The Rest of the possessive Adjectives
The possessive adjectives mein and dein were easy to pick up because they acted like ein and kein with nouns. But now it's time to learn the rest of the possessive adjectives. Just as mein refers to the pronoun ich and dein refers to the pronoun du, the remaining possessive adjectives refer to specific pronouns.
Table 17-2. Possessive Adjectives
Masculine nouns will use sein as their possessive adjective, feminine nouns will use ihr, neuter nouns will use sein, and plural nouns will use ihr.
Remember that your choice of which possessive adjective to use depends on the gender of the noun it represents, not on the noun it modifies. In the sentence “Die Dame sieht ihren Sohn,” the woman (die Dame) is feminine and therefore uses the possessive adjective ihr to mean “her.” Her son (der Sohn) is masculine and the direct object, so the possessive adjective must take the masculine ending –en.
Just as certain endings are required with ein, kein, mein, and dein, the same endings are required for all possessive adjectives. These endings show gender and indicate masculine nouns in the accusative case. The endings for the feminine, neuter, and plural are identical in both the nominative and accusative cases.
The following list shows what the endings for possessive adjectives look like with nouns of different gender in the nominative case. (Remember that the nominative case is the case used when a noun is the subject of a sentence.)
Now let's look at the endings used on the possessive adjectives in the accusative case. Recall that the accusative case is used when a noun is the direct object of a sentence, or following an accusative preposition.
If you compare these two lists, you will see that the endings in both cases are the same for feminine, neuter, and plural nouns. It is only the masculine gender that takes different endings in the accusative case. Note that when you put an ending on euer, there is a slight change of spelling: euer, euren, eure.
Using the pronouns, decide which possessive adjective to use to complete each sentence. For example, when presented with ich / Sabine findet_______ Buch, you write, “Sabine findet mein Buch.” Sabine finds my book, because mein is the possessive adjective form of ich. (Watch out for masculine words in the accusative case! You'll need an –en ending)
du / Vater war im Wohnzimmer.
sie (sing.) / Ich kenne Mutter.
er / Wir sahen Bruder im Theater.
wir / Der Franzose kaufte Volkswagen.
Sie / Wo ist Vetter?
ich / Das sind Bücher.
sie (pl.) / Wo ist Haus?
ihr / Sind Plätze gut?
er / Karl besuchte Onkel in der Hauptstadt.
wir / Das ist ein Geschenk für Lehrerin.