The Indefinite Pronouns

The indefinite pronouns ceva - something, altceva - something else and orice - anything, whatever replace nouns designating things, states, actions, etc. They are all derivatives of the interrogative pronoun ce, constructed with the indefinte elements ori- and -va, and with the element of differentiation alt-

1. Ceva - Something

an object, situation, quality, or action that is not exactly known or stated:

  • E ceva ascuțit în pantoful meu. - There's something sharp in my shoe.
  • Ceva în dulap miroase ciudat.- Something in the cupboard smells weird.
  • Ne-am gândit că e ceva în neregulă pentru că nu am auzit de tine. - We thought there was something wrong because we hadn't heard from you.
  • E ceva în neregulă cu motorul - face zgomote ciudate.- There's something wrong with the engine - it's making strange noises.
  • S-a întâmplat ceva care să-l supere, dar nu știm ce este.- Something's happened to upset him but we don't know what it is.
  • Am auzit ceva îngrijorător la serviciu azi dimineață. - I heard something worrying at work this morning.

a thing for which you are grateful, especially because an unpleasant thing has also happened:

  • Ni s-au dat cinci sute de euro în compensație, ceea ce nu este mult, dar cel puțin este ceva. - We were given five hundred pounds in compensation which isn't much but at least it's something.

used after a number like 20, 30, etc. to refer to the age of a person who is between 20 and 29, 30 and 39 years old, etc., or to a person who is of this age:

  • Bănuiesc că are treizeci și ceva de ani.- I'd guess she's thirty-something.
  • Cele mai multe dintre aceste locuri sunt destinate persoanelor de douăzeci și ceva de ani. - Most of these places are aimed at twenty-somethings.

a thing which is not known or stated:

  • Eram nerăbdător să fac ceva.- I was anxious to do something.
  • Pot să-ți citesc ceva? - Can I read you something?
  • Eram sigur că i s-a întâmplat ceva. - I was sure something had happened to him.

used in questions and negatives to mean "something":

  • Pot să fac ceva pentru a ajuta? - Is there anything I can do to help?
  • Ai vrut să spui ceva sau asta este? - Was there anything else you wanted to say or is that it?
  • Aveţi ceva mai puţin costisitor? - Do you have anything less expensive?
  • Ai observat ceva ciudat la el? - Did you notice anything strange about him?

2. Altceva - Something else

unusual, especially extremely good or extremely bad:

  • Acest joc este cu adevărat altceva! - This game is really something else!

3. Orice - Anything

any event, act, object, or situation:

  • A spus că pot comanda orice din meniu.- He said I could order anything on the menu.
  • Ar putea avea orice (= orice vârstă) între 30 și 40 de ani. - She could be anything (= any age) between 30 and 40.