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  1. #1
    Junior Member occidental's Avatar
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    Default Hoće li biti rata?

    I need your help. I have seen several sentences with "Hoće li biti..." followed by the genitive case (rata instead of rat). Which word indicates that a genitive has to follow?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Dzomba's Avatar
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    That is one very good question about a thing which we, who are native speakers, do not pay much attention to...
    I can't answer your question for sure, because the genitive simply comes natural to me... It's just the way it is, I guess...

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  4. #3
    to hoću
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    I can't help with the answer. I just can add to the question:

    As far as I understood (here in German) genitive case serves for following functions: To explain..
    a) ..from where someone comes
    b) ..to whom something belongs
    c) ..of which material something is made (od)
    d) ..the place (kod, iza, izmedu)
    e) ..the time (prije, poslije)

    Some other prepositions which indicate following Genitive case are:
    bez, ispod, iz, zbog, do, ispred, iznad, (u) mjesto, osim

    Since there is no preposition used in your example: could it just be because of the temporal information in the sentence, that makes genitive case following?

    Another example: Izgleda da će biti kiše = It looks like rain / "it seems, there will be rain".

    [kiša "rain" (nominative case) is femininum, kiše is again genitive case, like rata in your example]
    Last edited by to hoću; 02-03-2012 at 12:35 PM. Reason: Link substituted

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    Junior Member occidental's Avatar
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    I think you are on the right track and I have some ideas as well. But it's usually a bad habit to start guessing the grammar in language learning. Here more information instead: The genitive is also required after "nema" as in "nema problema!" (no problem)

    Zašto to kažu? Nema dokaza! --- Why do they say that? There's no proof!
    Ovde nema nijedne dobre knjige. --- There's not a single good book here.

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  8. #5
    to hoću
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    I tried to find a good source, but failed. I found different explanations for the function of genetive case as "Objekt nach verneinten Verben" (object after negated verbs) and as "Deklination der Numeralia 2, 3, 4". I'm confused. I hope someone can help you here.

  9. #6
    Senior Member milijana's Avatar
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    Smile Genitive case

    Maybe I can help to both of you.
    All Serbian cases answer to one question. For genitive question is whose or whom or how much? It points that something is part of something, that something belongs to something, originates from somewhere/something or that it is a part of some quantity. In Serbian genitive means nothing else.
    Examples:
    1. To je knjiga mog prijatelja. It is the book of my friend/It is my friend's book.
    Mog prijatelja is put in genitive, and it tells you that book belongs to my friend.
    Whose is this book? It's my friend's book./ This book belongs to my friend.
    2. Jedem tri jabuke. I eat three apples.
    Tri jabuke is put in genitive because it tells you whom (in this case what) I am eating. If you wander why number is included, in Serbian language exist 10 types of words, 5 of them are changeable, 5 are not. Numbers, adjectives, pronouns, nouns and verbs are words that change either by conjugation (changing verbs trough persons) either by declination (change trough cases). Except from verbs, all other types of changeable words help to describe nouns more closely, and therefore they change together with nouns.
    3. Popio je mnogo vode He drank lots of water .
    Mnogo vode is in genitive telling you quantity and whom or what he drank. How much of what did he drink? He drank lots of water.
    4. Dolazim iz Srbije I come from Serbia.
    From where/whom (odakle/ od,iz čega?would be our question) I come (originate)? From Serbia.

    Nouns in genitive, and other types of changeable words mostly end with A or E in genitive, depending of the gender.

    Answer to occidental:
    Hoće li biti rata? Will there be (what?whom?) war? It is genitive because it is answering to you whether there will be something. It would be the same if you asked: Am I to expect (whom/what?) a war?

    Answer to to hoću:
    Izgleda da će biti kiše. I will put this little differently and say like this: Rain will fall - Kiša će pasti. Now rain is in nominative, cuz it'll do the action, it is subject. The sentence you gave has no direct subject, no one and nothing really does any action. So if there is no subject, there is no nominative, so it must be something else. The correct translation of the sentence is: It seems there will be rain. But what is failing here is some measure of quantity to help you with case (little rain, some rain, lots of rain, etc).
    Now you can ask a question now: whom/what am I expect to be, to come, to fall? I expect (some) rain.

    Those prepositions can help you a lot with determining in which case noun is. Also, what you wrote for German genitive is what our genitive determines as well. I just put it short in three main groups.

    I hope I helped a bit. If I can do something more to help you, always feel free to ask

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  11. #7
    to hoću
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    My first thought was, Djomba was wrong to point to organic intuition only, living with blood. My idea was to find a bridge by understanding, comparing and accepting the "strange" structure. This has been my experience from learning Bulgarian at least.

    For example (occidental will understand this) in German we can use genitive case for many functions, for which it is used in other much inflecting languages, too (like Latin, Russian, or Serbian e.g.):

    1. To je knjiga mog prijatelja ~ Es ist das Buch meines Freundes (Es ist meines Freundes Buch) = genitive case;
    colloquial dative case is usual: Es ist das Buch von meinem Freund.
    2. Jedem tri jabuke ~ Ich esse drei der Äpfel drei (Drei der Äpfel esse ich) = genitive case;
    standard accusative case is used: Ich esse drei Äpfel.
    3. Popio je mnogo vode ~ Er trank viel des Wassers = genitive case;
    standard accusative case is used: Er trank viel Wasser


    With those helps I hoped I can adapt the "unknown" rules for my own. But meanwhile I see, it is not so easy. Whether I will learn concentrated and unconditional this language, forgetting and giving up all old dear relations, or I will fail alltogether. You made a lot of efforts to explain "Hoće li biti rata?" and "Izgleda da će biti kiše". But now for me it seems, Djomba was right in the beginning. Whether I will learn it without any distant and comparing studies, or I won't at all.

    Hermann Paul once defined this elusive case as the case that can serve "dem Ausdruck jeder beliebigen Beziehung zwischen zwei Substantiven" (to the expression for any relation between two nouns).

    I'll come back, when I'm really ready for it. Not before.

    Added note: My 2nd and 3rd examples are wrong: the object remains accusative case, only the second part of it can be changed by genetive case (with possessive function). Actually my 1st example is grammatically the only correct form, so it is wrong to call it a substitution. To be honest: my comments here alltogether were rather useless. Forget it please. Sorry.
    Last edited by to hoću; 02-05-2012 at 08:37 AM. Reason: correction - I was wrong in German, too

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  13. #8
    Senior Member Dzomba's Avatar
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    I like miljana's posts and translations.. They are pure quality...
    ...
    Now, I wanted to say something important, but I forgot what I was thinking...
    ...
    @ to hocu
    Just don't feel discouraged... I know it must be difficult...
    If it makes you feel better, even some native Serbians don't use cases properly.. (and in the south, they are not a minority lolololololololol)
    ...
    miljana's post is 100% correct, but I don't know how much did it help you... In the end, it's all about speaking a language... You can't possibly learn Serbian if you don't speak it with someone..
    So, my suggestion to you is - more speaking, less rules... (I assume you have someone to speak serbocroatian with)

  14. #9
    Junior Member occidental's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by milijana View Post
    Answer to occidental:
    Hoće li biti rata? Will there be (what?whom?) war? It is genitive because it is answering to you whether there will be something. It would be the same if you asked: Am I to expect (whom/what?) a war?
    It doesn't help a lot because when I think of "whom" I think of the dative case. That's probably because my mother tongue is German. And in German the accusative is the most used and the one you "choose" as a standard if you have no idea. This might be true for the genitive case in Serbian.

    So what I need to know is: If "Hoće li biti..." always uses the genitive. Or if it can be different.

  15. #10
    Belveder
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    Quote Originally Posted by occidental View Post
    I need your help. I have seen several sentences with "Hoće li biti..." followed by the genitive case (rata instead of rat). Which word indicates that a genitive has to follow?
    Yes, this expression - how you put it - is always fallowed by the genitive case.
    (in spoken language, you may hear accusative instead of genitive: Hoće li biti pauza?

    BUT:

    Hoće li to biti rat?

    rat - nominative, (*correction)
    Meaning: That what has happened - will that be a war?

    Hoće li biti rata?
    rata - genitive
    Meaning: That what has happened - will that lead to a war?
    or, if it's easier to see genitive: Will there be an outbreak of war?

    Alternative expression with the same (or close) meaning:
    Hoće li biti / Da li će biti....(+ genitiv) ?
    Da li i će izbiti ... / Da li i će se desiti... (+ nominative) ?


    The Genitive case may or may not be used with prepositions.

    The prepositions followed by genitive:

    od, do, iz, s(a), ispred, iza, izvan, unutar, iznad, ispod, više, poviše, niže, pre, uoči, posle, nakon, za, tokom, krajem, usred, oko, okolo, blizu, kod, kraj, pokraj, pored, nadomak, nadohvat, i, u, mimo, duž, uzduž, širom, preko, bez, osim, umest, pomoću, posredstvom, između, protiv, nasuprot, usprkos, unatoč, zbog, usled, radi, povodom...

    I would advice you not to translate them to English or German, but think in our language. Less confusion.

    @to hoću: Great source you found! Thanks! You translated Serbian genitive from German language.
    Last edited by Belveder; 02-05-2012 at 02:46 AM.

  16. #11
    Senior Member milijana's Avatar
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    First of all, thank you very much for all those words Dzomba!

    And I second, I think all of you must look the whole picture of cases before you start learning them one by one. It is hard to do it with English or German, because those languages have less cases and build sentence structure in different way.
    And maybe you should listen to what Dzomba advices you and try to find someone who speaks Serbian. Also, maybe, you could just "give in" into the texts written in Serbian. No need to work hard on understanding, just superficially glance it all, and soon your brain will start getting it. Maybe this sounds silly, but it worked with me when I started studying foreign language. It's not all in the rules, something is in the fact that our brain needs time to figure out how and when to use what we learned.

    occidental:
    Dative case tells you TO WHOM/TO WHAT something is GOING, HAPPENING, etc. It is exclusively a case for active verbs and shows you direction of subject's actions, or the goal to subject's actions, whereas the locative case is the same, but tells you about an object ABOUT WHICH we talk, think, etc, no direction or goal of our action.
    While genitive explains to you the origins, quantity of something or from where, to whom something belongs, dative tells you to where we look, walk, etc.
    You can say the sentence about the war anyway you like. The phrase is Hoće li biti rata?. You can ask Hoće li biti rat? as well. We use both, and both can be used.

    Belveder:
    First sentence, "rat" is in nominative, not accusative. Will there be war? Who will be there? War will be there.
    Accusative indicates an object on which or to which we do some action.
    Mrzim rat (I) hate war. Now the war is in accusative because it is my object (of hate).


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  18. #12
    Belveder
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    Quote Originally Posted by milijana View Post
    Belveder:
    First sentence, "rat" is in nominative, not accusative. Will there be war? Who will be there? War will be there.
    Accusative indicates an object on which or to which we do some action.
    Mrzim rat (I) hate war. Now the war is in accusative because it is my object (of hate).
    Yes, sorry.

    Hoće li to biti rat? - rat - dopunski predikativ, nominative.
    (I wrote down "nominative", in additional examples)

    "уз неке глаголе (постати, звати се, остати, чинити се, бити и др.), номинатив служи и као допунски предикатив (Постао је доктор.)" (Wiki)
    Last edited by Belveder; 02-05-2012 at 02:45 AM.

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  20. #13
    Senior Member milijana's Avatar
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    You are right, and no sorry
    That was "a noun predicate". It happens when verbs (helping verbs, most of all) can't stand alone, and ask for a noun.
    You know grammar very good!

  21. #14
    Junior Member occidental's Avatar
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    @to hoću
    Yeah, come back! I need your support and your quality German sources. Haha

    @Dzomba
    I have someone to speak to but she is Macedonian and can't explain grammar very well. But speaking is definitely the best if you reach a certain point.

    @Belveder
    Hoće li biti rata? --- Hoće li to biti rat?
    That's a good one to see the difference. Nice! It's the best to stay inside the language. I still like to discuss it now and then on a forum. And after some time goes by you can look back at a thread and see it from a different perspective.

    @milijana
    No, it doesn't sound silly. I see these rules more as training wheels which you can take off after a while. Beating and bullying the language with grammar rules doesn't work all the time. I am repeating it to myself but deep inside you there is always that impatience.

  22. #15
    Belveder
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    @Miljana, Dzomba: Južnjačka gramatika ali ne potcenjuj!

    @occidental: Are you accidentally "our guy" from Swiss (I meant that BMW )? Gasterbajter?

    If you need help, we are here....

  23. #16
    Senior Member Dzomba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by occidental View Post
    @Dzomba
    I have someone to speak to but she is Macedonian and can't explain grammar very well. But speaking is definitely the best if you reach a certain point.
    Macedonian girls are the best....

    Now, I have a song for y'all...



    Helpful? lololololololol

  24. #17
    Belveder
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dzomba View Post
    Macedonian girls are the best....
    Miljana rocks!

  25. #18
    to hoću
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    Quote Originally Posted by occidental View Post
    @to hoću
    Yeah, come back! I need your support and your quality German sources. Haha
    Hä?! Muß ich das verstehen?

  26. #19
    Belveder
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    Quote Originally Posted by to hoću View Post
    Hä?! Muß ich das verstehen?
    He thanked you.
    Last edited by Belveder; 02-05-2012 at 11:07 AM.

  27. #20
    Junior Member occidental's Avatar
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    @Belveder
    No, not Gastarbeiter. I'm Swiss with a good taste in cars.

    @to hoću
    Du sagtest "I'll come back, when I'm really ready for it. Not before." Und mit "sources" meinte ich den Link in deinem Beitrag.

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