How is αὐτος used in Greek?

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The word αὐτος has three different meanings in Greek, depending on its case and the use of the definite article.

1) When the word agrees with an article + noun but is not sandwiched, it means himself/herself/itself/themselves.

ὁ βασιλευς αὐτος = The king himself

αὐτος ὁ πατηρ = The father himself

The word also has this meaning when it appears on its own as a pronoun in the nominative:

αὐτη ἐφυγεν = She herself fled.

2) When the word agrees with an article + noun and is sandwiched, it means the same. This is always the meaning when a part of αὐτος comes immediately after the article.

τους αὐτους δουλους εἰδεν = He saw the same slaves.

3) When the word is used on its own as a pronoun and is not in the nominative, it means him/her/it/them. It is always third-person, and cannot come as the first word of a sentence or clause.

ὁ στρατηγος αὐτην εἰδεν = The general saw her.

ὁ ἀγγελος αὐτοις ἐπιστευεν = The messenger trusted them.

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