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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > pronouns     



Hello everyone ,

Could you help me in this sentence because I found it confusing?

When large number of people move from their homes in country areas to find better

 paid jobs in town and cities ,the villages they once lived in are often left empty .

No one wants to buy homes there because they cant  make money out of them .
what does the pronoun they refer to ?

Does it refer to no one  , or people  .

 What type of pronouns refer to no one  ,some one  .
Thanks ,

20 Apr 2013      



21 Apr 2013     


It refers to "no one" = they (no one) want to buy homes because they (no one) can �t make money... Although "no one" is singular and followed by a 3rd person singular -s present, the substitute pronoun must be "they" because it doesn �t show gender. This also refers to someone, anyone, everyone and the -body compounds.
I hope it answers your question.

21 Apr 2013     


Pronoun reference words can sometimes be confusing but if you google it you will find lots of information about it. 
They refers to no-one but it also refers to peopleNo-one, in this context, means people.
No-one (not one person) wants to buy homes there  because ...
People do not want to by homes there because...
Re no-one/someone - when the gender is not known you can use their or they 
Somebody has left her/their purse in the ladies restroom (gender implied)
I�m missing one class text book. Some one has forgotten to give me their book (gender unknown)
Somebody has left their flash drive in the computer
When no-one attends the meeting, they miss out on vital information

21 Apr 2013