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  5. "Du bist deren Sohn."

"Du bist deren Sohn."

Translation:You are their son.

January 20, 2013



yeah, these genitives kill me sometimes... So, just to confirm, this could also mean "..her son", then?


No, "her son" translates as "ihr Sohn".


Um, are you sure? 'Their son' can also be 'ihr Sohn' so it makes sense that 'deren Sohn' can mean both.


Let me see how I'd use "deren" as a native speaker:

1) as relative pronoun referring to either one female person or a plural:

Die Frau, deren Sohn im Auto saß. = The woman whose son sat in the car.

Die Eltern, deren Sohn Biologie studiert. = The parents whose son is studying biology.

2) as demonstrative pronoun referring to either one female person or a plural:

Wir trafen Marianne und sprachen mit deren Sohn. = We met Mary-Ann and spoke with the latter's son. (*)

Wir trafen die Müllers und sprachen mit deren Sohn. = Wir met the Millers and spoke with their son.

(*): In most contexts, this sounds pretty unnatural to a native speaker's ear. One would definitely prefer the use of a possessive pronoun:

Wir trafen Marianne und sprachen mit ihrem Sohn. = We met Mary-Ann and spoke with her son.

So, yes, you are right, getting back to your question, it could be "her son", but then one would usually say "ihr Sohn", not "deren Sohn".


Hmm, interesting. Thanks! It's good to hear from a native speaker about these things that are a bit tricky and confusing...


So is "du bist ihres Sohn" correct as well?


No your sentence is wrong. It would be "ihr", not "ihres"


"ihres Sohn" cannot exist.

You could have "ihres Sohnes" but that would mean something different - "of their son". e.g.

Das Zimmer ihres Sohnes The room of their son / Their son's room


So, sorry, what is the difference in meaning between 'Du bist deren Sohn' and 'Du bist ihr Sohn' ?

[deactivated user]

    "deren" is more emphatic.


    What do you mean by emphatic exactly?


    Emphatic means to show or give more emphasis, or for something to be definite and clear. I believe this just means that it stands out more than if you were to use "ihr."


    Ahh, okay thank you.


    For eg. In this case "You are their son!!".


    Maybe there are biological and adoptive parents and someone says indicating one of this couple: "Du bist DEREN Sohn".


    A relative pronoun without anything to get related with...that's great....I don't understand this.

    Could it be You are her son?


    I would have thought this could mean either "You are her son" or "You are their son" due to deren being feminine or plural and dessen being masculine and neuter. Yet the former was marked as incorrect.


    What's the difference between deren and ihr when they are used as demonstrative pronoun?

    [deactivated user]


      Thanks. I just looked up and see that it can be used as a very strong possessive pronoun


      It listened to just my dad coughing the background and then said it was correct.


      Looks like your dad coughs in German

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