by itself or itself

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apoziopeza

Senior Member
slovak
Hi,

Could you please advise - in the paragraph below is it by itself or by themselves or itself or themselves?

Thanks,

A.

Source: Founder's Deed

The executives are obliged to convene the General Meeting, if the Shareholder or the Shareholders, whose contributions exceed 10% of the registered capital of the Company, request so. If the executives do not convene the General Meeting within one (1) month from the date of delivery of such a request, such Shareholder is, or the Shareholders are, entitled to convene the General Meeting itself, or themselves
 
  • Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    "Itself" and "Themselves" are correct. The first applies to "such Shareholder" and the second applies to "the Shareholders".

    ...such Shareholder is, ...entitled to convene the General Meeting itself..,
    ...the Shareholders are... entitled to convene the General Meeting...themselves
     

    Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    A shareholder need not always be a human being. A company/organisation can hold shares too. I think "itself" is an appropriate choice to refer to a single shareholder, when the word "Shareholder" is used to refer to any shareholder in general.
     

    Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    and in any case it's not one shareholder but such Shareholder or Shareholders
    The term "such shareholder" refers to a single shareholder. If you read the paragraph as a whole, it says that the shareholders who hold more than 10% of the capital (which may consist of a single shareholder or multiple shareholders) may ask the executives to convene a meeting.

    The rest of the paragraph then uses "itself" and "themselves" to indicate that if there is just one shareholder holding over 10%, that shareholder may, acting by himself/herself/itself convene the meeting if the executives fail to do so, and if there is more than one shareholder, they may, acting by themselves, convene the meeting.

    Use the plural pronoun, and all problems disappear.
    The singular pronoun has been used for clarity, to take into account the fact that it may be a single shareholder who convenes the meeting.

    My question was whether or not to use "by" in this context.
    As I indicated in #3, "by" isn't to be used.
     

    cubaMania

    Senior Member
    Don't use "by".
    But there are larger issues.
    1. You don't really need either:
    ...such Shareholder is, or the Shareholders are, entitled to convene the General Meeting. (Full stop.)
    2. If you are determined to use "themselves", then put it after "the Shareholders":
    ...the Shareholders themselves are entitled to convene the General Meeting.
    3. The use of "itself" with the single shareholder would be weird, unless it is known that "such Shareholder" is not a single human. Otherwise you are left with the modern dilemma of gender neutrality. The traditional way calls for "himself":
    ...such Shareholder himself is, or the Shareholders themselves are, entitled to convene the General Meeting.
    There is no settlement of this wrinkle in the language. A gender-neutral alternative to the traditional "himself" is "himself or herself" or also "themself" (which many people hate with a passion.)

    Personally, I'd leave out the "himself/themselves". You don't need it.
     

    apoziopeza

    Senior Member
    slovak
    Sorry for an unclear question, I only wanted to ask whether or not to use "by", thanks for clarification that I should not use it.

    As to "it" vs "he" - I understand that the shareholder often refers to a legal entity that is why I agree that it is "it".
     

    shankarkvp

    Member
    India - Tamil
    Doesn't the pronoun 'itself' become emphatic when used immediately after the noun 'meeting'? It seems that the speaker wants to emphasize 'meeting'.
     

    Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    Yes, "itself" can be used that way. But in the OP's sentence it doesn't refer to the meeting but to the shareholder(s) mentioned earlier in the sentence, who hold(s) 10% or more of the capital. You'll see it says "itself or themselves", making it clear it doesn't refer to the meeting. Those two words are used as it might either be a single shareholder holding more than 10% or multiple shareholders.
     
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