Verbs which take the dative

Some verbs are followed by the dative or accusative case, or both. The verb determines which case is used.

Ein Lehrer: Ich helfe + ein Lehrer. → Ich helfe einem Lehrer.

A teacher: I'm helping + a teacher. → I’m helping a teacher.

The following verbs are always used with the dative case: sagen (“to say” - when introducing the person spoken to), helfen (to help), gefallen (to like, to please), gehören (to belong), schmecken (to taste), danken (to thank), antworten (to reply to), glauben (to believe).

Maria glaubt dem Kind.

Maria believes the child.

Mir gefällt Berlin.

I like Berlin.

Ich antworte dir später.

I'll reply to you later.

Wir sagen niemandem, was wir machen.

We're not telling anyone what we're doing.

These are the endings for articles in the dative case (the symbol ∅ indicates that no ending is added):

Nominativ Dativ
maskulin em
neutrum em
feminin e er
Plural e en

Anna antwortet einem Gast, einer Freundin, einem Mädchen.

Anna replies to a guest, a (female) friend, a girl.

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