Hello and welcome to our three-part series on case endings.
So, what exactly are case endings when we talk about Arabic grammar?
Well, in Arabic, case endings are short vowel marks (or الحَرَكات /alHarakaat/in Arabic) that are placed above and below the last letter of a word. These let the reader know what the grammatical function of the word is. In other words, they help the reader determine if the word is a subject, object, object or the verb of a sentence.
Each case marker corresponds to one of the different grammatical cases. These cases are:
Today, we will begin with the nominative case.
The Nominative Case
In Arabic, the nominative case is used to indicate the subject of a verbal sentence and the actions of the subject and the predicate.
To mark nominative case a ضَمَّة/dhammah/ (ُ ) is placed above the last letter of the word to mark it as a singular nominative. For example:
What’s more, the subject of a verbal sentence is in the nominative, as seen below:
ذَهَبَ الوَلَدُ إِلى المَدْرَسَةِ
/THahaba ilwaladu ’ilaa ilmadrasati/
The boy went to school.
Finally, it’s important to note that the indicate and the predicate of a sentence are both in the nominative case, as in:
the tall boy
(Notice that both the indicate and the predicate have a dammah above the last letters.)
Here are a couple more examples:
The new student (f.)
The sky is clear.
This concludes today’s lesson on the nominative case in Arabic grammar. Please join us next time as we dive a little deeper into the accusative case.
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