Indefinite pronouns are anyone, anything, anybody, anywhere, someone, something, somebody, somewhere, no one, nothing, nobody, nowhere.
They do not refer to any specific person, thing, place or amount. We normally use –one, -body, -thing, -where to refer to people, things or places in a general way:
- Anyone could steal your purse because you left it on the table in that cafe.
- Someone is knocking at the door.
- There is no one to help us so we’ll have to manage by ourselves.
- I am looking for somewhere I can park my car.
- Hi Tara. I’d like to talk to you about something.
- I haven’t eaten anything today so I’m starving.
- Those who don’t know a foreign language know nothing about their own.
Indefinite pronouns ending in -body and -one
Indefinite pronouns ending in –body and –one mean the same thing, though –one is used in a more formal context.
- I’m sure somebody (or someone) will tell us her phone number.
- I don’t see anyone (or anybody) coming.
Note: all indefinite pronouns are written as one word except no one.
- She broke her leg because no one told her the floor was slippery.
We use else after indefinite pronouns to refer to people or things in addition to the ones we already mentioned.
- If you can’t join us we’ll ask someone else.
- In case you need anything else, give me a call.
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