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Subclasses of pronouns and their functions

§ 216. Semantically all pronouns fall into the following subclasses:

I. Personal pronouns are noun-pronouns, indicating persons (I, you, he, we, they) or non-persons (it, they) from the point of view of their relations to the speaker. Thus I (me) indicates the speaker himself, we (us) indicates the speaker together with some other person or persons, you indicates the person or persons addressed, while he, she, they (him, her, them) indicate persons (or things) which are neither the speaker nor the persons addressed to by the speaker.

Personal pronouns have the category of person, number, case (nominative and objective), and gender, the latter is to be found in the 3rd person only: masculine and feminine is he - him, she - her; neuter case-forms it - it coincide.

The nominative case form is generally used as subject of the sentence, or predicative in the compound nominal predicate in sentences like: It was I who did it. However, in colloquial style the form of the objective case is preferable, especially in sentences of the type: It is me.

Both the nominative and the objective case forms are used after the conjunctions as and than in comparative constructions:


She is as stout as I now; Last year he looked much older thanI; She is as old asme; He was a better friend to you thanme.


The nominative case-form (as well as the objective) is used in elliptical sentences: “Who is there? – I”. “Who did it? – Me”.

The objective case form is used mainly as an object (with or without a preposition), occasionally as an attribute in prepositional phrases: Give me your hand; Were you speaking about me?; The better half of me protested.

The fact that semantically personal pronouns indicate persons or things restricts their functioning as adverbial modifiers. However, they may occur in this function in a prepositional phrase: He stood close to me; Keep behind me.

The pronoun you implies a person, sometimes an animal, or an inanimate object, when the latter is personified: Glad to see you here, Mary; Oh, Cat, you are as clever as a man...

Its singular and plural forms, as well as the objective case forms, coincide: Are you in, John?; Where are you going, children? The plural and the singular forms are differentiated only through their co-referents (denoted by John, children), as both agree with the verb in the plural.

Historically, the form you is the plural form, the singular form being thou (the objective case thee). It is no longer used nowadays except in poetry and other literary texts, where it produces a particular stylistic effect: “So”, said the messenger, “Then thou are the spokesman.”

The pronouns he (him), she (her) usually refer to persons, he - to male, she - to female. However some other phenomena are often referred to as he or she in poetry and fiction. Those referred to as he are: sun, wind, fear, love; those referred to as she are: earth, moon, ship, boat, car, hope, justice, modesty and some others. Also countries, especially native countries, are referred to as she: England, France, Italy, the USA, etc.


I was born in Ireland. She is the best country for me.


The nominative case forms are used as subject or predicative; when used as predicatives both nominative and objective case forms are possible: At last he lost his way; It was he; It is him. It keeps true also for comparative constructions: She did it better than he (him).

The pronoun it can perform functions varying so greatly that three statuses of this word should be differentiated. They are the personal pronoun it, the impersonal pronoun it, and the demonstrative pronoun it.

The personal pronoun it refers to non-persons, that is, to animals, things and abstract notions, as in:

The room was large. Somebody had already cleaned it.

We had no mutual understanding, and I wanted it badly.

The dog was sitting by him. Several times it had turned and looked up at the boy.


However when speaking of pet animals, especially cats and dogs, it is usual to refer to them as he or she depending on whether they are male or female, as in:

He is a very nice dog. He is my friend. He knows how I feel.

It’s Pussy. She wants to go out.

The demonstrative pronoun it indicates non-persons or certain situa­tions, mentioned in the previous context:

Some were dancing, some tried to sing. A big man, bottle in hand, lay by the armchair. Clouds or smoke

hung under the ceiling. Suddenly I felt sick of it all.

Besides its anaphoric use, it is also used with demonstrative force when preceding the words it points to:

It’s my husband. It’s Mary. It was a red rose.

It may also have the force of a purely formal element of the sentence, as the formal subject or object devoid of any lexical meaning. Its function is to point to the real subject or object which comes after the predicate and is expressed either by an infinitive (an infinitive phrase) or by a gerund (a gerundial phrase), or else by a clause.

It was nice to stop here.

It was useless trying to see him.

It was clear to everybody that she was not well.

May I take it that you will keep your word?


When it refers to the predicative (or any part in this position) it selves as means of producing emphasis: the word in the predicative position becomes prominent and therefore becomes the information focus of the sentence:


It was he who did it.

Именно он это сделал. (Как раз он это сделал).

It was there that we met.

Именно там мы встретились. (Там-то мы и встретились).

It was to this room that Soames went.

Именно в эту комнату пошел Соме.*

* See Syntax, § 121.


The impersonal pronoun it functions as a purely structural element -the subject of impersonal sentences describing various states of nature and environment, or things, time, measure, or distance, etc., as in: It was raining; It was cold that day; It’s spring already; It’s 10 o’clock; It’s still sixty miles to the river.

The pronoun they (them) is the plural form of the pronouns he, she and the personal it. Its syntactic functions are similar to those of the forms in the singular. It may be used as subject (They had no time) and as predicative (It's they who will answer first). The objective case form can also be used in these cases (That’s them). The same form is to be found in comparative constructions, as objects and adverbial modifiers:

Do you know them, boy? (object)

Try to catch up with them. (prepositional object)

In front of them there were seven candles. (adverbial modifier)


In addition to their usual function when they have personal meaning the pronouns we, you, they may be used as indefinite-personal, indicating people in general or a limited group of people. The difference between them is in their reference: we refers to a group of people including the speaker, you includes only the listener(s), and they excludes both the speaker and the listeners.


As we know, geographic limits between dialects are not easy to establish.

You never saw such a commotion up and down the house, in all your life, as when my Uncle Podger

undertook to do a job.

When you are tired they give you some pills, and in a minute you are your own self again.

They say you were in the park with her?

What do they teach you there?


§ 217. Possessive pronouns indicate possession by persons (my, mine, your, yours, their, theirs) or non-persons (its, their, theirs). They comprise two sets of forms: the conjoint forms - my, your, his, her, our, their, which always combine with nouns and premodify them as attributes and the absolute forms - mine, yours, his, hers, ours, yours, theirs, which do not combine with nouns, but function as their substitutes. Thus, they may be adjective-pronouns when used as conjoint forms and noun-pronouns when used as absolute forms. There is no absolute form corresponding to the pronoun it.

Both conjoint and absolute forms may function with reference to persons and non-persons; pointing back (with anaphorical force) and forward (with anticipatory force).

My friends are waiting for me.

I liked this house and its wonderful garden.

Where are the dogs? Mine is under the table.

The coat isn't mine, it’s yours.

Hers was a wonderful room.


A peculiarity of the English language is that possessive pronouns, not the article, are used with reference to parts of the body, personal belongings, relatives, etc.


I raised my eyebrows.

He rose up and put his hands in his small pockets.

Where are you going to spend your leave?

I can’t see my way ahead.

§ 218. Reflexive pronouns indicate identity between the person or non-person they denote and that denoted by the subject of the sentence. They are: myself, yourself, herself, himself, itself, ourselves, yourselves, themselves, structurally derived either from the possessive pronouns (myself, yourself, ourselves, yourselves), or from personal pronouns (himself, herself, itself, themselves); the pronoun oneself is derived from the indefinite pronoun one.

Reflexive pronouns derived from possessive and personal pronouns have the categories of person, number, and gender in the 3d person singu­lar only. The generalising reflexive pronoun oneself has none of these.

Oh, I can do it myself. He felt himself grow hot to the roots of his hair.


If these are several homogeneous subjects denoting different persons including the 1st, the 1st person plural reflexive is used: You, mother, and I must now think about ourselves. If there is no 1st person, the 2nd person plural reflexive is used: You and mother must now think of yourselves.

If the subject is the indefinite pronoun one, the corresponding reflexive is used: One must not deceive oneself. If the subject is expressed by any other indefinite pronoun himself or themselves is used: Has anybody hurt himself?

The most common functions of the reflexive pronouns are those of an apposition and objects (direct, indirect, prepositional):

Cedric himself knew nothing whatever about it. (apposition)

I have all kinds of beautiful sentiments myself. (apposition)

I learned to dress myself many years ago. (direct object)

“How well you talk, ” said the Miller’s wife pouring herself a large glass of warm ale. (indirect object)

She talks only about herself. (prepositional object)


Less common are the functions of the subject, predicative, attribute, and adverbial modifiers:

My wife and myself welcome you, sir. (subject)

In some minutes she became herself again. (predicative)

She showed me a large picture of herself as a bride. (attribute)

My brother was a Robbins like myself. (adverbial modifier of comparison)

He lived in a tiny cottage all by himself. (adverbial modifier of manner)

§ 219. Reciprocal pronouns indicate a mutual relationship between two or more than two persons, or occasionally non-persons (each other, one another) who are at the same time the doer and the object of the same action. Thus They loved each other means that the doer A loved the object В and at the same time the doer В loved the object A.

The pronoun each other generally implies that only two persons are involved, one another usually being preferred when more than two persons are involved.

Both of them are composite words and have only one grammatical category - the category of case (each other’s, one another’s).

Reciprocal pronouns in their common case form function as objects:

Now they hate each other. They often quarrelled with one another.

The possessive case forms are used as attributes:

They stood silent, in each other’s arms.

§ 220. Demonstrative pronouns point to persons or non-persons or their properties: this (these), that (those), such.* The first two of them have the category of number. This (these) and that (those) function both as noun-pronouns and adjective-pronouns; such functions only as an adjective-pronoun:

* The demonstrative of it was given above. See Personal pronouns.

This is my brother Rob. That is very kind of you. (noun-pronouns)
This house is too large just for one person. She issuch a silly little tiring. (adjective-pronouns)


The general demonstrative meaning of this (these) is of relatively near reference in time or space, while that (those) implies distant reference in time or space. Both of them are commonly used anaphorically, pointing to things, persons, or situations denoted in the preceding context, as in the following examples with this and that:

He tried the door. This did not yield.

A tall blonde came forward. This was the barman’s wife.

“I often wondered how you were getting on.” –“ That was very kind of you.”

Sometimes, however, these pronouns may be used with anticipatory force, pointing to something new, or something still to come:


I know this – you’re a traitor.

This time I'll win.

I’ve never seen this dress of yours.


When used with words denoting periods of time (a day and its parts, week, month, year, century) the pronoun this implies that these periods include the moment of speaking:

This year he is going abroad. I had no breakfast this morning. I haven’t seen her this week.


When used with the words town, country, government the pronoun this implies ones in which the speaker lives or is staying at the moment of speaking. Phrases like in this town, in this country, this government, etc., should be translated into Russian by the actual names of the town or country as in the following:


Englishman: I do like this country - Я очень люблю Англию

or by a possessive pronoun: Я очень люблю свою (нашу) страну.


The pronoun that (those) pointing to something relatively remote in space or time may refer to something already known or past:

Do you see that red roof over there? That’s my house.

Oh! that was a sad mistake.

That (those) can be used either as a noun-substitute or as a sentence-substitute.

The perfume of the rose is more subtle that that of the lily.


Syntactically the pronouns this and that can be subject, predicative, object, or attribute.

This was my old dear car again.

His story was like that.

Do you remember this?

The woods are so beautiful at this time of year.


When used as attributes both this and that exclude the use of the article. The pronoun such points to a certain quality in things, persons, or situations. It is more often used anaphorically, although can also be used in its anticipatory function.


I like such little towns as this.

He could not love her. Such was everyone’s verdict.

You can buy there such things as buns, sausage rolls, and plum cakes.

Such never precedes the definite article, though it often occurs with the indefinite one, which is placed after such.

I’ve never seen such a beauty.

§ 221. Indefinite pronouns indicate persons or non-persons or else their properties in a general way without defining the class of objects they belong to, class or properties they possess. They are: some, any, somebody, anybody, someone, anyone, something, anything, one.

Some and any are both noun-pronouns and adjective-pronouns; their compounds in -body, -one, or -thing, as well as the pronoun one, are only noun-pronouns.

Some, any, something, anything have no grammatical categories, somebody, anybody, someone, anyone, and one have the category of case (somebody’s, anybody’s, someone’s, anyone’s, one’s).

Some and any indicate qualities or quantities, depending on the class and grammatical form of the noun with which they are used as attributes or for which they function as their substitutes. The idea of quantity is actualised if they combine with:


a) count nouns in the plural:

Are there any roses in your garden? I have a tot of flowers in my garden, some of them are sweet-

scented, some are not.


b) nouns of material:

Give me some water, please. Can you see any snow on the mountaintop?

c) abstract nouns:

She won’t give you any trouble.


When used before noun-phrases with cardinal numerals some denotes approximate quantity: some ten years ago, some twenty people (около, приблизительно).

The idea of quality is actualised when some and any combine with count nouns in the singular. In a positive statement any acquires the meaning of ‘любой'.

They bought some old house in the country, (какой-то дом)

Any horse will do now. (любая лошадь)


Very often the idea of quality and that of quantity go together: Some people will do it of their own free will means a certain type of persons and о certain number of people.

Some and any, indicating both indefinite qualities and quantities, differ in meaning: some has assertive force, that is presupposes the presence of some quality or quantity. It generally corresponds to the Russian неко­торый, какой-то, некоторое количество. Any has a non-assertive force, that is, does not presuppose the presence of any quality or quantity, and generally corresponds to the Russian какой-нибудь, какой-либо, сколько-нибудь.

The difference in meaning predetermines their use. Some is commonly used in affirmative and imperative sentences.

There are some apples on the table. Give him some milk.

Any is commonly used:


1) In negative sentences (with negatives not, no, never, neither... nor), in sentences with incomplete negatives (hardly, little, few, least, etc.), and with implied negatives (fail, prevent, reluctant, hard, difficult).

I don’t like any of them. She has never lasted any wine.

I hardly knew any of those present.

He failed to find any of them.


2) In questions, mostly general:

Did you see any of them? Is there any bread there?


3) In conditional clauses:

If any person learns about it, you will have to leave.


4) In comparative phrases:

He did more for me than any of you.


However, some not any, is used in interrogative sentences when their basic meaning is assertive and the speaker suggests that a certain state of affairs exists, as in:

Did you see some new English books on the shelf?


(The speaker suggests that there are new English books on the shelf and the addressee had only to look on them).

When will you have some time to show me your presents?

Some, not any, is preferable when making invitations or offers if it presupposes an acceptance:

Will you have some tea? Would you like to see some of my pictures?


The same holds true for negative sentences and conditional clauses with positive orientation.

She would not find some letters she had left on the table.

If you bring her some flowers, she'll be only too glad.

On the other hand any can be found in affirmative sentences if used with the meaning of no matter what, no matter who, as in: I am so hungry. I’ll eat any piece of stale bread. Any of them will do. (Я съем любой черствый кусок хлеба, любой из них подойдет).

Syntactically some and any can be used as subject, object, or attribute.


The compound pronouns of this subclass (something, somebody, someone, anything, anybody, anyone) are used only as noun-pronouns. Those ending in -thing imply non-persons, and those ending in -body imply persons. The difference in their communicative value is the same as between some and any. The pronouns with the element some- are used in affirmative and conditional sentences, or in interrogative, negative and conditional sentences if they are assertive:

Something unexpected always happened to him.

Что-нибудь неожиданное всегда случалось с ним.

Let somebody bring me a glass of water.

Пусть кто-нибудь принесет мне стакан воды.

Did somebody called me up?

Мне кто-то звонил?


The pronouns beginning with any are used in negative and interrogative sentences, in conditional clauses, in comparative phrases and in affirmative sentences meaning no matter what, no matter who.

I don’t see anyone here.

Я никого здесь не вижу.

If anyone calls, ask them to wait a moment.

Если кто-нибудь зайдет, попросите подождать минуту.

The pronoun one is indefinite-personal. It indicates people in general implying inclusion of the speaker, much in the same way as the indefinite-personal we, you, they do:

One is used as subject and attribute (in the genitive case)

One never knows what may happen.

Никогда не знаешь, что может случиться.


The use of one is rather formal. In everyday speech weor you is preferable:

You never know what may happen.


§ 222. Negative pronouns as the term implies render the general meaning of the sentence negative.

They are: no, none, nothing, nobody, no one, neither. No is used only as an adjective-pronoun, none, nothing, nobody, no one as noun-pronouns, neither may be used as both adjective-pronoun and noun-pronoun.

Unlike Russian, in sentences with negative pronouns no other nega­tive words can be used:

Я ему ничего не сказал. - 1 told him nothing.


Only two negative pronouns have the category of case: nobody – nobody’s, no one - no one’s. The other pronouns of this subclass have no grammatical categories.

No and none refer to all nouns denoting both persons and things, nothing refers to things, whereas nobody and no one refer to persons only. Nobody means to offend you. The pronoun neither refers to two persons or things and therefore correlates only with count nouns. It has a disjunctive force (ни тот, ни другой).

No trees could be seen. I will give you no trouble.

No means not... a when premodifying count nouns are in the singular.


I have no pen. = I have n’t a pen with me. (ни одной ручки)

None refers to many people, therefore it agrees with the predicate verb in the plural.

None were present at the meeting.

I remember none of the stories.

Nothing happened. I could see nothing there.

Nobody answered. (Not anybody) No one stirred. (Not anyone)

Neither came back. Neither book interested me.


When neither is used as subject, the predicate verb is in the singular:

Neither was present.

Nobody and no one cannot be postmodified by an of-phrase. Only none can be used in this case.

None of my relatives came to our wedding.


§ 223. Detaching pronouns indicate the detachment of some object from other objects of the same class. There are only two pronouns of this subclass - other, another. They are used both as noun-pronouns and as adjective-pronouns.

One of the girls was pretty, while the other was terribly plain.

He gulped one cup, then another.

I live on the other side.


Both other and another have the category of case (other – other’s, another – another’s), but only other has the category of number (other -others).

The pronoun other has dual reference, personal and non-personal, and correlates with all subclasses of nouns in the singular and in the plural:


Other times have come, other people are of importance.


Unlike the majority of pronouns, other (both as a noun-pronoun and as an adjective-pronoun) can be preceded by the definite article and other determiners.

The other tree was half-withered.

Then he gave me his other hand.

That other question quite upset me.

Show me some other pictures.

His sister’s other child was only five then.


In these sentences other is used as an attribute. The attributive func­tion can also be performed by the noun-pronoun other in the genitive case, as in: The other’s mouth twitched where other's stands for some noun from the previous context.

The pronoun another also has a dual reference, but itcorrelates only with count nouns in the singular.

Will you have another cup?

Then another runner came into view.

Another has two meanings:


1) a different one -

I don’t very much like this dress, will you show me another.


2) one more, one in addition to the one or ones mentioned before –

She asked me a question, then another.


Detaching pronouns can be used as subject, object, adverbial modifier and attribute.


§ 224. Universal pronouns indicate all objects (persons and non-persons) as one whole or any representative of the group separately. They are: all, both, each, every, everything, everybody, everyone, either.

Of these only everybody and everyone have the category of case (every­body - everybody's, everyone – everyone’s), others have no grammatical categories.

These pronouns, as can be seen from the definition, differ in their reference.

Some universal pronouns (all, everybody) have always collective or all-embracing reference. They correspond to the Russian все, весь, целый, всё as in:

All were present.

Все присутствовали.

All night long she sat by the window.

Всю ночь напролет она просидела у окна.

I haven’t read all the book.

Я не прочел всей книги.

Everything looks so beautiful in spring.

Все так красиво весной.

She is everything to me.

Она для меня всё.


Two pronouns (both, either) indicate a group comprising two persons or non-persons treated either as a whole (both) or as consisting of individual objects in a group of two (either - каждый из двух). In accordance with their reference both takes a predicate-verb in the plural and either - in the singular. The article is usually placed after both.


Both have come in time. Both the windows were shut. Either of these will do. -Оба пришли вовремя. - Оба окна были закрыты. - Любой из них подойдет.


Some pronouns (every, each, either) always have individual reference (каждый, другой), therefore they agree with the predicate-verb in the singular.

She searched every corner, but found nothing.

Each of them keeps silent.


Two pronouns (everybody, everyone) may have both collective and individual reference. In the first case it corresponds to the Russian все, in the second case to the Russian каждый. This or that reference is generally marked not so much by the predicate-verb, as by correlation with personal or possessive pronouns.

Everybody did as he thought best.

Everybody was eager to give his evidence.

Tell everybody that they are to wait a bit.

Everybody lowered their eyes.

The women stood by the gates and everyone told her own story.


§ 225. Interrogative pronouns indicate persons or non-persons or tlieir properties as unknown to the speaker and requiring to be named in the answer. Accordingly they are used to form special (or pronominal) questions.

This subclass of pronouns comprises who, whose, what, which, who­ever, whatever, whichever. Of these only the pronoun who has the category of case — the objective case is whom. However there is a strong tendency in colloquial English to use who instead of whom, especially with prepositions.


Who did you get it from?

Who have you been with?

Who do you mean?


instead of Whom did you get it from? (or from whom), Whom have you been with? (or with whom). Whom do you mean?

Who, whose, whoever have personal reference, what, whatever have non-personal reference, and which may have both personal and non-personal reference.

The number of the persons implied by who can be derived from the context. Accordingly the predicate-verb may be in the singular or in the plural.

Who has come? It’s my brother.

Who are to come today?

When who is used as predicative, the link verb naturally agrees with the subject:

Who is she? Who are you? Who were those people?


The pronouns what may be both a noun-pronoun (что? ) and an adjective-pronoun (каков? какой? ). It has mostly a non-personal reference, as in:

What has happened?

What is his name?

What did you say?

What are you looking at?

What book are you reading?


When what is used as subject it is, unlike who, always used with the predicate verb in the singular.

What is there on the table? - Some books and papers.


However when what is used as a predicative the link verb agrees with the subject.

What are their names?

What and who can both be used as predicatives in questions concerning persons. In this case they convey different meanings. Who-questions inquire about the person's name or parentage, while what-questions inquire about person’s occupation, profession, rank, etc.

“Who are you? ” — “I am your sister’s son.”

“Who is he? ” – “He is Mr. Smith.”

“What is she? ”- “She is a painter”.

Which is both a noun-pronoun and an adjective-pronoun. It may have either personal or non-personal reference.

Which of these men is your husband?

Which colour do you prefer?

Which always implies a choice among a certain limited group of persons or things, corresponding to the Russian который, какой из. The same meaning may be rendered by what, but what has always indefinite reference, whereas which has definite reference. Thus the following two questions.

Which books would you like to buy?

What books would you like to buy?


differ in meaning, as the first implies that one is to choose from a given number of books and that one knows what kind of books they are. When answering this question one may either specify the books or just point to them saying “these”. The second sentence implies that one is to choose from an indefinite number of books, from books in general. This sentence corresponds to the Russian Какие (какого жанра и т. п.) книги Вы хотели бы купить? When answering this question, one simply has to specify them.

The pronouns whoever, whatever, whichever are noun-pronouns. Whoever has personal reference, whatever has non-personal reference, whichever may have either personal or non-personal one. When used in questions they express indignation or surprise.

Whoever could have done it?

Whichever was it?

Whatever are you trying to do?

Whatever is he talking about?

§ 226. Conjunctive pronouns (whom, whose, what, which, whoever, whatever, whichever) are identical with the interrogative pronouns as to their morphological, referential and syntactical characteristics. They refer to persons and non-persons. The difference between the two subclasses lies in that the conjunctive pronouns, along with their syntactical function in the clause, connect subordinate clauses to the main clause. They are used to connect subject, predicative, and some adverbial clauses, or rather to indicate the subordinate status of these clauses, as the sentence may begin with the clause they introduce.

Who did it will repent. (who opens the subject clause)

I know who did it. (who opens the object clause)

They were what you call model girls. (what opens the predicative clause)

Whatever you may do you can’t save the situation. (whatever opens the adverbial concessive clause)


Conjunctive pronouns always combine two functions - notional and structural. They are notional words because they function as parts of the sentence within a clause and they are structural words because they serve as connectors or markers of the subordinate clause.

The compounds whoever, whatever, and whichever introduce subject and adverbial clauses and have a concessive meaning:

Whoever told you this may be mistaken.

Whichever you choose, I’ll help you.

Whatever may be the consequences, I insist on going on.


§ 227. Relative pronouns refer to persons and non-persons and open attributive clauses which modify words denoting these persons or non-persons. They are who, whose, which, that. Who, like its homonyms, has the category of case (who-whom), the others have no categories.

Relative pronouns, like conjunctive pronouns, have two functions - notional and structural: they are parts of the sentence and connectors between the main clause and the subordinate attributive clause they are used in. But unlike conjunctive pronouns they are always related (hence their name relative) to some noun or pronoun in the main clause. Compare the following sentences:


Who he was is still a mystery(conjunctive pronoun)   I don’t knowwhich of the books is better. That is the manwho has saved your child (relative pronoun) Here is the bookwhich the lecturer recommended.


Conjunctive and relative pronouns do not coincide referentially: the conjunctive pronouns who and whose have only personal reference; the relative pronoun who has personal reference, but whose has dual reference (personal and non-personal); the conjunctive pronoun which has dual reference, whereas the relative which has only non-personal reference.


The man who stood at the gate was Jim.

Then the man whose face I still could not see began singing.

The village whose roofs were seen in the distance was N.

I picked up the letter which was on the window sill.


Relative pronouns may function in the subordinate attributive clause as subject, object, attribute, and adverbial modifier (with prepositions).


Types of pronouns   The list of pronouns  
Personal pronouns   The common case: I, you, he, she, it, we, they. The objective case: me, you, him, her, it, us, them.  
Possessive pronouns   Conjoint forms: my, your, his, her, its, our, their. Absolute forms: mine, yours, his, hers, its, ours, theirs.  
Reflexive pronouns   myself, yourself, himself, herself, itself, ourselves, yourselves, themselves.  
Demonstrative pronouns   this, that, these, those, such, same.  
Indefinite pronouns   some, something, somebody, someone; any, anything, anybody, anyone.  
Negative pronouns   no, nothing, nobody, no one, none, neither.  
Universal pronouns   all, each, both, either, every, everything, everybody, everyone.  
Detaching pronouns   other, another.  
Reciprocal pronouns   each other, one another.  
Interrogative pronouns   who, what, which, whose, whoever, whatever, whichever.  
Conjunctive pronouns   who, what, which, whose, whoever, whatever, whichever.  
Relative pronouns   who, whose, which, that.  




§ 228. The numeral denotes an abstract number or the order of thing in succession.

In accordance with this distinction the numerals fall into two groups cardinal numerals (cardinals) and ordinal numerals (ordinals).

Cardinals Ordinals
0 nought, zero 1 one 2 two 3 three 4 four 5 five 6 six 7 seven 8 eight 9 nine 10 ten 11 eleven 12 twelve 13 thirteen 14 fourteen 15 fifteen 16 sixteen 17 seventeen 18 eighteen 19 nineteen 20 twenty 21 twenty-one, etc. 30 thirty 40 forty 50 fifty 60 sixty 70 seventy 80 eighty 90 ninety 100 one (a) hundred 101 one (a) hundred and one, etc. 1, 000 one (a) thousand 1, 001 one (a) thousand and one, etc. 100, 000 one hundred thousand 1.00.0 one million 1.000.001 one million and one, etc.   1st first 2nd second 3rd third 4th fourth 5th fifth 6th sixth 7th seventh 8th eighth 9th ninth 10th tenth 11th eleventh 12th twelfth 13th thirteenth 14th fourteenth 15th fifteenth 16th sixteenth 17th seventeenth 18th eighteenth 19th nineteenth 20th twentieth 21st twenty-first, etc. 30th thirtieth 40th fortieth 50th fiftieth 60th sixtieth 70th seventieth 80th eightieth 90th ninetieth 100th (one) hundredth 101st (one) hundred and first, etc. 1, 000th (one) thousandth 1, 001st one thousand and first, etc. 100, 000th (one) hundred thousandth 1, 000, 000th (one) millionth 1, 000, 001st (one) million and first, etc.

Morphological composition

The Cardinals

§ 229. Among the cardinals there are simple, derived, and compound words.

The cardinals from one to twelve, hundred, thousand, million are simple words; those from thirteen to nineteen are derived from the corresponding simple ones by means of the suffix -teen; the cardinals denoting fens are derived from the corresponding simple ones by means of the suffix -ty.



Mind the difference in the spelling of the stem in three and thirteen (thirty), four and forty, five and

fifteen (fifty).


The cardinals from twenty-one to twenty-nine, from thirty-one to thirty-nine, etc. and those over hundred are compounds.

In cardinals consisting of tens and units the two words are hyphenated:


21 - twenty-one, 35 - thirty-five, 72 - seventy-two, etc.


In cardinals including hundreds and thousands the words denoting units and tens are joined to those denoting hundreds, thousands, by means of the conjunction and:


103 - one hundred and three,

225 - two hundred and twenty-five,

3038 - three thousand and thirty-eight,

9651 - nine thousand six hundred and fifty-one.



If not part of a composite numeral the words hundred, thousand and million in the singular are always used with the indefinite article; a hundred pages, a thousand ways; in composite numerals both a and one are possible, but one is less common; a (one) hundred and fifty pages.

The words for common fractions are also composite. They are formed from cardinals denoting the numerator and substantivized ordinals denoting the denominator. If the numerator is a numeral higher than one, the ordinal in the denominator takes the plural form. The numerator and denominator may be joined by means of a hyphen or without it:


1/3 - one-third (one third),

2/7 - two-sevenths (two sevenths), etc.


In mixed numbers the numerals denoting fractions are joined to the numerals denoting integers (whole numbers) by means of the conjunction and:


3 1/5 - three and one-fifth,

20 3/8 - twenty and three-eighths.


In decimal fractions the numerals denoting fractions are joined to those denoting whole numbers by means of the words point or decimal:


0.5 - zero point (decimal) five,

2.3 - two point (decimal) three,

0, 5 - zero decimal five,

0, 005 - zero decimal zero zero five.

The ordinals


§ 230. Among the ordinals there are also simple, derivative and compound words.

The simple ordinals are first, second and third.

The derivative ordinals are derived from the simple and derivative cardinals by means of the suffix -th:

four-fourth, ten-tenth, sixteen-sixteenth, twenty-twentieth, etc.


Before the suffix -th the final у is replaced by ie:

thirty - thirtieth, etc.


Mind the difference in the spelling of the stems in the following cardinals and ordinals:

five-fifth, nine-ninth.


The compound ordinals are formed from composite cardinals. In this case only the last component of the compound numeral has the form of the ordinal:

twenty-first, forty-second, sixty-seventh, one hundred and first, etc.



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