declension of manch, solch, viel and others

Hey, dude, how are you? I’m studying the declinations of some words like viel, manch, solch, all… and the following adjectives. As a matter of fact, I understood quite easily some of the general rules (most of them I saw at DUDEN-Richtiges und Gutes Deutsch) but a doubt appeared through my studies: I can’t quite understand when to decline or not the words I mentioned before. I mean, I know how these words should be declined, but I don’t know WHEN they should be declined. I don’t really know if there are any rules or something, but if you could give me at least a hint, I would really appreciate :)

Auf Wiedersehen!


(asked by Filipe)

3 comments on “declension of manch, solch, viel and others

  1. So… my first impulse without any background check or anything was this:

    when they are between an article and a noun – decine them.
    when they are in front of an article – don’t decline (you must not do it in fact)

    But each word works a little differently. So let’s take them on one by one and be a little more precise:


    Viel is declined when between an article and a noun (maybe with other adjectives in between) AND it refers to noun:

    – Die vielen schönen Blumen …. the numerous pretty flowers (lit.)
    – Die viel gelesenen Romane … the novels that are read a lot

    In the second sentence viel modifies gelesen and is hence an adverb and not declined despite being between article and noun.

    Viel can also act as an article and is then declined too.

    – Viele schöne Blumen wachsen hier. (nom)
    – Von vielen schönen Blumen träume ich.(dat)
    – Vieler schöner Blumen Duft hängt in der Luft. (gen.)

    Viel is not declined when used as a stand alone word.

    – Ich esse viel.

    I could replace viel with pizza here.


    When between article and noun, it is declined

    – Ein solches Auto…
    – Einen solchen Abend…

    There is also a solche that modifies an adjective:

    – Ein solch schnelles Auto….

    But this is really really rare and ancient I’d say. People would use “so” instead.
    When solch is in front of an article, it is not declined.

    – Solch ein schönes Pferd habe ich noch nie gesehen.

    But this also sounds a bit “oldish”.

    Solch can also stand alone as a pronoun. Then it is declined accordingly but those situations are rare.

    – Ne, diese Blumen hab’ ich nicht mehr. Ich hab’ nur noch solche da.


    This works pretty much like solche but can never be between an article and a noun (unless it describes the adjective)

    – das alles erklärende Buch….

    Alle can be used as an article:

    – Alle schönen Blumen…

    or before an article:

    – all die schönen Blumen…

    The latter is sounding nice but a bit theatrical…

    And alle can be a pronoun

    – Ich habe allen gesagt, dass ….
    – Ich kenne aller Leute Namen (gen.)


    Manch can’t be between article and noun. It can be an article and is then declined.

    – Manchem Pferd sieht man seine Geschwindigkeit nicht an.

    It can also be a pronoun.

    – Pferde sind unterschiedlich. Manche sind schnell, andere nicht. Auf manchen kann man reiten, auf anderen nicht.

    And it can be used before an article (only indefinite) to sound like a stage actor :)

    – Manch ein Pferd wäre gern ein Rennpferd.

    So… this was a bit jumbled. There is sort of a logic behind it but there is not just one system because the words can have different functions and come from a different background so each of them has its own limitations in what it can be used for… I hope this helps rather than that it confuses :)

  2. jacbop says:

    ‘Ich esse viel’
    Kann man auch sagen: ‘Ich esse vieles’?
    Wie, ‘Es gibt so vieles, was wir nicht verstehen’, oder ‘Ist das alles’?

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