Pronominal adverbs are adverbs that have the same meaning as a preposition and a pronoun, and in which the pronoun is turned into a location adverb and put before the preposition. For example:
- in this - herein
- of that - thereof
- by which - whereby
Notably, the set of adverbs that have where in them can be used as interrogative adverbs or relative adverbs, e.g., wherein lies the problem?, the town wherefrom he came.
Everyday speech uncommonly uses pronominal adverbs, whereas older literature and legal writing often use them. In contrast, they are far commoner in Dutch and German.
|in + above||hereinabove||thereinabove||whereinabove|
|in + after||hereinafter||thereinafter||whereinafter|
|in + before||hereinbefore||thereinbefore||whereinbefore|
|in + below||hereinbelow||thereinbelow||whereinbelow|
- Though it looks like one, whereas is not a pronominal adverb; the as is used here in its older conjunctive use of introducing a relative clause. The same use is found in the archaic word whenas.
- The about words now use the s variant (which stems from the adverbial genitive) and refer only to location, e.g., shops in London and thereabouts, the thief's whereabouts (treated as plural).
- The adverbs formed from for have two variants that now differ in meaning and stress: therefor means for this and is stressed on the second syllable, but therefore means for this reason and is stressed on the first syllable.
- The inafter/inabove and inbefore/inbelow words are now used in reference to documents, e.g., grievous body harm (hereinafter GBH), all terms listed hereinbefore shall be ignored.
- The before words are now replaced with the tofore words, which are formed from an obsolete variant of before. They are used only with reference to time, e.g., everything that has happened heretofore.
- The unto and withal words are archaic variants of the to and with words, though wherewithal is still used as a noun meaning means, resources.