World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Disjunctive case

Article Id: WHEBN0007887871
Reproduction Date:

Title: Disjunctive case  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Nominative case
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Disjunctive case

A disjunctive pronoun is a stressed form of a personal pronoun reserved for use in isolation or in certain syntactic contexts.

Examples and usage

Disjunctive pronominal forms are typically found in the following environments. The examples are taken from French, which uses the disjunctive first person singular pronoun moi. The (sometimes colloquial) English translations illustrate similar uses of me as a disjunctive form.

  • in syntactically unintegrated disjunct (or "dislocated") positions
Les autres s'en vont, mais moi, je reste.
The others are leaving, but me, I'm staying.
Qui veut du gâteau ? Moi.
"Who wants cake? Me.
Il est plus âgé que moi.
He is older than me.
Mes parents et moi arrivons dans une heure.
I and my parents are arriving in an hour.
C'est moi que vous cherchez.
It's me that you're looking for.
Comptez sur moi.
Count on me.

Disjunctive pronouns are often semantically restricted. For example, in a language with grammatical gender, there may be a tendency to use masculine and feminine disjunctive pronouns primarily for referring to animate entities.

Si l'on propose une bonne candidate, je voterai pour elle.
If someone proposes a good candidate, I'll vote for her.
Si l'on propose une bonne loi, *je voterai pour elle.
If someone proposes a good law, I'll vote for her (it).

"It's me"

In some languages, a personal pronoun has a form called a disjunctive pronoun, which is used when it stands on its own, or with only a copula, such as in answering to the question "Who wrote this page?" The natural answer for most English speakers in this context would be "me" (or "It's me"), parallel to moi (or C'est moi) in French. Unlike in French, however, where such constructions are considered standard, English pronouns used in this way have caused dispute. Some grammarians have argued and persuaded some educators that the correct answer should be "I" or "It is I" because "is" is a linking verb and "I" is a predicate nominative, and up until a few centuries ago spoken English used pronouns in the subjective case in such sentences. However, since English has lost noun inflection and now relies on word order, using the objective case me after the verb be like other verbs seems very natural to modern speakers. The phrase "It is I" historically came from the Middle English "It am I" and the change from "am" to "is" was also a step towards fixing the SVO word order.

See also


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.