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Alternative forms[edit]


Univerbation of der +‎ selbe.


  • IPA(key): /deːɐ̯ˈzɛlbə/ (official standard)
  • IPA(key): /dɛɐ̯ˈzɛlbə/ (normal)
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: der‧sel‧be


derselbe (demonstrative)

  1. the same
  2. selfsame
  3. idem



  1. the same
  2. selfsame

Usage notes[edit]

  • When preceded by a preposition that contracts with the definite article, the form selbe or selben can be written apart: zu derselben Zeit or zur selben Zeit (“at the same time”).
  • derselbe should be used only when one refers to physically the same object, whereas der gleiche should be used when referring to an object of the same kind or a duplicate. For example:
    Ich habe früher dasselbe Auto gefahren.I used to drive this very same car.
    Ich habe früher das gleiche Auto gefahren.I used to drive the same kind of car.
However, this distinction is sometimes even missed by native speakers in standard usage, let alone colloquial German.


Declension of derselbe
masculine feminine neuter plural
nominative derselbe dieselbe dasselbe dieselben
genitive desselben derselben desselben derselben
dative demselben derselben demselben denselben
accusative denselben dieselbe dasselbe dieselben

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • derselbe” in Duden online
  • derselbe” in Digitales Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache