One last post about genitive dates

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2005/11/12 03:01 -05:00, original URI: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/michkap/archive/2005/11/12/491274.aspx


About a year ago I talked about "What the %$#! are genitive dates?" and then yesterday and the day before I talked about them again and then again and then again.

Hopefully this will be the last post about them for a little while!

In a comment to that first post, George asked:

I understand your post about the month names. But what about day names? Do any locales have genitive forms for them?

To which I pointed out:

Hi George,

There may be, but it would not apply here since there is no analagous "owned" piece like "the 7th hour of Monday" or something like that. Thus there is not a case where a genitive form for the day name would be needed.

But perhaps somebody who speaks one of these languages could say for sure whether there is a genitive form for day names?

And not too long after, Igor Tandetnik tried to answer the question:

There is indeed a genitive form of day names in Russian. In fact, there is a genitive form of almost every noun, along with nominative, dative, accusative, instrumental and prepositional. Exceptions are certain nouns borrowed from other languages, that only have one form.

GetLocaleInfo(LOCALE_SDAYNAMEx) provides the nominative form for day names (this is the base form, the one listed in dictionaries and such). If you use a date by itself, as in "Monday, January 3", this is the form you need. But if the date is used as part of a sentence, you may need other forms. E.g. in "until Monday, January 3" one would use genitive, "on Monday, January 3" requires accusative, to say "between Monday, January 3 and Saturday, January 8" you need instrumental.

Although it is not entirely clear to me from the above whether the genitive form would in fact be used here for the day as well as the month; I had though (perhaps incorrectly) that it would require something within the day such as "the 7th hour of Tuesday". But is it the case that some of the strigs given above that include a day name would require the genitive form of the day name?

The problem is complicated a bit more by a few facts:

  1. If I am correct about the use of genitive day names, then Windows currently has no way to support format strings that would use the genitive day names since there is no NLS function that will mix date and time tokens; if I am wrong then it is easily possible.
  2. The .NET Framework's formatting and pasrsing allow the mixing of date and time values and it is posible to create a format string where a genitive day name might be expected (but which we do not currently use anything but the one nominative form we have).

So, in the interests of looking at features in future versions, what kind of formatted strings would include a day name where the genitive form of the day's name would be expected?

(I promise this will be my last post about genitive dates for a while!)

 

This post brought to you by "Z" (U+005a, a.k.a. LATIN CAPITAL LETTER Z)


# Igor Tandetnik on 12 Nov 2005 9:45 AM:

In my examples you quote, the day name is in the cases I stated, whereas the month name is always in genitive. Consider:

Saturday
nominative: суббота
genitive: субботы
dative: субботе
accusative: субботу
instrumental: субботой
prepositional: субботе
(dative and prepositional happen to be the same for this noun, but may be different for other nouns).

November:
nominative - ноябрь
genitive - ноября
(other forms don't occur when spelling out dates, but may occur when the month name is used by itself, without specific date or day, as in "it happened in November")

Today is Saturday, November 12
Сегодня суббота 3 ноября
nominative

until Saturday, November 12
до субботы 12 ноября
genitive

judging by Saturday, November 12
судя по субботе 12 ноября
dative
(a rather contrived example, couldn't come up with anything better)

on Saturday, November 12
в субботу 12 ноября
accusative

between Monday, November 7 and Saturday, November 12
между понедельником 7 ноября и субботой 12 ноября
both day names are in instrumental, month name is genitive

about Saturday, November 12
о субботе 12 ноября
prepositional

# Teresa on 12 Nov 2005 1:11 PM:

FYI ...
The "hi George" section is repeated.

;-)

# Michael S. Kaplan on 12 Nov 2005 1:27 PM:

No its not!

# Michael S. Kaplan on 12 Nov 2005 1:27 PM:

(anymore, that is)

# Michael S. Kaplan on 12 Nov 2005 1:33 PM:

Ah, I understand what you are saying now, Igor. I will have someone take a look at this....

referenced by

2010/09/09 Latvian. Genitive. Oops.

2008/05/14 Windows is too busy being consistent with the user to be consistent with itself!

2007/08/04 A re-genitive post

2006/03/20 Practical Uses for Replacement Cultures/Locales

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