Cases – Nominative, Accusative & Dative

In German, the word for ‘the’ and ‘a / an’ changes depending on the position of the noun in the sentence. 

  • Row 1:  If the noun is at the beginning of the sentence and comes before the verb you use the word for ‘the’ or ‘a / an’ from Row 1 (nominative).  This is because the noun is the subject of the sentence, i.e. it is the thing that ‘does’ the action of the verb (it is part of the snap pair).

 

  • Row 2:  If the noun is in the second part of the sentence after the verb you use the word for ‘the’ or ‘a / an’ from Row 2 (accusative).  This is because the noun is the object of the sentence.  The only exception to this is if you use the verb ‘sein’ – to be or ‘heissen’ – to be called.
    • *We also use Row 2 if the noun comes directly after the following prepositions:
      • bis – until, to, by
      • durch – through, by
      • entlang – along, down
      • für – for
      • gegen – against, for
      • ohne – without
      • um – around, for, at (time)

cases

  • Row 3 is called the Dative Case and is used when the noun comes after the following prepositions:
    • aus – from, out of
    • außer – except for
    • bei – at, near
    • gegenüber –  opposite
    • mit – with
    • nach – after, to
    • seit – since (time), for
    •   von – from
    • zu – at, to

The following prepositions are a little complicated. 

You use Row 2 after them if there is movement from one place to another – e.g. Ich gehe ins (in das) Kino – I go to the cinema.  (you are moving from outside the cinema to inside the cinema)

You use Row 3 after them if there is no movement from one place to another – e.g. Ich bin im (in dem) Kino – I am in the cinema.  (you are in the cinema and are not moving to a different place)

  •  
    • an – at, on
    • auf – on
    • hinter – behind
    • in – in
    • neben – next to
    • über – above, over
    • unter – under
    • vor – in front of
    • zwischen between
  •  

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June 17, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , . accusative, dative, nominative, prepositions. 3 comments.

Hast du Haustiere? – (Do you have any pets?)

Use the pictures below to make sentences saying what pets you have.

1. cat   z.B.  Ich habe eine Katze.

2. dog   ……………………………………………..

3. bird……………………………………………..

4. fish ……………………………………………..

5. horse ……………………………………………..

6. rabbit ……………………………………………..

animal-sentence-answers

March 5, 2009. Tags: , , , . accusative, animals, writing. Leave a comment.

Hausaufgaben – für 10/11tem März

Look at the Simpson’s family tree below and make at least one sentence like the examples to describe each person. 

e.g.  Maggie hat eine Schwester und einen Bruder.
         Homer ist Maggies Vater.

Use either the verb ‘haben’ (to have) or ‘sein’ (to be) to make sentences, but remember that if you use ‘haben’ you may have to use ‘einen’  with masculine words (look at previous blog post).

Also there are no apostrophes in German, so if you want to say that Lisa is Bart’s sister, you have to use one of the forms below:

Lisa ist die Schwester von Bart – Lisa is the sister from Bart

or

Lisa ist Barts Schwester – Lisa is Bart’s sister (note NO apostrophe – this -s only works with a persons real name, you can’t use it with objects)

simpsonstree1

February 24, 2009. Tags: , , , , , . accusative, family, homework, writing. Leave a comment.

Describing your family

Look at these four sentences:

 

Karl ist             ein        Bruder.

Angela ist         eine      Schwester.

Ich habe           einen    Bruder.

Ich habe           eine      Schwester.

 

 

Ein, einen and eine both mean the same thing – a

 

What is the rule?

When do we use ein?

When do we use einen?

When do we use eine?

 

Answer: We use ein when we are talking about someone male using the verb ‘sein’ (to be) and we use einen after any other verb.  We use eine when we are talking about somebody  female.   

 

Can you fill in the gaps in these four sentences?

1)         Marge Simpson ist _______ Mutter.

2)         Homer Simpson ist _______ Vater.

3)         Lisa Simpson hat _______ Großmutter.

4)         Bart Simpson hat _______ Großvater.

 

describing-your-family-answers

February 24, 2009. Tags: , , , . accusative, family, grammar, Uncategorized. Leave a comment.