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There are conflicting information in many parts of the internet, so I ask the question here. In this video by 'Your German Teacher', the following table is given for possesive articles:

Masculine:

Pronoun possessive article
ich mein
du dein
er sein
sie ihr
es sein
wir unser
ihr euer
sie ihr
Sie ihr

Feminine and plural:

Pronoun possessive article
ich meine
du deine
er seine
sie ihre
es seine
wir unsere
ihr euere
sie ihre
Sie ihre

Now, in another German Youtuber named Learn German with Anja, gives give the same lists this video saying they represent possessive pronouns.

Now in this site (can't link picture due to threatened copyright), it seems so the author at least tries to say about the between distinct possessive pronouns and possessive articles. However, she gives two different graphs for each. Now.. all of these information are conflicting each other.

Which is the correct graph for possessive pronouns? And which is the one for possessive adjective?

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  • Please do NOT post text as an image, if is intended to be read and if it is important to understand the question (or answer). There are blind and visually impaired people who depend on programs that either read the texts aloud to them or output them on Braille devices. These programs cannot read the contents of images. Therefore, blind and visually impaired people are excluded when texts are posted as images. I have attached a table template to the end of the question. Please use this template to convert the contents of your images into text. Please delete the images when you're done. Apr 13, 2022 at 8:15
  • I think there is something wrong, when I edit it, the table comes but when I post it, the table disappear @HubertSchölnast Apr 13, 2022 at 8:55
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    This is a bug that already has been reported. The workaround is to leave an empty line above the table. Apr 13, 2022 at 8:57
  • OH okie thankes @HubertSchölnast Apr 13, 2022 at 8:57
  • I haven't ever heard of the term possessive article before. The pronouns in the second columns of the tables are called possessive pronouns. Apr 14, 2022 at 8:08

2 Answers 2

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This Website has a complete version of all the tables shown. The information shown in the tables you listed is not exactly contradictory, but rather one table is more complete than the other.

The way I understand it, Possessivpronomen can act as both a companion for the noun ("My dog") or as a substitute of the noun ("That dog is Mine"). Depending on how the Possessivpronomen is acting, you might need to decline it one way or another.

When a Possessivpronomen acts as a companion for the noun (aka when it acts like my, your, her, etc...) it works similar to an article, which is why it is sometimes called Possessivartikel. Now unlike English, in German the Possessivartikel needs to agree with the noun in gender, number and case, which is why you have these tables to help you out with that.

The first table you listed shows the declensions for Possessivartikel in the nominative case albeit only for ich, du, er, sie, es. The second table shows the same but adds more info: wir, ihr, sie, Sie. The third table you listed shows something different, that one is for Possessivpronomen that substitute the noun (aka when it acts like mine, yours, hers, etc), and it shows the nominative, accusative and dative case.

The link I provided at the beginning has 2 tables, the first one is for Possessivartikel and it's basically a complete table contaning everything that the first two you listed are missing, the second one it's basically the same as the third one you listed but it adds the genitive case.

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  • This answer aligns with my thinkins as well. Apr 13, 2022 at 8:59
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The term "possessive article" is not used in German grammar. German has 6 definite articles and 6 indefinite articles. All in all 12 articles. Thats all:

  • definite articles

    der, die, das, des, dem, den

  • indefinite articles

    ein, eine, eines, einer, einem, einen

One could argue that there also is a "null article" that is used as indefinite article for plural words, but that is just an academic way to say that you don't use an article in such a case.

So, all in all 12 articles. And "meine", "dein", "eurer" etc. does not belong to them.

The words you listed are possessive pronouns. And they be used as determiners, but acting as a determiner is the main purpose of articles. And for this reason some people call the super-class that includes the class of articles and the class of pronouns "article words" (Artikelwörter). But a better (and more often used) name is just determiner (Determinativ; Bestimmer).

You can read more about them here:


How to use possessive pronouns?

You can use it as a determiner (like an article, although it's not an article):

Deine Jacke ist rot.
Your jacket is red.

But you can also use it just as a pronoun without any article-like behavior:

Diese Jacke ist auffallend rot. Ist das deine?
This jacket is strikingly red. Is this yours?

Another hint that shows that possessive pronouns are not articles is the fact, that you can combine possessive pronouns with articles, but you can't combine two articles:

Ja, diese Jacke ist die meine.
Yes, this jacket is mine.

(Also correct and even more often used: »diese Jacke ist meine«. But »diese Jacke ist die meine« is also possible and correct too.)

Also:

Ich habe das meine getan. = Ich habe meinen Teil getan.
I have done my part.

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  • I mean if possesive artikel is not used, how does one have adjective which shows possesion Apr 13, 2022 at 8:57
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    de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Possessiv uses the term Possessivartikel, as the IDS does here: grammis.ids-mannheim.de/systematische-grammatik/373. The term is also popular in the field of German as a Second Language. Therefore, the first sentence of the answer is false (and gratuitously misleading for the people relying on this site).
    – David Vogt
    Apr 13, 2022 at 8:58
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    The term Possessivartikel may be popular in some circles but it is still wrong. There are no possessive articles in German. What some call possessive article is just a different usage of the possessive pronoun. Apr 14, 2022 at 9:56

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