Maße is the plural. In + Dativ, it should be besonderEN, not besonderEM. if using Maß, then with Dativ singlular Neutrum Word, it goes with besonderEM Maß.

Could any of you help explain why in besonderEM Maße still seems to be correct? As such writing displayed in my Deutsch textbook.

Many thanks in advance!

Sincerely, Canny

  • 1
    In general it helps to give context for your question. What was the sentence the word appeared in?
    – RDBury
    Aug 2, 2023 at 3:35
  • Thanks, RDBury. The context is: Seit 1991 ist sie Europa-Universität. Damit stellt sie sich in besonderem Maße den Herausforderungen Europas und schlägt eine Brücke zwischen Ost- und Westeuropa.
    – Canny
    Aug 2, 2023 at 4:37
  • It's actually dative. I don't have the tube for an answer right now, but see german.stackexchange.com/q/40750/3237
    – Carsten S
    Aug 2, 2023 at 7:29
  • The problem is that textbooks usually omit the fact that certain masculine and neuter nouns can have -e in the dative singular; the declension tables do not have the optional -e, it isn't taught.
    – David Vogt
    Aug 2, 2023 at 19:32

2 Answers 2


In requires Dativ:

  • in besonderem Maß(e)
  • in einem besonderen Maß(e)
  • im besonderen Maß(e)

Note that "Maße" is singular here and could be substituted with "Maß" which is more common outside this phrase.

In plural it would be in besonderen Maßen. Prost!

  • Thanks, Zac67. I agreed IN requires Dativ and I have no problem with the other two examples you shared. Only in besonderEM Maße, this by Dativ without articles and pronouns in the front, Maße as the plural form, it should be besonderEN. If here it’s Maß, singular Neutrum form, it should go with besonderEM. This plural formed noun attached with the Dativ inflection for a singular Neutrum noun gave me problem. It’s not following the grammatical rules stated on my German grammar book.
    – Canny
    Aug 2, 2023 at 7:58
  • "Maße" is singular - that's likely where your problem lies... de.wiktionary.org/wiki/Ma%C3%9Fe
    – Zac67
    Aug 2, 2023 at 8:04
  • Oh, man…haha…the dictionaries I used all show me Maße as a plural form. Your dictionary link shared seems more powerful to help clear my confusion here. Many thanks!
    – Canny
    Aug 2, 2023 at 8:20
  • Thank you for your supplement sharing here, Zac67. Much appreciated!
    – Canny
    Aug 3, 2023 at 10:19

Maße is the plural.

That's not correct. It's nominative, genitive and accusative plural but also dative singular of das Maß.

The preposition in can't take nominative nor genitive, and the strong accusative plural ending of adjectives is -e so that Maße can't be the plural form. You have to pick up all the clues given.

So Maße is indeed dative singular neuter case, and because there's no article, the strong ending -em must be on the adjective.

  • Thanks for your kind reply, Janka. Your sharing and Zac67‘s aligned. Thanks again!
    – Canny
    Aug 2, 2023 at 8:49

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