Can anyone please explain this:

Berufsanfänger müssen sich in einer immer unübersichtlicher werdenden Berufswelt zurechtfinden.

Why do we have "-er" in unübersichtlicher and "-en" in werdenden ?

1 Answer 1


Berufsanfänger müssen sich in einer immer unübersichtlicher werdenden Berufswelt zurechtfinden.

The -en on "werdenden" is the regular adjective ending for the feminine dative singular noun that is "Berufswelt" in that sentence.

The -er in "unübersichtlicher" is the comparative ending, as "immer <comparative> werden" expresses the described thing is geadually gaining/increasing a certain quality.

  • 3
    The unübersichtlicher is an adverb modifying werdenden here, and adverbs are not declined in German. I think the confusion is that it looks (to an English speaker at least) like unübersichtlich is modifying Berufswelt. "Career starters have to find their way in an always confusing and changing professional world." is a plausible sentence in English, though not the original meaning. But I think if that was the author's intent then some form of andern would replace werden.
    – RDBury
    Commented Apr 5, 2021 at 16:48
  • @O. R. Mapper But I thought even the comparative needs an ending; if it was comparative then it should be like: unübersichtlicheren is that correct?
    – Sam_9090
    Commented Apr 6, 2021 at 14:06
  • @ RDBury Thanks for clarification. I thought adverbs don't have endings. So in this case it should be unübersichtlich. But what do you mean by "an adverb modifying werdenden"? is there a grammar for this?
    – Sam_9090
    Commented Apr 6, 2021 at 14:10
  • 1
    @Sam_9090: The comparative needs an ending for adjectives: As RDBury explained, we are not looking at an adjective here, though, but at an adverb. And that one doesn't get an inflected ending - other than the ending added by the comparative itself (because despite not having an inflected ending based on the word they refer to, adverbs can very well be put into comparative/superlative, which, in German, happens by attaching another ending). Commented Apr 6, 2021 at 14:43

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