practice exercises on this page are primarily compiled from
other websites ==> please use the Contact/Feedback
link in the navigation bar on the left to let me know if any
of the links stops working, so I can update or delete it! Some
of the exercises below are rather detailed, whereas this page
is just designed to provide a general overview of case ==>
don't be too concerned if something seems very unfamiliar
to you, but do ask your instructor about it.
particular, a number of the exercises below deal with prepositions
and strong/verb/weak verb pairs. These will be explained
in more detail on the Prepositions
page on this site, but you can get a good preliminary review
of prepositions by trying these exercises!
NOT taken from other websites
Was ist logisch? Helps you recognize the dative
case and build a basic understanding its use with verbs
that take both direct (accusative) and indirect (dative)
mit Genitiv Educational infotainment :) Practice
the Genitive by translating titles of some popular movies.
The second of these asks you to translate into German and
is quite difficult; use the "Nächster richtiger Buchstabe"
button if you're stuck on e.g. an adjective ending.
practice: Was ist richtig?
from other websites
1. nthuleen.com Handouts and exercises created by Nancy Thuleen. Many of these are accompanied by an answer sheet ("Lösungsblatt").
2. Übungen auf der Treffpunkt Deutsch Webseite:
Übungen auf der Neue Horizonte Webseite:
- Kapitel 2: Try the exercises "Accusative Case" [note the first item is actually Nominative, since the verb is "sein" - but the others really are all Accusative] and "Possessive Adjectives" [most of these are Nominative, but a5, 7 and 8 are Accusative]
- Kapitel 4: Try the exercise "More uses of the Accusative Case"
- Kapitel 5: Try the exercises "Dative Case," "Dative Personal Pronouns," and "Prepositions with the Dative Case"
- Kapitel 6: Try the exercises "Two-way Prepositions" and "Masculine N-Nouns"
- Kapitel 7: Try the exercises "Der-Words and Ein-Words," "Verbs with Dative objects," "Personal Dative," and "Verbs with two-way Prepositions"
- Kapitel 8: Try the exercises "Genitive Case" and "Prepositions with the Genitive Case"
4. Übungen auf der Deutsch Heute Webseite [as of 11/2013, these exercises do work on a Mac using Chrome, although a webpage comes up with the title "webpage not available"]
Masculine Weak Nouns (N-Nouns)
"Normal nouns" generally change their endings in the plural, and add an -n (when possible) in the Dative plural. Masculine and neuter nouns also normally add an -s or -es in the Genitive singular.
Weak nouns (or N-nouns) add an -n or -en ending whenever they are NOT in the Nominative singular. Common examples are "der Junge" (the boy), (der) Herr (Mr., gentleman, Lord), der Student:
- Das ist ein Junge. Ich sehe den Jungen [=I see the boy (singular!)]. Wir geben dem Jungen einen Teddybär [= We give the boy (singular!) a teddy bear]. [Plural: Also die Jungen]
- Das ist Herr Müller. Ich sehe Herrn Müller[=I see Mr. Müller]. Wir geben Herrn Müller einen Teddybär [= We give Mr. Müller a teddy bear]. [Plural: Also die Herrn, but more commonly die Herren]
- Das ist ein Student. Ich sehe den Studenten [=I see the student (singular!)]. Wir geben dem Studenten einen Teddybär [= We give the student (singular!) a teddy bear]. [Plural: Also die Studenten]
Here are a few tables, to show you the pattern:
Some "normal" nouns (to keep things consistent, the examples are all masculine):
Some weak nouns:
Good to know:
- Weak nouns are always masculine (exception: das Herz - see its forms here; note das Herz does NOT change in the Accusative singular).
- Usage is changing. Native speakers are increasingly leaving the -n/-en endings off singular weak nouns. In any case, no one is ever likely to misunderstand you if you forget a weak noun ending. ==> The most important reason to know about weak nouns is so that you will consider the possibility that when you hear e.g. "den Studenten" or "den Namen," the noun may well be singular. And native speakers may be impressed if you do remember these endings :)
- Which masculine nouns are weak nouns? There's no reliable pattern, but:
- Most masculine nouns ending in -e are weak: der Name, der Kollege [=colleague], der Experte, der Riese [=giant]), der Gedanke [=thought], der Wille [=will, as in the will to do something; the end-of-life will is das Testament]
- Many nouns referring to male professions or male animals: der Student, der Praktikant [=intern], der Athlet, der Soldat [=soldier], der Chirurg [=surgeon], der Assistent [=assistant], der Prinz, der Idiot [haha, does this count as a male professsion?], der Bär, der Affe [=ape], der Elefant
- Miscellaneous "other" nouns. Especially good to know: der Automat [=vending machine], der Held [=hero], der Mensch [=human being], der Nachbar [=neighbor], der Typ [=dude, guy], der Planet, der Satellit
- N-nouns ending in -e and the most important N-nouns ending in -r (Herr, Nachbar) just add an -n; (almost) all others add an -en.
- A few N-nouns ending in -e add -ens (instead of -en) in the Genitive singular, notably: des Namens [der Ursprung des Namens = the origin of the name], des Gedankens [Da war wohl der Wunsch der Vater des Gedankens: There the wish was likely the father of the thought, i.e. that was wishful thinking], des Willens [Triumph des Willens was a notorious Nazi propaganda movie], des Glaubens [Bekenntnis des Glaubens = the "Confession of Faith" in a Christian church service]
- A great overview with much more detail is provided here by Duolingo.