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Dative Case is the third polish case. It is used for indirect objects in the sentence. It describes to whom something is done, given or taken from. In the Polish language Dative Case is called Celownik. Celownik is an existing word and means viewfinder (it is the thing in guns used for aiming on a target). The polish name of this case perfectly matches its usage.


something is done to someone

Przygotowałem mojej żonie romantyczną kolację. - I prepared a romantic dinner for my wife.

mojej żonie - Dative (indirect object)

romantyczną kolację - Accusative (direct object)

something is given to someone

Czy możesz oddać mi książkę? - Can you return the book to me?

mi - Dative (indirect object)

książkę - Accusative (direct object)

something is taken from someone

Zabrałem dziecku zabawkę, bo było niegrzeczne. - I took the toy from the child, because it was rude.

dziecku - Dative (indirect object)

zabawkę - Accusative (direct object)

Dative Case answers to the questions komu? czemu? Below you can see examples of sentences and their corresponding questions, which use the Dative Case:


Pomagam mamie w ogródku. - I'm helping mom in the garden.

Komu pomagam w ogrodzie? - Who do I help in the garden?

mamie - Dative

mama - Nominative


Dzięki Słońcu na Ziemi istnieje życie. - Thanks to the Sun life exists on the Earth.

Dzięki czemu istnieje na Ziemi życie? - Thanks to what life exists on the Earth?

Słońcu - Dative

Słońce - Nominative

In the following articles you can learn in detail when to use the Dative Case and how to create the Dative Case for nouns, adjectives, numerals and pronouns. I will also cover the most common exceptions, that you should know.

/ Home / Grammar / Cases / Dative Case (Celownik) / Introduction

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