I am studying using the book "Klipp und Klar" and in the lesson fifteen about the dative case there is a sentence that I didn't understand. The sentence is:

Das Mädchen ist krank und den Frauen ist schlecht.

I realize that the part den Frauen is the dative, but is this right? To me this little part should stay in the nominative case, or when the und is used the things should stay in the dative.

  • 2
    The 'und' gives no hint at all as you can connect any two sentences with it. – Hagen von Eitzen Jan 6 '13 at 22:16

The sentence is correct; the construction "jemandem ist schlecht" requires the dative case, meaning someone feels nauseated.

This is comparable to "jemandem ist warm/kalt/langweilig"; this also requires the dative case.

If you used the nominative case here, saying "jemand ist schlecht", this would shift the meaning to someone is bad (at something).

  • I wouldn't use "jemand ist schlecht" in the context of "someone is bad at something", but rather "someone is bad". – Jonas Jan 6 '13 at 19:54
  • Even though I agree that the special case of "jemand ist schlecht" can be misunderstood, I want to mention that "jemand" and "jemandem" are both valid dative cases of "jemand". – John Smithers Jan 7 '13 at 10:47

The fragment 'den Frauen ist schlecht' is dative plural, and to me is sounds like the women are ill or not feeling well - analogous to 'mir is schlecht' when you're not feeling well.


In this case "die Frauen" is the object because it actually means

Es ist den Frauen schlecht.

This kind of consruction is commonly used when expressing (subjective, usually negative) feeling e.g.:

Dem Mädchen ist schlecht.

Dem Kind ist langweilig.

Mir ist komisch/ übel/ nicht gut.

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