The Argument: The definition of Parts of Speech in Latin/in general A Short Introduction: In linguistics we use different terms for different kinds of a description of a language. The different descriptions are different levels of abstraction = different perspectives of describing a language. For each of these different levels we use different terms and the terms from one category/level should not describe elements from the other level (or category) and vice-versa in order for the definitions to have some inner consistency. ____________ The most salient levels of abstraction in linguistics are (from the simplest to the most complex): phonology morphology syntax semantics (There are many more levels than that, some are mid-steps in between the mentioned ones (e.g. morphosyntax, nano-syntax), some are not as easily put into this order (like lexicology)... and many others I haven't mentioned (pragmatics... etc.) ) Here I will focus solely on syntax and semantics (and I touch superficially on morphology too) as to talk about Parts of Speech. __________________ The terms used in Syntax (+ a short definition): subject object attribute (And other terms I won't be naming (adverbial, predicate, complement, clause, phrase, sentence element, direct, indirect, syntactic role ...etc.), these are the most salient ones) subject - a phrase in the clause (a unit consisting of one or more words) that connects on the equal level only with the predicate which makes a statement about this unit. The nominative case[morphology] usually correlates with the subject[syntax]. object -a phrase/a unit in the clause which connects itself to the head of the predicate (usually the verb) and complements the meaning of the predicate. The accusative[morphology] usually correlates with the object[syntax] if the object is direct. attribute - a phrase (more often one-worded) which is a part of a noun phrase[tree/phrasal syntax] which itself is either a subject, object or complement. The genitive case[morphology] and several parts of speech often correlate with the attribute, very rarely in Latin a prepositional phrase[tree/phrasal syntax] too. __________________ The terms used in Morphology: declension conjugation mood morpheme morph case case-ending gender number finite non-finite (etc.) __________________ The terms used in Semantics: agent patient semantic roles *nouns, adjectives, pronouns, verbs, adverbs, prepositions, particles, interjections, (participles**), (determiners***) (etc.) *I will say why **According to some Roman grammarians, but the modern grammarians use term rather morphologically - as a kind of verbal mood (i.e. finite moods: indicative, imperative, subjunctive, [optative]; non-finite moods: infinitive, participle) ***Used sometimes as a part of speech[semantics] by modern English grammarians for their own special group of words in their NPs (noun phrases), but it has some implications for syntax too so it's a hybrid (semanticosyntactic) term and perhaps unfit/inept for Latin while apt/fit for English, I will explain later why. ____________________________________ Sorting the PARTS OF SPEECH as linguistic terms to one of the mentioned linguistic categories: The best definition for the terms from the "Parts of Speech" group (i.e. in Latin "noun, adjective, pronoun, verb, adverb, preposition, particle, interjection,") is such where the terms don't copy the already existing terms (their definitions) from some of the other categories. For example, if we somehow said that a noun is a subject, then we don't need the term subject anymore or vice-versa, we don't need the term "noun" anymore; if we said that a noun is a subject or object, we don't need the term "sentence element" anymore, the same applies for attribute (e.g. noun in the genitive case), complement and so on and so on. The same as when we were able to introduce the semantic roles such as agent and patient and make them useful by being distinct/independent on their occasional(!) syntactic counterparts such as subject and object, the definition of any individual part of speech should be independent on which syntactic role the part of speech takes in a clause, it should be distinct. -------------------------------------- A noun can be [syntax] an attribute(= a "describer" if in the genitive case; That is the head of an attribute phrase, a tail to the noun phrase), a noun can be a subject (+respective phrases), it can be a subject, object, complement. But a noun will consistently be as defined by semantics "a word that refers to a person, place, thing, event, substance, quality, quantity...". An adjective can be [syntax] an attribute (a "describer") (+the respective phrases), sometimes it's the complement(predicate), it can sometimes even stand for the whole subject and object (subject & object phrases), yet even in such cases no confusion arises, since we distinguish syntactic roles from the semantic description. We don't mind that an adjective (unless it lexically started to be as a full noun ) stands for a subject, since it's a mere semantic definition and the syntax of the clause stands unshaken. The definition of an adjective will consistently always be (no matter its current syntactic role): "a word that refers to a property or relation of nouns" A pronoun can take various syntactic roles[syntax]. It can be a subject (+respective phrases...), object, complement or attribute ("a describer"). No matter which syntactic role it takes in a sentence, whether it connects directly to the predicate[syntax] as subject, whether it directly complements a verb[semantics] as object[syntax], whether it describes[syntax] either subject or object or complement, the term is still useful, since it has always one consistent and unshaken definition which could be simplified as: "a word where the meaning of the pronoun is dependent on an antecedent [or an implicit lack thereof]" A numeral according to some of its multiple kinds can similarly to pronoun take various syntactic roles (subject, object, complement, attribute), but no matter which syntactic role it takes in the sentence, the term "numeral" is still useful since it has its consistent and never changing definition: "a word characterized by the designation of numbers" Conclusion: Based on this the argument of the usefulness of terms, the only case where they have a consistent definition which hasn't been used by any other linguistic category for any other term (& therefore are useful as standalone linguistic terms, be distinct) is when the parts of speech are put into semantics. The semantic definition complements nicely with the syntactic role of the same word and the definitions don't overlap or "fight themselves" or "aren't conflated" in any way. If the parts of speech are put to any other category but semantics (albeit temporarily), we introduce strange terms into e.g. syntax, such as "person, place, property, antecedent" and so forth which have no place in syntax, or in such case we just involuntarily copy the definitions such as those of subject or object just to rename them "nouns" or "adjectives", which is inelegant from the said reasons. (I will speak further about the determiner). ____________________ Categorization of Pronouns: Personal pronouns (prōnōmina persōnālia) Possessive pronouns (prōnōmina possesīva) Demonstrative pronouns (prōnōmina dēmōnstrātīva) Interrogative pronouns (prōnōmina interrogātīva) Relative pronouns (prōnōmina relātīva) Negative pronouns (prōnōmina negātīva) Indefinite pronouns (prōnōmina indefīnītīva) (+ sometimes other special categories)* *e.g. redditiva, redistributitiva.. etc. ------------------- Personal pronouns (prōnōmina persōnālia): (such as here) ego, tū, nōs, vōs (*ea, is, id/ille, illa, illud) + the respective cases of each. Syntactically the personal pronouns usually take the role of a subject ([Ego] currō.), object (Mē vidēs.), complement (Ego sum, quem vidēs.) or attribute in the genitive case[morphology] (Parva pars meī vītābit Libitīnam). *They often semantically stand for the personal pronouns, in case they are needed at all, but they are semantically rather demonstrative in Latin. ------------------- Possessive pronouns (prōnōmina possessīva): (such as here or also here...) meus, tuus, noster, vester, suus + respective cases. Syntactically the possessive pronouns take the role of an attribute ("a describer") (Canis meus mortuus est.), less frequently even the syntactic role of a subject (Nostrī vīcērunt.) and object (Nostrōs occidērunt). ------------------- Demonstrative pronouns (prōnōmina dēmōnstrātīva): (such as here or here[scroll up a bit too]) hic, haec, hoc | is, ea, id | ille, illa, illud | iste, ista, istud | tālis, tāle | īdem, eadem, idem | ipse, ipsa, ipsum | sōlus, sola, sōlum | *ūnus, ūna, ūnum + their cases Syntactically the demonstrative pronouns can take almost any role: subject (Ille, quem digitō ostendō, vēnit.), object (Illum, nōn hunc, videō.), attribute (Ille canis mortuus est.), complement (Ille est, quī vēnit.). *This is a demonstrative pronoun only in the sense "sōlus". ------------------- Interrogative pronouns (prōnōmina interrogātīva): (such as here or here) quis, quid, | *quī, quae, quod | *quālis, quāle | quantus, quanta, quantum** | uter, utra, utrum...etc. + their cases Syntactically the interrogative pronouns can take the role either of subject (Quis vēnit? Quid factum est?), object (Quid vīs? Quem vīs - quid nōmen eī est? ) or attribute (Quem discipulum maximē amās, magister?) *These are interrogative pronouns only when in a direct or indirect question. For relative clauses, see relative pronouns. **If not the "quantum" adverb. ------------------- Relative pronouns (prōnōmina relātīva): (such as here or here) *qui, quae, quod | quīcumque ... etc. + respective cases Syntactically the relative pronouns can mainly take either the role of the subject (Equus, quī currit, fessus fit.) or the object (Equus, quem videō, pulcher est.), attribute (Equus, cujus color albus est mihi placet), indirect object (Equus, cui dentēs nōn sunt, mihi nōn placet.) *These are relative pronouns, unless it's the introducing word of a direct or indirect question. ------------------- Negative pronouns (prōnōmina negātīva): (such as here or here) nēmō | nūllus, nūlla, nūllum | neuter, neutra, neutrum ... + their respective cases. Syntactically the negative pronouns can take the role of a subject (Nēmō vēnit.), object (Nūllum videō.), complement ([Ille] nēmō est), attribute (Nūllum canem videō.) ------------------- Indefinite pronouns (prōnōmina indefīnītīva): (such as here or here) aliquis, aliquid | aliquī, aliquae, aliquod | ūllus, ūlla, ūllum | tōtus, tōta, tōtum | quīdam, quaedam, quoddam | quiddam | alius, alia, aliud | *ūnus, ūna ūnum... + their respective cases Syntactically the indefinite pronouns take various syntactic roles like subject (Aliquis vēnit.), object (Aliquem videō.), attribute (hunc sī ūllus deus amāret... / ibi ūna mulier aderit lepida) *This one is indefinite only in the same "someone" ___________________ I'm not adding a treatise on numerals at this moment, since this one is long enough. ___________________ Determiner: A determiner is usually a term used in a syntactic relation: a phrase which is a necessary part of a noun phrase. This is how English treats this. Whenever the English NP happens to have no determiner, we say the determiner is zero. Therefore we treat determiner as an ever-present part of the noun phrase. (in the same time the term, unfortunately, happens to be used also in parts of speech in English, therefore in semantics, creating a hybrid). Should we import these syntactic features to Latin, we must say that Latin just like Czech and most Slavic languages (with two exceptions) has no determiner, since the Latin NP has no determiner in the same way. I would also try to stay away from a general/international/non-controversial look at the Latin grammar that must introduce a new term that has never been part of the grammatical tradition begun with Latin in the West (albeit having its root in Greek), but that's just my subjective argument. __________________________________ __________________________________ Discussion: I'm not sure Pacifica, this post is well-researched and sourced enough for your standards at Grammar Tips, but in any rate, I spent a few hours on making it, formatting it, I also included links to various sources (none of them Czech, even though that would have been easy). One doesn't need to agree with that argument as I laid it down, but it is valid/innerly consistent in respect to linguistics (+ supported by the grammatical tradition quite alive still in number of culturally western countries) and mainly, it's not "my" fiction, I paraphrase in the argument what is taken as a pretty wide consensus and has been for centuries amongst plenty of grammarians. But whatever. Ser I added my bit on the determiner. AoM I'm willing to use for simplification (and I do believe that OLD simplifies and in a way A&G too with its loose use of terms such as "syntax" and in a way even "adjective") the words as "adjectival" or "substantival" to mean "syntactically behaving like subject or object" for substantival and "syntactically behaving like some attribute" for adjectival, that's why I was willing -with the highest reluctance- to grant terms as "adjectival pronoun" e.g. And I would grant terms such as "syntactic noun" or "syntactic adjective" for different uses of e.g. ille, but that already induces, in my view, too much of a terminological confusion and a category conflation, so, even though I might have used the terms in the past in different threads, considering it a lesser evil, I think I will try to abstain from that too. I stand behind what I wrote in the "argument" part of this post, since that makes sense to me. Other people interested in this discussion (since I don't want to hijack the grammar thread anymore, since I do think it should be for the beginners who might be now dissuaded to post there anymore - I hope not) were Hemo Rusticus, Dantius, indirectly also Lysandra who might be interested in the post (in "not just mine" take on parts of speech, especially pronouns).