Correlatives

From Helpful
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This article/section is a stub — probably a pile of half-sorted notes and is probably a first version, is not well-checked, so may have incorrect bits. (Feel free to ignore, or tell me)


People use terms like 'correlatives', 'the correlatives of a language', 'a correlate' (as a noun) and other variations to refer to concepts such as:

  • two (or more) correlative entities (a correlate).
  • a choice in a correlative
  • the words used to ask for such a choice (who, which, etc.)
  • structures involved in connecting correlatives, mostly conjunctions (consider and, neither ... nor ..., not merely, but also and such)


Correlative structures commonly express multiple aspects, such as:

  • intent in dialogue/semantics/other, such as:
    • interrogatives (consider wh-words)
    • demonstrative (consider this, there, that, thus, then, this/that/so much, etc.)
    • indefinite (consider something, some kind of, somewhere, sometime, for some reason, some, someone, etc.)
    • universal (consider every, all, always)
    • negation (consider no kind of, never, nowhere, nothing, nobody, )
  • focus, such as
    • individuality
    • thing
    • quality
    • possessor
    • place
    • time
    • cause (why, for some reason)
    • manner (consider thus, somehow, some way, any way, in every way, etc.)
    • quantity (consider how much, so much, some, none/no (amount))


Languages differ in

  • how many words they have to combine those and more aspects,
  • how regular such words are, how they are used (whether they are pronouns, determiners, adverbs),
  • how many they have had over time (English used to have more; consider words like whence),

and more