Accusative Case 101
Welcome to Accusative Case 101! This is an overview of this grammatical case and how it is use in Turkish. (For more information, please visit the Accusative case in the lesson tree.)
What the heck is the "Accusative case?"
Given that I have a background in Spanish and Latin, I have a general understanding of what the Accusative case is. The accusative is defined at the object who is directly affected by the verb.
An example of this is "The girl speaks to the poet", wherein "the girl" would be the subject, aka the doer, would be in the nominative case. The poet, being affected directly by the verb would in the accusative case. In latin, this sentence would be, "Puella poetam dicit." The grammar breakdown would be this: girl-nom. poet-acc. speak-3rd.sg
How does Turkish use the Accusative case?
In Turkish, unlike Latin whose all direct objects take the acc. case, turkish distinguishes 2 variants of the direct objects. They are as follows: a. General direct objects- Plural objects OR Objects with the indefinite article. (e.g. oranges & an orange) b. Specific direct objects- objects with the definitive article. (the orange).
To simplify, if you are generally talking about a thing, you use the general object, but if you are taking about a specific thing, you use the specific direct object. Simple huh?
That being said, the specific direct object is the only ones who express the accusative case. Follow the vowel harmony rule, and add a close front/back vowel (i, ı, ü, u) depending on the last vowel of the word.
I hope this helps. Turkish so far has been EXTREMELY logical and fun to learn so far.
Güle güle ve iyi şanslar! Tony Mintz.
Wouldn't "poet" be dative case? Where in e.g. "The girl speaks the truth to the poet", "truth" would be accusative?
No, "to speak" in English needs the accusative case, since the one being spoken to is directly (not indirectly) affected by the subject of the verb.
Thus, the translation of the sentences in Latin is going to be. Notice where the placement of the "-m" goes, which signifies which noun is in the accusative:
"Puella poetam dicit." girl-nom poet-dat speak-3.sg "The girl speaks to the poet"
"Puella veritatem poetā dicit". girl-nom truth-acc poet-dat speak-3.sg. "The girl speaks the truth to the poet".
In your sentence, the word "poet" would have to change into the dative case, since the girl's actions (id est: speaking) causes the object (id est: the truth). The dative case in Linguistics distinguishes whenever the noun is being indirectly affected by the subject.