Duolingo is the most popular way to learn languages in the world. Best of all, it's 100% free!


What is Nominative-Accusative and Dative-Genitive?

I come across these words often in the Romanian lessons, but have no idea what they mean. Google wasn't much help, and everybody I've asked seem to have no idea too.

6 months ago

This discussion is locked.

  • 23
  • 23
  • 16
  • 16
  • 15
  • 13
  • 12
  • 9
  • 8
  • 4
  • 4
  • 3
  • 256

In Romanian, as in a large number of European languages, nouns and pronouns change form depending on their role (called 'case') in the sentence. In Romanian, there are four of those cases:

-The nominative case defines the subject of the sentence. For instance, in the sentence "Tu mănânci un măr" (you eat an apple), tu is the subject and therefore in the nominative case.

-The accusative case defines the direct object of the sentence or the object of a preposition. For instance, in "tu mănânci un măr", "un măr" is the object being eaten and therefore in the accusative case.

-The genitive case defines the possessor of a noun. For instance, in "mărul băiatului" (the boy's apple, or more litteraly 'the apple of the boy'), "băiatului" is the possessor of the apple and therefore in the genitive case.

-Finally, the dative case shows the indirect object the action of the sentence is directed to: For instance, in "Eu îți dau un măr" (I give you an apple), "îți" is the receiver of the apple and therefore in the dative case.

There is also a fifth case, the vocative case which is used when calling someone, but it is rarely used and I don't think it's taught on Duolingo.

For the vast majority of nouns and pronouns, the same forms are used for nominative and accusative, and for gentive and dative, which is why these 4 cases are often reffered to as the 2 cases "nominative-accusative" and "genitive-dative"

36 months ago


Best explanation I've heard. Thank you so much. :3

6 months ago