Feature GB185: Can an adnominal demonstrative agree with the noun in number?



This question concerns adnominal demonstratives (not pronominal demonstratives) and whether they can agree in number with the head noun. Number marking on demonstratives counts as agreement even if the head noun is not overtly marked for number.


  1. Code 1 if there is a marker that is used with demonstratives that varies according to the number of the head noun or if demonstratives have a different form according to the number of the head noun.
  2. Code 0 if the author states that there is no number agreement on adnominal demonstratives, or if there is no evidence for agreement in the data.
  3. Code ? if there appears to be agreement, but it is unclear whether it is agreement for number.


Haitian (ISO 639-3: hat, Glottolog: hait1244)

Coded 1. "In Creole, the demonstrative determiner makes the noun more specific. It has the forms: sa-a for the singular, sa-yo for the plural." (Valdman 1988: 27)

a. Li achte  chemiz-sa-a
he bought shirt-DEM-SG
‘He bought this/that shirt.’ (Valdman 1988: 27)

b. Kote   timoun-sa-yo?
where  children-DEM-PL
‘Where are these/those children?’ (Valdman 1988: 27)

Hulaulá (ISO 639-3: huy, Glottolog: hula1244)

Coded 0. Attributive demonstratives do not inflect for number. Demonstratives only inflect for number if they are used as pronouns (Khan 2009: 60).

Further reading

Corbett, Greville G. 2000. Number. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Khan, Geoffrey. 2009. The Jewish Neo-Aramaic dialect of Sanandaj. Piscataway: Gorgias.

Valdman, Albert. 1988. Ann Pale Kreyol: An introductory course in Haitian Creole. Bloomington: Indian University.

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Customize map markers:
0 absent
1 present
? Not known



Name Glottocode Family Macroarea Contributor Value Source Comment