3.12 – Using Quantity Words – Genitive sg. of pl.?

3.12 – Using Quantity Words

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3.12 – Using Quantity Words
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3.12 – Using Quantity Words – Genitive sg. of pl.?

Words which express a quantity of something are followed by the genitive case in Czech. This lesson will cover when these words should be followed by the genitive singular vs. when they should be followed by the genitive plural. It turns out that the choice is actually quite simple. Generally speaking, if you would use the singular in English, then you should use the singular in Czech; likewise, if you use the plural in English, then use the plural in Czech.

Quantity Expressions Genitive Singular

The object being quantified is typically not counted. Nouns such as this are typically called mass nouns and include words referring to substances, such as maso ‘meat’, pivo ‘beer’, mléko ‘milk’, čas ‘time’ (also considered a sort of substance), as well as abstract nouns such as odvaha ‘courage’ or strach ‘fear’.


Kilo mouky

A kilogram of flour.

Tři kila masa

Three kilograms of meat.

Litr vína

A liter of wine.

Kolik máš času ?

How much time do you have?

Hodně odvahy

A lot of courage

Quantity Expressions Genitive Plural

Likewise, the genitive plural is used with things we typically count (i.e. people, discrete objects, etc.).

Několik hrušek

A few pears

Hodně koláčů

A lot of kolaches

Spousta knih

A bunch of books