B. Case usage

1. Vocative

197) a) The Vocative Sing. is notably used in prayers and mythological texts : dUTU-e isha-mi "ô Sun, my lord", dUTU-e sarkui (variant sarku) LUGAL-e "ô Sun, heroic king".

b) In these texts, and even more in more recent texts or texts of other kinds, the forms of Nominative are used instead of Vocative : zik-pat genzuwalas dUTU-us "you are obliging, ô Sun".

198) The base root of the noun (that looks like the Vocative) can be used in order to introduce a new name in a narration : MUNUS-as ŠUM-set fSintalimeni "the name of a woman (is) Sintalimeni", but also : DAM- fTatizuli tamai UD-at seshas "his wife Tatizuli decided herself another day". It is not easy to estimate the influence of the Akkadian writing here.

2. Accusative

199) The Hittite constructions using Accusative for an "internal object" will be especially emphasized.

a) The use consisting in adding to a verb a noun of the same root or meaning at the Accusative (Lat. acerrimam pugnam pugnare, longam viam ire, Akkadian dīnam dânum, purussâm parāsum), also exists in Hittite (cognate Accusative) : hannessar hanna- "to solve a dispute", kupiyatin kup- "to set up a plan", hukmais hu(e)k- "to take an oath", uppessar uppa- "to dispatch a sending".

b) The Neuter Accusatives of pronouns and numerals associated to intransitive and transitive verbs (in addition to the external object) must also be understood as internal objects (Lat. hoc te rego, Greek τοῦτο χαίρω) : tuk UL kuitki idalawahhun "I did not treat you (Sg.) badly at all", appātaya NIŠ DINGIRLIM sarratti "so you (Sg.) thus break the oath", kiyan 1-an dammeshanunun "I only punished her with this".

200) a) Verbs related to illness can be built in two ways :

1. Either the ill person is the intransitive subject, as in English : fGassuliyawiyas istarkiat "G. fell ill", EĜIR-ma-as irmaliyattat "but he fell ill".

2. Or the illness is subject and the concerned person is object in the Accusative : kappin DUMU-an HUL-lu GIG GIG-at "the bad illness stroke the young boy".

b) The illness is often omitted in construction 2, so that it looks like an impersonal construction with the person as object in the Accusative : istarkiyazzi kuinki "someone fell ill", tuk-ma irmaliyattat "but you (Sg.) fell ill".

201) a) Very rarely (and formerly ?), the Accusative answers the question "where to ?" : nu-smas HUR.SAĜ-an parhanzi "and they will chase you (Pl.) to the mountain", GÚ- ĜIŠAPIN-an sēr tizzi "his neck goes onto a plough". Usually, the Dative in Old-Hittite and the Dative-Locative in Neo-Hittite are used to answer the question "where to ?".

b) The Accusative for ways is different : man-kan HUR.SAĜTehsinan sarā pāun "I climbed Mount T.".

202) The Accusative can be used as is as an adverb, for example in hantezzi "firstly, at the first opportunity", karuwariwar "in the morning", nekuz mehur "in the evening".

3. Dative-Locative and Allative

203) Old-Hittite still makes the difference between the Allative in -a for the questions "to whom ?" and "where to ?" and the Locative in -i for the question "where ?". The allative aruna thus means "to the sea", the locative aruni "at sea", likewise nepisa "to heaven", nepisi "in heaven".

204) In Neo-Hittite, Allative and Locative have merged in a single Dative-Locative form in -i that answers the questions "to whom ?", "where ?" and "where to ?". Examples for Locative : URU-an sasti walhun "I attacked the city in bed (i.e. in dream)", URUHattusi gimmandarinun "I passed the winter at Hattusa", for Allative : URUKÙ.BABBAR-si uwanun "I went to Hattusa", nu-smas-kan peruni parhanzi "and they will hunt you (Pl.) to the rock", KUR ÍDSeha ÌR-anni dahhun "I reduced the land of the river Seha in slavery".

205) a) The verb "to be" can have a possessive dative : ANA ŠEŠ-YA NU.ĜÁL kuitki "nothing (is) to my brother (i.e. my brother has nothing)".

b) It is the same for indications of measurement : ANA wasanni-ma pargater-set 6 IKU "the wasanna (the track) is 6 ikû high".

c) Hittite also uses a possessive genitive with the present meaning "to belong" : URUIyaruwaddas URU-as annaz ammēl ŠA ABI ABĪYA esta "the city I. previously belonged to my grandfather".

206) The Dative-Locative can be used in an apparently pleonastic way : nu-smas uzuhrin adanzi "they eat (for themselves) grass", nu-smas DINGIRMEŠ-as ZI-ni mekki nahhantes estin "be (Pl.) (for yourselves) very cautious with the mentality of the gods", assiyannas-wa-nnas ÌRMEŠ esuen "we were (for ourselves) beloved subjects (lit. slaves of love)", lē-ta nāhi "do not be afraid (for yourself)".

207) The Dative-Locative gets the following uses from its locative meaning :

a) Dative of purpose : nu-kan kuin ANA mNuwanza haluki parā nehhun "and whom I sent to N. with the object of an embassy".

b) Dative of the actor of passive : zik-za-kan ammuqqa 1-edani AMA-ni hassantes "you (Sg.) and me (are we) born from a mother ?", dUTU-i-kan kuis assiyattari "he who is loved by the Sun".

c) Comparative dative ; cf. §222.

d) Temporal dative : apēdani UD-ti "this day", nekuz mehuni "in the evening" (§58).

e) Dative of the person from whom one demands : nu-mu ... dIŠTAR URUSamuha ANA ABĪYA wekta "and Ištar of Samuha demanded me from my father" (cf. French demander à quelqu'un).

208) One finds the adverb assuli "for the good" from the Dative-Locative of assul "happiness" (it is not an adverb in -li from assu- "good").

4. Genitive

209) a) The Genitive generally stands before the noun it complements : parnas ishas "the man of the house", attasas É-ri "in the house of his father", LÚ-nas wastul "crime of the man".

b) The opposite can happen when the complemented noun is an ideogram : LÚ taksulas "man of peace" (next to taksulas URU "city of the peace"), INIM kunannas "an affair of murder".

210) a) A more clumsy use of the Genitive occurs with the simultaneous use of the possessive pronoun ("of the man his head"). It is especially popular in laws (and elsewhere in Old-Hittite) : GUD-as IGI-ŠU "the eye of the ox", MUNUS-as ELLI sarhuwandus-sus "the unborn child of a free woman", kēl mene-ssit "the face of this one".

b) The Genitive stands after the indefinite pronoun : suppala-sset kuēlqa "the animals of somebody".

211) Hittite also uses the Genitive as other classical languages with the objective genitive, the partitive genitive, etc... : ŠU.DIM4-as sardiyas "help against an agression", hūmandas-pat EĜIR-izzis DUMU-as esun "I was the last child of all (lit. Dat.-Loc. Pl "under all")". Cf. also §205c.

212) a) A very popular construction is the expression "he of ..." to describe another substantive : from wastul "sin", one finds wastulas for "(the man) of the sin" = "sinner" (next to wastulas UKU3-as), from tayazil "theft" tayazilas "(he) of the theft" = "thief" and "(that) of the theft" = "penalty for the theft". kardiyas-tas "(that) of your heart (kard-)" = "your desire", mān-as harkannas "if he (is guilty) of the decease". More examples : assawas memiyanas "(he) of good relations" = "in good relations", TI-annas "(he) of the life (huiswatar)" = "with a long life" ; also genitives of infinitives (§185a) : nahhuwas "(he) of the respect" = "reverential", kuis arha tarnummas "who (is one) of the leaving" = "who (can be) exempted (of the military service)", kuit-ma DI-sar sumēl UL tar(ah)huwas "what business (is) however (that) of your inability" = "what business that you cannot settle by yourselves".

b) Whence the Akkadian : ŠA MAMETI "he of the oath" = "suzerain", ŠA KASKALNIM "that of the trip" = "supply".

c) Sometimes, such genitives are inflected like independant nouns : from hassannas-sas "(one) of his family" (hassatar [§83] + possessive pronoun -si- "his"), one can build an Acc. Sing. hassannas-san and a Dat.-Loc. Sing. hassannas-si.

213) a) A partitive apposition can be used instead of a genitive. Thus, two objects in the same case depend on a verb, the first one expressing a whole and the second one a part of the whole concerned by the action : takku A.ŠÀ-an ZAG-an kuiski parsiya "if somebody breaks the boundary stone of a field" (lit. : the field (and of it) the border ; variant with genitive : A.ŠÀ-as ZAG-an !). nu-war-us IGIHI.A-wa munnanzi "one will veil their eyes" (lit. : them, (that is) the eyes). mān apē-ma kuiski ITTI dUTUŠI wastai "if somebody sins by these against the Sun" (lit. : if these, somebody sins). nu-kan ANA dUTUŠI ŠU-i anda miyahuwantahhut "now become old under the protection of the Sun" (lit. : next to the Sun in the hand). nat ANA ABBAHI.A Ù ANA ABBA ABBAHI.A-YA UL kuedanikki uppir "they had not send it to any of my fathers and ancestors". nat-mu-kan UKU3-az KAxU-az sarā uizzi "and it (this word) comes out from my human mouth" (lit. : of the man, of the mouth ; variant with genitive : antuhsas KAxU-az !).

b) 1. The use of personal pronouns in this construction is especially important : nu-za kē KUR.KUR KÚR ammēdaz ŠU-az tar(ah)hun "now I have defeated these enemy countries with my hand" (lit. : by me, by the hand). UL-war-an-kan tuētaza memiyanaz kuennir "they did not kill him on your order" (lit. : by you, by the order).

2. In practice in this construction, the personal pronoun has the role of a possessive pronoun. Thus, one can even find plural forms of the personal pronouns "I" and "you (Sg.)" only conceivable in the singular : one finds next to IŠTU HUR.SAĜHahruwa tuedaz assiyantaza "from your beloved mountain H." a Dat.-Loc. Plur. tuedas assiyantas pēdas "at your beloved places".

c) The indications of measuring must also be interpreted as partitive appositions : nas parkuwatar-set 5 IKU "and it (the track), its height (is) 5 ikû" (i.e. "and the height of the track is 5 ikû"). gankuwar appāttaya UL duqqari "also this one (§302b), the weight is not important" (i.e. "also its weight is not important").

5. Ablative and Instrumental

214) a) The ablative firstly points out the start point of a motion answering the question "from where ?" : issaz "from the mouth", nepisaz "from heaven", wetenaz "from water".

b) The ablative is used for separation : parkuis apēz linkiyaz "free from this oath", sullannaz "following an argument".

c) For the ablative of comparison, cf. §222.

215) A frozen usage of the ablative probably occurs in the adverbs of place and time such as ZAG-az "at right" (actually "from right"), iskisaz "at the back, from the back", hantezziyaz "(from) front ; ahead", UD.KAM-az "at daylight", MI.KAM-az "at night".

216) The instrumental points out the means or the tool : nu-kan IZI wetenit kistanuwanzi "now, they extinguish the fire with water", dUTU-un IGIHI.A-it uskizzi "she sees the sun with her eyes", kastita-man akten "you (Pl.) would starve to death (lit. be dead by hunger)", Í.DÙ-ma-as-kan lamnit halzissai "the door-keeper calls him however by the name".

217) However, Hittite also uses an ablative of instrument : HAZZINNU-wa ŠU-za ep "take (Sg.) the axe with the hand", URU-an zahhiyaz katta dahhun "I have subdued the city through a fight".

218) a) This is why the ablative or the instrumental can be found in the same turn. One can say kunnaz kesseraz harzi and kunnit kessarta (§61) harzi "he holds with the right hand", nat-za nassu teshit uwallu (§176) nasma-at ariyasesnaz handayattaru "(the reason is) that either I want to see thanks to a dream (Instr.), or it must be observed by an oracle (Abl.)".

b) With verbs of motion, one can compare : ĜÌR-it sarā pāun "I went up by foot", LUGAL-us ĜIŠhulugannaz sarā uizzi "the king comes up with the chariot".

c) α) With a substantive in the ablative, the possessive pronoun is always in the instrumental (the ablative of the possessive pronoun is not used) : sarhuwandaz-set "from its inner", issazmit (i.e. *issaz-smit, §19a. 27a and b. 42c) "from their mouth", ZAG-az-tit "to your (Sg.) right", kartaz-mit "from my heart".

β) The same construction is also used with the demonstrative pronouns : kit pantalaz "starting from this moment". However, the ablative of the pronouns is regularly used : kēz KUR-az "from this country".

6. Ergative

218.1)The neuter noun has the same endings for the nominative and the accusative as long as it is not used as the subject of a transitive verb. E.g. as the object of a transitive verb : takku pahhur ANA A.ŠÀ-ŠU kuiski pēdai "if someone brings fire into his barn", and as the subject of an intransitive verb : pahhur kistari "the fire goes out".

However, when the neuter noun is used as subject of a transitive verb, it takes another ending : mahhan-ta kās tuppianza anda wemiyazzi "as soon as this tablet reaches you" (as shown by the common gender of kās, the noun then works as if its gender had become the common gender).

This is the usual behavior of the so-called absolutive-ergative languages, hence Hittite can be considered as functioning as an ergative language as long as neuter nouns are considered. The Neut. Nom.-Acc. case can be viewed as the absolutive case, while the special endings -anza / -antēs can be viewed as the ergative case.

7. Supplement to case syntax

219) Some verbs can be used with several cases for similar or different meanings :

a) watarnah- means with the accusative "to ask someone, to order someone, to make someone responsible for doing something", with the dative-locative "to inform someone".

b) katta dāi- means with the accusative "to subdue a city", with the dative-locative "to besiege a city".

c) nah(h)- "to fear, to be afraid" governs the accusative : nahmi-us "I fear them", UL-za kuitki nahmi "I am afraid for nothing", the dative-locative : pahhuenass-a uddani mekki nahhantes estin "fear (Plur.) also an outbreak of fire" and in an isolated case : nu-za halluwayaza mekki nahhantes estin "now be (Plur.) very afraid of a conflict".

d) punus- "to ask" can be constructed in two ways. One can either say "to ask someone (Acc.) about something (Dat.-Loc.)", e.g. nas dUTUŠI ANA DIHI.A punusmi "and I, the Sun, will ask him about the lawsuits", or "to ask something (Acc.) to someone (Dat.-Loc.)", e.g. nu-smas DIHI.A punuskiddu "and he must ask them each time about the lawsuits".

220) a) About the formal mutual alternation between the plural nominative and accusative, cf. §63. In the singular, the use of the nominative in place of the accusative occurs only sporadically : 5 GUD tāiugas 5 GUD iugas 5 GUD sawitisza pāi "he gives 5 two-year-old oxen, 5 one-year-old oxen, 5 sucking oxen" (roots iuga-, tāiuga-, sawitist-, for the last one cf. §76a).

b) The fact that the nominative Sing. kanza (of kant- "wheat (?)") is generally used in horse-books instead of the accusative Sing. kantan is explained by mistakes made by the non-Hittite author of these texts.