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62

The World Atlas of Language Structures Online Chapter 49 lists 84 languages with at least 6 distinct cases (24 of them with at least 10 cases). A number of them are spoken in remote areas of Australia or South America where schooling is limited, if it happens at all. As far as I know, speakers of these languages have no problem using the case system in an ...


42

Though as some other posters have noted, some Russians may use dialect case forms, anyone who is out of diapers uses the full case system. Case is a core concept of the language. The very idea that using cases is a burden is alien to Russian. If you hear someone speaking Russian while ignoring case and gender, he isn't uneducated, he is a foreigner. He ...


41

The question has been well answered for specifics. I'd only want to add that a little thought would have answered it in general: most of language learning happens before a learner ever goes to school, so level of schooling cannot possibly be relevant. Furthermore, for most of human history, most people have been unschooled, unlettered, and illiterate, and in ...


27

Morphological complexity as such as is not related to the level of schooling. Some of the most morphologically complex languages are spoken by people without any education. So, all Russian and German speakers (including those with no formal schooling) use the morphological cases in their respective languages. So did speakers of Vulgar Latin which was really ...


25

All people use cases in Russian. Uneducated people may make some typical mistakes however, so use cases and other things wrongly, but the number of such possible characteristic mistakes is limited. For instance. Standard speech requires use of indeclinable possessive pronoun "их" "their". But uneducated people may decline it, adding the ending "ихний", "...


21

I live in Poland, and my first language is Polish, a slavic language somewhat related to Russian, with a quite complicated case system. From my experience, I can confirm what others have written: Every one who normally learned Polish in his or her childhood is able to use the case system with only occasional minor mistakes, usually involving one of several ...


20

People who natively speak a language that has grammatical cases do generally use them commonly and consistently. Like all language features, case systems do also evolve, and it's quite common for there to be variation in case use between different dialects of a language, or e.g. between literary and colloquial language, but (at least from a descriptive ...


18

Cases are properly used by pre-school children Any kid who can speak the language can use the cases properly. There may be edge cases where "the prescribed way to say this is X, don't use Y" - which refers to prescriptive vs descriptive language principles, and perhaps has some parallels to things like British 'acquired pronounciation'. The full case ...


15

There are multiple definitions of case, but the differences in conventional terminology between languages also just have a lot to do with different traditions for teaching grammar. Morphological case The original concept of "case" dates back to Greek and Latin traditional grammar. In this context, it's strongly connected to the concept of a noun's (...


14

You've basically got it. The terms "subjective genitive" and "objective genitive" come from the classical grammatical tradition (as opposed to modern linguistics), and are mostly used when analyzing texts in Latin and Greek. Traditionally, they're used only when a noun or adjective is derived from a verb (amor "love" < amā- "to love"), and modified by ...


13

I don't understand either grammatically or morally, how is "brother" an instrument with which the subject goes on a walk. You are right, brother is not an instrument here. "I go with my brother" — this type of relation is called comitative semantic relation. Morphologically, it behaves like Instrumental case, but functionally it serves a ...


12

Yes. One well-known example of a case emerging as we write is the Russian neo-vocative: In modern colloquial Russian given names and a small family of terms often take a special "shortened" form that some linguists consider a reemerging vocative case.[4] This form is applied only to given names and nouns that end in -a and -я, which are ...


12

That Akkadian word-final -u is the Nominative case ending, the other case endings being -a for Accusative and -i for Genitive. Thus, the case forms of the noun bētu 'house' are: Nom.: bētu Acc.: bēta Gen.: bēti Exactly the same case endings are still present in Literary Arabic (Modern Standard Arabic), although in most spoken Arabic dialects they are ...


11

The traditional Latin names are formed from the supine stems of verbs—basically, a way of turning a verb into a noun, and then into an adjective. Nōminātivus, for example, comes from nōmināre "to name"—it's "the case for naming". When other case names were needed for other languages, they tended to also be formed from Latin verbs. So here are the meanings ...


11

In the dictionaries, the Sanskrit name राम (Rāma), together with most other Sanskrit words, is given in the form of the stem. राम (Rāma) is the stem, and in a sentence it can be used only as a direct address (like in “Rāma, come here!”) since the Vocative case of this noun coincides with its stem. This stem, since it ends in -a, belongs to the so-called a-...


10

I can recommend this book: Słownik odmiany rzeczowników polskich by Stanisław Mędrak. The good news is that it's exactly what you want: a dictionary that lists all the noun declension paradigms. The bad news is that there are over 500 such paradigms. Crazy, I know. But of course they have a lot in common, and they are grouped into six main classes: class ...


10

A great number of loanwords from Ancient Greek have been integrated into Czech with great attention to the original forms. For instance, many Ancient Greek nouns from the third (athematic) declension preserve their stem consonants when declined in Czech. Consider the proper name Paris (the Greek mythological prince). In the table given on the linked page, ...


10

Semantically (in terms of meaning)? There's no real difference. Some languages might use an adposition for a certain meaning, while other languages use noun case. The underlying meaning can be exactly the same. Syntactically, though—in terms of putting words together into sentences—there's one major difference. The case is part of a noun, and can't be ...


9

The preposition z meaning 'with' takes the instrumental case, is all. E.g. Mieszkam w domu z ogrodem You say The instrumental case is used to indicate the instrument/object with which an action or state of being is performed. ...which is true, but that's not the only use of the instrumental. Of tools, instruments, and modes of travel After the ...


8

They are not nominative. Both of them are neuter nouns, which means that nominative and accusative look the same. In fact, they are in accusative case and you might want to call it "accusative of direction" or "goal of movement". Same holds true for amṛtam.


8

I would not say that these pronouns lack an objective case. It is just that the subject (nominative) and object (accusative) forms are identical. In Old English, as in virtually all Indo-European languages, neuter nouns and pronouns always have the same form in the nominative and accusative, in the case of Old English "hit" for the 3rd person ...


7

Sign languages generally do not have rich case systems because they tend to be much more head-marking than, say, English. By this I mean that a translation of your Latin sentences into a hypothetical sign language might be something like BOY FARMER KILL-he-him where he and him are verbal inflections that make it clear who killed whom. If we consider word ...


7

If there was a language where the case endings were just -a, -e, -i, -o, and -u, would speakers find these too similar to each other? Consider modern Russian, which has six cases: nominative, genitive, dative, accusative, instrumental, and prepositional. In the first declension these are indicated for the most part by single vowels. kniga = a book ...


7

Portuguese doesn't have a case system. Neither has Spanish, or French, Catalan, or Italian. A case system means that nouns (and possibly adjectives) take different forms for different grammatical functions. For instance, Latin has cases. The noun homo (man) has different forms whether it is a subject, object, vocative, etc. For instance: Homo homini ...


7

Language families classify languages according to their history. Italian, French, Spanish and so on are Romance languages because there was a gradual evolution from Latin to these languages. Evolution means change: some features of the resulting language differ from the original language. Usually languages in the same family share a lot of vocabulary, but ...


7

It is natural for a language that has the Dative case to use this case after verbs that have their action addressed for / to[wards] somebody or something, like “to help” and “to give”. In Russian, the corresponding verbs помочь and дать are also dative-governing, although the verbs themselves are definitely not etymological cognates of the German “helfen” (...


7

Yes, you do understand correctly what those sentences mean. In the Slavic languages in general and in Polish in particular, the direct object of a verb is in the Accusative case when the verb is affirmative, but if the verb is negated, the direct object is in the Genitive case (see #3 here). It is one of the most basic rules of Polish syntax and case usage....


6

German (it seems quite analytic so not too dependent on case for expressing meaning? This is true only to a certain extent: it is quite frequently possible to choose between alternative constructions which use different cases and/or prepositions also, articles can be used to mark the case. So you can often avoid a case you don't like (like in English: use ...


6

This is a fundamental question in morphology that has consequences going far beyond the simple distinction between case endings and postpositions (which, by itself, is effectively quite thorny in many languages). I would say that it pertains to the problem of defining such notions as grammatical category, paradigm and fusional/flective typology in general. ...


6

“Is there a logical canonical order of (nominal) cases across (Indo-)European languages?” I would say that the answer to this part of your question is “no”. The Nom Gen Dat Acc Voc order is traditional in Greek and Latin grammar since antiquity and it is imitated in modern languages like German and Russian. It is traditional, if you like “canonical”, but not ...


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