The Oxford dict. interprets reciprocate as "experience the same (love, liking, or affection) for someone as that person does for oneself". For example, "her passion for him was not reciprocated."

I don't quite understand "for oneself" in this interpretation. It's easy for me to fall into the illusion that "the person (love, like) himself/herself."

So, what does "for oneself" mean here?

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    Macmillan's definition is clearer, in my opinion: "to have the same feelings toward someone that they have for you". This avoids the clumsy oneself. – snailcar Feb 1 '14 at 2:02
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    @snailplane: Agreed. OP's definition is clumsy phrasing from someone who presumably didn't like the "informality" of you, and hence mistakenly sacrificed clarity for adherence to an outmoded concept of formal phrasing. – FumbleFingers Feb 1 '14 at 19:03

When a feeling is reciprocal:

  1. Person A has that feeling for Person B.
  2. Person B has that feeling for Person A.

In other words, they have the same feeling toward each other.

Let's annotate the definition so we can see which words refer to Person A and which words refer to Person B:

[A] experience(s) the same (love, liking, or affection) for someone[B] as that person[B] does for oneself[A]

Here, oneself refers to the (missing) subject of the sentence, Person A.

It does not refer back to person B.

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