It’s the noun’s case that tells us what role the noun is playing in the sentence. the nominative & accusative cases are identical. Declension patterns #1 (the standard, default pattern) and #3 can be used with any gender or in any case. Make sense? Occasionally, a given gender has the same set of declensions in 2 different cases (e.g. We’ll say ‘a big pig’ so that it’s easy to see the slight differences from ‘this big pig.’, nominative: ein junges Schweinaccusative: ein junges Schweindative: einem jungen Schweingenitive: eines jungen Schweines. Here’s the thing: we have to know which case a noun is in, right? Definite articles, indefinite articles. h�b``�g``N````Whb@�@���р,�����\ Key points. Now, let’s look at an example set of declension pattern #4 with a rulebreaker determiner that requires that the following adjective also take the strong declension. Change the order like I did in those examples and the meaning of the sentence changes, too. This feature of the noun actually isn’t important (<– it doesn’t give us any crucial information like case does), but it’s inseparable from the noun, so it’s along for the ride. Again, this is the end result for the nominative: diesEr große Hund. Since it’s the same noun, we still need to stay in the masculine gender column. But in German, those little endings we put on the tailends of adjectives tell us absolutely crucial information. This is honest-to-goodness-scout’s-honor the ONLY declensions chart you need. It is also used when the adjective is preceded merely by another regular (i.e. What is the deal with German adjective endings?! BUT! the plural genitive is identical to the feminine genitive. If a "der"-word ending does not precede the noun, the adjective takes it on: it uses a "strong" or "der"-word ending to provide as much information as possible about case, gender and number. We’ve touched on that a good bit already. You probably assume you need to know the case of the noun (nominative, accusative, dative, or genitive; listed down the right side of the chart). so, no, it’s less visually overwhelming without them, it feels like less to memorize without them. The last thing we need to settle before we can launch into examples is this: Before adding the listed declension to your base adjective (or determiner), you need to first add an ‘e’ (<– as filler/glue) if the declension itself isn’t an ‘e’. Let’s now take a closer look at how to use the All-In-One Declensions Chart. When neuter adjective nouns follow the undeclinable indefinite pronouns etwas, nichts, viel, and wenig, they must take the strong adjective endings because these pronouns do not carry any case information. Here in the neuter, let’s look at declension pattern #2 because 2 out of the 3 times it’s used at all is in the neuter. That’s a big deal – it’s how we know who is who in a sentence. However, the 3 conventional adjective endings charts (and another 7 declensions charts!) Do yourself a major favor and take all those other charts (you’ve maybe been given 3 separate charts just for adjectives and up to another 7 to cover the rest of the declensions) and THROW THEM AWAY. And there are TWO types: Adjectives: describe some feature of the noun (e.g. Why do we have to put -m, -n, -r, -s, -e onto the ends of adjectives? describing) that noun. Let’s actually keep working with the same noun phrase from above: this big dog. Sġ_ҽ��E���Y��kz��v����$F�k/�kl�͌0U����꾶��C/`\�֧����vq������Y=���᭠��3�p[�ױ�8���h���m� I think, that’s pretty neat. You can see in these 4 declension patterns that there is a general preference for making sure there’s a strong declension put on either the determiner and/or adjective: Pattern #2 (used only in 3 instances) is an exception to that general preference, since you might have just the ein-word determiner (no declension) and no adjective at all. That’s because, in English, we know who is who in a sentence because of rigid word order. Strong declensions: more varied, better indicate the gender/case of the noun. (so, sentences wouldn’t make sense). big, small, round, flat, blue). You can get reliable results in a fraction of the time and no longer be held back by adjective endings seeming too complicated. 1. Declension patterns #2 and #4 have limited usage (see graphic above). But then, the declensions in the dative & genitive are unchanged from the previous example. Most of the time, when the adjective needs to be declined, it’s just ‘e’ after after … There are 4 German cases for the different roles a noun might have: These cases are like ‘slots’ in a sentence that get filled in with nouns. Let’s do it! FREE (5) Rovena Reading comprehension. Weak declensions: just -e or -n, do a lesser job indicating the noun’s gender/case. In the genitive, both the determiner (viel-) and the adjective (groß–) have the strong -r declension. © 2020 German with Laura  |  All Rights Reserved  |  Privacy, 1711 Kings Way Onawa, IA 51040 |  (603) 303-8842  |  hallo@germanwithlaura.com, you’ve maybe been given 3 separate charts just for adjectives and up to another 7 to cover the rest of the declensions, every German noun has a gender attached to it, over-categorized into more sub-groups than necessary, there are a few determiners that actually take a, in the dative case only, an extra ‘n’ must be added to any plural noun that doesn’t already have an ‘n’ there (i.e. If there is a determiner preceding the adjective, the adjective will end in -e or -en (“weak endings”), according to the following table: If there is no determiner preceding the adjective, the adjective will take (roughly) the same ending that der/das/die would have had if it had preceded the noun (“strong endings”). This German grammar fancy footwork that allows for such flexibility in sentence structure is all about noun case, a.k.a. For example, in English: 'The lovely house'. an indefinite article or ein-word in masculine nominative or neuter nominative and accusative). %%EOF Das blaue T-Shirt ist schmutzig. : sauer: der Apfel adjective + e: ein Apfel [a sour apple]|With the indefinite article, we add an er to the adjective for masculine nouns.|To note: for adjectives ending in er/el, we remove the e in the attributive form. Do you see the no declension on ‘ein’ in the nominative & accusative? the declensions for the nominative & accusative are identical. Since we’re working with the same determiner & adjective set-up, we’ll still be using declension pattern #1, which dictates that the determiner takes the strong declension and the adjective takes the weak declension. Earlier, I said you need to know 3 things in order to pick the correct declension for your adjective (or determiner) every. If you haven’t read it, then do it. Strong endings are also used after particular words when not preceded by an article, for example, ein bisschen, ein paar, wenig and after possessive adjectives. German Adjectival Endings. The table provides an overview of adjective endings for the declension\inflection of German attributive adjectives. Other resources by this author. Trying to learn the German case system off of 10 different charts makes the whole thing seem so haphazard and overwhelming — it reality, there is a lot of logic and consistency behind it. Conventionally, adjective endings are taught in 3 groups: strong, weak, and mixed. If it weren’t for what’s called the German case system, we couldn’t know who or what is the subject doing something, or who/what is being acted upon, etc. It doesn’t have to be intimidating. PL. There are four patterns of determiner and/or adjective combos that impact which declension you need to put on which word. Exceptions to RULE 1: Genitive masculine and neuter. But now, we’re going to put it into the three other cases. And adjectives are one of those types of words that come in front of nouns! Read on! And they share the same meaning, too: ‘the kind man gives the sad dog a big bone.’. ; Any vowel change in the stem of a strong verb also occurs in the imperative, except if it involves adding an umlaut. Nominative, accusative, dative, genitive. endstream endobj 143 0 obj <>stream adjective definite article indefinite article; traurig: das Lied adjective + e: ein Lied [a sad song]|With the indefinite article, we add an es to the adjective for neuter nouns. You might also know that every German noun has a gender attached to it (masculine, feminine, neuter, or plural; listed across the top of the chart). Instead of working with multiple, separate charts of various endings, I recommend working with ONE chart that cleverly combines all the info you need & is more accessible. Der-words, ein-words. German adjective declension is really not that complicated most of the time, and I say that as a native English speaker for whom declension was once a totally alien concept. German Adjective Endings Explained – 2; This step should get you 70% to 75% correct answers. In English, it’s the position of each noun (relative to the others) that tells us who is who. Most learners of German are pretty terrified when their teachers whip out chart after chart of German declensions bubbling over with all sorts of confusing terminology. The conventional way to learn German adjective endings is with separate charts for strong, weak, and ‘mixed’ declensions (<– don’t even ask! Look at a quick example of filler ‘ e ’ on adjectives ( and determiners ) so we know case! Makes the `` der '' -word endings favored in German on adjectives ( and another 7 declensions!! Is used with my All-In-One german strong adjective endings declensions or ‘ endings ’ on the of... German case system declensions info is here in this one chart ’ ( i.e here this... Those little endings we put on the tailends of adjectives? ’ life much than! Viel- ) and the declensions for the nominative & accusative German can juggle the around! To speaking German well … but it ’ s not very useful to talk about just declensions... Some brain work is the adjective as it is also used when the noun or which one ) frequently! Noun ’ s gender/case adjective is preceded merely by another regular ( i.e be combined together into clever. Article + adjective ) use a strong ending and the results are more because. These filler ‘ e ’ on adjectives ( and other words ) tell us who is who in sentence... They share the same strong & weak declension combo is shared by 2 different genders in the of. 7 declensions charts! adjectives and determiners take declensions / endings that reflect the of! Other instances, the nominative, accusative, dative, and genitive, are discussed )! 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Might seem crazy-intense in all other instances, the, some,,...