Thursday, September 19, 2013

The eleven most useful cases

I have written hardly anything about the case endings. In theory, they are quite logical, but it all goes crazy when the word stems change. In this post, I try to keep is as simple as possible. Auto is a nice word as you already know it, it's easy to pronounce and it doesn't change no matter what ending or marker (such as the plural i) you add to it. This is the declination in singular.

nominative auto - a/the car


genitive auton - car's, of the car, with postpositions, in an object sentence when the action is completed.

  • Mikä teidän auton rekisterinumero on? - What's the register number of your car?
  • Kissa meni auton alle. - The cat went (to) under the car. 
  • Minä haluan auton. - I want a car. 

partitive autoa


  • Minulla on kaksi autoa. - I have two cars.
  • Minulla ei ole autoa. - I don't have a car.
  • En halua autoa. - I don't want a car. 

inessive autossa - in the car, inside of the car

  • Mä odotan sua autossa. - I'll wait for you in the car.
  • Meidän autossa on jotain vikaa. - There's something wrong in our car. 

elative autosta - from the car, about the car

  • Tule ulos autosta! - Get out of the car!
  • Mä en tykkää meidän autosta. - I don't like our car. 

illative autoon - into the car

  • Minä menen jo autoon. - I'll go into the car already.
  • Älä jätä koiraa autoon! - Don't leave the dog in (to) the car!

adessive autolla - by the car, close to the car, on top of the car (although not so common, as normally you'd say auton päällä instead. The following three external cases are used in the meaning of on top with 'normal' place names like pöytä, tuoli, lattia, sänky - table, chair, floor, bed), by car

  • Tavataan autolla puolen tunnin kuluttua. - Let's meet by the car in half an hour. 
  • Tulitko autolla? - Did you come by car?

ablative autolta - from by/close the car, from on top of the car, also used with the sense verbs

  • Mä en jaksa kävellä autolta kauppaan. - I don't have the energy to walk from the car to the store.
  • Tuo näyttää meidän autolta. - That looks like our car.

allative autolle - to the car (but not inside), to on top of the car

  • Mä menen jo autolle. - I'm going to the car already. (But not inside.)
  • Mä etsin ostajaa meidän vanhalle autolle. - I'm looking for a buyer for our old car. 

essive autona - in the state of being a car, also used with some verbs.

  • Teidän autona tämä olisi jo mennyt rikki. - If this car was yours, it would have broken already. 
  • Me pidämme tätä ihan hyvänä autona. - We consider this an ok car. 

translative autoksi - transition into a car, also used with some verbs.

  • Osaatko taitella tämän paperin autoksi? - Can you fold this paper into a car?
  • Mä luulin tuota meidän autoksi. - I thought that was our car. 

What about abessive autotta,  instructive autoin and comitatives autoineni, autoinesi, autoineen, autoinemme, autoinenne and autoineen? I'll skip those ones today. Feel free to write a comment using those forms. I've never ever in my life used them in a spoken sentence.

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5 comments:

  1. Terve!

    Your blog is amazing!

    I have seen some sentences in Finnish with the ending glued to the word with a colon (:). Unfortunately I don't remember the sentences. Could you explain this, please?

    Also, when adding endings to name of people, is there any rule for foreigners names? For example, "Sarah's cat is beautiful", "Sarahn kisa on kaunis"?

    Kiitos!
    :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kiitos! You've probably seen something like EU:ssa (Euroopan unionissa). The colon is used with abbreviations. With foreign names ending with a consonant, you just add an i between the name and the ending. It also depends on whether the name is pronounced with the consonant at the end or not. I would write Sarahin although the Sarah'n might be more correct since you don't hear the h at the end of the name. It just doesn't look right.:) Here's a handy link about the topic: http://www.kielitoimistonohjepankki.fi/ohje/479

      Delete
  2. Why do OIKEIN and VÄÄRIN take instructive case, not partitive?
    My e-mail: ka.carlos007@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. Kiitoksia paljon Hanna se oli niin useful mä kiitän��

    ReplyDelete
  4. Kiitoksia Hanna what a useful links u hava mä kiitän.

    ReplyDelete