A comprehensive account of the adnominal demonstrative expressions of contemporary Japanese has not been developed in the literature. In this article, we will address the six groups of adnominal demonstrative expressions, and reveal their functional differences through quantitative and qualitative analyses. The expressions of the kono-group refer to an entity or a single category ("unique reference") and do not have the illustrative function of implicitly referring to other entities as an example of referents. Our analyses indicate that the expressions in the non-kono-groups are commonly characterized in that they exhibit illustrative reference but that they differ in terms of the manner of illustrative reference, the strength of illustrative reference, etc. The function of illustrative reference is especially tied to the konoyouna-group, the koushita-group, and the kouitta-group. The expressions in these groups do not have the function of unique reference. The expressions in the konoyouna-group illustratively refer to approximate referents. On the other, the expressions in the kouitta-group are associated with representative illustrations. The konna-group and the kouiu-group display both the function of illustrative reference and that of unique reference. The expressions in the konna-group tend to refer to unique entities when inherent and specific objects are referred to. Further, in the case of the cataphoric use, they may refer to unique entities when the content of referents (linguistic information) is presented sufficiently and non-excessively. Unique reference in the case of the cataphoric use is also observed in the expressions in the kouiu-group.