Definition of she in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ʃiː/


[third person singular]
1Used to refer to a woman, girl, or female animal previously mentioned or easily identified: my sister told me that she was not happy
More example sentences
  • She mentioned she had a friend who loved girl groups, but who was too ill to travel to the parties in London.
  • Another girl decided she had to re-do her hair every time it fell out of place.
  • A crowd gathers and someone asks the girl what she has said to enrage her brother so.
1.1Used to refer to a ship, vehicle, country, or other inanimate thing regarded as female: I was aboard the St Roch shortly before she sailed for the Northwest Passage
More example sentences
  • This was the Danish ship Flora, and she steamed straight for the anchored Gwladmena.
  • The crew had raced out and were able to get them off the ship before she sank.
  • He also moved to dispel what he said was the myth that Queen Mary never sailed in convoy because she was too quick.
1.2Used to refer to a person or animal of unspecified sex: only include your child if you know she won’t distract you
1.3Any female person: she who rocks the cradle rules the world
1.4West Indian Her or hers: give she lavender oil
1.5Australian /NZ It (used to refer to something not usually regarded as female): reckon some decent weather and she’ll be right


[in singular]
1A female; a woman: is that a he or a she?
More example sentences
  • I hope I haven't mixed up her sex, I think she's a she…
1.1 [in combination] Female: a she-bear a she-wolf


1 For a discussion of whether to say I am older than she or I am older than her, see personal pronoun (usage) and than2 The use of the pronoun he to refer to a person of unspecified sex, once quite acceptable, has become problematic in recent years and is now usually regarded as old-fashioned or sexist. One of the responses to this has been to use she in the way that he has been used, as in only include your child if you know she won’t distract you. In some types of writing, for example books on childcare or child psychology, this use of she has become quite common. In most contexts, however, it is likely to be distracting in the same way that he now is, and alternatives such as ‘he or she’ or ‘they’ are preferable. See he (usage) and they.


who's she—the cat's mother?

British informal
1Used as a mild reproof, especially to a child, for impolite use of the pronoun she rather than a person’s name.
2Expressing the belief that a woman or girl has a high opinion of herself or is putting on airs.


Middle English: probably a phonetic development of the Old English feminine personal pronoun hēo, hīe.

Words that rhyme with she

absentee, açai, addressee, adoptee, agree, allottee, amputee, appellee, appointee, appraisee, après-ski, assignee, asylee, attendee, bailee, bain-marie, Bangui, bargee, bawbee, be, Bea, bee, bootee, bouquet garni, bourgeoisie, Brie, BSc, buckshee, Capri, cc, chimpanzee, cohabitee, conferee, consignee, consultee, Cree, debauchee, decree, dedicatee, Dee, degree, deportee, dernier cri, detainee, devisee, devotee, divorcee, draftee, dree, Dundee, dungaree, eau-de-vie, emcee, employee, endorsee, en famille, ennui, enrollee, escapee, esprit, evacuee, examinee, expellee, fee, fiddle-de-dee, flea, flee, fleur-de-lis, foresee, franchisee, free, fusee (US fuzee), Gardaí, garnishee, gee, ghee, glee, goatee, grandee, Grand Prix, grantee, Guarani, guarantee, he, HMRC, indictee, inductee, internee, interviewee, invitee, jamboree, Jaycee, jeu d'esprit, key, knee, Lea, lee, legatee, Leigh, lessee, Ley, licensee, loanee, lychee, manatee, Manichee, maquis, Marie, marquee, me, Midi, mortgagee, MSc, nominee, obligee, Otomi, parolee, Parsee, parti pris, patentee, Pawnee, payee, pea, pee, permittee, plc, plea, pledgee, pollee, presentee, promisee, quay, ratatouille, referee, refugee, releasee, repartee, retiree, returnee, rupee, scot-free, scree, sea, secondee, see, settee, Shanxi, Shawnee, shchi, shea, si, sirree, ski, spree, standee, suttee, tant pis, tea, tee, tee-hee, Tennessee, testee, the, thee, three, thuggee, Tiree, Torquay, trainee, Tralee, transferee, tree, Trincomalee, trustee, tutee, twee, Twi, undersea, vestee, vis-à-vis, wagon-lit, Waikiki, warrantee, we, wee, whee, whoopee, ye, yippee, Zuider Zee

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: she

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.