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Can someone help confirm this for me?

I think we can all agree, that when the subject consists of 2 or more persons that are referred to with the 3rd person pronouns, the subject is equivalent to the pronoun "sie (pl)" in German.

Alex und Hanna (sie) sind beste Freunde.

Maria und ihre Kinder (sie) leben in Deutschland.

Deine/eure Familie und ihre Familie (sie) sind miteinander verbunden.

Now here's where it gets tricky for me. In grammar websites people have said again and again, that the rule is as follows: When there's a 1st person pronoun, the subject would be equivalent to "wir" in German, whether a 2nd or a 3rd person pronoun follows after it.

Du und ich (wir) sind verheiratet.

Seine Kinder und ich (wir) sind beste Freunde.

All this time I used the "sind" (pl) verb conjugation, because I thought with "und" it's always "sie(pl)" and not "wir". I am however pretty sure that the circumstances do not matter, because "wir" and "sie(pl)" are conjugated the same way (sein->sind) (haben->haben), so no confusion there. My question is, is it right then, that in a case like this you truly conjugate it according to the pronoun "wir"?

And then comes the tricky part, part 2. When the subject consists of 2 or more persons that are not in 1st person, they would be conjugated according to the pronoun "ihr".

Du und er (ihr) habt euch erst gestern getroffen!

Ihr und eure Freunde (ihr) seid zu meiner Party eingeladen.

That is also what is stated in grammar websites. However someone has told me yesterday, that with "Sie" (even though "Sie" is here 2nd person) it would be conjugated like "Sie" would. (This made sense to me too, because I found no examples with "Sie" regarding this case in grammar websites.)

Haben Sie und Ihre Familie (Sie) heute gefrühstückt?

Can somebody tell me if these informations are right? In conclusion, are these statements correct?

  1. 3rd and 3rd person : sie

  2. 1st and 2nd/3rd person : wir

  3. 2nd and 3rd person : ihr

  4. Except for Sie, (Sie+3rd person) : Sie

  5. Are the example sentences also correct?

  6. Are there any mistakes I stated that I should watch out for?

Many Thanks!

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    1, 2, 3: correct. Whether Sie or sie is correct in your last example depends on whether you address the persons talked about or not. The hint is ihre but as soon you replaced it by die, both options are valid. – Janka Jun 23 at 13:40
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    Simple rules: Formal Sie is virulent. Ihr is more virulent. Wir is most virulent. – Janka Jun 23 at 13:44
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    Naturally, I would ask "Haben Sie und Ihre Familie (Sie) schon gefrühstückt?" (schon = already). Also, "heute" can be omitted (everyone knows, we don't mean yesterday). – Bodo Thiesen Jun 23 at 18:50
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    @Janka: "Habt Sie und Ihre Familie schon gefrühstückt?" would be wrong. "Habt ihr schon gefrühstückt?" would be fine, even if "ihr" refers to "Sie und Ihre Familie". – Bodo Thiesen Jun 23 at 19:01
  • information are a pluraletantum. Bazinga :D – vectory Sep 22 at 15:12
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First of all: yes, all your points are correct. It's actually very simple:

  • If I include anyone and/or the person I'm talking to with myself, I reffer to the resulting group as we/wir.
  • If I include the person I'm talking to with anyone else, the resulting group would be you/ihr.
  • If none of the above apply, the result is them/sie(pl).*

*Sie (sgl, formal) is neither Ich nor Du, so the third case applies.

  • It is important to note that this simplified rule only works in spoken language. In written language, you would have to make sure to use "Sie" (i.e. formal). Also note that "Sie" is also the 2nd person plural (e.g. to address a group that consists (predominantly) of people you would individually refer to with the formal "Sie") – Oliver Giesen Sep 13 at 8:46
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I would state it like this:

  1. 3rd and 3rd person : sie
  2. 1st and anyone else : wir
  3. 2nd (familiar) and 3rd person : Ihr
  4. 2nd (formal) and 3rd person : Sie

Are the example sentences also correct?

They appear correct to me.

Are there any mistakes I stated that I should watch out for?

There is only one other point I would make has less to do with verb conjugation and more about which pronoun selection is used in case you have also run into this. I constantly hear people who I believe would normally address me individually as Sie, refer to me (and my family) as Ihr and use the rest of the 2nd person familiar pronouns like Euch etc.

One of my German teachers said he believes the bar is a little bit lower for using Ihr especially if you're referring to the person's family which may include kids. In this case it just seems a little more natural to use the plural familiar second person. I think that same speaker would still use Sie if they were referring to me and one other adult for example.

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Can somebody tell me if these informations are right?

I'm almost afraid to answer this ... so ... let me put it this way: As a native German speaker, I didn't find anything wrong.

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