebrew alphabet.
2. any of the sounds represented by this letter.
[< Hebrew hē']
1. high explosive.
2. His Eminence.
3. His Excellency; Her Excellency.