Original phrase is

Such in der Stadt nach dem Agenten namens Hendrik.

Hendrik is surely 1 guy and that means this is singular, so why not :

Such in der Stadt nach dem Agent namens Hendrik.

Is this an exception or just a mistake?

  • Dem Agenten is dative singular. Dative plural would be den Agenten. (and yes, the latter is indistiguishable from accusative singular.)
    – Janka
    Apr 8, 2017 at 19:20
  • But isn't the noun "der Agent"?
    – Max Roatta
    Apr 8, 2017 at 19:22
  • 1
    Nouns change with case. It's (nom sg) der Agent, (gen sg) des Agenten, (dat sg) dem Agenten, (akk sg) den Agenten, (nom pl) die Agenten, (gen pl) der Agenten, (dat pl) den Agenten, (akk pl) die Agenten. The pattern of this change mostly depends on noun gender. See en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_declension
    – Janka
    Apr 8, 2017 at 19:25
  • 1
    related: german.stackexchange.com/questions/34150/…
    – tofro
    Apr 8, 2017 at 19:31
  • This is all correct. Let me add that 'nach dem Agent' is technically wrong but nevertheless used in spoken language.
    – shuhalo
    Apr 11, 2017 at 20:54

1 Answer 1


"Agent" has to be declined according to the "n-Deklination". All masculine nouns with the ending "-ent" behave like that. Other endings which indicate the "n-Deklination" are: -e, -or, -ant, -oge, -at, -ad and -ist. Very important other examples would be "der Name", "der Kollege", "der Präsident", "der Egoist", ...

These nouns get the ending "-n" in the plural and in the genitive, dative, accusative singular. - Mein Name ist... / Ich habe einen langen Namen. - Das ist mein Kollege. / Ich habe einen netten Kollegen. - Trump ist Präsident. / Ich sehe den amerikanischen Präsidenten.

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