Second person (/ˈsekənd ˈpɜ:(r)sən/) is a grammatical person, used when the speaker or writer refers to the listener(s) or reader(s). In standard English the forms of the second person singular and second person plural are identical, as English lost its T-V distinction when the thou form fell out of use. English second person pronouns are you, your, yours and yourself.
In addition to the singular and plural uses mentioned above, there is a third use for this person, this being generic you. Students may find it difficult to identify which of these three forms is intended, and may therefore answer with the wrong pronoun, e.g.
- Q: “What can you do if you buy something and it doesn’t work?"
- S: ?“I can take it back to the shop.” [better to say “You can take it back to the shop.”]