Case marking on personal pronouns

The inflection of personal pronouns (PP) refers to refers to the phenomenon in which morphologically distinct forms of a personal pronoun are used to mark case. From a typological perspective, sentences featuring pronouns with a verbal predicate should be considered. [1] If the inflection of third-person pronouns differs from that of the rest, first-person pronouns should be considered. Morphonophological alternation alone does not mark case[2], and only variants of the pronominal stem should be examined.[3] If multiple strategies exist to mark case in the given language, the primary (structurally dominant) strategy should be considered.


NoPP: The language does not have personal pronouns.

NoCase: The language has personal pronouns, but does not have case inflection.

NoPPCase: Both personal pronouns and case inflection exist in the language, but personal pronouns are not inflected.

PPAff: Case is marked on personal pronouns using suffixes.

AffPP: Case is marked on personal pronouns using prefixes.

PPCaseTon: Case is marked on personal pronouns using tone.

PPCaseInflex: Case is marked on personal pronouns using phonemic differences in the noun stem (internal flexion).

CaseMix: Case is marked on personal pronouns using various strategies, with no dominant strategy.

Suppl: The pronominal paradigm for case includes suppletive forms.[4]


[1] In terms of this parameter, it is irrelevant whether case forms mark the arguments of the verb or other adverbial functions.

[2] If, for example, case is marked through the use of affixes, it is irrelevant whether the affix attaches to the base form of the pronoun or a variant. Morphological variation of the pronoun is only relevant when it functions to mark case.

[3] Suppletive forms in which person marking occurs through the use of an affix rather than a pronoun do not constitute pronominal inflection.

[4] For example, person-marking morphemes may attach to case affixes, while the use of explicit pronouns is either optional (as intensifiers) or not possible. This should be specified in the commentary, with reference to any relevant parameters. See for example Person marking on case affixes.