Das war ein tolles Ding (toll / tolles)

Discussion in 'Deutsch (German)' started by thunderbirz, Jan 5, 2014.

  1. thunderbirz Member

    "Das war ein tolles Ding" Why? Why not "Das war ein toll Ding"? When do you use toll and when tolles? Someone please tell me.
  2. Schimmelreiter

    Schimmelreiter Senior Member

    A warm welcome!

    Nominative singular: ein tolles Ding/das tolle Ding
    Genitive singular: eines tollen Ding(e)s/des tollen Ding(e)s

    No declension of the adjective when it is used predicatively: Dieses Ding ist toll.

    Das war ein toll Ding
    is permissible in a poetic context. But forget this for now, it sounds horrible outside of poetry.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2014
  3. thunderbirz Member

    you didn't tell me why it's there in the first place.
  4. Schimmelreiter

    Schimmelreiter Senior Member

    I told you as explicitly as I could that it was there because of the declension of adjectives, in the broader context of declension at large. Where do you want me to begin? That there is declension? ;)
  5. thunderbirz Member

    Can you tell me what does the "es" part tells? Why is it there instead of just toll? In English it is just "a great thing". "Great" doesn't change at all. Even in Finnish it doesn't change at all. "Loistava" juttu. In english, finnish and swedish they are in their basic forms. Why in German there is some es in the end? It doesn't make any sense. I have never seen anything like this. So why are you surprised when I don't get this. Think about explaining it to someone who has never seen anything like this.
    das tolle ding? Why did you remove the es-end? You are just giving this information. You don't explain. Please explain.

    edit: That there is declension? YES
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 6, 2014
  6. Schimmelreiter

    Schimmelreiter Senior Member

    Wikipedia is good to begin with.
    Pay special attention to attributive adjectives.
  7. grafkoks Banned

    er hat es doch erklärt: im Deutschen werden Adjektive dekliniert. Warum das so ist, weiß man nicht. Es ist eben so.
  8. thunderbirz Member

    K found it. Why didn't you tell that when word is neuter and before it there is ein, then it will get es-end? Why?

    < ... >Well I asked it this on other site and this is the answer I got.

    Because Ding is a neuter subject (das Ding) and you have to use the neuter version of the adjective toll: "Das war ein tollesDing."

    If the adjective comes first it has to have the same gender as the subject: "Das war ein tolles Ding.", "Das ist ein toller Hund.", "Das wird eine tolle Reise."

    If the subject comes first you don't have to change the adjective: "Das Ding war toll.", "Der Hund ist toll.", "Die Reise wird toll."
    < ... >
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 6, 2014
  9. Dan2

    Dan2 Senior Member

    English (US)
    If you know Swedish, you have seen something like this. Swedish has varying adjectival endings like German does: "en stor_ bil" vs. "ett stort hus" vs. "stora bilar" ("stor-" means "big"). (Depending on how "tolles Ding" is translated the adjective may have the null ending in Swedish.) In fact, in Swedish the endings are required even predicatively: "huset är stort" ("das Haus ist groß"). So Swedish actually requires varying adjective endings in more contexts than German!

    Here are some European languages that have variable adjectival endings:

    The only European language that I know of that does not:
    (From thunderbirz I've learned that Finnish is also on this list. It's likely that there are others.)

    (I know very little about many of the languages listed above, but I believe I'm correct about them having variable adjective endings.)
  10. Frank78

    Frank78 Senior Member

    Well you can easily remember it with this trick. The ending of the adjective after the indefinite article is the same as the ending of the definite article (at least in nominative):

    Der Mann - ein toller Mann
    Die Frau - eine tolle Frau
    Das Ding - ein tolles Ding

    Or lets put it easier. If the adjective is after a form of "sein" then it is treated like an adverb, i.e. no inflection.
  11. Hutschi

    Hutschi Senior Member

    Hi, just one remark. If it is used as adverb, it has no declension, too.

    Er verhält sich toll. (sich toll verhalten)
  12. thunderbirz Member

    "("stor-" means "big")" Wow I never knew that. I mean I have only studied Swedish for over 4 years. And yeah I knew all of that very basic Swedish grammar you explained. I just didn't realize it is the same as that German one. Dunno why. "varying adjective endings in more contexts than German!" Yes I know but the only adjective change that is hard to remember is that t-end because if it's ett-word or en-word the adjective in plural is always the same and in en-words there is no end. That's not the case in German. In every case the adjective is different. tolles, tolle toller, toll. I don't think Swedish even has cases besides normal and just s-end genitive.
    Btw: I don't know why you are trying to make this adjective end thing in German more simple. I got it already.

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