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The Basics
How to Use Articles and Related Words
Knowing a Nouns Gender
Declension of Nouns
The Use of Cases
Declension of Adjectives
Comparison of Adjectives
Using Pronouns

Personal | The Use of Es | Reflexive | Dative Reflexive | Relative | Wer and Was | Interrorgative | Indefinite | Alles | Beide | Einer | Irgend- | Some and Others | Jeder | Solcher | Welcher | Whoever and Whatever | Demonstrative | Da and Hier | Neuter Dative | How to Solve Ambiguity | Dies | The one | The same (one) | Use of Welcher

In this lesson we learn how to use the different types of pronouns. Most attention will be focused on the indefinite and demonstrative pronouns.
Personal Pronouns:
These are not to be confused with possessive adjectives, which are followed by a noun:
Mein Bleistift ist rot. - My pencil is red.
Dieser Bleistift ist meiner, der andere Ihrer. - This pencil is mine, the other yours.
Es is used in many places where English has nothing:
Wir gehen zu Bett, und du solltest es auch. - We are going to bed, and you should too.
Man sagt, er ist dumm, und er ist es bestimmt. - They say he's dim, and he certainly is.

Es can act as an introductory word, like English there:
Es steht ein Tisch in der Ecke. - There is a table in the corner.
Es blies ein starker Wind. - There was a strong wind blowing.

Es can also be a sort of indeterminate object, omitted in English:
Sie haben es gut! - You are lucky!
Er meint es gut. - He means well.
Ich bin es satt. - I'm sick of it.

Es ist is more precise than es gibt for there is. You can use plural es sind whereas you could not say es geben; es gibt serves for there are also.
Reflexive Pronouns:
The reflexive form of a pronoun must be used after a preposition when the pronoun refers to the subject:
Er hatte kein Geld bei sich. - He had no money on him.
Sie schloß die Tür hinter sich. - She closed the door behind her.
The dative reflexive is idionmatically used as the dative of advantage:
Ich will mir den Wagen ansehen. - I'm going to have a look at the car.
Ich dachte mir, daß... - I thought to myself that...
Relative Pronouns:
When relative pronoun which refers to a whole clause (ex: He collapsed, which shocked me) was is used:
Sie kommt immer spät, was mich ärgert. - She always comes late, which annoys me.
Er erhielt den Führerschein, was mich erstaunte. - He got his driving license, which astounded me.
Wer and was can be used as compund relatives, this combines the subject and relative:
Wer wagt, gewinnt. - Who dares wins.
Was ich hatte, war nicht genug. - What I had wasn't enough.
Interrogative Pronouns:
Although wer and was have no plural they can complement plural of sein:
Wer sind diese Leute? - Who are these people?
Was sind diese Dinge? - What are these things?

Wer and was may also be used as exclamations:
Wer hätte es geglaubt! - Who would have believed it!
Was du nicht sagst! - The things you say!
Indefinite Pronouns:
Many adjectives and adverbs can be used as pronouns:
Alles may be used as everything and alle to mean everyone:
Alles ist fertig. - Everything is ready.
Alle waren da. - Everyone was there.
Adjective beide (both) is used as pronoun beides:
Ich hatte einen Fahrplan und eine Karte, und habe beides verloren. - I had a timetable and a map, and I've lost both of them.
Beides ist möglich. - Both things are possible.
Note: except with sind and waren all other verbs take a singular with beides.
Einer can be a pronoun too:
Eine Tür war offen, und eine war zu. - One door was open, and one was closed.
Einer von uns ist schuldig. - One of us is guilty.
The prefix iregend- may be used to strengthen several pronouns especially einer:
Iregendeiner muß es gemacht haben. - Somebody or other must have done it.
Iregendeiner seiner Freunde wird Ihnen seine Adresse geben. - Any of his friends will give you his address.
Some and others can be Die einen...die anderen:
Die einen sind zufrieden, die anderen nicht. - Some are content, others are not.
or by einige...andere:
Einige blieben die ganze Nacht, andere gingen nach Hause. - Some stayed all night, others went home.

Einige in the plural is some or a few:
Nur einige sind hier. - Only a few are here.
As a neuter singular pronoun it means a certain amount or a few things:
Ich habe einiges gefunden. - I have found a certain amount.
Ich hatte noch einiges zu tun. - I still had a few things to do.
Note: A few may also be translated as ein paar, not to be confused with ein Paar (a pair) which has a capital:
Ich habe noch ein paar übring. - I've still got a few things left over.
Jeder (each one), mancher (many a), mehrere (several) may be used as pronouns:
Jeder von Ihnen muß zehn Mark bezahlen. - Each of you must pay ten marks.
Manche wollten es nicht glauben. - Many people wouldn't believe it.
Ich hatte ihm mehreres zu sagen. - I had a few things to say to him.
Solcher as a pronoun is rare, except as such:
Die Stadt als solche ist uninteressant, aber die Lage ist ganz einmalig. - The town as such is uninteresting, but its setting is quite unique.
Ich bin nicht gegen die moderne Musik als solche, sondern gegen ihre Anhänger. - I am not against modern music as such, but against its fans.
Welcher is used as a pronoun widely with the meaning of some:
Hast du Zigaretten? Ja, ich habe welche. - Have you any cigarettes? Yes, I have some.
Ich brauche Geld - kannst du mir welches geben? - I need some money - can you give me any?
Whoever or whatever may be rendered by adding auch or immer or auch immer to wer or was:
Wer es auch getan hat, er hatte unrecht. - Whoever did it, he was wrong.
Was auch geschieht, du kannst auf mich zählen. - Whatever happens, you can count on me.
Wer immer das gesagt hat, es ist falsch. - Whoever said that, it's not true.
Demonstrative Pronouns:
The use of der is more for spoken than written. The gender is determined by the noun which it represents. In speech it is always stressed:
Der ist billig. - That one is cheap.
Die ist schön. - That one is beautiful.
Note: when the emphasis is needed for written, add spaces between the letters of the pronoun:
D e r ist billig.
D i e ist schön.
Usage of der can be strengthened by da (there) or hier (here):
Der da ist zu klein. - That one is too small.
Die hier ist gut. - This one is good.
Neuter dative dem is used as indefinite demonstrative for the following expressions:
Wie dem auch sei/Wie dem auch sein mag. - However that may be.
Dem sei, wie es wolle. - Be that as it may.
Genitive dessen and deren are helpful in avoiding ambiguity.
Er verabschiedete sich von seinem Freund und dessen Schwester.
Dieser is often shortened to dies with sein and a noun:
Dies ist meine Schwester. - This is my sister.
Dies sind meine Eltern. - These are my parents.
Note: with neuter nouns dieses is usually shortened to dies:
dies Buch - this book
The one is derjenige, diejenige, and dasjenige. Der has the definite ending, but jenig has the weak declension:
Diejenigen, die am besten spielen, bekommen den Preis. - The ones who play best get the prize.
Note: this is thought to be considered ugly and pompous and should be avoided.
The same (one) is derselbe, dieselbe, and dasselbe. Der has the definite ending and selbe has weak declension:
Sie ist immer dieselbe. - She is always the same.
Er sagt immer dasselbe. - He always says the same.
Welcher should be avoided, but is helpful to avoid repeating der:
Ein Kleid, das ihr gehörte, welches sie aber nie getragen hatte... - A dress which belonged to her but which she had never worn...

may also be used as an interrogative pronoun and demonstrative adjective:
Welchen Wein willst du wählen? - Which wine would you like to choose?
Diese sind zwei gute Mannschaften. Welche wird gewinnen, meinen Sie? - These are two good teams. Which will win, do you think?

also used in explamations:
Welcher Unterscheid! - What a difference!
Welche Überraschung! - What a surprise!
Lesson Ten - Numbers -->