Usage of Cases
In the previous Unit we learnt that the Pali nouns decline in eight cases.
- Nominative Case (Paṭhamā)
- Accusative Case (Dutiyā)
- Instrumental Case (Tatiyā)
- Dative Case (Catutthī)
- Ablative Case (Pañcamī)
- Genitive Case (Chaṭṭhī)
- Locative Case (Sattamī)
- Vocative Case (Ālapana)
Each of these cases is used for expressing one or more specific meanings. The following is an overview of usage of the cases :
- Nominative : subject of a sentence
- Accusative : object of a sentence or destination
- Instrumental : by, with, through someone / something
- Dative : beneficiary / recipient (indirect object)
- Ablative : separation, origin (place / cause)
- Genitive : relation / possession
- Locative : location or time
- Vocative : for addressing purpose
Now let us learn in detail the usage of each of these cases with the help of multiple examples and activities.
Please Note :
- We will be using ‘a’-ending masculine nouns throughout this Unit for studying various cases. Hence it is desirable to be fairly conversant with the declension table of the noun ‘Buddha’.
- We will be learning a few nouns and verbs at a time to make and translate Pali sentences. As we move along, you will also come across words learnt in the previous sections / Units. It might be useful to make a list of these words or use a Pali-English dictionary (physical or online) for translating Pali sentences.