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This Proto-Slavic entry contains reconstructed terms and roots. As such, the term(s) in this entry are not directly attested, but are hypothesized to have existed based on comparative evidence.



From Proto-Balto-Slavic *is, from Proto-Indo-European *ís and Proto-Indo-European *yós. Cognate with Lithuanian jis (he).



  1. this


In the relative function, *jь was supplemented with *že; see *jь že.

Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Trubachyov, Oleg, editor (1981), “*jь (že), *ja (že), *je (že)”, in Этимологический словарь славянских языков [Etymological dictionary of Slavic languages] (in Russian), issue 8 (*xa – *jьvьlga), Moscow: Nauka, page 204



  1. he


Already in Old Church Slavonic, the nominative forms of this pronoun had mostly fallen out of use, and were supplanted by reflexes of *onъ (that over there) and *tъ (this, that). It's not certain whether this had already happened within Proto-Slavic but it is likely.

Following a preposition, a prothetic n- is attached to the pronoun in many Slavic languages, including Old Church Slavonic. This probably arose through resegmentation of prepositions that originally ended in -n; through the law of open syllables, it became preferable to consider the final consonant as part of the next syllable, so it was shifted onto the pronoun.


In most of the descendants, the pronoun only survives in the inflected forms, which have often become part of a suppletive paradigm, and are combined with a nominative form from an unrelated root (*onъ or *tъ). As such, the roots of the inflections derived from this pronoun have been shown, linking to the nominative masculine pronoun.

Further reading[edit]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Derksen, Rick (2008), “*jь(že)”, in Etymological Dictionary of the Slavic Inherited Lexicon (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 4), Leiden; Boston: Brill, →ISBN, →ISSN, page 208: “prn.”
  2. 2.0 2.1 Olander, Thomas (2001), “jь ja je”, in Common Slavic Accentological Word List, Copenhagen: Editiones Olander: “he: cf. Table X (SA 35f., 244; PR 138)”