Definitions starting with T

ID #5000

them (3)

/dem/ pluralizer 1. [Pan-Creole; cf. –dem, an dem DJE; cf. marking plural with pronoun meaning ‘they’ after the noun in Pap. Homber nan, Haitian nom yo (Alleyne 12), both ‘men’ (lit. man they); Port. Guiné Cr. ne idem (Valkhoff 1966:95); Dutch Cr. sende idem (Loftman 1953:27); cf. Yoruba “áwǭn ‘they’ is placed in front of the noun, e.g. áwǭn ǭkùnrin ‘the men’” (Rowlands 1969a:40)]

After animate nouns, indicating plural: 1918 Some of the rat them would not come inside (Parsons 88).

2. [Pan-Creole; cf. Jam. Miere dem, Haitian Mari yo (Alleyne 13); cf. Yoruba “When áwon [‘they’] is placed in front of a proper name, it denotes the group to which the person concerned is thought of…as belonging” (Rowlands 1969a:196); cf. also Kikongo-Kituba ba ‘plural’ used similarly before personal names (Mufwene p.c.); cf. similar use of and-them in SA, US dial. (rare in Brit.)]

After a person’s name, indicating family, friends, or associates: 1966 B’Booky them having hard times (Crowley 61).

Tags: plural, pluralizer

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Last update: 2011-08-29 05:38
Author: Holm and Shilling, DBE, 1982
Revision: 1.1

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