***Confusion between Nominative and Accusative***

As I have strengthened some beginner lessons on my tree, I have come across many new ones asking for help. They don't seem to understand the case system of German. Maybe they do by now, or a beginner stumbles upon this, here is a clear-up of Nominative and Accusative.

The Nominative case is the case that contains the subject of a sentence. For beginners, it is normally in the beginning of a sentence. It is usually "der Hund" or "die Frau" or something of the like. The nominative is doing the action. Think of it this way: You were nominated to this prize because you did something, just like the nominative case. There isn't much else to say here, so now for accusative.

The Accusative case is the case that contains the direct object of a sentence. You probably won't see much of this until you reach the accusative pronouns lesson. The accusative is what is receiving the action of the nominative. Think of it as "being accused." You are receiving the action of being accused. I will get into more detail with this later.

Here are some examples of Nominative. "Der Mann heisst Karl." "Der Mann" is nominative. "Du bist eine schoene Frau." "Du" is a nominative pronoun. * "Die Katze ist grau und schwarz." "Die Katze" is nominative.

Here are some examples of Accusative. "Er isst mein Essen." "Mein Essen" is receiving the action, so it is accusative. "Er mag den Hund." "den Hund" is accusative. *"Sie haben ein grosses Haus." "grosses Haus" is accusative.

The adjective endings in the nominative are -er, -e, -es. If there is a definite article, the adjective ends in an -e. But the indefinite articles end in -er, -e, -es. Der kleine Hund. NOT, Der kleiner Hund because it has a definite article. Ein kleiner Hund. The adjective has "er" because of the indefinite article.

You will understand more as you continue with Duolingo.

For each case, there are pronouns. What if I told you that only the masculine changes in accusative? Almost................. Here are the nominative pronouns first so you see a comparison.

NOMINATIVE PRONOUNS Ich-I. Du-You. (Informal) Er-He. Sie-She. Es-It. Wir-We. Ihr-You all. Sie/sie- You (formal)/they.

You have probably seen those rather often. Here are the accusative pronouns.

ACCUSATIVE PRONOUNS Mich-Me. Dich-You (informal). Ihn-Him. sie-Her. Es- It. Uns-Us. Euch- You all. Sie/sie- You (formal)/ them.

There also definite and indefinite articles. Those are simple. Nominative- Der, Die, Das. Accusative- Den, Die, Das. Only the masculine changes here. Also, Nominative- Ein, Eine, Ein. Accusative- Einen, Eine, Ein. Only the Masculine changes.

That's about it. If you have read to the bottom of this page, I hope it helped you. If you watch some videos and read some articles, you will soon have this down. Just remember that Nominative is the one doing the action, Accusative is the one receiving, and Masculine indefinite/definite articles change with this.

Ich hoffe, dass diese Artikel dir geholfen hat. Auf wiedersehen!

May 8, 2016


This page has been bookmarked. You are a life saver. Have a lingot, and I hope you receive many for this post!

May 8, 2016

Thanks for this, but should accusative for Sie also be Sie, not Ihnen - that's dative?

May 8, 2016

That is correct. Sie (formal you) is the exact same in both Nominative and Accusative case in the German language.

May 8, 2016

Thanks. I'll change that now.

May 10, 2016

Great job! I'm sure this will help lots of people:)

May 8, 2016

Thanks a lot, bookmarked for later use

May 9, 2016

Although i already kind of understood nominative/accusative case this really clarified the differences. Thank you so much! Lingots for you...

May 9, 2016

Really helpful, thank you

May 10, 2016

wooow this is splendid

May 10, 2016

I will make dative and genitive articles for you all soon. I will put a link here when I do, so keep this discussion followed.

May 10, 2016

Thanks, that's very helpful!

May 11, 2016

Well done Bob. Very clearly explained.

May 13, 2016

Is this the same in Norwegian?

July 19, 2018

Very, very good explanation. Finally, I understand <3

October 3, 2018

Thank you for making this so clear :)

October 14, 2018

Thanks a lot for this clarification.

October 29, 2018

danke ! langot for you

April 14, 2019
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