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Dative order using pronouns inquiry


First the example... Wir geben diesem Mann einen Apfel.

Regarding the example above it appears the Indirect Object (IDO) comes first, then the Direct Object (DO).

Is this correct?

If so, what are the exceptions pertaining to pronouns mentioned below?

How might the sentence look if it had pronouns, instead of an Indefinite Article?

Note: Is "diesem" a pronoun? Thanks!! +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Seoman6 said.... The indirect (dative) object should come before the direct (accusative) object. I'm not really sure if it is technically 'wrong', but it is very strange and would confuse the hearer. Better stick to indirect object first, direct object second.

26ReplyGive Lingot2•2 years ago

mizinamo said.... Exceptions apply if one or both of the objects are pronouns :)

12ReplyGive Lingot•2 years ago

April 28, 2018



Take a look at the link here, especially the yellow boxes and the examples below those boxes:


Here's an example from my notes from a Goethe Institut class that I took in Germany:

Ich schenke meiner Mutter ein Buch.

Ich schenke ihr ein Buch.

Ich schenke es meiner Mutter.

Ich schenke es ihr.


This is awesome thank you.


Just re-read this one, thanks!


Hi Eric, Klastrion already gave you a good answer. But there are some other ways to form sentences, too.

(Wir) (geben) (diesem Mann) (einen Apfel). Let's take a look at the word order first. In German you can change it and you would put more emphasis on certain parts of the sentence.

Einen Apfel geben wir diesem Mann.

Diesem Mann geben wir einen Apfel.

In main clauses the conjugated predicate comes always second in line. But the other parts are usually interchangeable.

Even using pronouns you can change them but there are some ways which would sound strange to a native.

Wir geben diesem Mann einen Apfel. Wir geben ihm einen Apfel. Wir geben ihn ihm. (Whereas the last one is grammatically correct we would never say it like this ;-)))

"Diesen" is indeed a pronoun. In German it is called a demonstrative pronoun since it points out someone/something.

I hope I could help.. :-)


This definitely helps.

What is a conjugated predicate? I have heard something about the 2nd spot before.


The predicate is the verb (sometimes there are more verbs) that matches the subject (the person / thing) that does something.

Ich kann einen Kuchen essen.

ich = subject

kann ... essen = predicate, the verb "kann" is the conjugated form because it adapts to "ich" ; whereas "essen" is the infinitive .

Morgen kommt er nach Hause.

kommt = predicate, it adapts to "er" (he)

Morgen muss er nach Hause kommen.

muss .... kommen = predicate; "muss" is the conjugated verb and "kommen" is the infinitive


Excellent, if I have any additional questions I'll reach out!

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