Nominative and Genitive Demonstrative Pronouns

You may have noticed that in the paradigm table for strong masculine nouns that the nouns were preceded by se, þa, þone, þara, þæs and þæm. These are demonstratives and function in the same way as the definite article ‘the’ or the demonstrative pronouns ‘that’ and 'those'.

Strong Masculine Demonstratives
Singular Plural
Nominative se þa
Accusative þone þa
Genitive þæs þara
Dative þæm þæm

A noun and all its modifiers, including demonstrative pronouns, always share the same case, gender and number. This is called case harmony and means that demonstratives are a good way of figuring out the case a noun is in.

se cyning
Singular Nominative
þa cyningas
Plural Nominative

þone cyning
Singular Accusative
þa cyningas
Plural Accusative

þæs cyninges      
Singular Genitive
þara cyninga
Plural Genitive

þæm cyninge   
Singular Dative
þæm cyningum
Plural Dative

Old English does not generally have an indefinite article (what would be the modern English ‘a’ or 'an'), though sum — some and an — one, occasionally function in this role.

Return to Acc and Dat Strong Masc Nouns Continue to Strong Masc Nouns and Cases Overview

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