case

In grammar, the case of a noun or pronoun indicates its function in a phrase or clause; such as the role of subject, DO, or of possessor.  (more).

English

In English, we refer to three cases,

  • nominative,
  • objective, and
  • possessive.

.

Greek:

In Greek, there are four main cases (BBG chp. 6 video & chp. 7 video);

  • nominative,
  • genitive,
  • dative,
  • accusative.

In Greek, you can tell what case a word is by its spelling.  Let’s use an English example.  Consider these sentences:

The man bit the dog.

The dog bit the man.

These are very different sentences in English with a very different meaning.  In the first sentence, “man” is the subject and is therefore in the nominative case.  “dog” is the object of the verb “bit” and is therefore in the accusative case.  We discern this by the order of the words in the sentence.  In the second sentence, this is completely reversed because the order of the words is reversed.  In Greek, however, the word’s spelling tells you its case, not the order of the words.  So it might look something like this (again, using an English example):

The manos bit the dogon.

The dogon bit the manos.

Now if we understand that words ending in -os are in the nominative case and words ending in -on are in the accusative case, then we can understand that both of these sentences mean exactly the same thing.  The word order no longer matters.  “manos” is going to be the subject regardless of where it is in the sentence, and dogon is going to be the object no matter where it sits.  This is how Greek works.

 

Hebrew:

Hebrew doesn’t use case although if you are really interested you can watch this.

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