An antecedent in English syntax is generally described as the noun an anaphor refers to. (Carnie, 2006, p. 27)

However, antecedents may also be expressions that give meaning to another pronoun, word, phrase, sentence or clause while its own meaning is determined in the surrounding linguistic context.


Example in the Secwepemctsín Context Mary is the Antecedent of ‘her’ (Lai, 1998, p. 19)


Carnie, A. (2006). Syntax: A generative introduction. John Wiley & Sons.

Lai, I. S. (1998). The grammar and acquisition of Secwepemctsín independent pronouns. [Master’s thesis, The University of British Columbia].