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Indefinite Pronouns

Indefinite Pronouns- Know more about them

An Indefinite Pronoun refers to non-specific beings, objects, or places. We use indefinite pronouns to refer to people or things without saying exactly who or what they are. We use pronouns ending in -body or -one for people, and pronouns ending in -thing for things:

e.g.

1) Everybody enjoyed the show.

2) He opened the door but there was no one.

3) She brings everything for her child.

List of some Indefinite Pronouns:

AnybodyEverybodyNobodySomebody
AnyoneEveryoneNo oneSomeone
AnythingEverythingNothingSomething
AllEveryNeitherFew
AnyEachNoneBoth
OneEitherManySeveral

Categories of Indefinite pronouns-

Indefinite pronouns can be divided into three categories based on whether they take a singular or plural verb:

1) Always singular:

anyone, everyone, someone, someone, anybody, somebody, nobody, each, one, either, neither, none, no one, everybody, another, little, less, much etc.

2) Always plural:

both, few, many, others, several, both, fewer etc.

3) Both Singular and plural (depending upon usage):

all, any, more, most, some etc.

(Here singular subject takes singular verb while plural subject takes plural verb.)

e.g.

i) Some of the money is needed by Anil.

ii) Some of the children are creating loud noise.

Remember-

a) We use a singular verb after an indefinite pronoun:

e.g.

1) Everybody brings books for donation.

2) Everything was ready for the event.

b) When we refer back to an indefinite pronoun, we normally use a plural pronoun:

e.g.

i) Everybody came to see the show. They stood up and clapped for the performance of the artists.

ii) I will tell all that dinner is ready. They have been waiting a long time.

iii) Everybody should mind their own business.

iv) Everyone chooses what they want to do.

About negative sense-

In negative clauses, we use pronouns with ‘no’. We do not use pronouns with ‘any’:

e.g.

Nobody came. (Do not write- Anybody didn’t come.)

We do not use another negative in a clause with nobody, no one or nothing:

e.g.

Nobody came. (Do not write- Nobody didn’t come.)

Nothing happened. (Do not write- Nothing didn’t happen.)

About showing possession-

We can add ‘s’ to an indefinite pronoun to show possession:

e.g.

1) He is waiting for someone’s call.

2) Is this anybody’s book?

Use of ‘else’-

We use ‘else’ after indefinite pronouns to refer to other people or things:

e.g.

1) If Sunil can’t come, we’ll ask somebody else.

2) I think this is somebody else’s shirt.

Using Question Tag-

Most of the indefinite pronouns take ‘they’ in question tag.

e.g.

i) Everyone was happy, weren’t they?

ii) Everyone should know it, shouldn’t they.

iii) Anyone is ready to do the work, don’t they?

iv) Somebody calls me, don’t they?

v) Nobody was present there, were they?

vi) Few came back, did they? (Few – negative meaning word)

vii) A few came back, didn’t they? (A few – Positive meaning word)

viii) All the students have passed the exam, haven’t they?

ix) None of them gives any response, don’t they?

Note that-

The pronoun of the indefinite subjects ‘something’, ‘everything’, ‘anything’, ‘nothing’, ‘little’, takes ‘it’.

e.g.

Something is happening there, isn’t it?

Nothing has been told, has it?

Little is wasted, is it? (Little – negative meaning word)

A little is wasted, isn’t it? (A little – positive meaning word)


Read More-

1) Test on spot the error

2) Online test on Framing wh- question

3) Online test on Conjunctions

4) Online test on If and Unless

5) Online test on Adjectives

6) Grammar Quizes

7) Online Test on Tenses

8) Simple, compound and Complex senternces


Do Solve the online test based on Indefinite Pronouns-


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