How to use cases in the Croatian language?

There are seven cases in the Croatian language. Before you start learning the cases, it’s very important that you know the endings for all three genders in Croatian. If you’re just starting to learn and understand Croatian cases, you can find you can download my free cheatsheet (famous ‘šalabahter’ my students use) that can help you learn and understand Croatian cases a bit better.  

Understanding Croatian Cases (Basics)

Here’s a quick overview of six cases (doesn’t include vokativ):


It’s the subject of a sentence.

           Example: Ivan je iz Hrvatske.

          (Ivan is from Croatia. – Who is from Croatia.)

          Ovo je Ivan. (This is Ivan. – This is who?)


It’s used with lots of prepositions: od (from), do (to), poviše (above), ispod (under), pored (next to), između (between), etc. It’s also used with quantitiy: malo (a little), puno (a lot), nekoliko (a few)…

           Example: Ivan je iz Hrvatske.  (Ivan is from Croatia.)

Od Hrvatske do Njemačke treba 2 sata avionom.

(From Croatia to Germany it takes 2 hours by plane.)


It’s an indirect object in a sentence. In short, it’s used to say what are we giving/saying/telling/donating to someone.

           Example: Ivan daje poklon Ani. (Ivan is giving a gift to Ana.)

                           Ivan govori Ani o putovanju. (Ivan is telling Ana about the trip.)



It’s used in the function of an object in a sentence. It’s also used with the verbs of movement. If we want to say where we are going or travelling to, we would use akuzativ.

           Example: Ivan daje poklon Ani. Ivan is giving a gift to Ana.)

Ivan gleda film. (Ivan is watching a film.)

Ivan pije kavu. (Ivan is drinking coffee.)

Ivan ide u Split, u Hrvatsku. (Ivan is going to Split, Croatia.)


It’s used usually to determine the place. In short, if you want to say where you are, you will use lokativ in Croatian.

Ivan je u Rijeci, u Hrvatskoj. (Ivan is in Rijeka, in Croatia.)

Živim u Rimu, u Italiji. (I live in Rome, in Italy.)


It’s used to say who you are going with or what means of transport you are using. In short, if you want to say that you are going with your friend by car, you will use instrumental.

Ivan ide autom. (Ivan is going by car.)

Ivan ide s prijateljem. (Ivan is going with a friend.)