. 9
( 17)


entities of their class (from other things or other dresses) as to select these enti-
ties in one domain -- here, the real-world situation in which the activity of speech
is embedded -- and establish them as entities that can be discussed in speech.
Demonstratives also operate in the domain of text, pointing from the current
discussion to the domain of the prior discussion. Recall that bare nouns without
a demonstrative can easily be used in Russian to refer back to unique individuals
´pthj in [4.213] and gkfnj in [4.214]). For example, in the narrative of a hiking
expedition in the Crimea ([240]), the narrator ¬rst asserts that they entered what
she calls a canyon:

[240] F yf cktle/obq ltym e;t djikb d yfcnjzobq rfymjy // Vs c Vfhbyjq
dthyekbcm r h/rpfrfv / f jyb gjikb lfkmit // B jyb dsikb . . . ghjikb
rfymjy yfcrdjpm
The next day we entered a real canyon // Marina and I went back to the backpacks
/ while they went on // And they came out . . . they went through the whole

When the hike becomes dif¬cult, the party divides, and the speaker™s husband
and a friend continue. Throughout this episode, the ravine is a known entity with
a constant property; it is the site of a challenging hike. Here no demonstrative
is used. In the continuation in [241],

[241] Djn // Ntgthm . . . Ye vs dthyekbcm bp эnjuj rfymjyf / jgznm e;t cnfkj ntvytnm /
vs hfp,bkb . . . jgznm gfkfnrb / gthtyjxtdfkb
So // Now . . . We came out of this canyon / again it had started to get dark / we
broke out . . . the tents again / spent the night

the speaker uses a demonstrative to begin a new text segment (note Djn //
Ntgthm . . . Ye). By using the demonstrative, the speaker indicates that the canyon
Arguments 235

now under discussion is, after all, the same canyon discussed in the prior text
segment. In broader terms, demonstratives “point” in the sense that they con-
nect an individual across two domains; they indicate that there is continuity of
identity despite there being a shift from one domain to another.
Demonstratives can also be used to establish that there is a unique individ-
ual under discussion even when no individual was previously established. In
particular, a demonstrative can turn a shapeless event or state -- gjcvjnh†k in
[242], yfcneg«kf nbiby’ in [243] -- into something that can be discussed as an

[242] Cnfkby gjcvjnhtk tve ghzvj d ukfpf. <elzuby pyfk, xnj jpyfxftn эnjn dpukzl:
jy jpyfxftn ytljdthbt.
Stalin looked him straight in the eye. Budiagin knew what this look meant: it
meant suspicion.
[243] Jy yt ecgtk jndtnbnm. Dlheu yfcnegbkf nbibyf, b d эnjq nbibyt Vfhr
ecksifk ujkjc Cnfkbyf: <. . .>
He was about to reply when silence suddenly fell. In this silence Mark heard the
voice of Stalin: <. . .>

The nouns used with demonstratives help de¬ne the class of entities to which
the entity is thought to belong, at this point in the text. Sometimes a new
noun is introduced to re-classify an individual which is already known in other

[244] <elzuby tlbycndtyysq rfr-nj c ybv c,kbpbkcz. Hf,jxbq gfhtym bp
Vjnjdbkb[b, jy dgthdst edbltk rfdrfpwf, gj;fktk эnjuj /;fybyf, pfckfyyjuj
d [jkjlye/ Cb,bhm, d eckjdbz, cehjdjcnm rjnjhs[ dslth;bn b yt dczrbq
Budiagin had been the only one who managed somehow to get along with him
[=Stalin]. A working-class lad from Motovilikha, as soon as he spotted the
Caucasian, he felt sorry for this southerner banished to chilly Siberia, to ferocious
conditions that not every Russian could endure.

As the noun places the individual in a new category -- those people who come
from the Caucasus -- the demonstrative connects the new category (essence) to
the prior mention.
The class of things to which a demonstrative points has some connection to
the class named by the noun, but it does not have to match it exactly. In [245],
for example,

[245] Z gjvy/ d ltncndt / yfif ,elrf jrfpfkfcm hzljv c Af,th;t / c rfrbv Af,th;t
/ z yt pyf/ / ,elrf ,skf / b djn / rfr ctqxfc gjvy/ / эnjn Af,th;t ghbitk /
vjq jntw c ybv hfpujdfhbdfk / cbltkb d rjcn/vf[
236 A Reference Grammar of Russian

I remember in childhood / our booth turned out to be next to the Faberg†s™ / with
which Faberg† / I don™t know / the booth was / and so / as I recall now / that
Faberg† came / my father talked with him / they were sitting in their bathing suits

the function of the demonstrative is not to single out this Faberg† from other
Faberg†s. The set is not people bearing the name Faberg†, but the inclusive
hypernym of wealthy tourists that includes this particular person.
Thus using a demonstrative with a noun is a complex operation. A demonstra-
tive points from the domain of the current discussion to some other domain,
such as the real world surrounding speech, the adjacent text, or the set of com-
parable entities; there is continuity of reference -- the individual is the same --
in spite of the shift in domains.

4.6.2 Njn
Nj more restricted than English that, has quite speci¬c functions.
In speech, nj can indeed be used, in opposition to proximate ¦njn, to point
to a distal object. In [246], the distal location is con¬rmed by the distal adverb
[246] -- Njdfhbob, z r dfv c njq kfdjxrb. -- Comrades, I™ve come to you from that
bench. Just wanted to let you know
Ghjcnj d njv djy ljvt tcnm cnjkjdfz.
there™s a canteen in that building over
-- C ekbws? -- On the street?
-- Lf. B vs htibkb ghzvj d gjhzlrt -- Yes. We decided to go in, keeping the
right order ™cause everyone wants a bit
jxthtlb pf[jlbnm, dtlm gjreifnm dct
to eat.
-- F xtuj, ghfdbkmyj. -- Good idea, why not?
-- Nfr xnj эnf kfdjxrf pf yfvb, f ds pf -- So this bench is after us, and you™re
after them, okay?
ytq, [jhjij?
Nj is used along with ¦njn in texts when two participants are under discus-
sion and need to be distinguished. Únjn refers to the more prominent, nj to
the less prominent referent.
[247] Vyjuj ktn cgecnz, ctcnhf Vfif crfpfkf Hbyt, xnj z ,sk d ytt dk/,kty. Эnf
jxtym elbdbkfcm, gthtcghjcbkf Vfie, nf gjlndthlbkf, xnj jxtym cbkmyj, xnj
,tp gfvznb.
Years later, my sister Masha told Rina that I had been in love with her. This one
[= Rina] acted surprised, quizzed Masha, and that one [= Masha] con¬rmed that
yes, I had been completely, head-over-heels in love.
[248] Hbyf jxtym elbdbkfcm, gthtcghjcbkf Vfie, nf gjlndthlbkf, xnj <. . .>
Rina acted surprised, quizzed Masha, and that one [= Masha] con¬rmed that <. . .>
Thus nj selects out the more distal of two competing individuals.
Arguments 237

When there is no contrast between competing individuals, nj points to an
entity perceived as remote from the current situation. Some examples:
[249] Yt pyf/, wtk kb njn fkm,jv. I don™t know if that album is still
[250] Itcnmltczn ktn ghjikj, f z Sixty years have passed, but I still
clearly remember that interrogation.
yfrhtgrj pfgjvybk njn ljghjc.
[251] Ytlfdyj gthtxbnfk z njn cdjq Not long ago I reread that collection of
sketches of mine.
c,jhybr jxthrjd.
[252] d njv rfat in that caf† [in Paris, long ago]
[253] d njv (1929-jv) ujle in that year (of 1929)
[254] Bp cjctlytuj dsikf cnfhe[f, jxtym From the adjacent house an old
woman came out, very similar to that
gj[j;fz yf ne, rjnjhfz pltcm ;bkf
gjkdtrf yfpfl. Z gjyzk, xnj эnj ,skf one who had lived here a half century
ago. I understood that it was that
nf ltdjxrf-cjctlrf, ecgtdifz
neighbor girl, who had managed to
grow old.

Nj in this sense becomes idiomatic: d n† dhtvty’ ˜in those times of yore [unlike
now]™, d nj h’p ˜on that occasion™, c nj cnjhjyß ˜from the other [not this] side™,
´n ´q
nj cd†n ˜the other realm [death]™.
Combined with the adjective c’vsq or the particle ;t (or both), nj con¬rms
that the discussion still concerns the same individual discussed earlier, when
other individuals might be imagined, or the participation of this individual is

[255] Nfywez cnhj;fqit pfghtotyysq ajrcnhjn, pfdjlbkb jlye b ne ;t gkfcnbyre.
Dancing the strictly forbidden foxtrot, we would put on one and the same record.

Similarly, ¦njn ;t reminds the addressee that the entity is the same, lest there
be any doubt:
[256] Djn // F gjnjv vs yf эne ;t dthibye dvtcnt / gjlybvfkbcm / yf enhj yf
So // And then together up this very same peak / we climbed / on the following

Nj commonly initiates an upcoming relative clause that provides a descrip-
tion of the entity or entities that ¬t a formula (essential reference):
[257] Jlyf;ls Cthut/ gjrfpfkjcm, xnj jy yfitk bvtyyj ne ltdeire, rjnjhe/
bcrfk dc/ ;bpym.
Once it seemed to Sergei that he had found just the very girl he had been looking
for all his life.

In this function nj is easily used without an overt head noun (§4.4.5):
238 A Reference Grammar of Russian

[258] Dkfcnb ghtcktljdfkb nt[, rnj rhtcnbk.
The authorities persecuted those who engaged in baptism.

Related is the use of neuter singular nj to provide a head for xnj clauses
embedded as argument phrases when a preposition or oblique case is required
in the matrix clause ([259]) (§5.10.2).

[259] Vs gjnjv dcnhtnbkb tot jlye uhegge rbtdkzy / nfr jyb nj;t tt jxtym
djpytyfdbltkb / pf nj xnj jyf . . . ujdjhbkf bv / d Zknt ujkjktl
We subsequently met another group of people from Kiev / and they also took a
dislike to her / on account of the fact that she told them / there was frost in Yalta.

4.6.3 Headless nj, эnj
The neuter singular forms ¦nj and nj used alone without a noun, have developed
functions that go beyond their strictly demonstrative functions, although they
are related.66
Both ¦nj and nj can refer back to whatever was being discussed in the previous

[260] Ye djn / pyfxbn ye vs ikb . . . nfv jxtym gjlybvfnmcz ,skj . . . ytvyj;txrj
nz;tkjdfnj djn / e rjuj cthlwt yt jxtym [jhjitt / yj vyt rfr hfp эnj ,skj
So well / I mean well we walked . . . you had to climb . . . just a bit dif¬cult you
see / for anyone whose heart isn™t so good / but for me this was not hard

A specialized variant is: x -- ¦nj y, which ¬rst names a topic and then makes an

[261] Gentitcndbt d Dtht/ -- эnj cdtnkjt djcgjvbyfybt vjtq /yjcnb.
The trip to Vereia -- that is a sacred memory of my youth.

Nj used in this function makes the situation remote:

[262] C yfxfkf njuj 1929 ujlf z c,kbpbkcz c Kzktq Bkmbycrjq. Ytn-ytn, nj yt ,sk
From the beginning of that year of 1929 I grew close to Lialia Ilinskaia. No, no,
that was no romance.

It could be noted that the neuter demonstrative usually comes before the copula,
but the copula agrees with the noun that is introduced (masculine in [262],
feminine above in [254]).
Headless nj has been lexicalized in various expressions and constructions,
such as ,j´ktt njuj ˜even more than that™, njv© yfp’l ˜ago™. The phrase f nj has
´ ´

66 Weiss 1988, Junghanns 1996.
Arguments 239

become a discourse connective introducing the apodosis in conditionals:

[263] Fktif z nt,t yfkm/ / f nj ,eltn jxtym [jkjlysq
Alesha, I™m going to pour [coffee] for you now / or else it will be very cold

Repeated, it forms the notable idiom nj . . . , nj . . . ˜¬rst one, then the other™:
´ ´

[264] Yjxm/ yt lfdfkb gjrjz -- jnrhsdfkfcm ldthm, b nj jlyjuj, nj lheujuj
dsrkbrfkb yf ljghjc.
At night they gave us no peace -- the door would open and they™d call in ¬rst one,
then another for interrogation.

While headless nj has become a connective that links clauses in discourse,
headless neuter ¦nj has also extended its functions, but in a different direction.
The starting point is its deictic function of pointing to an entity (in the speech
situation or in the text) and identifying it, such as the ¬rst token of ¦nj in
[265]. From this, ¦nj has become an operator identifying something about the
nature of the situation, such as who the agent was (second and third tokens in

[265] F -- Эnj ndjt ifvgfycrjt? Эnj ns -- Is this your champagne? Are you
the one who brought it?
V -- Ytn, эnj Kblf dxthf ghbytckf. -- No, it was Lida who brought [it]

Or ¦nj can identify some other participant, such as an object (¬rst token in
[266]) or even how the event as a whole is to be characterized (second token in

[266] -- Djn jyb, ghjktnfhbb, ghjktnfhbb! -- There they are, those proletarians,
damned proletarians.
Lf dtlm эnj yfv rhbxfn, yfc It was us they were shouting at, us
they were cursing. Shura and I passed
ghjrkbyf/n! Iehf b z gjikb vbvj
by the next car. And from there, once
cktle/otuj dfujyf. B jnnelf, edbltd
they saw us, came the same angry
yfc, dphsdfkbcm nt ;t pkj,yst
cries, hooting.
rhbrb, ek/k/rfymt.
-- Gjqltv j,hfnyj, -- crfpfk z -- Let™s go back, I said to Shura.
Ieht . . . -- Don™t pay any attention, what they™re
-- Yt j,hfofq dybvfybz, эnj rekfrjd doing is shipping off kulaks, -- said
dtpen, -- crfpfk Iehf ytdjpvenbvsv Shura in an imperturbable voice.

At this point ¦nj has become a sentential operator with the function of focusing;
it does not have to have a speci¬c argument position. The uses of ¦nj in [265--66]
have become quite usual in colloquial Russian.
240 A Reference Grammar of Russian

4.7 Reflexive pronouns

4.7.1 Basics
Russian has two re¬‚exive pronouns: ct,z an argument pronoun, and cdj a
´, ´q,
possessive adjective. Ct,z occurs in positions in which argument phrases usu-
ally occur, except subject position. Ct,z expresses case, but does not distinguish
gender or number. As an adjective, cdj agrees in gender, case, and number with
the noun it modi¬es. Cdj and ct,z can refer to ¬rst or second persons as well
´q ´
as to third persons.
Pronouns instruct the addressee to posit an individual at the site of the pro-
noun and go to a source for information about the identity of the individual. On
the syntactic domain of a ¬nite predicate in which a pronoun is an argument
of the predicate (or modi¬es an argument of the predicate), the meaning of re-
¬‚exive and third-person pronouns is complementary. When a re¬‚exive pronoun
is used, the source, or antecedent, for the re¬‚exive must be the subject of the
¬nite predicate (indexed <i> in [267] and [268]); re¬‚exives cannot refer to an
object (t= in [267] or tv© in [268], indexed <j>) or to some other third person
who is not mentioned in this sentence (indexed <k>):

[267] Vjz vfnm<i> dpzkf tt<j> r ct,t<i | —j | —k> , r cdjtq<i | —j | —k> ctvmt.
My mother<i> took her<j> to herself<i | —j | —k> , into her<i | —j | —k> family.
[268] Jy<i> rhfnrj crfpfk tve<j> ghj ct,z<i | —j | —k> , ghj cdj/<i | —j | —k> ;bpym.
He<i> told him<j> brie¬‚y about himself<i | —j | —k> , about his<i | —j | —k> life.

By complementarity, non-re¬‚exive third-person pronouns cannot refer to the
subject of a ¬nite predicate, but must refer to some other entity, which can be
another argument of the same predicate or an individual that is not mentioned
as an argument of the predicate at all. In [269--70] the third-person feminine
pronouns (y†q, t=) cannot refer to the subject (indexed <i>) but could refer to
the direct object (indexed <j>) or to some other person not mentioned in the
predication (indexed <k>).

[269] Jyf<i> hfccghfibdfkf tt<j> j ytq<—i | j | k> , j tt<—i | j | k> ;bpyb.
She<i> questioned her<j> about her<—i | j | k> , about her<—i | j | k> life.
[270] F xthtp ldf lyz Vfit<j> dthyekb tt<—i | j | k> pfzdktybt c htpjk/wbtq: Jnrfpfnm.
Two days later they returned to Masha<j> her<—i | j | k> application with the
decision: Denied.

On the domain of a ¬nite predicate, almost any argument phrase can be the
site for a re¬‚exive. If English normally uses a non-re¬‚exive pronoun in sentences

67 See Peshkovskij 1956, Klenin 1974, Paducheva 1974[b], 1985, Yokoyama 1975, Yokoyama and Klenin
1976, Timberlake 1980[a], 1980[b], 1986, Rappaport 1986.
Arguments 241

such as next to him (?himself) John found a snake, similar constructions in Russian
would use ct,z Compare:

[271] Cjklfn<i> lfk tve vtcnj hzljv c cj,jq<i> yf crfvtqrt.
The soldier made room for him next to him on the bench.
[272] Yf njq ;t cnfywbb d nht[ ifuf[ jn ct,z<i> Vfif<i> edbltkf cfvjuj Cnfkbyf.
At that station, just three steps from her, Masha saw Stalin himself.

As in [272], it does not matter if the site for the pronoun precedes the subject
antecedent; word order is largely irrelevant to the use of re¬‚exive and non-
re¬‚exive pronouns.
Thus on the most transparent and frequent domain -- that of a ¬nite predi-
cate -- there is complementarity between the two types of pronouns in all argu-
ment positions: a re¬‚exive means the current referent is the same as that of the
subject, while an ordinary third-person pronoun cannot refer to the subject of
the ¬nite predicate.
Semantically, a re¬‚exive pronoun means that the individual posited at the site
of the pronoun is understood to be the same individual, with the same proper-
ties, as the antecedent. In context, subtle variations on the notion of identity
of reference arise, especially with the possessive adjective cdj 68 Example [267]
above, in which cdj establishes that there was a family associated with the
mother, might be considered neutral identity in between two extremes. At one
extreme, the referent of the pronoun could be de¬ned independently, such as
Vladimir™s friend in [273]; this is i n d e p e n d e n t or i n d i v i d ua t e d reference.

[273] Dkflbvbh gjdtk yfc r ,jkmijve cdjtve lheue [elj;ybre Rjhbye.
Vladimir took us to his good friend the artist Korin.

At the opposite extreme, the individual may be de¬ned by its relation of identity
to the subject. Thus, cdj often suggests that the possessed entity ¬ts exactly
because it is associated with the subject, whereas other entities would not ¬t.
In [274], young people want to hear from representatives of that generation
associated with them, not from some other generation.

[274] Yfif vjkjlt;m [jxtn ecksifnm ;bdjq ujkjc ghtlcnfdbntktq cdjtuj
Our young people want to hear the living voice of members of their generation.

This kind of reference is essential, in that the referent of the pronoun is de¬ned
by its relation of identity to the antecedent. In context, with cdj essential
reference takes on several guises: a distributive relation of possessed entities
with possessors, a contrast of exactly this possessor as opposed to other possible
68 Timberlake 1980[b].
242 A Reference Grammar of Russian

Table 4.12 Domains and semantics of reflexives

domain domain
domain moderately severely
unrestricted restricted restricted

individuated reference (individual de¬ned ct,z, cdjq tuj, tt, b[ tuj, tt, b[
independently of relation of identity to
neutral reference ct,z, cdjq ct,z, cdjq tuj, tt, b[
essential reference (individual de¬ned by ct,z, cdjq ct,z, cdjq ct,z, cdjq
relation of identity to antecedent,
speci¬cally by a distributive, contrastive,
or characteristic relation)

possessors, or the sense that this possessed item, de¬ned by identity to the
subject, is c h a r ac t e r i s t i c of the entity ([274]).
On the domain of ¬nite predicates, these nuances in reference are merely
contextual overtones. But there are also restricted domains on which comple-
mentarity is vitiated, and then either a re¬‚exive or a non-re¬‚exive pronoun can
be used to refer to the antecedent. In such contexts, the choice of pronoun is
correlated with the sense of reference (Table 4.12).
In the vast majority of cases, the domain is the domain of ¬nite predicates,
and then pronouns follow the principle of complementarity in an automatic
fashion, and these cases require no further comment. The discussion below is
devoted to the less automatic, albeit less frequent, contexts.

4.7.2 Autonomous arguments
Adverbial phrases such as ytcvjnhz yf ˜notwithstanding™, ghb ˜for all his/her™, gj
˜according to™ are commentary by the speaker about the validity of the predica-
tion. They are independent of the syntactic domain. In reference to the subject, a
possessive pronoun is often cdj especially if the subject might be aware of the
relationship (as she is in [275]) but a non-re¬‚exive can be used, if the sentence
re¬‚ects the speaker™s judgment (as in [276]):

[275] Jyf, ytcvjnhz yf cdj/ ,thtvtyyjcnm, wtksvb lyzvb cetnbkfcm.
Despite her pregnancy, she bustled around for days on end.
[276] Yj jabwths, ytcvjnhz yf b[ ytljdjkmcndj, dct ;t yt xedcndjdfkb ct,z hf,fvb.
The of¬cers, their dissatisfaction notwithstanding, still did not feel like slaves.

Non-re¬‚exive pronouns are used with parenthetical gj: gj tuj {hfcxtnfv ∼
ghbpyfyb/ ∼ ckjdfv} ˜by his {calculations ∼ admission ∼ words}™. Cdj is ´q
avoided in comitative phrases expressing characteristic qualities whose existence
is presupposed:
Arguments 243

[277] Dcnfdfkb ktcf c b[ ghj[kfljq b cevthtxyjcnm/.
There rose up forests with their dankness and gloominess.

4.7.3 Non-immediate sites
Pronominal sites which are not direct arguments of a ¬nite predicate, but which
are buried inside argument phrases, allow both types of pronouns in reference
to the subject:

[278] Jy ghbyzk htitybt gj cfvjve df;yjve lkz {ct,z ∼ ±ytuj} djghjce.
He made a decision on the most important for him question.
[279] Nfr jy ghjbpyjcbk dct ytghbdsxyst tot lkz {±ct,z ∼ ytuj} heccrbt ckjdf.
That is how he pronounced all still unusual for him Russian words.

The choice of pronoun depends in part on the adjective™s meaning. Affec-
tive adjectives, such as d’;ysq ˜important™ in [278], report states that im-
pinge on the well-being of the subject, who is also responsible for evaluating
the effect. Similar are: ,kfujghbz ´nysq ˜favorable™, uk’dysq ˜central™, ljhjuj ´q
˜dear™, ytj;«lfyysq ˜unexpected™, j,zp’ntkmysq ˜obligatory™, jg’cysq ˜danger-
ous™, jnx’zyysq ˜hopeless™, gjk†pysq ˜useful™, cxfcnk«dsq ˜happy, fortunate™,
nh©lysq (nz ´;rbq) ˜dif¬cult™, e,«qcndtyysq ˜devastating™.
´ujcnysq, nz;=ksq, nz
These affective, subjective adjectives readily allow the re¬‚exive to be used (half
of the examples in a small corpus of this infrequent construction, 19xx/38xx).
In contrast, non-affective adjectives, such as ytghbdßxysq ˜unfamiliar™ in
[279], describe a quality of the situation that does not affect the well-being
of the subject. The quality is evaluated by the speaker. Similar are: dscj ´rbq
˜high™, ljcn©gysq ˜accessible™, pfu’ljxysq ˜puzzling™, bynth†cysq ˜interesting™,
´nysq ˜incomprehensible™, yj ´dsq ˜new™, jxtd«lysq ˜obvious™, cnh’yysq
˜strange™, xe;j ˜alien™. As in [279], such non-affective, objective adjectives use
the re¬‚exive sparingly (in 8 of 35 tokens, or 23%).
The re¬‚exive is rare for dative targets of adjectives, even affective adjectives:
jy yt chfpe yf[jlbn ye;ysq tve wdtn ˜he cannot right away ¬nd the color he

4.7.4 Special predicate--argument relations: existential, quantifying, modal,
experiential predicates
Existential, modal (y©;yj, ytj,[jl«vj ˜necessary™), and quantifying predicates
([dfn«nm/[dfn’nm, ljcn’njxyj ˜be suf¬cient™) have potentially two arguments
(§5.3.3).69 One argument, expressed in an oblique case or with a preposition,
is known independently and states the domain on which existence or modal-
ity or quanti¬cation holds. The other argument, expressed in the nominative

69 Timberlake 1980[a].
244 A Reference Grammar of Russian

or genitive, names the entity whose existence is at issue. Its reference is often
de¬ned by a relationship of possession to the domain:70

[280] Lf b yf djqyt kjiflm nj;t yf[jlbncz ghb ltkt, tq nj;t tcnm nen cdjz
The horse also has a function in war; it also has its own duty.
[281] Cdjb[ pfgfcjd ujh/xtuj tve yt [dfnbn.
His reserves of fuel were not going to be suf¬cient for him.
[282] Tq cdjq ljv ye;ty.
To her is necessary her own house.
[283] Tq ye;yf [jnz ,s dblbvjcnm cdjtq pyfxbvjcnb.
To her was necessary at least the appearance of her (own) signi¬cance.

Cdj in these constructions de¬nes the essence of the possessed entity: it is a
token of the kind of thing that is appropriate for, or characteristic of, this domain
or possessor ([280--83]). Cdj also ¬ts in such contexts if there is a distributive
relationship between entities and possessors, where each entity is associated
with a distinct possessor.

[284] Rf;lsq irfa bvtk ytcrjkmrj ctrwbq, r rf;ljq bp yb[ ,sk cdjq rk/x.
Each cabinet had several divisions, to each was its own key.

Cdj is occasionally used in other arguments if one of the special senses of cdj
´q ´q
comes in, such as a contrast of self opposed to other:

[285] E rjk[jpybrjd yf cdjb[ exfcnrf[ xeltcf fuhjnt[ybrb.
On their own plots the kolkhoz farmers achieve veritable wonders of
[286] Z yt [jntk e[jlbnm bp wt[f. Vyt [jhjij ,skj d cdjtv hf,jxtv rjkktrnbdt.
I didn™t want to leave the shop. It was good for me being in my own worker

But cdj is not needed if the entity is independently known (the folder in [287]):

[287] B dlheu z bycnbyrnbdyj gjxedcndjdfk, xnj e vtyz d herf[ ytn {vjtq ∼ — cdjtq}
And suddenly I felt instinctively that I did not have my folder in my hands.

Ct,z has fewer opportunities than cdj to occur with existential (modal, quan-
´ ´q
tifying) predicates, but can appear in a comitative expression ([288]) or within a
noun phrase ([289]):

[288] E vtyz jrfpfkbcm c cj,jq cgbxrb.
I had some matches turn up on myself.

70 In Tuj yt ,skj d cdjtq rjynjht (Stadniuk), the re¬‚exive possessive in the domain phrase refers to
a genitive.
Arguments 245

[289] E ytuj yt jcnfdfkjcm dhtvtyb yf ct,z.
He kept having no time left for himself.

Experiential predicates are similar to existential predicates. Experiential pred-
icates, usually not verbs, report an experience or state or emotion localized in
a domain, which is named in an oblique (dative) case. Another argument, ex-
pressed by a prepositional phrase or the genitive, states the focal point of the
experience or emotion. The domain is referentially independent and is a natural
antecedent for re¬‚exive pronouns in the focal argument.

[290] Tve cnfkj {ytkjdrj ∼ cnslyj ∼ uhecnyj ∼ ,jkmyj} pf {— ytuj ∼ ct,z} b pf
{— tuj ∼ cdj/} ckf,jcnm.
It became {uncomfortable ∼ shameful ∼ sad ∼ painful} to him on account of
himself and his weakness.
[291] :fkrj ,skj cdjtuj nhelf.
He was sorry on account of his effort.
[292] Tve cnfkj uflrj yf cfvjuj ct,z.
To him it became disgusting with respect to himself.

With experiential predicates, the re¬‚exive is used regularly, without essential

4.7.5 Unattached reflexives
Especially in existential constructions, cdj often acquires the overtone of some-
thing that is appropriate, or characteristic, or uniquely one™s own (as in [280--83]
above). In this sense, cdj can modify the subject of intransitives that are vaguely
existential ([293--95]):

[293] Vt;le ybvb ecnfyjdbkfcm cdjz, jcj,fz, cdzpm, yt nfrfz, rfr c lheubvb.
Between them there arose their own, special, bond, not like that with others.
[294] Pfujdjhbn ;t cdjz rhjdm.
One™s own blood will speak out [≈ Blood is thicker than water].
[295] Gjlevfnm, b vs ,skb rjulf-nj ,tpecst, ntgthm djn cdjz udfhlbz gjlhjckf.
And just to think, we were once whiskerless, and now our own regiment has
sprouted up.

A related sense of cdj is the sense of ˜one™s own kind™. In this sense cdj can
´q ´q
even be used as the subject of transitive verbs:

[296] D celm,t ;t Vbnzubyf z yt cjvytdfkcz. Ktn xthtp gznm-itcnm j,zpfntkmyj kb,j
cdjb pfht;en, kb,j hfccnhtkz/n gj cele.
I had no doubts about Mitiagin™s eventual fate. Five or six years down the line,
either his own kind will slit his throat or they™ll condemn him to a ¬ring squad.
[297] Celm,e j,dbytyyjuj htifkb cdjb ;t cjcke;bdws.
The fate of an accused person was decided by his own fellow workers.
246 A Reference Grammar of Russian

Here cdj creates a contrast of self with others. It is in this sense that cdj
´q ´q
is used in idioms with no obvious antecedent: g©,kbrf cdjz ˜it™s our kind of
audience™; cdj« k·lb ˜they are our own people™ ≈ ˜we™re among friends™.
Ct,z is occasionally used without any explicit antecedent, in the sense of
˜whosoever might be under discussion™:

[298] Эnj jgfcyjcnm, rjnjhfz dctulf dktxtn pf cj,jq nz;rbt gjcktlcndbz lkz ct,z b
lkz lheub[.
That is a danger such as always brings with it serious consequences for oneself
and for others.

Used in this way, cdj and ct,z have gone considerably beyond re¬‚exives that
´q ´
only blindly identify the referent of one argument as the same as the subject.

4.7.6 Special predicate--argument relations: direct objects
It is generally true that in Russian, unlike in English, objects do not antecede
re¬‚exive pronouns. Nevertheless, the direct object can antecede a re¬‚exive if the
predicate records that the argument changes over a domain, where the domain
includes the pronoun site.71 The domain can be: the source of emotional equilib-
rium (эnj dsdjlbkj tuj bp ct,z ˜that took him out of himself, upset him™; xe;bt
k/lb jndktrfkb tuj jn ct,z ˜people distracted him from himself ™); the goal
of emotional equilibrium (dktxtn tuj r ct,t ˜that drags him towards himself™;
ghtljcnfdbd njdfhbof cfvjve ct,t ˜turning him over to himself, to his own
devices™); or the domain of reciprocal interaction (Z ,sk cgjcj,ty chfdybdfnm
rkjeyjd vt;le cj,jq ˜I knew enough to be able to compare clowns among them-
selves™; Jabwths gjbkb ifvgfycrbv j,tpmzye b cj,fr b cnhfdkbdfkb b[ vt;le
cj,jq ˜The of¬cers got a monkey and some dogs drunk and set them ¬ght-
ing amongst themselves™; rfr cdzpfnm vt;le cj,jq k/ltq ˜how to bind people
amongst themselves™).
In these constructions, the pronoun could hardly refer to anyone other than
the object. That is not so with pfobn«nm/pfobo’nm ˜defend™ -- the danger could
come from anyone. This verb uses the re¬‚exive pronoun if the source of danger
happens to be the object who needs protection:

[299] Gfgf Rfhkj, hfpevttncz, pfoboftn yfc<j> jn cfvb[ ct,z<j> .
Papa Carlo, clearly, is protecting us<j> from ourselves<j> .

A possessive adjective is usually not re¬‚exive in reference to the direct object:

[300] Jyf pfoboftn tuj<j> jn {tuj<j> ∼ ?cdjb[<j> } lheptq!
She is protecting him<j> from his<j> friends.

71 Timberlake 1996.
Arguments 247

[301] {hbcn/<j> c ldevz ljxehrfvb jcnfdbkb d tt<j> [fnt.
They left Khristia<j> with her two daughters in her<j> hut.
[302] Vs ghjdjlbkb Ctht;e<j> lj tuj<j> rjvyfns.
We accompanied Serezha<j> to his<j> room.

Nevertheless cdj can be used to express the special sense of characteristic pos-
session ([303]) or a distributive relationship (in [304], of sailors and ships):

[303] Vj;yj kb jcnfdbnm {bqevff<j> ,tp cdjtuj<j> inf,f?
Could one really leave Hijumaa<j> without its<j> own staff ?
[304] Yfxfkmcndj ntgthm ,tcgjrjbkjcm kbim j, jlyjv -- crjhtt hfpdtcnb gmzys[<j>
gj cdjbv<j> celfv.
The authorities were worried about just one thing -- how to return the drunken
sailors<j> to their<j> own ships.

4.7.7 Special predicate--argument relations: passives
Subjects of passive participles can antecede re¬‚exives: ghbextyyfz r эnjve cdjbv
cnfhsv [jpzbyjv, j,tpmzyf dsrbyekf dgthtl b ddth[ kfge ˜trained by its former
master, the monkey thrust its paw out and up™. Locative arguments, which are
de¬ned independently, use non-re¬‚exives: ajnjuhfabz, ult ,skf cyznf dcz tt
ctvmz d b[ rhjitxyjv bvtybb ˜a photograph, where her whole family was taken
on their modest estate™.
The agents of passives, whether overtly named in the instrumental case or
implicit, can antecede re¬‚exives: cvsck, rjnjhsq ,eltn jnrhsn <jujv cfvjve
ct,t njkmrj d ltym celf ˜a meaning that will be revealed by God to himself only
on Judgment Day™; d jlyjv bp gbctv, flhtcjdfyys[ cdjtve lheue, jntw ujdjhbn
˜in a letter addressed to his friend, father says™. Arguments that are de¬ned
independently use non-re¬‚exive pronouns: ghtlvtnjd, ghbdtptyys[ jnwjv bp tuj
gentitcndbq gj hfpysv cnhfyfv ˜objects, brought back by father from his trips
through various countries™.

4.7.8 Autonomous domains: event argument phrases
Event nominals (often derived from verbs) or abstract qualities (often derived
from adjectives) can have their own arguments. A subject analog can antecede
a re¬‚exive:

[305] F tckb dcgjvybnm j tuj cgfhnfycrjq cehjdjcnb r ct,t, r cdjtve lfhjdfyb/,
If one just thinks of his Spartan rigor with respect to himself, to his talent,
[306] gjybvfybt bv cdjtq jib,rb
understanding by him of his mistake

Ct,z can be used with arguments of nouns which do no more than hint
at events: pfgbcm j ct,t ˜a note about oneself™, (tt) cdj,jlf yfl cj,jq ˜(her)
248 A Reference Grammar of Russian

freedom over herself™. Possessive adjectives are non-re¬‚exive if there is no spe-
cial (contrastive, characteristic, distributive) sense of reference: hfccrfp njdfhbof
j tuj dcnhtxt c bpdtcnysv kbnthfnjhjv ˜the story of a comrade about his meet-
ing with a famous writer™. Often, the possessor is not named, but can be inferred:
z dbltk, rfre/ ,jkm ljcnfdkztn tve cjpthwfybt cdjb[ cnfhs[ rfhnby ˜I saw what
pain was afforded to him by the contemplation of his old pictures™.
Event nominals, then, constitute an autonomous domain for re¬‚exives. But
since event nominals are used as arguments of a ¬nite predicate, the sub-
ject (indexed <i>) is also a potential antecedent for pronouns in event nom-
inals. Both re¬‚exive and anaphoric pronouns can be used in reference to the

[307] Jy<i> yfltzkcz dszcybnm jnyjitybt r {tuj<i> ∼ cdjbv<i> } ckjdfv <h/[fyjdf.
He was hoping to get a clear sense of Briukhanov™s relationship to his words.
[308] Gtnhjd<i> , jnvtnbd dybvfybt r {ytve<i> ∼ ct,t<i> } Cnfkbyf, cnfk clth;fyytt.
Petrov, noticing Stalin™s attention to him(self), became more reserved.

A noun that is the head of an argument phrase can antecede a re¬‚exive if
it can be construed as the implicit subject of an event or a state: chtlb hfdys[
ct,t k/ltq ˜among people [who are] equal to each other™; yfhjl, ujhlsq cdjbvb
gj,tlfvb ˜a people proud of its victories™, yfcnjzobt fhnbcns cdjtuj ltkf ˜true
artists of their (own) work™; yfcnfdybr cdjb[ gjlxbytyys[ ˜a trainer of his (own)
subordinates™; ghjhjr d cdjtq hjlbyt ˜a prophet in his (own) land™.

4.7.9 Autonomous domains: non-finite verbs
Non-¬nite forms of verbs -- adjectival participles, adverbial participles
(lttghbxfcnbz), and in¬nitives -- though they lack an explicit subject argument,
can be understood as having an implicit subject, which can antecede re¬‚exive
pronouns ([309]):72

[309] Ltdbwf<i> , dct tot rjkjnbdifz ct,z<i> gj uhelb, gjgsnfkfcm dshdfnmcz.
The girl<i> , still striking herself<i> on her breast, tried to break free.
[310] Gjkexbd gtxfkmye/ dtcnm j tuj<j> lheut, Atljh<i> [jlbk pfvryensq.
After getting the sad news about his friend, Fedor went around depressed.

By complementarity, a non-re¬‚exive pronoun would have to refer to another
individual; the friend in [310] cannot be Fedor™s.
In¬nitive clauses for the most part behave as autonomous domains which obey
complementarity of reference (with exceptions discussed below). In “subject-
controlled in¬nitives” -- in¬nitives dependent on such main verbs as [jn†nm
˜want™, cnfh’nmcz ˜try™, ghtlgjxbn’nm ˜prefer™ -- the subject of the ¬nite predicate
72 On the context of pronouns and in¬nitives, see Yokoyama 1975, Timberlake 1979.
Arguments 249

is the implicit subject of the in¬nitive: the person who wants (tries, prefers)
is the person who performs the desired (attempted, preferred) activity. Such
constructions obey complementarity of reference, as if they were a ¬nite do-
main. Thus a re¬‚exive in Vjz vfnm<i> htibkf dpznm tt<j> r ct,t<i | — j | — k> , r
cdjtq<i | —j | —k> ctvmt ˜My mother<i> decided to take her<j> to herself<i | —j | —k> ,
into her own<i | —j | —k> family™ refers to the implicit subject of the in¬nitive and
the matrix subject, while the non-re¬‚exive pronouns in Jyf<i> yt cybpjikf
hfccghfibdfnm tt<j> j ytq<—i | j | k> , j tt<— i | j | k> ;bpyb ˜She<i> did not conde-
scend to question her<j> about her<—i | j | k> , about her<— i | j | k> life™ cannot refer
to the subject.
In¬nitives can be used independently (¬rst clause of [311]) or subordinated
to modal predicates (second clause of [311]). The dative argument in the matrix
clause supplies the implicit subject of the in¬nitive and the potential antecedent
for re¬‚exives. For the most part such constructions obey the constraint of com-
[311] :bpym ,skf jxtym nz;tkjq. Xnj,s [jnm vfkj-vfkmcrb rjhvbnm ct,z<j> b
cdjb[<j> ltntq, bv<j> ghb[jlbkjcm ghjlfdfnm cdjb<j> ytvyjujxbcktyyst dtob.
Life was dif¬cult. To feed themselves and their children, however minimally, they
had to sell off their not very numerous possessions.

Occasionally, an anaphoric adjective (tuj t=, «[) occurs, if the possessed entity
is de¬ned independently. In [312], Nikolai is a known person; in [313], his years
are a given:
[312] Jyf b Ybyrt Rehpjdjq ;fkjdfkfcm, f nf yfl ytq njkmrj cvtzkfcm, dnfqyt
pfdblez, gjnjve xnj tt<j> Ybrjkfz b hfp d ytltk/ gjl,bnm yf эnj ,skj tq<j>
yt nfr-nj ghjcnj.
She even complained to Ninka Kurzova, but that one just laughed at her, while
secretly envying her, because it was not simple for her<j> to get her<j> Nikolai up
to that once a week.
[313] Jnxtuj ,s tve<j> ecnfdfnm d tuj<j> ujls?
Why should he<j> be getting so tired at his<j> age?

The most complex construction is “object-controlled” in¬nitives, which have in
effect two subjects: the implicit subject of the in¬nitive, which corresponds to a
dative or an accusative object of the main predicate, and the subject of the main
predicate. Either can in principle antecede a re¬‚exive pronoun in the in¬nitival
clause. The choice of pronoun depends on the cohesion of the in¬nitive and the
matrix predicate, which in turn depends on the semantics of the matrix predi-
cate. The two clauses are very cohesive if the subject of the matrix predicate con-
trols the outcome of the event, as with l’nm/lfd’nm ˜give, let™, gjvj ´xm/gjvju’nm
˜help™, pfcn’dbnm/pfcnfdkz ˜force™. The two predicates are not cohesive if the
250 A Reference Grammar of Russian

matrix subject transfers responsibility for the event to the matrix object (im-
plicit subject), as with evjk«nm/evjkz ˜beseech™, eujdjh«nm/eujd’hbdfnm ˜per-
suade™, e,tl«nm/e,t;l’nm ˜convince™, ghbukfc«nm/ghbukfi’nm ˜invite™, (gj)ghjc«nm
˜ask™. Intermediate are ghbrfp’nm/ghbr’psdfnm ˜order™, gjpdjk«nm/gjpdjkz ´nm
˜allow™, ghtlkj;«nm/ghtlkfu’nm ˜propose™, gjhex«nm/gjhex’nm ˜delegate™.
If the subject of the matrix predicate is the same person as an argument or
a possessor in the in¬nitival clause, it is in principle possible to use either an
anaphoric or a re¬‚exive pronoun, depending on the matrix predicate, as in the
schematic example [314]:
±  ± 
 lfkf vyt   {ct,z<i> ∼ ?tt<i> } 
[314]    
cjghjdj;lfnm {ct,z<i> ∼ ±tt<i> } .
Jyf<i> gjpdjkbkf vyt

 gjghjcbkf vtyz   {?ct,z ∼ tt } 

 
<i> <i>

She<i> {let ∼ allowed ∼ requested} me to accompany her<i> .

The re¬‚exive is close to obligatory with cohesive predicates ([315]), variable for
intermediate clauses ([316--17]), and unlikely for the least cohesive ([318]), yet
possible ([319]):

[315] Jy<i> yt lfk эnjq dcgsirt gj,jhjnm ct,z<i> jrjyxfntkmyj.
He<i> didn™t let this ¬‚are-up completely conquer him<i> .
[316] Gjkrjdybr<i> ytpfljkuj lj эnjuj ghbrfpfk gjlfnm ct,t<i> rjyz b relf-nj et[fk.
Not long before, the colonel<i> ordered a horse brought to him<i> and had gone
off somewhere.
[317] Gjkrjdybr<i> ghbrfpfk lfnm tve<i> rbntkm, yfltk tuj, pfcntuyekcz yf dct
geujdbws b eujcnbk yfc pfdnhfrjv.
The colonel<i> gave an order to bring him<i> a coat, he put it on, buttoned up all
buttons and treated us to breakfast.
[318] Lzlz<i> gjctkbkcz d Zgjybb b ghjcbn ghjcnbnm tuj<i> pf dytpfgyjt
Uncle<i> has settled in Japan and asks [us] to forgive him<i> for disappearing
[319] Pbyfblf<i> gjghjcbkf gjkj;bnm ct,z<i> gj,kb;t r ldthb.
Zinaida<i> asked [one] to place her<i> a bit closer to the door.

When both re¬‚exive and non-re¬‚exive are possible, the difference lies in how
the whole complex action is understood. With the re¬‚exive in [316], the matrix
predicate and in¬nitive together amount to one action: he acquired a mount for
himself. In [317], with non-re¬‚exive, there are two actions, ¬rst commanding and
then producing the coat, an entity which becomes the focus of the subsequent
Less freely, cdj in the in¬nitive clause can refer to the matrix subject, but
only if the predicates are cohesive:
Arguments 251

±  ± 
 pfcnfdkzkf vtyz   {cdjtve<i> / ±tt<i> } 
[320]    
gthtlfnm gbcmvj {±cdjtve<i> / tt<i> } lzlt d
Jyf<i> ghbrfpfkf vyt

 evjkzkf vtyz  — 
  { cdjtve 
<i> / tt<i> }
She {tried to force me ∼ ordered me ∼ beseeched me} to deliver a letter
to her uncle in Moscow.

The other potential antecedent of re¬‚exive pronouns inside the domain of
the in¬nitive is the implicit subject of the in¬nitive (and object of the matrix
predicate). If an argument of the in¬nitive is the same as the implicit subject,
ct,z must be used, with all matrix verbs:
± 
 yt lfk tq<j> 
[321]  
Jy yt gjpdjkbk tq<j> pf,hfnm vfkmxbire {r ct,t<j> ∼ — r ytq<j> }.
 
 evjkbk tt 
He {would not allow her<j> ∼ did not permit her<j> ∼ beseeched her<j> }
to take the lad to live with her<j>

With possessive adjectives, the non-re¬‚exive is occasionally possible ([322]):
±  ± 
 pfcnfdkzkb tt<j>   {cdj/<j> / tt<j> } 
[322]    
Lbhtrnjhf yt hfp ghtlkfufkb tq<j> bpvtybnm {cdj/<j> / ?tt<j> }
   
 ghjcbkb tt   {cdj/ 

<j> / tt<j> }
afvbkb/ yf byjcnhfyysq vfyth.
Directors more than once {tried to force her<j> ∼ suggested to her<j> ∼
asked her<j> } to change her<j> name to the foreign style.

Cohesive matrix predicates allow anaphoric possessives ([323--24]), while the less
cohesive almost require the re¬‚exive ([325]), unless the possessive is a kind of
epithet applied to a noun that is de¬ned independently ([326]):

[323] B ,sk cxfcnkbd, kbim ,s tve<j> lfdfkb gbcfnm tuj<j> hfccrfps.
And he was happy if they only just let him<j> write his<j> stories.
[324] Jy yf[jlbkcz d Gfhb;t b gjvjufk Fylht Vfkmhj<j> cj,bhfnm tuj<j>
bynthyfwbjyfkmye/ эcrflhbkm/.
He was in Paris and helped Andr† Malraux<j> organize his<j> international
[325] Vs gjghjcbkb Vfrfkbycrjuj<j> ghjxtcnm cdjb<j> cnb[b.
We asked Makalinsky<j> to read his<j> poems.
[326] Vs eghjcbkb Dkflbvbhf<j> gjdtcnb yfc r ,jkmijve tuj<j> lheue [elj;ybre
We begged Vladimir<j> to take us to that good friend of his<j> the artist Korin.

Thus, in in¬nitive clauses whose implicit subject is an object of the main
predicate, either the implicit subject of the in¬nitive or the matrix subject can
252 A Reference Grammar of Russian

Table 4.13 Reflexives with object-controlled infinitives

antecedent = matrix antecedent = in¬nitive
matrix predicate subject subject

{ct,z | — tt}
{ct,z | ?tt}
lfnm/lfdfnm ˜give, let™,
{cdj/ | ?tt} {cdj/ | tt}
gjvjxm/gjvjufnm ˜help™,
pfcnfdbnm/pfcnfdkznm ˜force™
{ct,z | — tt}
{ct,z | tt}
ghtlkj;bnm/ghtlkfufnm ˜propose™,
{±cdj/ | tt} {cdj/ | ?tt}
gjhexbnm/gjhexfnm ˜delegate™,
ghbrfpfnm/ghbrfpsdfnm ˜order™,
gjpdjkbnm/gjpdjkznm ˜allow™
{ct,z | — tt}
{?ct,z | tt}
evjkbnm/evjkznm ˜beseech™,
{— cdj/ | tt} {cdj/ | ?tt}
eujdjhbnm/eujdfhbdfnm ˜persuade™,
e,tlbnm/e,t;lfnm ˜convince™,
ghbukfcbnm/ghbukfifnm ˜invite™,
(gj)ghjcbnm, eghjcbnm/eghfibdfnm

antecede a pronoun in the in¬nitive clause. Matrix predicates can be hierar-
chized according to the cohesion between matrix predicate and in¬nitive, and
that in¬‚uences the choice of pronoun (Table 4.13). As cohesion decreases, the
possibility of using re¬‚exives to refer to the matrix subject decreases, and the
pressure to use a re¬‚exive in reference to the in¬nitival subject increases.

4.7.10 First- and second-person antecedents
Re¬‚exive pronouns in Russian can refer to ¬rst- or second-person antecedents.
When the subject of a ¬nite predicate antecedent of an argument pronoun is a
¬rst or second person, ct,z is used:

[327] Z ybrjve yt dth/. Ybrjve! Njkmrj ct,t. Z b {ct,t ∼ — vyt} ntgthm yt dth/!
I don™t trust anyone. No one! Only myself. These days I don™t even trust myself!

One difference from third persons is that, when the pronoun site and the po-
tential source are not in a close domain, it is natural to use a personal pronoun
(vtyz d’c), for example in Z djccnfyjdbk gj cdt;tq gfvznb df;yst lkz {vtyz
∼ ?ct,z} gjlhj,yjcnb ˜I reconstructed from memory important for me details™.
In this context, a re¬‚exive pronoun might easily be used with a third-person
antecedent ([278] above).
With possessive adjectives, either the re¬‚exive cdj or a non-re¬‚exive posses-
sive adjective -- vj ndj y’i, d’i -- can be used:
´q, ´q,

[328] D {±cdjtq ∼ vjtq} pfgktxyjq cevrt, z dtp htrjvtylfntkmyjt gbcmvj.
In my shoulder bag I was carrying a letter of introduction.
Arguments 253

Table 4.14 Cdjq with first-person and second-person antecedents (Petr Tarakhno,
Zhizn , otdannaia tsirku; Konstantin Simonov, Raznye dni voiny, vol. II)

non-re¬‚exive total % cdjq

Tarakhno 1st sg 90 7 97 93
Tarakhno 1st pl 10 11 21 48
Simonov 1st sg 187 17 204 92
Simonov 1st pl 39 11 50 78
Simonov 2sg/2pl (not imperative) 24 1 25 96
Simonov 2sg/2pl (imperative) 11 9 20 55

[329] Z dgthdst edbltk {cdj/ ∼ ±vj/} ,eleoe/ ;tye.
I ¬rst saw my future wife.

The non-re¬‚exive, likely in [328], refers to an entity known independently. In
contrast, the re¬‚exive is appropriate with an essential reading; in [329], cdj/
,eleoe/ ;tye is the person who can be de¬ned as ful¬lling the role of wife to
x, x being the subject.
Usage can be investigated in memoirs, a genre in which ¬rst-person an-
tecedents arise frequently. Table 4.14 records the usage in two memoirs. As
can be seen in Table 4.14, the re¬‚exive cdj is used pervasively with ¬rst-
person singular antecedents, somewhat less frequently with ¬rst-person plural.
The re¬‚exive is also usual for second persons, though less so in the impera-
tive, when the immediacy of the situation makes the possessed items more
The memoirist can speak of himself as the unique, universal memoirist or as
an individual whose properties differ in each time-world. The personal possessive
vj re¬‚ects the unique memoirist: Z [jxe jcnfyjdbncz yf эnjv afrnt vjtq
kbxyjq ;bpyb gjnjve, xnj <. . .> ˜I want to pause on this fact of my personal
life because <. . .>™ [Tarakhno] -- his life is his total, unique life; Ltcznm ktn yfpfl
z gjkexbk gbcmvj jn jlyjuj bp xbnfntktq vjtq rybub ¤Cjklfnfvb yt hj;lf/ncz≥
˜Ten years ago I received a letter from a reader of my book Not Born a Soldier™
[Simonov] -- the book is timelessly that book; Yt levfk z, xnj d gjcktlybq hfp
db;e vjtuj lheuf Dbnfkbz Tabvjdbxf Kfpfhtyrj ˜It never occurred to me that
I was seeing my friend Vitaly E¬movich Lazarenko for the last time™ [Tarakhno] --
friendships are not constantly rede¬ned.
Cdj refers to another self who acted in other circumstances and was asso-
ciated with entities that existed in other times and places -- Tarakhno had his
repertoire, Simonov his notes and his feuilletons.
254 A Reference Grammar of Russian

[330] Ybrjulf lj эnjuj z yt vtyzk b yt bcrfk cdjq htgthnefh nfr jcvscktyyj.
Never before had I modi¬ed and searched out my repertoire so studiously.

Here the argument with cdj has an essential reading: x, the speaker™s past self,
attempted to de¬ne whatever would constitute the repertoire associated with x.
The non-re¬‚exive vj can be used, however, when the perspective shifts to a
moment in the past:

[331] D эne yjxm z gjrfpsdfk Rfhf,bybye vjq htgthnefh.
That very night, there I was showing Karabinin my repertoire. [Tarakhno]
[332] Dct эnj yt vjukj yt hfljdfnm vtyz, b z c tot ,jkmibv hdtybtv ghbyzkcz
pfybvfnmcz c vjbv gfhnythjv.
All this couldn™t help but please me, and so I began to rehearse with my partner
with even greater enthusiasm. [Tarakhno]

Once the speaker shifts into the past world, the speaker at that moment has
only one unique repertoire ([331]) and one unique partner ([332]).
Both re¬‚exive cdj and non-re¬‚exive ndj ´q/d’i can be used in the imperative.
Simonov uses d’i when the issue is what to do with known entities ([333]):

[333] -- Relf dgthtl?
-- Yf Kjckfe. Pf,bhfqnt эnjn dfi inehvjdjq ,fnfkmjy b dtlbnt tuj dgthtl.
-- Forward in which direction?
-- To Loslau. Gather up that attack battalion of yours and lead it forwards.

He uses the re¬‚exive for entities that are not known, but are de¬ned by their
relation to the addressee (essential reference: ˜whoever your adjutant is, because
he has that role™):

[334] Jabwthjd cdjb[ dgthtl gjikbnt, fl(/nfynf cdjtuj gjikbnt, jcnfdmnt ghb ct,t
jlyjuj-lde[ xtkjdtr, jcnfkmys[ dct[ gjikbnt dgthtl.
Send your of¬cers ahead, send your adjutant ahead, but keep one or two behind,
while you send all the others ahead. [Simonov]

Thus, with a ¬rst- or second-person antecedent, ct,z is used almost as regularly
as with third persons. The possessive adjective allows more freedom of choice,
but the re¬‚exive is still more usual. The non-re¬‚exive is used when an entity has
an identity separate from the event and is associated with the unique speaker
(vj ndj
´q, ´q).

4.7.11 Emphatic pronominal adjective cfv
The adjective c’v creates a contrast between what is asserted and other op-
tions that might be entertained or expected. When it modi¬es ct,z c’v re¬‚ects
Arguments 255

the gender--number of its antecedent (for example, plural in [299] above, sin-
gular in [335] below). C’v may or may not agree in case with ct,z When ´.
it agrees in case, c’v registers surprise that it is speci¬cally this entity that
is involved in the event as opposed to other entities that might be imagined.
In [335], c’v implies a set of people who might be deceived, but it turns out
that the individual who is the same as the subject does not belong to that

[335] <ehtyrjdf jy vju j,vfyenm, yj yt vju j,vfyenm cfvjuj ct,z.
Burenkov he could deceive, but he could not deceive himself.

Often c’v does not agree with ct,z in case, and instead appears in the nomi-
native case, even though it is still positioned next to the re¬‚exive, c’v ct,z or
immediately in front of a preposition, c’v c cj,j ˜with himself™, c’v gj ct,t
˜by itself™, c’v pf ct,z ˜for himself™. When c’v remains in the nominative, it
contrasts the surprising fact that the event occurred at all with the possibility
that it might not have occurred. In [336], the surprise is that the change in the
individual has occurred at all, when one might expect no change.

[336] Pf jlye ytltk/ cfv yf ct,z cnfk ytgj[j;.
Over the course of a week he became unlike himself.

The difference, then, is that cfvjuj ct,z creates a contrast based on the individ-
´ ´
ual -- it is noteworthy that Self is affected, when other individuals are not. C’v
ct,z with nominative, creates a contrast based on the polarity of the event: it
is surprising the event occurred at all, when it might not have.

4.7.12 Retrospective on reflexives
Re¬‚exive pronouns are one of the devices that Russian (and many other lan-
guages) use to keep track of an individual. On most domains, choosing between
a re¬‚exive and non-re¬‚exive seems automatic, inasmuch as the distribution fol-
lows the principle of complementary reference: a re¬‚exive pronoun points to
the same individual that is the subject (or, rarely, with special predicates, some
other argument), while a non-re¬‚exive indicates an individual distinct from the
subject. But there are also contexts in which complementarity of reference is not
entirely strict. Complementarity breaks down when the domain containing the
pronoun site and antecedent is not cohesive, or when the antecedent is less than
a full-¬‚edged subject (passive agents, implicit subjects of in¬nitives). Moreover,
¬rst- or second-person antecedents do not obey the constraint of complemen-
tarity of reference with respect to possessive adjectives. In contexts in which
both re¬‚exive and non-re¬‚exive pronouns can refer to the same individual, a
non-re¬‚exive pronoun indicates that the entity is de¬ned independently. A re-
¬‚exive pronoun insists that the reference of that entity is to be de¬ned within
256 A Reference Grammar of Russian

Table 4.15 Retrospective on reflexive pronouns

level re¬‚exive non-re¬‚exive

essence entity de¬ned as essence by its entity de¬ned independently of the
relation to the antecedent given predication
cvjue j,yjdbnm cdjq htgthnefh ˜I can jcnfyjdbnmcz yf эnjv afrnt vjtq
renew [that which would be] my kbxyjq ;bpyb ˜pause on this matter
repertoire™ of my personal life™
individual the same individual as opposed to unique individual, no consideration
other possible individuals of other possible individuals
hfpdtcnb gmzys[ gj cdjbv celfv ghjdjlbd Ctht;e lj tuj rjvyfns
˜distribute the drunks back to their ˜accompanying Serezha to his room™
time-worlds the entity de¬ned relative to one the entity independent of time-worlds
z bcrfk cdjq htgthnefh ˜I sought out
gjkexbk gbcmvj jn jlyjuj bp
[what would be] my repertoire™ xbnfntktq vjtq rybub ˜I received a
letter from one of the readers of my
speaker from the perspective of one subject as from the perspective of the timeless
perspective opposed to other possible subjects and unique speaker
gj df;yjve lkz ct,z djghjce ˜with ytghbdsxyst lkz ytuj ckjdf
respect to an-important-for-him ˜unusual-for-him words™

the given predication, by its relation to the subject. Some of the (not exclusive)
senses of the opposition are presented in Table 4.15.

4.8 Quantifying pronouns and adjectives

4.8.1 Preliminaries: interrogatives as indefinite pronouns
Pronouns which now function as interrogative or relative pronouns in the con-
temporary language were historically inde¬nite: rnj ˜who, someone™, xnj ˜what,
´ ´
something™, ul† ˜where, somewhere™, etc. In their earlier inde¬nite meaning,
they combined with a variety of particles (or words or small phrases) to form
inde¬nite existential pronouns and negative pronouns.73 Possible combinations
are listed in Table 4.16.

73 Veyrenc 1964, 1976, Ryb’k 1965, Boguslawski and Karolak 1970, Ruˇiˇka 1973, Sheliakin 1978,
Ponomareff 1978, Kobozeva 1981, Fontaine 1983:188--231 (source of examples [350], [351], [352],
[364], [365], [367]), Paducheva 1984, 1985:219--21.
Arguments 257

Table 4.16 Combinatorics of pronouns and particles

-nj -yb,elm -kb,j
yb- y†- y†- rjt-
(negative) (inde¬nite)
√ √ √ √ √ √ √
√ √ √ √ √ √ √
√ √ √ √ √ √ √
√ √ √ √ √ √

√ √ √ √ √ √

√ √ √ √ √ √

√ √ √ √ √ √

√ √ √ √ √
† †
√ √ √ √ √
— —
√ √ √ √
— — †

— — —
† † †

= occurs normally
— = (hardly) occurs
† = infrequent, stylistically restricted (or archaic)

Most combinations are possible, although some, stylistically marked as archaic
or folksy, are less frequent than others.74 The pre¬xes yb(-), negative existential
y†(-), and rjt- are placed before primary prepositions: yb c xtv ˜with nothing™,
yt c rtv ˜there is no one with whom™, rjt c rtv ˜with someone or another™.
The pre¬x yt- forms two types of compounds, listed separately in Table 4.14:
an inde¬nite pronoun (for example, z ytrjulf ,sk nfv ˜I was there once™) or
a negative existential pronoun with the special syntax of the free (dative-with-
in¬nitive) construction (bv<dat> ntgthm ytrjulf ,sdfnm<inf> d jabct ˜these days
there is no time for them to be in the of¬ce™; tcnm<inf> ,eltn ytxtuj ˜there™ll
be nothing to eat™). To the set of inde¬nite pronouns in y† should be added
the adjectival y†rbq ˜a certain™ (rfr bp ghjuhfvvs ,tp jcj,s[ ecbkbq jnrhsnm
ytrbq URL bkb jnghfdbnm rjve-kb,j gj эktrnhjyyjq gjxnt gbcmvj ˜how to open a
certain URL or send an e-mail without special efforts™). The inde¬nites in y†(-) are
more lexicalized, in that the pre¬x does not precede a preposition: c y†crjkmrbvb
˜with several™, c y†rbv ˜with a certain™.
These pronouns, especially rnj and xnj can still be used as inde¬nites with-
´ ´,
out a particle in certain contexts, such as: distributive contexts (˜some ¬t one
description, others do not™):

74 Levin 1973, Pereltsvaig 2000, http://mt.nightmail.ru/russian/pronoun.htm (28.04.2002). Some com-
binations not mentioned in these sources can be found on the web.
258 A Reference Grammar of Russian

[337] Elbdbntkmye/ vs ghtlcnfdkzkb uhegge. Rnj d djtyyjq ajhvt, rnj d
bvghjdbpbhjdfyyjv hf,jxtv rjcn/vt, rnj d pfnhtgfyyjv infncrjv . . .
We made for a motley picture: here and there was someone in military garb,
another in an improvised worker™s uniform, somebody else in ragged civvies . . .

In conditions, which, like distributive contexts, contrast different types of indi-

[338] Tckb rnj ,jufn, nj ,jufn rfr Rhtp, tckb ,tlty, nj b wthrjdyfz vsim -- d
kexitv gjkj;tybb.
If someone is rich [in Brazil], then he™ll be as rich as Croesus, if he™s poor, a
church mouse is better off.

Or in concessive contexts, with the particle yb next to the verb and ,s next to
the pronoun:

[339] Rfrbt ,s vsckb yb djpybrfkb d ujkjdt xtkjdtrf, jyb vjuen djpybryenm kbim
yf ,fpt zpsrjdjuj vfnthbfkf.
No matter what thoughts come into a person™s mind, they can arise only using
linguistic material.

Each of the ¬ve sets of pronouns (leaving aside the negative existential and
inde¬nites in y†-) has its own zone of contexts in which it is likely to be used.
Together, the form and the context create a characteristic scenario. As in other
cases, it is dif¬cult to say how much is in the meaning of the individual word,
how much in the meaning of the context.

4.8.2 Negative pronouns in yb-
The negative yb(-) makes negative existential pronouns that deny that any entity
exists that could ¬t in the event. Yb(-) combines with most pronouns: ybrnj ´,
ybx†q, etc. (Ybrjnj´hsq is archaic.) Negative pronouns in yb(-) are used when
the argument is within the same syntactic and semantic domain as a negated
predicate. More than one such pronoun can occur in a given clause ([340]).

[340] Ybrfrbt vths ybrjulf b ybult yt vjukb gjvtifnm djpybryjdtyb/ cgtrekzwbb
d nhelyst dhtvtyf.
No measures at any time or place could interfere with the appearance of
speculation in dif¬cult times.

Negative pronouns in yb(-) usually appear only if the predicate is also negated,
though they can occur in elliptical fragments when there is no overtly negated
predicate ([341--43]):

[341] <skj dtctkj, pf,jn ybrfrb[, rjhvbkb dct[ ;blrjq gityyjq rfitq.
It was fun, no worries, everyone was fed with a thick wheat kasha.
Arguments 259

[342] Afynfcnbrf, enjgbz? Ybxtuj gjlj,yjuj.
Fantasy? Utopian dreams? Nothing of the sort.
[343] Xtv vs njulf pfybvfkbcm? Lf ybxtv.
And with what did we occupy ourselves? Well with nothing.

These negative pronouns are used with in¬nitives dependent on negated ¬nite
[344] Jy tot yt ecgtk ybxtuj gjlevfnm<inf> , htibnm<inf> .
He still had not had time to think over, to decide anything.
[345] J,zpe/cm ybrjulf, ybrjve, lf;t cfvsv ,kbprbv hjlysv ybxtuj yt
hfccrfpsdfnm<if> j lfyyjv cnhjbntkmcndt.
I agree never, to no one, even to my closest relatives, to tell anything about the
aforementioned construction project.

The force of negation, however, does not reach into ¬nite subordinate clauses
that depend on negated predicates, when instead the pronoun in -yb,elm is used:
Jy yt [jxtn, xnj,s z j,hfofkcz {— yb r rjve ∼ r rjve-yb,elm} ˜he doesn™t want
me to turn to anyone™.75
In complementary fashion, -yb,elm pronouns usually do not occur when the
predicate is negated: — J,zpe/cm ybrjve-yb,elm, xtuj-yb,elm yt hfccrfpsdfnm. Pro-
nouns in -yb,elm do occur, however, when the pronoun is protected from the
force of negation. Thus -yb,elm is possible in an in¬nitive that is not tightly
bound to the main predicate ([346]):
[346] D ujkjde tve yt ghb[jlbkj relf-yb,elm cghznfnmcz jn ytt.
It did not occur to him to hide anywhere from her.

(The -nj series is not so restricted: Rnj-nj yt ghbitk, rnj-nj jgjplfk ˜Someone
didn™t come, someone was late™. See below for -kb,j and negation.)
The negative pronouns are not required when the force of negation is atten-
uated, as it is with expressions such as xenm yt ˜almost not™, gjrf yt ˜until, for
so long as not™, ytkmpz crfpfnm, xnj,s yt . . .˜one couldn™t say that . . .™, or in
questions ([347]):76
[347] Gjckt e;byf dct [jlbkb cvbhyst, dt;kbdst b njkmrj ghbckeibdfkbcm, yt
hsxbn kb ult-yb,elm ¤<jhjlf≥ -- nfr tuj ghjpdfkb.
After supper they all moved meekly, just listening, whether “The Beard” (as they
called him) was not snarling about somewhere.

Under conditions of epistemological doubt or dread (with ,jznmcz, xnj(,s) yt
˜be afraid lest™ -- [6.20]), both series are conceivable, with a different interpreta-
tion: with -yb,elm the speaker fears there might be some dissatis¬ed readers;
with yb(-) the speaker fears that all readers will be dissatis¬ed.
75 Comrie 1980[b]:109.
76 Paducheva 1974[b]:148--50, 1985:218--19 (semantics), Brown 1999[a]:94--98, 1999[b] (distribution).
260 A Reference Grammar of Russian

[348] Z ,j/cm, xnj vjb hfccrfps {rjve-yb,elm = ybrjve} yt gjyhfdzncz.
I fear ∼ that {someone wouldn™t = no one would} like my stories.

Though a negative pronoun in yb(-) denies any referent, it does create a posi-
tion for an argument. Anaphoric and re¬‚exive pronouns can point to negative
existential arguments:

[349] Ybrnj<i> yt [jntk ghbyznm yf ct,z<i> jndtncndtyyjcnm pf nfrjt ytghbznyjt
No one wanted to take upon himself the responsibility for such an unpleasant

That is, there exists no such x (x a person) such that x would make the decision.

4.8.3 -Nj, -yb,elm
Pronominal compounds in -nj, -yb,elm (and also -kb,j, rjt-) are said to be indef-
inite, but above all they are existential: they invite one to entertain the thought
that there is an individual of some type that could ¬t in the event. The two se-
ries of pronouns, -nj and -yb,elm, differ in how they conceptualize the individual
and hence in the contexts in which they are naturally used.
Compounds in -nj establish the existence of an entity that has certain proper-
ties that make it different from other possible entities one might think of. The
-nj series is natural when the event is actual and known, as when the verb is
a past perfective ([350]) or an imperfective reporting an activity ongoing in the
present or past ([351]):

[350] Cj pdjyjv xnj-nj egfkj yf gjk.
With a noise something fell to the ¬‚oor.
[351] Nfv d rjhhbljht xnj-nj {ckexfkjcm<pst if> ∼ ckexftncz<prs if> }
In the corridor something {was going on ∼ is going on}.

Pronouns in -nj are used when the event is actual, and the entity and its prop-
erties are ¬xed.
In contrast, -yb,elm is used when the entity and its properties are in some way
indeterminate. More speci¬cally, -yb,elm is used in the following contexts.

Epistemological uncertainty: Operators such as djpvj ´;yj ˜possible™, dthjz´nyj
˜likely™, vj
´;tn ,ßnm ˜maybe™ indicate that it is not certain whether the event
occurred at all. Hence the existence of the entity is uncertain, its identity un-

[352] Vj;tn ,snm, ghjcnj jnvtxfkb rfrjt-yb,elm cj,snbt.
Perhaps they were just celebrating some special event.
Arguments 261

A question is suf¬cient to elicit -yb,elm, even with a past perfective ([353]):

[353] Yt pfdtkf kb ns nfv rfrjuj-yb,elm rfdfkthf?
You haven™t acquired some sort of beau there, have you?

-Yb,elm itself can signal that the event is hypothetical -- in [354], the bemused
speaker imagines a plausible scenario to explain why a young girl failed to
appear as expected:

[354] F-f-/ fathbcn / fathbcn rfrjq-yb,elm gjgfkcz / relf-yb,elm yt nelf edtp / gjt[fkb
yf djrpfk / ghjlfkb ,bktns / jy ltymub ct,t dpzk
A con man / con man turned up / led her off somewhere she™s not supposed to be
going / they went to the station / sold the tickets / he grabbed the money for

The particle -nj would be used if [354] were intended as a factual, not a hypo-
thetical, report.

Distributive (iterative) contexts: With -yb,elm in distributive contexts, a differ-
ent individual ¬ts on each occasion:

[355] Yэgvfys pf,bhfkbcm r rfrjq-yb,elm ye;lf/otqcz cnfheirt, lfdfkb pf
afvbkmyst htkbrdbb ybxnj;yst cevvs.
The NEPmen would go to some old woman in need and give miserable sums for
the family relics.

Potential contexts: Potential contexts include counterfactual ([356]), imperative
([357]), potential (future) conditional ([358]), and deontic ([359]) contexts:

[356] Tckb ,s xnj-yb,elm c lzltq Vbitq d ljhjut ckexbkjcm, ns yfv ybrjulf yfitq
ytjcnjhj;yjcnb yt ghjcnbk ,s.
If something had happened with Uncle Misha on the way, you would have never
forgiven us for our carelessness.
[357] Gjpjdb rjuj-yb,elm bp cnfhib[.
Call one of the senior people.
[358] Tckb xnj-yb,elm jrf;tncz d <hfpbkbb yt gj drece, jyb tuj djpmven j,hfnyj pf
If something in Brazil should turn out not to his liking, they™ll give him return
passage in exchange for labor.
[359] B nen jy dcgjvbyfk, xnj yflj ,skj ,s ghbdtpnb tq xnj-yb,elm, rfrjq-yb,elm
gecnzr: xekrb, rjat.
And then he remembered that he ought to bring her something, some sort of
tri¬‚e: stockings, coffee.
262 A Reference Grammar of Russian

All these are contexts in which the event is less than certain or less than real, and
the entities that are hypothesized to participate have a tentative, hypothetical
Idiomatically, -yb,elm is used when the speci¬c properties are not important --
jxthtlb rfrb[-yb,elm gjkxfcf ˜a line of a half an hour or so™ -- and by extension
to disparage something through indifference:

[360] Htlfrnjhs ujdjhbkb, xnj lkz xbnfntkz bynthtcty Ljcnjtdcrbq, f yt xmz-yb,elm
The editors said that for readers what was interesting was Dostoevsky, not
somebody or another™s great-grandmother.

The complementary distribution of -nj in realis contexts, -yb,elm in irrealis
contexts is not watertight. Less-than-real contexts allow -nj, for example, in ques-
tions when the speaker suspects the answer:

[361] F e nt,z xnj-nj tot yt ljltkfyj?
[I take it] you™ve got something to ¬nish off?

In a potential context, -nj emphasizes the eventual uniqueness of the entity:

[362] Yj hfccrfp j, tuj lfkmytqitq ;bpyb -- эnj yjdfz rybuf, gbcfnm rjnjhe/ ,eltn
e;t rnj-nj lheujq, yfi ghttvybr, bleobq pf yfvb cktljv.
But the tale of his subsequent life -- that™s another book, which will be written by
someone else, our successor who comes after us.

When that radiant future arrives, there will be a single unique individual, hence
In iterative contexts, both types of pronouns are used. In such contexts, -yb,elm
makes a condition: whenever some situation arises, whenever an individual of
a certain type exists, then something happens, as in [355] above. In iterative
contexts, -nj allows one to imagine a representative occasion and describe the
occasion and the individual which is unique relative to that occasion. In [363],
-nj depicts an individual and his activity. On each of the many occasions, each
a sequence of actions, one scene or person is presented:

[363] Эkkbc cbltk, vt;le yfc, gjhjq dcrfrbdfk, ghtlcnfdkzz xnj-nj, rjuj-nj, b cyjdf
djpdhfofkcz r yfv, yt ghtrhfofz hfccrfpf.
Ellis sat between us, he would occasionally hop up, portraying something or
someone, and again return to us without interrupting the story.

It is even possible to combine -nj and -yb,elm. A set of hypothetical occasions
can be established ¬rst by means of -yb,elm, and then -nj points to an entity
that is unique relative to one occasion from the set (in [364], a victim™s life):
Arguments 263

[364] B tve rfpfkfcm ytgjvthyjq hjcrjim/ vyjujvtczxyfz nhfnf dhtvtyb yf nj,
xnj,s evtymibnm chjr yfrfpfybz rfrjve-yb,elm vthpfdwe, rjnjhsq pfue,bk
xm/-nj ;bpym.
And it seemed to him an extreme luxury, this waste of months of time to shorten
the prison sentence of some scoundrel who had extinguished someone™s life.


. 9
( 17)