Genitive

The genitive case indicates possession. For proper names, German adds an 's', just like in English. The only difference is that in German you do not add an apostrophy: Peter's car = Peters Auto; Mary's lamb = Marys Lamm.

Masculine and neuter nouns add an 's' if the noun has more than one syllable, an 'es' if it has only one syllable. Note that in the genitive the article has to change, too.

One syllable:
das Kind -> des Kindes
More than one syllable:
der Großvater -> des Großvaters

seems they couldn't decide on the proper genitive ending...

The only exception to this rule are masculine 'N-nouns' as they also add 'n' or 'en' in the genitive. They do not add an additional 's'.

Feminine and plural nouns do not change in the genitive.

Jakobs Hemd = Jacob's shirt

Petras Kleid = Petra's dress

die Hose des Mannes = the man's pants (Mannes because it is masculine and has one syllable)

die Schuhe des Professors = the professor's shoes (Professors because it has more than one syllable)

der Hut der Frau = the woman's hat (Frau is feminine, so there is no change)

die Socken der Kinder = the children's socks (Kinder does not change because it is plural)

  masculine neuter feminine plural
definite article des des der der
indefinite article eines eines einer keiner

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