Today we will finish talking about cases. The two that we have left is Locative (miejscownik) and Vocative (wołacz).
Locative Case (o czym? o kim?)
Locative indicates a location and is required after the prepositions w in, na (on, at), o (about), po (after), przy (near, during, while)
Ona jest teraz w szkole Now she is at school -Loc.
Po kolacji idziemy do kina After dinner-Loc. we are going to the movie.
Muszę kupić znaczki na poczcie I have to buy stamps at the post-office-Loc.
Biblioteka stoi przy ulicy Wars The library is next to Wars Street-Loc.
There are several different locative endings in Polish:
- -ie used for singular nouns of all genders, e.g. niebo → niebie.
- brat → bracie
- rzeka → rzece
- noga → nodze
- -u used for:
- Some masculine singular nouns, e.g. syn → synu, dom → domu, bok → boku, brzuch → brzuchu, worek → worku*, nastrój → nastroju*, deszcz → deszczu, miś → misiu, koń → koniu, Poznań → Poznaniu, Wrocław → Wrocławiu, Bytom → Bytomiu** [* In a few cases, a vowel change may occur, e.g. ó → o, or a vowel may be dropped. ** Final consonants in Wrocław and Bytom used to be soft, which is still reflected in suffixed forms, hence -i-.]
- All neuter singular nouns ending in -e, e.g. miejsce → miejscu, życie → życiu
- Some neuter singular nouns ending in -o, e.g. mleko → mleku, łóżko → łóżku, ucho → uchu
- -i used for:
- Feminine nouns ending in -ia, e.g. Kasia (“Katie”) → o Kasi (“about Katie”), Austria → w Austrii (“in Austria”)
- Feminine nouns ending in -ść, e.g. miłość (“love”) → o miłości (“about love”)
- -ach used for plural nouns of all genders, e.g. kobiety (“women”) → o kobietach (“about women”)
- -ich / -ych Used for plural adjectives of all genders, e.g. małe sklepy (“small shops”) → w małych sklepach (“in small shops”)
- -im / -ym Used for masculine and neuter singular adjectives, e.g. polski język (“Polish language”) → w polskim języku (“in the Polish language”)
- -ej Used for feminine singular adjectives, e.g. duża krowa (“big cow”) → o dużej krowie (“about a big cow”)
Vocative Case (O!)
The vocative case is the case used for a noun identifying the person (animal, object, etc.) being addressed and/or occasionally the determiners of that noun. A vocative expression is an expression of direct address, wherein the identity of the party being spoken to is set forth expressly within a sentence.
Feminine nouns usually take -o, except those ending in -sia, -cia, -nia, and -dzia which take -u, and those ending in -ść which take -i.
Masculine nouns generally follow the complex pattern of the locative case, with the exception of a handful of words such as Bóg → Boże (“God”), ojciec → ojcze (“father”) and chłopiec → chłopcze (“boy”).
Neuter nouns and all plural nouns are the same as in the nominative case.
Usually, the Nominative case functions as a de facto Vocative:
Adam, chodź tu! (Adam -Nom., come here!).
Asia, przynieś książki! (Asia – Nom. bring books)
However, in conjunction with titles, the Vocative is obligatory:
Dzień dobry, panie profesorze! (Hello, professsor-Voc.!).
In addition, the vocative remains prevalent:
- To address an individual using his/her function, title, other attribute, family role
- Panie doktorze (Doctor!), Panie prezesie! (Chairman!)
- Przybywasz za późno, wybawco (You arrive too late, savor-Voc)
- synu (son), mamo (mom), tato (dad)
- After adjectives, demonstrative pronouns, and possessive pronouns
- Nie rozumiesz mnie, moja droga Kasiu! (You don’t understand me, my dear Kasia -Voc!)
- To address an individual in an offensive or condescending manner, e.g.
- Zamknij się, pajacu! (“Shut up, you buffoon!”)
- Co się gapisz, idioto? (“What are you staring at, idiot!”)
- After “Ty” (second person singular pronoun)
- Ty kłamczuchu! (You liar!)
- Set expressions, e.g.
- (O) Matko!, (O) Boże!, (Mother!, Oh God!)
The vocative is also often employed in affectionate and endearing contexts such as
Kocham Cię Mamo! (“I love you Mom!”)
Tęsknię za Tobą, moja Żono. (“I miss you, my wife.”)
I think we covered everything. If I missed anything or if you have questions, please let me know in comments below. It will probably take a little time and a lot of patience to understand and remember all of it, but don’t give up!
Do następnego razu! (Till next time…)