German Articles

One of the most common words in any language is “ the”. In German, “ the” is not just one word. Rather there are a total of 3, depending on the gender of the noun to which each refers. The short defining word before the noun is really part of the noun. It is called an article.

Define it ….
You may not have learned this at school, but in English the word “the” is called a definite article. That is because the word “the” points to a very specific thing. For example, you may tell someone, “I want the book,” assuming that they will bring you the book you have in mind.

Or not!
However, if you tell them, “I want a book,” you will get whatever book they choose to hand you! That is because the words “a” or “an” or “some” are indefinite articles and point to a general group of items, things, people or places.

Let’s get it straight:
Nouns refer to a person, animal, thing or concept. All nouns in German are either masculine, feminine or neuter. The little word in front of the noun, the article, will tell you the gender. German Articles can be definite (specific) or indefinite (general).

Here are the German definite and indefinite articles:

  • der - the (masculine)
  • die - the (feminine)
  • das - the (neuter)
  • ein - a (masculine and neuter)
  • eine - a (feminine)

Pronouncing German Articles 

Here we go: The definite articles in German are "der", "die" and "das".

Der = masculine article, the, e.g. der Tisch (the table)

Die = feminine article, the, e.g. die Tasse (the cup)

Das = neuter article, the, e.g. das Kind (the child)

The indefinite articles in German are “ein”, “eine” and “ein”.

ein = masculine article, the, e.g. ein Tisch (a table)

eine = feminine article, the, e.g. eine Tasse (a cup)

ein = neuter article, the, e.g. ein Kind (a child)

As mentioned previously, the article (“the”) before a noun in German is not only an integral part of the word, but is also a major clue to the gender of the word. In other words, as you learn new words, you should always be learning them with either a “der” in front, as in “der Tisch”, “the table”, a “die” in front, as in “die Tasse”, “the cup”, or a “das” in front, as in “das Kind”, “the child”. This will help you to understand the concept of gender as you build up your vocabulary.

Zum Beispiel:

Masculine Articles and Nouns

Feminine Articles and Nouns

Neuter Articles and Nouns

The days of the week, months and seasons are all masculine.

Here are a few recommended German lessons to try next!

Bis bald!
Paul Weber
Paul Weber
Rocket German

Testing!

Test yourself with the Rocket German testing tools! Improve your knowledge of German!

Note that the tests below are listed from easiest to hardest.

Hear It Say It!

<{percentComplete['hearit']}>% Complete

Improve your understanding of spoken German. With Hear it Say it! you can tune your ear to German, increase your vocabulary and improve your pronunciation at the same time! Ready?

  • Click the Get Started button below
  • LISTEN to the audio (and touch up your pronunciation with Rocket Record if you like; Chrome/Firefox/Edge desktop browsers only)
  • Click REVEAL to see the word/phrase and see the translation
  • Just click your RATING to continue

See how many words you've rated at each level below. Just click on the number below each rating to review your words and phrases.

Write It!

<{percentComplete['writeit']}>% Complete

Write it! helps you to improve your written German and your understanding of sentence structures. Just listen to the audio and type in what you hear!

  • Click the Get Started button below
  • LISTEN to the audio
  • WRITE down, in German, what you hear
  • Click REVEAL to see the word/phrase and see the translation
  • Your answer will be automatically RATED, just click the rating to continue

Tip!

Click the keyboard icon for a German keyboard

Know It!

<{percentComplete['knowit']}>% Complete

Know it! tests you on your ability to translate English to German! Ready?

  • Click the Get Started button below
  • READ the word/phrase
  • RECORD yourself saying it in German (Chrome/Firefox/Edge desktop browsers only)
  • Click REVEAL to see the word/phrase in German and listen to the German audio

Over 1,200,000 people love Rocket Languages

Here's what Rocket Languages members have to say:

Andrei Freeman - Pennsylvania, USA

Andrei
Freeman

Pennsylvania, USA

Rudi Kopp - USA

Rudi
Kopp

USA

Carmen Franceschino - Pennsylvania, USA

Carmen
Franceschino

Pennsylvania, USA

Kelly Scali - Chicago, USA

Kelly
Scali

Chicago, USA

Mark Waddel - Auckland, NZ

Mark
Waddell

Auckland, NZ

William McGill - Florida, USA

William
McGill

Florida, USA

Probably the best language tool I've come across. Actually love it more than Rosetta Stone and Duolingo

Try our award-winning German language software for FREE 受賞歴ありの英語学習ソフトウェアを無料でお試しください Pruebe nuestro galardonado software del idioma inglés GRATIS

(And see how easy it actually is to learn German... even if you've tried and failed before) (そして英語学習がどれだけ簡単か、肌で感じてみてください…今までに失敗したことのある人でもそれが分かるでしょう) (Y vea qué tan fácil es en realidad aprender inglés… aún si lo ha intentado y fallado antes)