On 3/07/20 5:09 am, David Mertz wrote:
"they" has long been used in that "indeterminate-not-inanimate" way since 14th century (different from "it"). "He" has often been used that as well, but really with the implication that a generic person is male.
Maybe the indeterminate use of "he" was influenced by French? In French there are no neutral pronouns at all, and the masculine ones are used for indeterminate and mixed genders.