Use of reflexive

JohnC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Use of reflexive

What is the rule governing whether or not the reflexive construction is used?  It seems clear with personal verbs like brushing ones teeth or cutting one’s hair, but not clear at all in the context of having sandals made. 

Asked 2 years ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

There is no general rule. Some constructions in French require a reflexive construction. Some of those also do in English, some others don't.

For the example you quote, there is also a parallel to colloquial English:

"I have myself a pair of sandals made." -- Je me fais faire une paire de sandales.

MichaelC1Kwiziq community member
"I have myself a pair of sandals made." - I read this to mean that I made the sandals, not that I'm having sandals made.
ChrisC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

'I have myself a pair of sandals made' is not any form of English I have come across, except maybe in poetry. It could mean ' I have made myself a pair of sandals' ie. I made them, or likewise ' I made this pair of sandals myself' or it could mean ' I have had a pair of sandals made for me' ie someone else made them at my request.  You could say ' I made myself get up this morning' as in fact I did. But I don't think instances of reflexive verbs are at all common in English.

ChrisC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

'I have myself a pair of sandals made' is not any form of English I have come across, except maybe in poetry. It could mean ' I have made myself a pair of sandals' ie. I made them, or likewise ' I made this pair of sandals myself' or it could mean ' I have had a pair of sandals made for me' ie someone else made them at my request.  You could say ' I made myself get up this morning' as in fact I did. But I don't think instances of reflexive verbs are at all common in English.

Use of reflexive

What is the rule governing whether or not the reflexive construction is used?  It seems clear with personal verbs like brushing ones teeth or cutting one’s hair, but not clear at all in the context of having sandals made. 

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