Article »

antecedent

This Grammar.com article is about antecedent — enjoy your reading!

A pronoun takes the place of a noun. When writing, you'll use a pronoun and that pronoun will refer to some noun close by. That noun (the referent) is called the antecedent. The prefix ante might make you think that all antecedents come before the pronoun. But that's not true. Pronouns are either anaphoric (backward‑looking) or cataphoric (forward-looking).

Here's an anaphoric pronoun. It looks back to the antecedent:

  • John is my friend. He came to our house for dinner.

Here's a cataphoric pronoun. It refers to an upcoming antecedent:

  • When he came to our house, John brought abottle ofHope &Gracepinot noir.

Have a discussion about this article with the community:

Citation

Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:

Style:MLAChicagoAPA

"antecedent." Grammar.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 22 Nov. 2017. <http://www.grammar.com/antecedent>.

Free Writing Tool:

Instant
Grammar Checker

Improve your grammar, vocabulary, and writing -- and it's FREE!


Improve your writing now:

Download Grammar eBooks

It’s now more important than ever to develop a powerful writing style. After all, most communication takes place in reports, emails, and instant messages.