1. The grammatical category of forms that designate a person or thing other than the speaker or the one spoken to. Examples of forms in the third person include English pronouns such as she and they and verb forms such as Spanish hablan “they speak.”
2. A discourse or literary style in which the narrator recounts personal experiences or impressions using such forms: an essay written in the third person.
3. A perspective in a video or computer game in which the screen depicts a point of view other than that of the player's avatar.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.