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John | 9th Jan 2011, 20:33 PM | 英文文法 (2) | (5962 Reads)

甚麽是indefinite pronouns? 

先說個笑話。 

如果你在學校、公司或酒樓的廁所「開房」如廁,我的意思是,你在學校、公司或酒樓的廁所內進了其中一個廁格 (toilet cubicle, water closet cubicle) 閉門如廁,大大地方便着,正便得暢快淋漓的一刻,廁格外傳來一隻「鬼」的聲音,說:Is there anyone in? (有無人呀?)你應如何回答? 

如答Yes, Im inYes, Im here,都是錯的,因為對方隔着門,根本不知「I」是誰,對方亦無意知道究竟廁格內的是誰人,對方只想知道「有沒有人在廁格」(Is there anyone in?) 

正確的答法是:Someone in (有人),或者Yes, someone in。當然,答YesYeah也無不可,對方一定明白,但如果這樣答是因為不懂得用Someone in 的表達方法,可以考慮改善。 

上文的Someone anyone 都是「不定代名詞」(Indefinite Pronouns) 

不定代名詞沒有特定的前述詞。 (Indefinite pronouns have no specific antecedents.) 不定代名詞並不指向特定的人或物。 (Indefinite pronouns do not point to any one place or thing.) 不定代名詞指的是不定的某一個個人或某組人(Indefinite pronouns refer to an individual or group in an indefinite way),有點像中文的「某人」、「有人」、「無人」、「每人」、「所有人」「一個人」等。 

和上述笑話例子類似的是以下這句:Do we have any questions from the audience for Kary Ng?  Yes.  Someone in the back. (有無觀眾要問吳雨霏問題呀。A,後面有一位)
 不定代名詞的例子:
all each neither one
another either nobodyother
anyfewnonesome
bothmanynothing such
以下是複合不定代名詞的例子:
anybodyeverybodysomebody
anyoneeveryonesomeone
anythingeverythingsomething

 不定代名詞使用實例 (Indefinite Pronouns in Use)

1.          This is all I found.

2.          Anyone can be a saint. (人皆可以為堯舜)

3.          Did somebody say something?

4.          Many came but few were chosen.

5.          My ex has done everything he can to hurt me. (可以傷害我的,我的前度都幹了。)

6.          Everything that could go wrong went wrong for me this weekend. (可以出錯的所有事情,這個周末都發生在我身上。)

7.          Love is blind.  She just doesnt get that everything her boyfriend has said is untrue. (愛情盲目,佢條仔講野無句真,佢就係睇唔通。) 

不定代名詞的數 (Number of Indefinite Pronouns)

有些不定代名詞只用單數 (Some indefinite pronouns are only singular): another, anybody, anyone, anything, each, either, everybody, everyone, everything, neither, nobody, nothing, somebody, someone, something.

1.          Each is responsible for his or her own belongings. (各人負責自己的私人物品。)

2.          Nobody knows where her husband has gone.

有些不定代名詞只用複數 (Some indefinite pronouns are only plural): both, few, many, several

1.          Many have seen the YouTube video of the live performance by Kary. (很多人看過Kary這段現場表演的YouTube片。)

2.          Few survive an attack of flesh-eating bacteria. (很少人感染食肉菌後仍能生存。)

有些不定代名詞既可用單數也可用複數,要看情況 (Some indefinite pronouns may be singular or plural, depending on the context. Usage determines grammar):

1.          Such is politics. (singular) (Such are politics 是不對的,因為politicsuncountable noun)

2.          Such are the ways of politics. (plural)

3.          Some is left in the fridge. (例如,可以想,是Some food is left in the fridge.)

4.          Some are going to leave shortly. (例如,可以想,是Some people/students/visitors are going to leave shortly.)

不定代名詞None在任何情況下用單數或複數均正確。(The indefinite pronoun none can be singular or plural in all contexts.) 為何如此?據說起初是用None is的,因為none=no one,用單數動詞is是合理的,但後來有人用None are,用得很通行,none are也成了絕對正確。無解,是約定俗成。(Usage determines grammar.)

1.          None is/are available.

2.          None of my children has/have blonde hair.

3.          None is as happy as I am for her success. (這句因為在I am之前,none用單數的isI am的單數較為對稱,但要用None are也無不可。) 

有些不定代名詞有不同的單數和複數形式。(Some indefinite pronouns have different singular and plural forms.)

1.          oneones (1. One needs to set clearly defined goals. (人要設立清晰的目標。) 2. Do you know why your loved ones all hate you? (你知唔知點解你愛D人個個都憎你?))

2.          otherothers (1. Some other in my department knows it. (我部門內另一個某人知道那事。) 2. Others in my department know it. (我們部內其他人知道那事。) 3. In China, some social activities are closely monitored, and others are labeled as culprits. (在中國,一些民運人士被嚴密監視,另一些被標籤為罪犯。)) 

思考題:‘Everybody are not happy.’ 這句對不對?
答案:要改成Everybody is not happy才對,因為everybody是一定用singular verb的不定代名詞。題外話:這句的意思不是「每個人都不快樂」,而是「不是所有人都快樂」=Not everyone is happy.=There are some who are not happy

不定代名詞的格 (Case of Indefinite Pronouns)

不定代名詞主格和受格的形式相同,只有部分不定代名詞具有所有格。所有格則加apostrophe s (‘s).  (Indefinite pronouns take the same forms in both the nominative and objective cases. Only some indefinite pronouns have possessive forms.  Add apostrophe s (‘s) to form their possessive forms.)

1.          What happened here is anybody’s guess.

2.          Everyone’s mood was lifted when the rain stopped.

思考題:哪種正確?

1.          Each kid ate their hotdog.

2.          Each kid ate his or her hotdog.

答案:Each kid ate his or her hotdog. 這句正確,因為each kidsingular,不能配their

不定代名詞用作限定詞 (Indefinite Pronouns Used as Determiners)

1.          (a) Neither of my parents likes my boyfriend. (這句的Neitherpronoun,因為在它之後的是介系詞of)(b) Neither student can solve the problem. (這句的Neitherdeterminer,因為在它之後的是名詞student.)

2.          (a) Many would disagree with you. (這句的Manypronoun,因為在它之後的是動詞would disagree)(b) Many people would disagree with you. (這句的Manydeterminer,因為在它之後的是名詞people) 

以下這些叫不定代名詞名詞片語(indefinite pronoun phrases),其實無甚麽特別,其文法功能仍是不定代名詞。

1.          Any one of them could be the thief.

2.          No one else’s car is as fast as yours.

3.          She is poor but proud.  She will not accept anyone else’s help.

想聽首歌:天后王菲小姐

 
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