Accusative case in German – Nouns
Lesson on introduction to German cases: Cases in German
Usually a sentence has three parts
- Subject who does the action
- Object who receives the action
- Verb which specifies the type of action
For example, in a sentence “A man buys a chair” ,
- Subject is “the man” who is doing an action
- Object is “the chair” who is receiving an action
- Verb is “to buy” which suggests the action of buying.
Similar sentences would be
- The dog bites a man
- I hear songs
- I eat an apple
- He is giving a pen
In all the above sentences, highlighted words are direct objects.
The accusative case is used for direct objects.
The German Articles for nouns which are objects in the sentences will undergo a declensional change.
Der Mann sieht Den Mann (The man sees the man)
There are two nouns – “Mann”
The noun which is the subject takes the article of the nominative case : Der Mann
The noun which is the object takes the article of the accusative case : Den Mann
The article “Der” changes to become “Den” for all masculine nouns in accusative case.
In the German accusative case,the articles for masculine gender change while articles for feminine and neuter gender remain the same.
The table below gives the list of definite and indefinite articles in accusative case.
Articles for accusative case in German
||Den (changes from Der)
||Einen (changes from Ein)
Der Mann sieht den Mann
→The man sees the man
Der Mann sieht die Frau
→The man sees the woman
Der Hund beißt den Hund
→The dog bites the dog
Ich kaufe einen Hund
→I buy a dog
Monica isst einen Apfel
→Monica eats an Apple
Peter trinkt die Beer
→Peter drinks the beer
Du siehst einen Junge
→You see a boy
Ich fahre ein Auto
→I drive a car
Like articles, the pronouns also undergo declensional change in the accusative case.
The following table compares the nominative and accusative form of possessive pronouns in German.
The German pronoun for masculine gender changes from “Mein” to “Meinen” in accusative case.
This rule is applicable to all possessive adjectives of masculine gender. The pronouns like “dein”,”seine”,”unser” and “ihr” become “deinen”,”seinen”,”unseren”,”ihren” in accusative case.
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