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Accusative

Welcome to your second of the 7 cases in Turkish. You have already been using the nominative case to
describe subjects and some objects.

The accusative case in Turkish is used to mark specific direct objects. What does this mean exactly? A
specific direct object is one that uses the article the. For example:

Turkish English

Ben gazete okurum. I read newspapers. or I read a newspaper.

Ben gazeteyi okurum. I read the newspaper.

Ben bir gazete okurum. I read a newspaper.

As you can see above, the accusative is only used when referring to the newspaper. Now, how do we
form the accusative case? This will bring you to one of the most fun aspects of the Turkish language,
vowel harmony.

Vowel Harmony

In Turkish, vowels within a (native) word and any suffixes that are attached to said word must obey vowel
harmony rules. This means that vowels tend to either be the same or similar, making words easier to
pronounce than they may look.

There are two types of vowel harmony in Turkish: 4-way and 2-way. The accusative case uses 4-way
vowel harmony. In order to figure out what may go on the end, you will have to look at the final vowel in
the word.

Turkish Accusative Suffix

ö, ü -(y)ü

o,u -(y)u

e,i -(y)i

a,ı -(y)ı

If the noun ends in a vowel, you have to insert the buffer letter y. Here are some examples:
Turkish, Nominative Turkish, Accusative English

elma elmayı apple

gazete gazeteyi newspaper

süt sütü milk

limon limonu lemon

Consonant Mutations

There is one final thing to talk about in terms of the accusative case. That would be your first taste of
consonant mutations, often called consonant harmony. Consonants often change at the end of words
depending on if it is followed by a vowel or a consonant. If they are followed by a vowel, they will
generally change into voiced consonants. For example:

Turkish, Nominative Turkish, Accusative English

kitap kitabı book

ağaç ağacı tree

köpek köpeği dog

This means:

p→b

t→d

k→ğ

ç→c

This rule in general does not affect single syllable words, but there are exceptions of course. You will
even come across exceptions to vowel harmony in loanwords from Arabic, Farsi, and French. These must
be learned as you encounter them. In the meantime, happy learning and kolay gelsin.