The Dative Case
Russian Grammar


Russian Dative Case (The indirect object)

The dative case is used in Russian for the indirect object of a sentence. In the sentence "Adam gave flowers to Anna", the word "Anna" should be in the dative case. The indirect object is normally the person who receives the direct object.

Forming the Russian Dative Case

Masculine Nouns:

1. If the noun ends in a consonant, add “у”.
2. Replace “й”, with “ю”.
3. Replace “ь”, add “ю”.

Feminine Nouns:

1. Replace “а” with “е”.
2. Replace “я” with “е”.
3. Replace “ь” with “и”.
4. Replace “ия” with “ии”.

Neuter Nouns:

1. Replace “о” with “у”.
2. Replace “е” with “ю”.

Plurals - Russian Dative Case

Look at the last letter nominative singular form (dictionary form) and...
1. If the noun ends in a consonant, add "ам".
2. Replace "а", "о" or a consonant with "ам".
3. Replace the last letter with "ям"


Other Uses of the Dative Case.

In addition to simply using the dative case as the indirect object. There are some additional times when you will need to use the dative case.

1. It is used after the Russian verbs "Помогать" ("to help") and "Советоват" ("to advise"). (ie. instead of using the accusative case, as you may have expected).

2. With "Нравиться" ("to like"). Example : "Адаму нравится Москва" ("Adam likes Moscow").

3. It is also used in conjuction with some other reflexive verbs (-ся).

4. When using the word "Нужен" (to need). (the word you would expect as the subject, is used in the dative).

5. To represent the concept of sending or communicating something. Like the English word "to". (example: write to, bring to, call (by telephone) to).

6. To express your age.

For more information and examples refer to Lesson 13 - Russian Dative Case

Pronouns of the dative case.

To use a personal pronoun in the dative case, you should use the following:

Мне - me.

Тебе - you (informal).

Ему (m), Ему (n), Ей (f) - him, it, her.

Нам - us.

Вам - you (formal, or plural).

Им - them.



Recommended Books For Learning Russian

A Comprehensive Russian Grammar - A great reference on Russian grammar.

The New Penguin Russian Course: A Complete Course for Beginners - Probably the best course in a book.

The Big Silver Book of Russian Verbs - A great reference book of conjugated Russian verbs.

Russian Learners' Dictionary: 10,000 Russian Words in Frequency Order - A simple but powerful concept. Expand your vocabulary by learning the most used words first.