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What is declension?

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April 30, 2009 8:13AM

Declension organizes the non-verbal parts of speech so as to indicate case endings gender, and number. Case endings help relate the different parts of speech to the verb, and to the rest of the sentence. In the specific example of Latin, the cases are called as follows: nominative, for the subject of the sentence; genitive, to show possession; dative, for the indirect object; accusative, for the direct object; and ablative, for objects of prepositions. Gender indicates whether an object or person is feminine, masculine, or neuter. And number indicates whether the object or person is singular, in the case of one; or plural, in the case of more than one. In contrast to Latin, declension isn't strong in English. There are traces of its influence in the differentiation between singular and plural. There are even fewer traces in the differentiaton between cases. Nowadays, it tends to exist in the pronoun forms of he/him/his, I/me/mine, she/her/hers, they/them/their/theirs, and we/us/our/ours. And there are even rare sightings of gender, other than examples such as blond and blonde.