"Die Katze ist schwarz. Es ist eine schwarze Katze."

Translation:The cat is black. It is a black cat.

January 26, 2013



Here are tables that I constructed. I cannot learn without the grammar translation method first.

<pre> The Definate Articles and dieser, diese, dieses etc. </pre>

Case m f n pl Nominative der die das die Accusative den die das die Dative dem der dem den Genative des der des der

<pre> Adjective Endings </pre>

Case m f n pl Nominative e e e en Accusative en e e en Dative en en en en Genative en en en en

<pre> The Indefinate Articles and mien, meine etc (for meine etc) </pre>

Case m f n pl
Nominative ein eine ein e
Accusative einen eine ein e
Dative einem einer einem en
Genative eines einer eines er

<pre> Adjective Endings </pre>

Case m f n pl
Nominative er e es en
Accusative en e es en
Dative en en en en
Genative en en en en

<pre>Negation with the indefinate articles (kien(e)) </pre>

Case m f n pl
Nominative kein keine kein keine
Accusative keinen keine kein keine
Dative keinem keiner keinem keinen
Genative keines keiner keines keiner

<pre> Adjective Endings </pre>

Case m f n pl
Nominative er e es en
Accusative en e es en
Dative em er em en
Genative es er es en

<pre> Adjective endings where there is not article or After etwas, mehr, wenig, viel, mehrer, all </pre>

Case m f n pl Nominative er e es e Accusative en e es e Dative em er em en Genative en er en er

Sentence begins with an adjective: -e. Adjective at the end of sentence: not declined.
Modified noun (e.g. red wine): adjective declined. Adjectives not directly attached to a noun: not declined

March 19, 2013


How do the endings of the colours work? They keep changing from Schwarz, to Schwarze, to Schwarzen and I can't see the rule. Help?

January 26, 2013


"Schwarz" is an adjective. There are two basic types of adjectives:

1) Predicative adjectives, i.e. adjectives used after the verbs "sein" (to be) and "werden" (to become). They get no additional ending but remain unchanged: "Die Katze ist schwarz/Ein Hund ist schwarz/ Die Häuser sind schwarz", etc.

2) Attributive adjectives, i.e. adjectives used before a noun. They get additional endings: "die schwarzE Katze"/ "ein schwarzER Hund"/ "die schwarzEN Häuser". The endings of attributive adjectives depend on several factors:

a) the type of article that is used before the adjective (der-words, ein-words, unpreceded)

b) whether the noun is masculine, feminine, neuter or plural

c) the case of the noun (nominative, genitive, dative, accusative)

For more information including charts of the endings you have to use, read the chapters on adjectives here: http://coerll.utexas.edu/gg/gr/index.html?si=adj

To come back to your exercise: In the sentence "Die Katze ist schwarz", "schwarz" is used after a form of the verb "to be" (sein). Thus, it is a predicative adjective and remains unchanged.

In the second sentence "Es ist eine schwarze Katze", the adjective is used before the noun "Katze". It is an attributive adjective and therefore gets an ending. The article "eine" is an ein-word, the noun "Katze" is feminine and nominative. Because of these factors, the adjective adds the ending "-e": "eine schwarzE Katze".

January 26, 2013


Thank you! I'm printing that out and keeping it around!

May 7, 2013


Better still, lets have more double sentences like this for practice! one illustration is worth a thousand grammar words... life is too short to learn German by these long-winded rules, at least mine is!

January 19, 2016


Yes! Exactly so! I can't stop in the middle of a sentence and say "Wait five minutes while I read up about that rule again"!

April 10, 2018


Why is your life short

September 23, 2017


Great explanation! Thanks!

March 1, 2019


It changes with the gender of the word, like a direct object. Die Katze, Die Schwarze Katze, Der Hund, Der Schwarzen Hund Das Pferd, Das Schwarz Pferd.

November 22, 2018


I think all 3 examples given here would have an adjective ending in -e, because adjectives preceding a noun either end in -e if the definite article is in the nominative singular case, or in -en if the definite article is in another case and/or plural. Here, the definite articles have the nominative case (I assume, since there aren't actually sentences) and are paired with singular nouns.

die schwarze Katze - der schwarze Hund - das schwarze Pferd

If I have this wrong, corrections are welcome :)

November 26, 2018


Is 'es' (neut.) correct? In a previous module I think I saw that the pronoun agreed with the gender of the subject, so in this case that would be 'sie' (f.). Or does it change to 'es' because 'it' is now the subject of a new sentence, and therefore can/should take 'es'?

February 18, 2013


It can be either "es" or "sie" (ist eine schwarze Katze), though for objects and animals you'd usually use "es".

February 22, 2013


Could you also say "Die ist eine schwarze Katze"?

March 10, 2016


No, "Die" is the equivalent for the, so you'd be saying "THE is a black cat," which is illiterate.

October 11, 2016


I don't think "illiterate" is the right term. The definite articles can be used as demonstrative pronouns - i.e., der/die/das can be used alone to mean something like "that, that one" - but this might be more a feature of spoken German than written/standard. Can any native speakers confirm?

October 11, 2016


Wouldn't it be "... Sie ist eine schwarze Katze." since we know what we are referring to already?

September 19, 2015


Sorry, the tables did not maintain my formating.

March 19, 2013


has determiner, nominative, feminine. m/n/f/pl: e/e/e/en https://www.lsa.umich.edu/german/hmr/Grammatik/Adjektive/Adjektivendungen.html

July 6, 2018


I really appreciate this (and similar) drills. It helps me see how the endings work on the colors. Thank, Duo!

October 5, 2018


again that doesn't work for die...

October 9, 2018


This German grammar app has very good explanations and handy adjective endings tables.


March 12, 2019


Very helpful thanks!

January 26, 2018



April 17, 2018
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