The definite articles are, with examples:
The definite article is used when talking about something specific.
⇒ The noun is unique. You can say exactly what you are talking about.
The definite article is used when talking about something generally known or alreadly specifically mentioned.
|Masculine||der Mann||den Mann||dem Mann||des Mannes|
|Feminine||die Frau||die Frau||der Frau||der Frau|
|Neuter||das Kind||das Kind||dem Kind||des Kindes|
|Plural||die Eltern||die Eltern||den Eltern||der Eltern|
The indefinite articles are, with examples:
The indefinite article is used when we talk about something unspecified.
⇒ The noun is not unique. It is one of many.
(There are many . It could be any stick (=Stock).)
|Masculine||ein Mann||einen Mann||einem Mann||eines Mannes|
|Feminine||eine Frau||eine Frau||einer Frau||einer Frau|
|Neuter||ein Kind||ein Kind||einem Kind||eines Kindes|
|Plural||- Eltern||- Eltern||- Eltern||- Eltern|
*In plural there is no indefinite article.
In some cases, the article and preposition are joined together into one word (a contraction):
These combinations are always joined together. But everybody will understand you if you leave them separated.
The difference: when separated, the article becomes a demonstrative pronoun. This means that you highlight the noun. You put it as the focus of the sentence. Joined together it´s just a neutral preposition + article combination. (More information: Demonstrative Pronouns)
(It could be ANY woman)
(zur = zu der ⇒ Not any kind of work HER work.)
(It is a specific woman!)
(It could be any bicycle!)
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