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Thread: Partitive Case

  1. #1
    Почтенный гражданин xXHoax's Avatar
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    Partitive Case

    I know generally about the concept behind the partitive but one aspect doesn't seem to be explained anywhere online. The partitive occupies the same structure that denotes nominative and accusative cases, among others, which doesn't make much sense to me. Couldn't a partitive noun be the subject or the object, and since it's marked with partitive it ISN'T marked with either of those so how can you tell which it is in the sentence? Some languages exhibit the partitive with prepositional phrases, which is essentially the same I guess, and Finnish also uses up a case ending on it.

    Is it an unwritten assumed rule that anything in the partitive must be the object of the sentence?

    That would line up with a lot of Russian mentality since only mass, inanimate nouns really ever take the partitive, and those will theoretically never be subjects.

    It's just occurred to me, that Russian partitive can be accompanied by a "determining" noun, which will take on the case endings for the whole phrase.
    (a) чаш-ка,-ку,-кой,-ки чаю

    A few questions remain though:
    -What is the difference between кашка чаю and чашка чая?

    -What about the times where there isn't a determining noun to mark the phrase? How can one tell how the чай fits grammatically? Must we just assume BY CONTEXT that выпить will probably have a liquid based object?
    (b) Выпить чаю/чая/чай

    -What differences are there between these three?

    Is the partitive an noun-attributive or a verb-agreeing case? Meaning, for instance, Genitive is basically used to affect ~a noun~ with a noun, it's unrelated to the verb layout. Whereas Accusative is directly interworking with the sentence's verb. (a) and (b) show it being both types.

    -Is modern partitive simply represented by genitive endings, even though the same trick is at work? ( Выпить чая )

  2. #2
    Подающий надежды оратор Black Forest's Avatar
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    It is true that a noun in the partitive case cannot be a subject. The special у/ю declension applies to a small class of masculine nouns, and either a noun or a verb may establish the case. As partitive is mainly used for mass nouns, or variable quantities, the case ending can be seen, in context, to denote "some" amount of an item or substance.

    Furthermore, partitive case endings are to be used with perfective verbs.
    Выпить чаю: proper. "To drink some tea". People may use the other variant, but it is not fully grammatically sound.

    As for nouns preceding partitive case, the unique ending relates to parts of a whole. Imagine taking a cuplike amount of tea from a larger supply. In communicating this action, чаю would be used, emphasizing a definiteness: чашку чаю, "cup of (the/that) tea". Even so, outside of verb usage, the traditional genitive case ending for partitive nouns is more universally accepted.
    xXHoax likes this.
    Шварцвальд

  3. #3
    Властелин iCake's Avatar
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    First, you should know that partitive isn't really a part of Russian grammar anymore and it is not even taught in Russian schools any longer, instead it's generally classified as genetive. Yes, you can say:

    Налей чаю or налей чая, instead of just налей чай and more and more people tend to prefer the latter nowadays. Therefore there is hardly any difference between those. A very slight nuance is there though. You see, mass noun can't be counted, therefore such nouns can be percieved like a single entity and partitive was invented to say that you only need a part of this entity:

    Налей чай - чай can be viewed as a single entity, thus all the tea in the world there is
    Налей чаю - just a part of this entity, not the whole amount of it

    This simple way of thinking persist across all cases of partitive use:

    Намешай бетону, насыпь сахару, отрежь сыру.

    Yours - чашка чая, чашка чаю. I bet you can tell the difference yourself now. Just remember that there is hardly any really and you can choose whatever version you like more, although the latter is a bit more Russian, if you ask me


    -What about the times where there isn't a determining noun to mark the phrase? How can one tell how the чай fits grammatically? Must we just assume BY CONTEXT that выпить will probably have a liquid based object?

    Выпить чай - pure genetive, the others are genetive partitive, but again all are genetive. Выпить does have to have a liquid based object to make any sense, though it can be an indirect object --- Выпить чашку чаю. If you said something like, выпить шкаф that would first confuse me, then I'd assume that шкаф was liquified somehow

    -Is modern partitive simply represented by genitive endings, even though the same trick is at work? ( Выпить чая )

    Yes, выпить чаю, выпить чая are essentially the same with the same trick. Just remember that there can be a pure genetive instead: чашка чая for example vs. чашка чаю.

    Is the partitive an noun-attributive or a verb-agreeing case? Meaning, for instance, Genitive is basically used to affect ~a noun~ with a noun, it's unrelated to the verb layout. Whereas Accusative is directly interworking with the sentence's verb. (a) and (b) show it being both types.

    This is very hard to say. My best guess is that it's both. Выпить чаю - verb related, чашка чаю - noun + noun.
    fortheether likes this.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

  4. #4
    Почтенный гражданин diogen_'s Avatar
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    A few questions remain though:
    -What is the difference between кашка чаю and чашка чая?
    No difference in meaning whatsoever. Чашка чаю just sounds like sloppy Russian. I'd rather you stuck to чашка чая, IMO.


    Веселые ребята - чашка чая
    I.
    Когда цветных огней гирлянды
    Развесит город на домах
    Когда в театрах музыканты
    Ждут дирижера первый взмах
    Когда я вечером скучаю
    Могу ли я тебя просить
    Меня к себе на чашку чая
    Ты не смогла бы пригласить

    Припев:
    И у тебя в гостях я замечаю
    И в этом есть твоя вина
    Что выпивая чашку чая
    Я вдруг пьянею без вина
    Но выпивая чашку чая
    Я вдруг пьянею без вина

    II.
    И под старинным абажуром
    Что излучает мягкий свет
    До самой полночи сижу я
    И ничего прекрасней нет
    Но разговор, не бесконечен
    Пришла пора благодарить
    За вкусный чай, за теплый вечер
    Что ты смогла мне подарить

    Припев:
    III.
    Но разговор, не бесконечен
    Пришла пора благодарить
    За вкусный чай, за теплый вечер
    Что ты смогла мне подарить
    Припев: 2 раза


    История | Дискография

  5. #5
    Почтенный гражданин Serge_spb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iCake View Post
    This simple way of thinking persist across all cases of partitive use:

    Намешай бетону, насыпь сахару, отрежь сыру.
    Man, these forms are kinda outdated, someone may even blame you for using that.

    Russians say: намешай бетона, насыпь сахара (сахарка, сахарку - уменьш.-ласкательная форма), отрежь сыра
    "Насыпь сахарку" somehow is the only one of these which is still active.

    xXHoax, Why would you overload your brain with this issue? I have passed my school Unified State Exam on "A" mark and we had no hours dedicated to the subject, nor my personal coach gave me any of that theory. 9 of 10 of russians woulnd`t even get what are you talking about even mentioning "partitive". Just learn these common phrases by heart and that`s it.

    Съешь ещё этих мягких французских булок, да выпей чаю - well known joky phrase among russian pc\ms word users (since it contains the majority of russian alphabet)

    Съешь ещё этих мягких французских булок — Lurkmore

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    Почтенный гражданин Serge_spb's Avatar
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    deleted
    Last edited by Serge_spb; December 7th, 2016 at 07:41 PM.

  7. #7
    Властелин iCake's Avatar
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    Man, these forms are kinda outdated, someone may even blame you for using that.

    Russians say: намешай бетона, насыпь сахара (сахарка, сахарку - уменьш.-ласкательная форма), отрежь сыра
    "Насыпь сахарку" somehow is the only one of these which is still active.
    I know well of this. I only used these pronounced forms to better illustrate my point.

    Do not mix the determining noun in 1st and 2nd example!

    1. Выпей чая! | Выпить [что?]--->чая! (accusative from "чай")
    Выпей чаю! | Выпить [что?]--->чаю! (partitive from "чай")
    чая is genetive, чай is accusative and also nominative, do not confuse the OP here. Выпить (что?) чай (accusative), выпить (чего?) чая. Чашка (чего?) чая. Подать (что?) чай. That's about it. Чаю is разделительный (partitive), which is now considered genetive.
    xXHoax likes this.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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    Почтенный гражданин xXHoax's Avatar
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    Спасибо всем за чрезвычайно чёткие(< google/the site marks this with a green "incorrect grammar" line) ответы

    xXHoax, Why would you overload your brain with this issue? I have passed my school Unified State Exam on "A" mark and we had no hours dedicated to the subject, nor my personal coach gave me any of that theory. 9 of 10 of russians wouldn't even get what are you talking about even mentioning "partitive". Just learn these common phrases by heart and that's it.
    Эти вопросы, честно говоря, произошли из места интерес вообще в языках вместо интереса в изучении русского.

  9. #9
    Завсегдатай maxmixiv's Avatar
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    Tea might be too complicated substance. Let's refer to the classic instead:
    — Не хочешь ли торта? — любезно предложил Заяц.
    Алиса оглядела весь стол, но там ничего не было, кроме чайников и чайной посуды.
    — Какого торта? Что-то я его не вижу, — сказала она.
    — Его тут и нет, — подтвердил Заяц.
    — Зачем же предлагать? Это не очень-то вежливо! — обиженно сказала Алиса.
    Offering 'не хочешь ли торт?' could be understood as a proposal to have the whole cake! (nevertheless in a conversation you can utilize the either case.)
    "Невозможно передать смысл иностранной фразы, не разрушив при этом её первоначальную структуру."

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    Почтенный гражданин Serge_spb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iCake View Post
    чая is genetive, чай is accusative and also nominative, do not confuse the OP here. Выпить (что?) чай (accusative), выпить (чего?) чая. Чашка (чего?) чая. Подать (что?) чай. That's about it. Чаю is разделительный (partitive), which is now considered genetive.
    Ok, my bad. Even the best of the best get overheated with such stuff.

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