proform

pro-form

[proh-fawrm]
noun Grammar.
a word used to replace or substitute for a word, phrase, or clause belonging to a given grammatical class, as a pronoun used to replace a noun or noun phrase, there used to replace an adverb or adverbial phrase of place, as in I parked the car near the entrance and left it there, or so used to substitute for a clause, as in Have they come? I think so.

Origin:
1960–65

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
pro-form
 
n
a word having grammatical function but assuming the meaning of an antecedent word or phrase for which it substitutes: the word ``does'' is a pro-form for ``understands Greek'' in ``I can't understand Greek but he does''

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