Define Accusative Case: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know what the accusative case is? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on accusative cases, including its definition, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What is the accusative case?

Today we will explore the accusative case. According to Grammar Monster,  this is a grammatical case whose main function is to show the direct object of a verb. You can find the direct object by finding the verb and asking who or what. This grammatical case is related to the word accuse, which comes from the Latin accūsātīvus and Greek ptōsis aitiatikē. According to Educalingo, the accusative case existed in Proto-Indo-European and is still present in some Indo-European languages, as well as in the Uralic languages, in Altaic languages, and in Semitic languages. Other languages including Finnic languages, such as Finnish and Estonian, have two cases to mark objects, which are the accusative and the partitive case. In morphosyntactic alignment terms, both of these cases perform the accusative function, but the accusative object is telic, while the partitive is not.

There are numerous other cases including the genitive case, oblique cases, nominative case, upright case, objective case, dative case/dative forms, subjective case, straight case, possessive case which shows ownership, and more. accusatives also affect definite articles and indefinite articles. In English, the accusative case pronouns change from the subjective case in the following ways. I becomes me, you becomes you, he / she / it becomes him / her / it, we becomes us, you becomes you, and they becomes them.

The accusative case is also used in German and Old Germanic. The German prepositions that take the accusative case are bis (up to), durch (through), entlan (along), für (for), gegen (against), ohne (without), and um (around). Some articles in German are den die das and die. An example of the accusative could be “Der Hund liebt die Katze.” which means “the dog loves the cat.” More German examples are below from Easy Deutsch.

  •  „Der Junge schenkt seiner Freundin die Blumen.“
  •  „Er singt ein Liebeslied.“
  •  „Ich habe ein Eis.“
  •  „Er gibt der Frau die Blumen.“ 
  •  „Er schenkt ihr ein Auto.“
  •  „Er spielt den Ball.“
  •  „Der Mann geht um das Haus.“
  •  „Der Mann hat ein Pferd.“
  •  „Die Blumen sind für meine Freundin.“
  •  „Er fährt durch den Tunnel.“

Many different languages also contain words that mean accusative case. You may notice that some of these translations of accusative case look and sound similar to one another. These are called cognates, which are words and phrases in different languages that likely have the same root or language of origin, causing them to sound the same. The below list of translations of accusative case is provided by Word Sense

  •  Swedish: ackusativ‎ (common)
  •  German: Akkusativ‎ (masc.), Wenfall‎ (masc.), vierter Fall‎ (masc.)
  •  Telugu: ద్వితీయా విభక్తి‎
  •  Ancient Greek: αἰτιατικὴ πτῶσις‎ (fem.)
  •  Mongolian: заах‎
  •  Japanese: 対格‎ (たいかく, taikaku)
  •  Albanian: kallëzore‎ (fem.)
  •  Georgian: ბრალდებითი ბრუნვა‎, აკუზატივი‎
  •  Ukrainian: знахі́дний відмі́нок‎ (masc.), знахі́дний‎ (masc.)
  •  Slovene: tožilnik‎ (masc.)
  •  Esperanto: akuzativo‎
  •  Danish: akkusativ‎
  •  Slovak: akuzatív‎ (masc.), štvrtý pád‎ (masc.)
  •  Italian: accusativo‎ (masc.)
  •  Belarusian: вінава́льны склон‎ (masc.), вінава́льны‎ (masc.)
  •  Portuguese: acusativo‎ (masc.)
  •  Romanian: acuzativ‎ (neut.), caz acuzativ‎ (neut.)
  •  Roman: akuzativ‎ (masc.)
  •  Mandarin: 賓格‎, 宾格‎ (bīngé)
  •  Vietnamese: đối cách‎
  •  Latin: casus accusativus‎ (masc.), incūsātīvus‎
  •  Bulgarian: винителен падеж‎ (masc.)
  •  Finnish: akkusatiivi‎
  •  French: accusatif‎ (masc.), cas accusatif‎ (masc.)
  •  Lithuanian: galininkas‎ (masc.)
  •  Arabic: مَنْصُوب‎ (masc.)
  •  West Frisian: hwaenfal‎, 4e fal‎, akkusatyf‎
  •  Cyrillic: акузатив‎ (masc.)
  •  Hebrew: יחס הפעול‎
  •  Novial: akusative‎
  •  Polish: biernik‎ (m-in)
  •  Armenian: հայցական‎, հայցական հոլով‎
  •  Icelandic: þolfall‎ (neut.)
  •  Ingrian: akkuzatiivi‎
  •  Russian: вини́тельный паде́ж‎ (masc.)
  •  Interlingua: accusativo‎
  •  Greek: αιτιατική‎ (fem.)
  •  Northern Sami: akkusatiiva‎
  •  Rusyn: акузатів‎ (masc.)
  •  Korean: 대격‎
  •  Czech: čtvrtý pád‎ (masc.), akuzativ‎ (masc.)
  •  Dutch: accusatief‎ (masc.), vierde naamval‎ (masc.)
  •  Catalan: acusatiu‎ (masc.), cas acusatiu‎ (masc.)
  •  Faroese: hvønnfall‎ (neut.)
  •  Volapük: kimifal‎, kusatif‎
  •  Hindi: द्वितीया विभक्ति‎ (fem.)
  •  Spanish: acusativo‎ (masc.), caso acusativo‎ (masc.)
  •  Old English: wregendlic casus‎
  •  Hungarian: tárgyeset‎, akkuzatívusz‎

What is an example of accusative case?

The accusative case can be used in many different contexts in the English language. Trying to use a word or literary technique in a sentence is one of the best ways to memorize what it is, but you can also try making flashcards or quizzes that test your knowledge. Try using this term of the day in a sentence today! Below are a couple of examples of accusative cases from English Grammar Lessons and Grammar Monster that can help get you started incorporating this tool into your everyday use.  Take a look at these accusative case examples from. 

  •  I like apples.
  •  President Theodore Roosevelt had a pet hyena.
  •  Give the large parcel to the lady next door.
  •  Anteaters prefer termites.
  •  Most Disney characters wear gloves to keep animation simple.
  •  I had a monumental idea this morning, but I didn’t like it. (Film producer Samuel Goldwyn)
  •  The dog ran after the frisbee that her owner threw by the beach.
  •  The cat caught the mouse and brought it home.
  •  The children watched the movie.
  •  I sleep on a softer pillow than my fiancee.
  •  Blue whales eat half a million calories in one mouthful.
  •  Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana. (Comedian Groucho Marx)
  •  Hollywood is a place where people from Iowa mistake each other for stars. (Comedian Fred Allen)
  •  She stroked the cat.
  •  Barney will draw him tomorrow.
  •  The dog ate our turkey.
  •  The captain of the ship gave strict orders to the crew members on deck.
  •  I made a sandwich for my mother.
  •  The teacher created a new lesson plan for her students about all the wars in American history. 

Overall, in modern English grammar the accusative form shoes the relationship of a direct object as it is the recipient of a verb. 


  1. Glossary of grammatical terms | OED
  2. What Is the Accusative Case? (with Examples) | Grammar Monster 
  3. The Accusative Case | Use and Declension | Grammar | Easy Deutsch 
  4. hat Is the Accusative Case? (with Examples) | English Grammar Lessons 
  5. CCUSATIVE – Definition and synonyms of accusative in the English dictionary | Educalingo