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:



the book

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:

الوَلَدُ الطَّويلُ

/alwaladu iTTaweelu/

the tall boy

(Notice that both the indicate and the predicate have a dammah above the last letters.)

Here are a couple more examples:

الطَّالِبَةُ الجَّديدَةُ

/aTTaalibatu ijjadeedatu/

The new student (f.)

السَّماءُ صافِيَةٌ

/assamaa’u Saafiyatun/

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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