A pronoun to disrespect



My mother tongue is Hindi and we have two second Pronouns तू and आप translation in English' You' they both work for second person

For example:

Disrespectful Interrogative clause in Hindi language

Why did you not go there? तू गया क्यों नहीं?

Respectful introgrative in Hindi language

Why did you not go there? आप क्यों नहीं गये?

I'm looking for pronouns of English which are used to disrepect . If we want to disrepect anyone then we use तू You. and if we want to respect anyone, we use Also आप You. Is there pronoun to use to disrespect in the English language?


Posted 2017-01-07T14:28:43.487

Reputation: 540

3This distinction does not exist in present-day English. – Tᴚoɯɐuo – 2017-01-07T14:36:08.877

I agree, but do you have disrespectful pronoun in English? – Arman – 2017-01-07T14:37:54.120

1What do you mean, "in English"? And what do you mean, "have" (present tense)? – Tᴚoɯɐuo – 2017-01-07T14:38:34.523

Looking for a pronoun to disrespect anyone like Hindi has as तू – Arman – 2017-01-07T14:39:49.990

3Such a pronoun does not exist in present-day English. I'm afraid you're going to have to disrespect the person in your mother tongue. – Tᴚoɯɐuo – 2017-01-07T14:40:48.277

was it ever in English? If we fight with anyone then we call them disrespectfully – Arman – 2017-01-07T14:47:07.540

We'd use an epithet or insult. "Say that to my face, you jerk/coward/ass." – John Feltz – 2017-01-07T14:57:43.533

Hahahah I need just a pronoun in English not an idiomatic expression – Arman – 2017-01-07T14:59:55.140

3As @TRomano said twice, that doesn't exist in modern English. You won't find what you're looking for because it doesn't exist. – LMS – 2017-01-07T15:02:18.440

Your question about historical forms of English would be better asked on the sister site, http://english.stackexchange.com/questions It is off-topic here.

– Tᴚoɯɐuo – 2017-01-07T15:05:41.263

You're wrong in saying that तू is disrespectful. We often use it while talking to our family and friends etc but it doesn't mean we disrespect them. It's just "informal". We use आप while talking to unknown persons, our teachers or our superiors at work place etc to show our respect towards them. आप is respectful but it doesn't mean तू is disrespectful. You understood it wrongly. Perhaps you didn't understand the meaning of disrepect well. – Omkar Reddy – 2017-01-08T16:46:26.983

@ Nagendra तू is disrespectful pronoun – Arman – 2017-01-09T03:06:16.747

@Nagendra . Oh thanks a bunch! My mother tongue Hindi/Urdu. I was born in Utter pardesh but now iam living in Mumbai. I'm sure that's used to disrespect – Arman – 2017-01-09T08:45:58.927

1In modern English, we communicate respect (or lack of respect) through phrasing and intonation - we use words differently, rather than using different words. – Davo – 2017-02-08T12:10:23.927

Why was this bumped ? It's clear that such a pronoun doesn't exist. – Teleporting Goat – 2017-02-08T16:16:50.127



As others have said, we don't have a "disrespectful" second-person pronoun in English. But we do have ways of referencing you that are similar.

For example, to be rude and disrespectful in English using a similar statement, one would probably say something like

"Hey, why didn't you get your ass over there?"

The your ass is a rude way of saying yourself in that context.

To be even ruder, with an angry, accusatory tone, one might say

"Hey, why the hell didn't you get your goddamned ass over there?"

Be careful, though. If you use such a statement, or a variation on it, you may be provoking a physical confrontation.

The important thing to observe is that disrespect is not a neutral phenomenon in English.


Posted 2017-01-07T14:28:43.487

Reputation: 13 739


If you are asking whether modern English has different ways to say "you" to show varying levels of respect, the short answer is "no". There is only you.

(In this English is not as flexible as other languages -- for example you might enjoy Japanese where there are perhaps a dozen ways to say "you", each with its own nuance of gender, respectfulness, historical context, and formality)

In English we do have a few honorifics which can be used to denote respect: Mister, Sir, Missus, Miss, etc. as well as various other ways to be more respectful, but none to be less, at least not without adding modifiers like "you jerk", "you bastard", "you asshole" and so on.

Of historical interest, English used to have two forms to address someone in the second person: "you" and "thee/thou", as well as the plural "ye". In modern English, thee and thou (as well as the other forms like thy and thine) are only used in formal religious contexts, literature that reproduces archaic language, and certain fixed phrases such as "fare thee well".

For this reason, many associate the pronoun with formality, however, thee was actually the informal and you was the formal.

So since (grammatically) yelling at someone, "Get thy ass over here!" would probably going to send mixed signals, all we're left with is plain old you.


Posted 2017-01-07T14:28:43.487

Reputation: 85 521

1Side note: use of a second-person pronoun in Japanese at all can be a sign of disrespect. Use of third-person with an honorific suffix is politer, Andrew-san. And the word anata can be everything from a pronoun to an interjection (a way of beginning a statement that is similar to You there! or even hey or look in English — abrupt and maybe even curt or dismissive). – Robusto – 2017-01-07T16:29:37.127

1@Andrew I disagree with' Get thy ass over here!" It should be something like' Get thine ass over here!" – Arman – 2017-01-08T03:38:59.480

@Arman that's actually what I thought at first but then I figured thy = your and thine = yours, as in "that is thy ass" vs. "that ass is thine". But then you have expressions like "Know thine enemy" and apparently Shakespeare used them interchangeably ... so color me confused. – Andrew – 2017-01-08T04:41:40.763


I read all comments below your answer and honestly, I took 2 minutes to understand what you meant, but I got there, yeah!

Your main tongue has 2 different pronouns, each one is used specifically when referring to someone in a disrespectful way or a respectful way.

As TRomano, LMS and John Feltz said, unfortunately, such pronoun hasn't yet been invented in English language. You can enjoy words (Well, I wouldn't say enjoy) such as: Jerk, dumb, idiot, stupid. Of course there are others which I'd rather not put them down here.

I presume this construction hasn't yet been invented and won't be, because English and Hindi follow different paths, English came from Latin and had other continental influences along the way, and I presume Hindi is associated and derived from sanscrito.


Posted 2017-01-07T14:28:43.487

Reputation: 1 680

English actually didn't come from Latin, it came from Germanic (not the same language as German; "Germanic" is the unwritten but reconstructed common ancestor of English, German, Swedish, Norwegian and other related languages). If you go way far back, Germanic, Latin and Sanskrit all descend from Proto-Indo-European. – sumelic – 2017-01-07T16:59:27.693

English had most influence from Latin. Grammar, verbal times and even some wors, and when I say some I mean hundred ones. – Davyd – 2017-01-07T17:12:48.070

Oh, English definitely had a lot of influence from Latin, but it didn't "come" from Latin in the way languages like French, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian and Spanish came from Latin. – sumelic – 2017-01-07T17:14:43.660

English is originally from England, which came from: West Germanic Language: link However, I'm talking about references and influences, Hindi is an Indo-Aryan Language, but most references and influences came from the religion Hindu. link

– Davyd – 2017-01-07T17:26:17.947

@Nagendra I'm sorry but I know absolutly nothing about the Hindi language, I just followed the OP's question and the details about his question. – Davyd – 2017-01-09T01:22:10.193