Grammatical case

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A grammatical case, in many languages, is an inflectional form of a noun, pronoun, or adjective that indicates its grammatical relation to other words.[1] English has three cases, the nominative, possessive, and objective cases. However, only pronouns distinguish all three cases, since nouns have the same form for the nominative and objective cases. Also, adjectives in English are no longer declined for case, although in most languages that distinguish case, adjectives agree in case with the nouns that they modify. The set of forms that a word takes in its cases is called its declension.[2]

Examples of declensions in English

  • Nominative: we; man
  • Possessive: our; man's
  • Objective: us; man

Traces remain of a dative case in English in some archaic phrases such as "methinks" (it seems to me) or "woe is me" (woe is to me).


  1. Linguistic Terms: Case
  2. Definition of declension