Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 12 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Of the commonly recognised case categories, the dative is perhaps the most difficult to define in a consistent, cross-linguistically valid way. In Greek and Latin, where the term originates, the dative case was used both for the goal/recipient argument of ditransitive verbs, and for the complements of certain intransitive verbs such as ‘help’, ‘obey’, or ‘trust’. These two types of argument are commonly taken to share the property of being ‘indirectly affected’ by the verbal event, and so given the label ‘indirect objects’. Case markers labelled ‘dative’ vary greatly in the range of functions they cover, although they must be assumed to share some common semantic core. It is fairly common for dative functions to be indicated by adpositions, as in English and many other languages of Europe. This article looks at the functional varieties of dative and its overlap with other cases such as dative-accusative syncretism, dative-allative syncretism, and dative-genitive syncretism.

Keywords: dative case, indirect objects, case markers, adpositions, dative-accusative syncretism, dative-allative syncretism, dative-genitive syncretism, ditransitive verbs

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.