Diacronia 7, April 27, 2018, art. A102 (p. 1–11)

On the history of the indefinite pronoun altcineva ‘someone else’. Grammatical observations

Adrian Chircu


Faculty of Letters, “Babeș–Bolyai” University, Str. Horea 31, 400202 Cluj-Napoca, Romania


Received December 19, 2017
Accepted January 17, 2018
Published April 27, 2018

Key words

diachronic grammar
dynamic syntax
indefinite pronouns


Within the present study, we aim to look at the way in which the indefinite pronoun altcineva ‘someone else’ has come to being in Romanian. Its linguistic bearings are mainly discussed from a diachronic perspective, that can help us understand the evolutionary stages of this compound pronoun, starting from a process of syntagmatization on the basis of the Latin model, and ending in a lexicalization on Romanian grounds. In order to perform an analysis on the basis of objectivity and actuality, we have prioritized the investigative leads in recent grammars of the Romanian language, be they diachronic (Frâncu, 2009, Stan, 2013; SOR) or synchronic (GALR; GBLR; RGR; GR).

For the accomplishment of this goal, we have made use of a representative sample of old writings (mainly from the 16th and 17th centuries), that illustrate the dynamics of the old language, as well as the mutations that occurred over time. Our research has led to interesting and novel à la fois results pertaining to the structural peculiarities, the semantic compatibility and the syntagmatic association or the syntactic implications of the pronoun in question.


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    Text:Chircu, A. (2018). On the history of the indefinite pronoun altcineva ‘someone else’. Grammatical observations, Diacronia 7 (April 27), A102 (1–11),
     author = {Adrian Chircu},
     title = {On the history of the indefinite pronoun altcineva ‘someone else’. Grammatical observations},
     journal = {Diacronia},
     ISSN = {2393-1140},
     year = {2018},
     month = {April},
     number = {7},
     eid = {A102},
     doi = {},
     pages = "(1–11)",
     url = {}


© 2018 The Authors. Publishing rights belong to the Journal. The article is freely accessible under the terms and conditions of the CC-BY Open Access licence.

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