German Language/Pronouns

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Hallo. This lesson will cover basic German pronouns in what are called the subject (nominative), direct object (accusative), indirect object (dative) and the possessive (genitive) case. The genitive cases are rarely used and they should not be mixed up with the German possessive pronouns that are translated into English as "my/mine" etc.

The Nominative Pronouns[edit | edit source]

German English
ich I
du you (informal singular)
er/sie/es he, she, it
wir we
ihr you (informal plural)
sie they
Sie you (formal singular & plural)

German pronouns mostly have direct equivalents in English. Sie, when capitalized, is a formal means of addressing either one person or many.

The Accusative Pronouns[edit | edit source]

Note: for non-German speakers, the differences between nominative and accusative cases can be confusing. It is helpful to think of them as the "subject case" and the "direct object case".

German English
mich me
dich you (informal)
ihn/sie/es him, her, it
uns us
euch you (plural & informal)
sie them
Sie you (formal singular & plural)

The Dative Pronouns[edit | edit source]

German English
mir to me
dir to you (informal)
ihm/ihr/ihm to him, to her, to it
uns to us
euch to you (plural & informal)
ihnen to them
Ihnen to you (formal singular & plural)

The Genitive Pronouns[edit | edit source]

These forms should not be mixed up with the possessive adjectives that are translated into English as "my/mine" etc. These are rarely used in modern German, and if so, they are used as modifiers of a very limited amount of adjectives and verbs, such as Hast du dich seiner vergewissert? 'Have you got assurances of that?' (sich vergewissern, followed by a word in the genitive case, means 'to get assurances of').

German English
meiner my
deiner your (informal singular)
seiner/ihrer/seiner his/hers/its
unser our
euer your (informal plural)
ihrer their
Ihrer your (formal singular & plural)