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Adjectives and how to use them with different articles

Some time ago, in lesson 2, you studied the meaning of some adjectives in German. For example: neu, alt, gro,
etc.. But until now, we did not extend this list of adjectives any further. The reason for this is that we are still
only able to form simle constructions with adjectives, in which the adjective comes after a form of the verb
'sein' (to be). For example: 'Ich bin schn' or 'Du bist hsslich'.
What we are going to learn now is how to use adjectives directly in front of nouns. An example from the dialog
of page 1:
Ich mchte eine neue Jacke kaufen.
I would like to buy a new jacket.
The adjective is highlighted in red and as we can see, its ending is 'e'.
In German, whenever we use adjectives in front of nouns as we did in the above example, we have to add an
ending to the adjective, which depends on three things:
gender of the noun (masculine, feminine or neuter)
case of the noun (nominative and accusative are the only two cases, which we know so far)
type of the article used (definite article or indefinite article)
Seems complicated, right? You will see now that it's actually not that bad. There is a lot of regularity in the
following tables, which summarize, what endings we use for which genders, cases and articles.
adjective-endings with definite articles
case
masculine feminine
neuter

plural

nominative -e

-e

-e

-en

accusative -en

-e

-e

-en

adjective-endings with indefinite articles (or no article)


case
masculine feminine
neuter
plural
nominative -er

-e

-es

-e

accusative -en
-e
-es
-e
Note: The plural indefinite article does not exist! Therefore, if no article is used in the plural, use the endings of
this table.
Now let's look at some example sentences, in which adjectives are placed directly in front of their noun. Each
time, we will explain the adjective's ending by naming the noun's gender, case and article type:
1) Die neue Lehrerin heit Kirsten. (Lehrerin = feminine, nominative, possessive pronoun => 'e')
2) Der alte Fernseher ist kaputt. (Fernseher = masculine, nominative, definite article => 'e')
3) Peter ist ein freundlicher Mann. (Mann = masculine, nominative, indefinite article => 'er')
4) Aber seine Tchter Elisabeth und Karin sind unfreundliche Mdchen. (Mdchen = plural, nominative,
indefinite article (no article) => 'e')
5) Die schne Frau dort drben heit Marlene. (Frau = feminine, nominative, definite article => 'e')
6) Wir wollen heute abend in ein schnes Restaurant gehen. (Restaurant = neuter, accusative, indefinite
article => 'es')
7) Manfred geht in den groen Garten. (Garten = masculine, accusative, definite article => 'e')
The last two sentences from above contain an accusative case. And again, we can look at our accusative-rule
from lesson 4, which we extended to the indefinite article on Page 2 of this lesson and now restate it to:
RULE: The accusative is only visible, if it is formed on masculine nouns. In that case, the definite article

'der' changes to 'den' and the indefinite article 'ein' changes to 'einen'. Also, all adjectives have to end in 'en', if they precede a masculine noun in the accusative (see tables above). Thus, the accusative of feminine
and neuter nouns is NOT distinguishable from their nominative forms.
On the following pages, we will practice adding the correct endings to adjectives depending on the gender, case
and type of article (indefinite, definite) of the succeeding noun.