Associative case

The associative case (abbreviated ASS) is a grammatical case which expresses associativity which is, although related, not identical to comitativity, which is expressed by using the comitative case.

Associativity is a grammatical category which expresses the meaning "X and the group (of one or more members) associated with X", where X is a nominal, typically of human reference. An example is the Hungarian János-ék meaning "John and associates / John and his group / John and them",[1] or the Japanese Tanaka-tachi meaning "Tanaka and associates / Tanaka and his group / Tanaka and them".[2]

Associations in English can be identified by words such as with, or along with.[3] Another name for this is Instrumental Case.[4] Instrumental Case, in the past--has been identified as 'means by which', in that it expresses the notion of means by which an action was done.[5]


  1. ^ Cysouw, M. (2003). The Paradigmatic Structure of Person Marking. Oxford Studies in Typology and Linguistic Theory. OUP Oxford. p. 69. ISBN 978-0-19-925412-5. Retrieved 28 August 2018.
  2. ^ "Associativity". Grammatical Features. 11 June 1994. Retrieved 28 August 2018.

[3] Associative Case.,

[4] Associative/Instrumental Case.,

[5] Instrumental Case: Means by Which.,