Four hundred years ago, when the Thirty-nine Articles were drawn up, it was good English idiom to use the same as a pronoun where we should now say he or she, him or her, they or them, or it.
The riches and goods of Christians are not common, as touching the right title and possession of the same, as certain Anabaptists do falsely boast.
This is no defence for the present pronominal use of the same and same, which survives robustly in commercialese. It is to be found to some extent in official writing also, especially in letters on business subjects. This use of same is now by general consent reprehensible. It should be stamped out as soon as possible, and the genuine pronouns should be restored to their proper functions.
|As you have omitted to insert your full Christian names, I shall be glad if you will advise me of same.||As you have omitted to insert your full Christian names, I shall be glad if you will let me know what they are.|
|With reference to the above matter, and my representative's interview of the 12th October, relative to same. . . .||With reference to this matter and my representative's interview of the 12th October, about it....|
|I enclose the necessary form for agreement and shall be glad if you will kindly complete and return same at your early convenience.||(for same substitute it)|
|I am informed that it may be decided by X Section that this extra will not be required. I await therefore their decision before taking further action in an attempt to provide.|
I like to think that the writer stopped abruptly after provide, leaving it objectless, in order to check himself on the brink of writing same. But he might harmlessly have written it.
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