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greetings (Gre)

Hello.

Hallo. Gr dich! casual Gr Gott! In southern Germany and Austria. Guten Tag. Hello/Good Day. Guten Morgen/Guten Abend. Good morning/evening. Auf Wiedersehen. Auf Wiederhren. Bye on the telephone. Tschss! casual Bis bald! See you soon! Bis spter! See you later! Wie geht es Ihnen? formal Wie geht es dir? casual Es geht mir gut. Es geht. Es geht mir schlecht. Es geht mir besser. Entschuldigen Sie bitte! formal Entschuldigung! casual Wie bitte? Bitte. See more on Thank you and You're Welcome in German. Danke. Es tut mit leid. Wirklich? Gerne! Sehr erfreut. Mach's gut.

Bye!

How are you? I'm fine. I'm so-so. I'm not doing well. I'm doing better. Excuse me! Pardon me? Please. Thank you. I'm sorry. Really? Gladly! Nice to meet you. Take care

Unique Traits of the German Alphabet: More than 26 letters in the alphabet - German has a so called extended latin alphabet The extra letters are , , and The pronunciation of some of these letters do not exist in the English language Several letters are pronounced more from the back of the throat: g, ch, r (though in Austria the r is trilled). The W in German sounds like the V in English The V in German sounds like the F in English Most of the time the S in German sounds like Z in English when placed at the beginning of a word followed by a vowel. The letter is the only letter that will never be at the beginning of a word.

Das Deutsche Alphabet/ The German Alphabet Buchstabe/ Letter Aussprache des Buchstabenamens/ Pronunciation of letter name ah approximate: bay Aussprache des Buchstaben - wie in/ Sound of Letter - as in astronaut baby creative, Celcius (soft c sound in German sounds like ts) dollar elegant effort gorgeous hammer

Beispiele/ Examples

Aa Bb

der Adler (eagle), Januar (January) der Bruder (brother), aber (but) der Chor, der Christkindlmarkt (south German term for der Weihnachtsmarkt/ Christmas market), Celcius Dienstag (Tuesday), oder (or) essen (to eat), zuerst (first) der Freund (friend), offen (open) gut (good), gemein (mean) der Hammer, dieMhle (mill) der Igel (porcupine), der Imbiss (snack), sieben (seven)

Cc

approximate: tsay

Dd Ee Ff Gg Hh

approximate: day approximate: ay eff approximate: gay haa

Ii

eeh

Igor

Jj Kk Ll Mm Nn Oo Pp

yot kah ell em en oh approximate: pay

yellow camel love man nice oven party

das Jahr (year), jeder (each) das Kamel, der Kuchen (cake) die Leute (people), das Land (land) der Mann, die Ameise nicht (not), die Mnze (coin) Ostern (Easter),rot (red) die Polizei (police), der Apfel das Quadrat (square), die Quelle (source) Note: All German words start with qu (kw - sound) der Rcken (the back), der Stern (star) summen (to hum), schn (pretty, nice), die Maus der Tyrann, acht (eight) die Universitt (university), der Mund (mouth) der Vogel (bird), die Nerven (nerves) die Wange (cheek), das Schwein (pig, wieviel (how much) das Xylofon/ Xylophon, die Hexe (witch) Note: There are hardly any German words that start with X die Yucca, der Yeti Note: There are hardly any German words that start with Y.

Qq

koo

coral

Rr Ss Tt Uu Vv

approximate: er es approximate: tay ooh fow

rich zoo, shine, mouse tyrant ou sound in you father

Ww

approximate: vay

van

Xx

ix

sounds like kz

Yy

uep-si-lohn

yellow

Zz

tset

sounds like ts

die Zeitung (newspaper), der Zigeuner (gypsy)

Umlaut + Aussprache des Buchstaben/ Pronunciation of Letter (esszet) sounds similar to the e in melon sounds similar to the i in girl no equivalent nor approximate sound in English double s sound Beispiele/ Examples hnlich (similar), ghnen (to yawn) sterreich (Austria), der Lwe (lion) ber (over),mde (tired) hei (hot),die Strae (street)

Diphthongs Diphthong Double Vowels ai / ei au eu / u ie Aussprache Pronunciation eye ow oy eeh Beispiele / Examples bei (at, near), das Ei (egg), der Mai (May) auch (also), das Auge (eye), aus (out of) Huser (houses), Europa (Europe), neu (new) bieten (offer), nie (never), Sie (you)

Grouped Consonants Buchstabe Consonant ck Aussprache Pronunciation k Beispiele / Examples dick (fat, thick), der Schock (shock) After a, o, u and au, pronounced like the guttural ch in Scottish "loch" - das Buch (book), auch (also). Otherwise it is a palatal sound as in: mich (me), welche (which), wirklich (really). TIP: If no air is passing over your tongue when you say a ch-sound, you aren't saying it correctly. No true equivalent in English. - Although ch doesn't usually have a hard k sound, there are exceptions: Chor, Christoph, Chaos, Orchester, Wachs (wax) Both letters are (quickly) pronounced as a combined puff-sound: das Pferd (horse), der Pfennig. If this is difficult for you, an f sound will work, but try to do it! das Alphabet, phonetisch - Some words formerly spelled with ph are now spelled with f: das Telefon, das Foto die Qual (anguish, torture), die Quittung (receipt) schn (pretty), die Schule (school) - The German sch combination is never split, whereas sh usually is (Grashalme, Gras/Halme; but die Show, a foreign word). At the start of a word, the s in sp/st has a sch sound as in English "show, she." sprechen (speak), stehen (stand) das Theater (tay-AHTER), das Thema (TAY-muh), topic - Always sounds like a t (TAY). NEVER has the English th sound!

ch

>>

pf

pf

ph qu

f kv

sch

sh

sp / st

shp / sht

th

PART 1b - From Essential German 2 Sprechen Sie Deutsch? - Sprechen Sie Englisch? Noch einmal, bittte. Wie bitte? Langsamer, bitte. Bitte Wiederholen Sie! Ich verstehe nicht. Ich habe eine Frage. Wie sagt man...? Ich wei nicht. Ich wei es nicht Doch! Wo ist...? Wo sind...? wann? - wer? - wie? warum? - was? Schon gut! Ich habe kein... Ich habe keine... Ich habe keinen... Ich habe kein Geld.

AUDIO SCRIPT 2 PART 1 - From Das Abc The words in bold type are the words you will hear. Letters as they are pronounced in German words:

A - der Apparat, der Vater, ab, aktiv, alles - der Br, der Jger, die Fhre, die rzte, mchtig B - bei, das Buch, die Bibel, ob, halb C - der Computer, die City, das Caf, C-Dur, die CD D - durch, dunkel, das Ende, der Freund, das Land E - elf, er, wer, eben, Englisch F - faul, Freunde, der Feind, das Fenster, der Fluss G - gleich, das Gehirn, gegeben, gern, das Image H - haben, die Hand, gehen (silent h), (G - das Glas, das Gewicht) I - der Igel, immer, der Fisch, innerhalb, gibt J - das Jahr, jung, jemand, der Joker, das Juwel K - kennen, der Koffer, der Spuk, die Lok, das Kilo L - langsam, die Leute, Griechenland, malen, locker M - mein, der Mann, die Lampe, Minuten, mal N - nein, die Nacht, die Nase, die Nuss, niemals O - das Ohr, die Oper, oft, das Obst, das Formular - sterreich, fters, schn, die Hhe, hchstens P - das Papier, positiv, der PC, der Papst, pur R - das Rathaus, rechts, unter, rund, die Reederei S - die Sache, so, das Salz, seit, der September /ss - gro, die Strae, muss, das, Wasser, dass T - der Tag, tglich, das Tier, die Tat, die Rente U - die U-Bahn, unser, der Rubel, um, der Jupiter - ber, die Tr, schwl, Dsseldorf, drcken V - der Vetter, vier, die Vase, aktiv, Nerven

W - wenn, die Woche, Treptow (silent w), das Wetter, wer X - x-mal, das Xylofon, Xanthen Y - der Yen, der Typ, typisch, das System, die Hypothek Z - zahlen, die Pizza, die Zeit, zwei, der Kranz

Long and Short Vowels long a/ - Bahn, kam, Vater, Gas, kahl short a/ - Bann, Kamm, Kraft, halb, Grten long e - Beet, Meer, mehr, leer, Leben short e - Bett, Vetter, letzte long i - mich, dich, Kilo, Klima, Limo short i - gibt, Mittel, Kind, Mist, Lippe long o/ - hohl, Boot, stren, Hhle, Ton short o/ - (rot long o), Post, Hlle, Tonne, Koffer long u/ - fhlen, Mut, Hut, Jugend, Kuh short u/ - fllen, Mutter, Htte, Nutte, Puppe

AUDIO SCRIPT for this audio file. PART 2 - From Diphthongs & Consonant Pairs Diphthongs ai/ei - bei (at, near), das Ei (egg), die Polizei, der Mai (May), der Kaiser au - auch (also), das Auge (eye), aus (out of), klauen (steal), tauchen (dive) u/ eu - Huser (houses), Europa (Europe), neu (new), heute (today), teuer (expensive) ie - bieten (offer), nie (never), Sie (you), bieten (offer), nie (never), Sie (you), mieten (rent), der Riese (giant)

Grouped Consonants ck - dick (fat, thick), der Schock (shock), drucken (print), picken, sickern The ch letter combination is pronounced several different ways in German: ch 1 - das Buch (book), auch (also), der Bauch (stomach), die Woche (week), noch (yet) ch 2 - ich, mich (me), welche (which), wirklich (really), nicht (not) ch 3 - das Mdchen, ein bisschen ch 4 - der Chor, das Chaos, der Chianti, der Charakter ch 5a (ch) - China, die Chemie - manchmal auch: (sometimes also) ch 5b (sh) - China, die Chemie - und auch: ch 5c (k) - China, die Chemie ch 6 - Chigago, der Chef, Chile -ig (-ich) - zwanzig, dreiig, mchtig -ig (-ik) - zwanzig, dreiig, mchtig chs - sechs, das Wachs, der Lachs, Sachsen, wechseln dt - die Stadt kn - der Knabe, das Knie, knusprig, der Knoblauch, die Kneipe pf - das Pferd, pflanzen, der Pfennig, der Napf, das Pflaster, die Pflege auch (also): das Pferd, der Pfennig, pflanzen, das Pflaster, die Pflege ph/f - das Alphabet, phonetisch, die Pharmaindustrie, die Phase, die Philatelie qu - die Qual, quer, die Quelle, die Quittung, der Quark - aber der Quai (also spelled Kai) sch - die Schule, schn, schade, der Schatz, schlafen The German sch combination is never split, whereas sh usually is: Grashalme, Gras/Halme; but die Show (foreign word) sp - sprechen, spalten, die Spannung, der Speck, die Speise st - stehen, die Stadt, der Standard, der Stein, stellen final st - der Mist, hast, bist, ist, willst th - das Theater, das Thema, Thomas, die Theke, das Thermometer

tz - der Witz, der Blitz, der Rotz, letzte, sitzen

PART 3 - From Pronunciation Hazards final b - das Lob (praise), der Job, der Lob (tennis) be- prefix - beobachten, der Beobachter final d - der Tod, der Feind, das Jod, der Wald ei vs ie - Wien/der Wein, Sie/sei, schiessen/scheissen, der Riese/die Reise final g - der Tag, genug, Berg, mag, lag silent h - ohne, sehen, die Uhr, leihen, das Vieh German ng - der Finger, der Hunger initial r - der Rabe, rund, Regular, regulr, der Ring, das Ross final r - vier, mehr, wunderbar, der Ring, der Ritter German th, as in Theorie, der Thron, die Therapie - der Thriller (English) German v - viel, bevor, negativ, der Vater, der Volkswagen In some foreign, non-Germanic words the v is pronounced as in English: Vase (vase), Villa (villa) German w - die Wahl, was, wieder, Wien, der Wind German z - schwarz, die Zeit, zum, der Geiz, zerbrechen, der Zimt umlauts - schon/schn, drucken/drcken, schwul/schwl, Mutter/Mtter, Bar/Br

Similar Words with Pronunciation Pitfalls Words similar to English, but pronounced differently. die Bank (bank) - die Bombe (bomb) - die Distanz (distance) der Finger (finger) - das Genie (genius) - die Hand (hand) der Hunger (hunger) - die Nation (nation) olympisch (Olympic) - das Papier (paper) - die Pause (pause) die Pizza (pizza) - der Planet (planet)

das Restaurant (restaurant) - total (total)

Some more similar but different words. der Berg (mountain) - die Burg (castle) die Post (post office) das Sofa

die deutschen Pronomina German Pronouns Nominative Singular Pronomen ich du er sie es Sie Pronoun I you (fam.) he she it you Sample Phrases Darf ich? (May I?) Ich bin 16 Jahre alt. (I'm 16 years old.)
The pronoun ich is not capitalized except at the beginning of a sentence.

Kommst du mit? (Are you coming along?) Ist er da? (Is he here?) Ist sie da? (Is she here?) Hast du es? (Do you have it?) Kommen Sie heute? (Are you coming today?)
The pronoun Sie always takes a plural conjugation, but is also used for the formal "you" singular.

Nominative Plural Pronomen wir ihr Pronoun we you guys (fam.) they you (plur.) Sample Phrases Wir kommen am Dienstag. (We're coming on Tuesday.) Habt ihr das Geld? (Do you guys have the money?) Sie kommen heute. (They're coming today.) sie
The pronoun sie in this sentence could also mean "you" Sie. Only the context makes it clear which of the two is meant.

Kommen Sie heute? (Are you [all] coming today?)


The pronoun Sie always takes a plural conjugation, but is also used for the formal "you" singular.

Sie

German nouns (a person, place or thing, Substantive) are very easy to spot: they always begin with a CAPITAL letter! German is the only world language that capitalizes all nouns.

NOUNS - Substantive
AUDIO Click on a linked word to hear it. (MP3)

NOMINATIVE SINGULAR Artikel der ein Gender masc. Sample Nouns der Bahnhof (train station), Sohn (son), Vater (father), Wagen (car), Zug (draft, parade, train) AUDIO: Hear All the Masculine Nouns die eine fem. die Anlage (installation, park), Dame (lady), Festung (fortress), Gesundheit (health), Luft (air) AUDIO: Hear All the Feminine Nouns das ein neut. das Boot (boat), Dach (roof), Geld (money), Jahr (year), Kino (cinema, movie theater), Radio AUDIO: Hear All the Neuter Nouns NOMINATIVE PLURAL Artikel die keine meine Gender plur. Sample Nouns (Plurals) die Bcher (books), Dcher (roofs), Fenster (windows), Jahre (years), Radios, Shne (sons), Zeitungen (newspapers)

Note: All nouns, of any gender, become die in the plural. (Ein can't be plural, but other socalled ein-words can: keine [none], meine [my], seine [his], etc.) That's the good news. The bad news is that there are about a dozen ways to form the plural of German nouns, only one of which is to add an "s" - as in English. - See the lesson and quiz Gender Hints for more.

German Gender Hints


German Noun Gender: Masculine - DER
RULE NO. 1: When learning a German noun, always treat its article as an integral part of the word! Not Wasser, but das Wasser. Not Hund, but der Hund. However, it can be very helpful to know about the gender generalizations below. These German gender hints are divided into two main categories: "Always" (no or few exceptions to the rule) and "Usually" (some exceptions). One more important gender rule to remember: in compound nouns, the last word determines the gender (as in die Geburt + der Ort = der Geburtsort, birthplace).

MNNLICH - der Always MASCULINE (der/ein):


Days, months, and seasons: Montag, Juli, Sommer (Monday, July, summer). The one exception is das Frhjahr, another word for der Frhling, spring. Points of the compass, map locations and winds: Nordwest(en) (northwest), Sd(en) (south), der Fhn (warm wind out of the Alps), der Scirocco (sirocco, a hot desert wind). Precipitation: Regen, Schnee, Nebel (rain, snow, fog/mist) - See Das Wetter (Lesson 20) Names of cars and trains: der VW, der ICE, der Mercedes. (But motorbikes and aircraft are feminine.) Words ending in -ismus: Journalismus, Kommunismus, Synchronismus (equal -ism words in English) Words ending in -ner: Rentner, Schaffner, Zentner, Zllner (pensioner, [train] conductor, hundred-weight, customs collector). The feminine form adds -in (die Rentnerin). The basic "atmospheric" elements that end in -stoff: der Sauerstoff (oxygen), der Stickstoff (nitrogen), der Wasserstoff (hydrogen), plus carbon (der Kohlenstoff). The only other elements (out of 112) that are masculine are der Phosphor and der Schwefel (sulphur). Note: All of the other chemical elements are neuter (das Aluminium, Blei, Kupfer, Uran, Zink, usw.).

Usually MASCULINE (der/ein):

Agents (people who do something), most occupations and nationalities: der Architekt, der Arzt, der Deutsche, der Fahrer, der Verkufer, der Student, der Tter (architect, physician, German [person], driver, salesman, student, perpetrator). Note that the feminine form of these terms almost always ends in -in (die Architektin, die rztin, die Fahrerin, die Verkuferin, die Studentin, Tterin, but die Deutsche). Nouns ending in -er, when referring to people (but die Jungfer, die Mutter, die Schwester, die Tochter, das Fenster) - See German Noun Suffixes and Gender for more

Names of alcoholic drinks: der Wein, der Wodka (but das Bier) Names of mountains and lakes: der Berg, der See (but Germany's highest peak, die Zugspitze follows the rule for the feminine ending -e, and die See is the sea). Most rivers outside of Europe: der Amazonas, der Kongo, der Mississippi (See World Rivers in German) Most nouns ending in -ich, -ling, -ist: Rettich, Sittich, Schdling, Frhling, Pazifist (radish, parakeet, pest/parasite, spring, pacifist)

German Gender Hints

German Noun Gender: Feminine - DIE

WEIBLICH - die (pron. DEE) Always FEMININE (die/eine):

Nouns ending in the following suffixes: -heit, -keit, -tt, -ung, -schaft - Examples: die Freiheit, Schnelligkeit, Universitt, Zeitung, Freundschaft (freedom, quickness, university, newspaper, friendship). Note that these suffixes usually have a corresponding English suffix, such as -ness (-heit, -keit), -ty (-tt), -ship (-schaft). Nouns ending in -ie: Drogerie, Geographie, Komdie, Industrie, Ironie (often equal to words ending in -y in English) Names of aircraft, ships and motorbikes: die Boeing 747, die Titanic, die BMW (motorbike only; the car is der BMW). The die comes from die Maschine, which can mean plane, motorbike and engine. - Helpful reminder: Ships are often referred to as "she" in English. Nouns ending in -ik: die Grammatik, Grafik, Klinik, Musik, Panik, Physik - But see German Noun Suffixes and Gender for some exceptions! Borrowed (foreign) nouns ending in: -ade, -age, -anz, -enz, -ette, -ine, -ion, -tur: Parade, Blamage (shame), Bilanz, Distanz, Frequenz, Serviette (napkin), Limonade, Nation, Konjunktur (economic trend). Note: Such words often resemble their English equivalent. A rare -ade exception: der Nomade. Cardinal numbers: eine Eins, eine Drei (a one, a three)

Usually FEMININE (die/eine):

Nouns ending in -in that pertain to female people, occupations, nationalities: Amerikanerin, Studentin (female American, student), but der Harlekin and also many non-people words: das Benzin, der Urin (gasoline/petrol, urine). Most nouns ending in -e: Ecke, Ente, Grenze, Pistole, Seuche (corner, duck, border, pistol, epidemic), but der Deutsche, das Ensemble, der Friede, der Junge ([the] German, ensemble, peace, boy) Nouns ending in -ei: Partei, Schweinerei (party [political], dirty trick/mess), but das Ei, der Papagei (egg, parrot). Most types of flowers and trees: Birke, Chrysantheme, Eiche, Rose (birch, chrysanthemum, oak, rose), but der Ahorn, (maple), das Gnseblmchen (daisy), and the word for tree is der Baum

Borrowed (foreign) nouns ending in -isse, -itis, -ive: Hornisse, Initiative (hornet, initiative)

German Gender Hints


German Noun Gender: Neuter - DAS
SCHLICH - das Always NEUTER (das/ein):

Nouns ending in -chen or -lein: Frulein, Huschen, Kaninchen, Mdchen (unmarried woman, cottage, rabbit, girl/maiden) Infinitives used as nouns (gerunds): das Essen, das Schreiben (eating/food, writing) Almost all of the 112 known chemical elements (das Aluminium, Blei, Kupfer, Uran, Zink, Zinn, Zirkonium, usw.) - except for six that are masculine: der Kohlenstoff (carbon), der Sauerstoff (oxygen), der Stickstoff (nitrogen), der Wasserstoff (hydrogen), der Phosphor and der Schwefel (sulphur). Note: Most of the elements end in -ium, a das ending. Names of hotels, cafs and theaters Names of colors used as nouns: das Blau, das Rot (blue, red)

Usually NEUTER (das/ein):

Geographic place names (towns, countries, continents): das Berlin, Deutschland, Brasilien, Afrika (but learn non-das countries, such as: der Irak, der Jemen, die Schweiz, die Trkei, die USA [plur.]) - See: Land und Leute, a German-English chart of countries, nationalities and languages. Young animals and people: das Baby, das Kken (chick); but der Junge (boy). Most metals: Aluminium, Blei, Kupfer, Messing, Zinn (aluminium, lead, copper, brass, tin/pewter; but die Bronze, der Stahl - bronze, steel) Nouns ending in -o (often cognates from Latin): das Auto, Bro, Kasino, Konto (account), Radio, Veto, Video - Note: Exceptions: die Avocado, die Disko, der Euro, der Scirocco, etc. - See German Noun Suffixes and Gender for more exceptions! Fractions: das/ein Viertel (), das/ein Drittel (but die Hlfte, half) Most nouns starting with Ge-: Genick, Gert, Geschirr, Geschlecht, Gesetz, Gesprch (back of the neck, device, dishes, sex/gender, law, conversation), but there are many exceptions, such as der Gebrauch, der Gedanke, die Gefahr, der Gefallen, der Genuss, der Geschmack, der Gewinn, die Gebhr, die Geburt, die Geduld, die Gemeinde, die Geschichte, and others) Most borrowed (foreign) nouns ending in -ment: Ressentiment, Supplement (but der Zement, der/das Moment [2 diff. meanings]) Most nouns ending in -nis: Versumnis (neglect; but die Erlaubnis, die Erkenntnis, die Finsternis) Most nouns ending in -tum or -um: Christentum, Knigtum (Christianity, kingship; but der Irrtum, der Reichtum - error, wealth)

Predicting German Noun Gender

Learning the gender of German nouns can be a problem for English-speakers. After all, we aren't used to nouns having any gender at all. ("She's a good ship" is a rare exception.) But as I explained previously in German Gender Hints, there are ways to predict the gender of a German noun. Not all nouns are truly predictable, but many are. But even when there is a rule to help determine the gender of a given noun category, there are almost always exceptions. For instance, certain noun endings or suffixes in German can tell you a noun's gender. Some, however, are more reliable than others. Take the example of German nouns ending in -o. Such wordsoften English cognates borrowed from Latinare usually neuter: das Auto, Bro, Kasino, Konto, Radio, Veto, Video, usw. But in this o-suffix category about one in three of the nouns is an exception to the rule. Some of the exceptions are very common: die Avocado, der Euro, die Limo, der Zoo. A sharp observer will notice that most of the exceptions are either not from Latin (die Avocado) or are short forms of longer words that determine the gender (die Limo, short for die Limonade). German nouns ending in -ik are usually feminine: die Grammatik, Grafik, Klinik, Mathematik, Musik, Physik, Panik. This is a fairly reliable predictor, but again there are some common exceptions, including der Atlantik, der Pazifik, der Katholik, and das Pik (spade, cards). Most of the few -ik exceptions are logical, particularly the two oceans, since the German word for ocean is der Ozean. Another German feminine noun suffix that is very reliable for predicting gender is the -in ending. This suffix is the most common way to turn a German masculine "people" word or occupation into a feminine noun (der Architekt/die Architektin, der Lehrer/die Lehrerin). However, there are a few nouns ending in -in that are not feminine: das Aspirin, der Harlekin, das Benzin, der Urin. But you'll notice that the -in exceptions are usually nonpeople words. An -er ending usually indicates a masculine noun. Such nouns are usually agents (people who do things), nationalities, and professions. However, some common nouns ending in -er are not masculine: das Fenster, die Mutter, die Schwester, die Tochter, das Wetter.

Nouns Ending in -er - Usually masculine NOTE: Because there are so many masculine -er nouns, only exceptions are listed here. e Butter butter e Feder feather, quill, pen; spring s Fenster window s Futter feed, food, fodder s Gewitter thunderstorm e Jungfer spinster, old maid; virgin, young lady e Kiefer pine

but r Kiefer jawbone s Kupfer copper s Lager camp, storeroom e Leiter ladder but r Leiter leader, head, manager s Messer knife but r Messer gauge e Mutter mother s Poker poker (game) s Puder powder (also masc.) s Opfer victim, sacrifice e Schwester sister s Silber silver e Steuer tax s Steuer rudder, helm s Theater theater e Tochter daughter s Wasser water s Wetter weather s Wunder miracle, wonder s Zimmer room
Nouns Ending in -ik - Usually feminine NOTE: Gender exceptions are marked * r Atlantik* the Atlantic e Belletristik fiction, belles-lettres e Dynamik dynamic(s) e Ethik ethic(s) e Fabrik factory e Grammatik grammar e Grafik graphic(s)

e Hektik hectic pace, hustle and bustle e Karibik Caribbean e Klassik classical (music, style, period) e Klinik hospital, clinic e Komik comic effect e Logik logic e Lyrik poetry e Mathematik math e Musik music e Mystik mysticism e Panik grammar r Pazifik* the Pacific e Physik physics s Pik* spade (cards) e Politik politics; policy e Romanik Romanesque (style, period) e Romantik Romantic (style, period) e Statistik statistics e Trafik smoke shop (Austria) e Tragik tragedy

Nouns Ending in -in - Usually feminine NOTE: Because there are so many feminine -in nouns, only exceptions are listed here. s Aspirin aspirin r Harlekin clown s Benzin gasoline, petrol r Urin urine

Nouns Ending in -o - Usually neuter NOTE: Gender exceptions are marked * s Abo subscription (short for s Abonnement) s Auto auto, car e Avocado* avocado

e Demo* (street) demo (short for e Demonstration) e Disco/Disko* disco (short for e Diskotheke) r Domino* domino (piece) s Domino (game) r Dynamo* dynamo r Eskimo* Eskimo r Euro* euro s Fiasko fiasco r Flamingo* flamingo s Foto photograph s Kilo kilogram s Kino cinema, movie theater s Klo toilet, loo r Kongo* the Congo (river) s Konto account e Kripo* cops, CID r Limbo limbo e Limo* soft drink, lemonade (short for e Limonade) s Logo logo s Lotto lottery s Manko deficit s Motto motto r ko Green (party member), tree-hugger e Polio* polio, poliomyeltis s Polo polo r Popo* bottom, butt, heinie s Porto postage s Radio radio r Realo* political realist s Risiko risk, odds s Rokoko Rococo (style, period) r Saldo* balance (finan.) r Salto* somersault, turn (gymn.) r Scirocco* scirocco, a hot desert wind e Soko* special police commission/unit r Tacho* speedometer (short for r/s Tachometer) r Techno* techno (music) s Tempo speed s Tempo Tempo (tissue), Kleenex

r/s Toto* soccer/football pool, sports book r Trafo* transformer (elec.) s Tremolo tremolo s Trio trio s Ufo UFO (unidentified flying object) e UNO* the UN (United Nations) s Veto veto s Video video r Voodoo* voodoo r Vopo* policeman (East Germany) r Zoo* zoo

Two Important Verbs: haben and sein


haben - to have Deutsch ich habe du hast er hat sie hat es hat wir haben ihr habt sie haben Sie haben English SINGULAR I have you (fam.) have he has she has it has we have you (guys) have they have you have Ich habe einen roten Wagen. (...a red car.) Du hast mein Buch. (...my book.) Er hat ein blaues Auge. (...a black eye.) Sie hat blaue Augen. (...blue eyes.) Es hat keine Fehler. (...no flaws.) PLURAL Wir haben keine Zeit. (...no time.) Habt ihr euer Geld? (...your money?) Sie haben kein Geld. (They have no money.) Haben Sie das Geld? (Sie, formal "you," is both singular and plural.) Sample Sentences

See more verbs on our German Strong Verbs and 50 Common German Verbs pages. To be or not to be... Sein oder nicht sein... sein - to be Deutsch ich bin du bist er ist sie ist es ist English SINGULAR I am you (fam.) are he is she is it is Ich bin's. (It's me.) Du bist mein Schatz. (...my darling/treasure.) Er ist ein netter Kerl. (...a nice guy.) Ist sie da? (Is she here?) Es ist mein Buch. (...my book.) PLURAL wir sind ihr seid we are you (guys) are "Wir sind das Volk!" ("We are the people/nation!" Slogan of 1989 East German protests in Leipzig.) Seid ihr unsere Freunde? (..our friends.) Sample Sentences

sie sind Sie sind

they are you are

Sie sind unsere Freunde. (..our friends.) Sind Sie Herr Meier? (Sie, formal "you," is both singular and plural.)

German Verbs in the Present Tense


The Basics Each verb has a basic "infinitive" ("to") form. This is the form of the verb you find in a German dictionary. The verb "to play" in English is the infinitive form. ("He plays" is a conjugated form.) The German equivalent of "to play" is spielen. Each verb has a "stem" form, the basic part of the verb left after you remove the -en ending. For spielen the stem is spiel- (spielen - en). To conjugate the verbthat is, use it in a sentenceyou must add the correct ending to the stem. If you want to say "I play" you add an -e ending: "ich spiele" (which can also be translated into English as "I am playing"). Each "person" (he, you, they, etc.) requires its own ending on the verb. This is called "conjugating the verb." If you don't know how to conjugate verbs correctly it means your German will sound strange to people who understand the language. German verbs require more different endings than English verbs. In English we use only an s ending or no ending for most verbs: "I/they/we/you play" or "he/she plays." In the present tense, German has a different ending for almost all of those verb situations: ich spiele, sie spielen, du spielst, er spielt, etc. Observe that the verb spielen has a different ending in each of the examples. If you want to sound intelligent in German, you need to learn when to use which ending. That's why we have this chart for you! German has no present progressive tense ("am going"/"are buying"). The German Prsens "ich kaufe" can be translated into English as "I buy" or "I am buying," depending on the context. The chart below lists two sample German verbsone an example of a "normal" verb, the other an example of verbs that require a "connecting e" in the 2nd person singular and plural, and the 3rd person singular (du/ihr, er/sie/es)as in er arbeitet. We have also included a helpful list of some representative common stem-changing verbs. These are verbs that follow the normal pattern of endings, but have a vowel change in their stem or base form (hence the name "stem-changing"). In the chart below, the verb endings for each pronoun (person) are indicated in bold type. spielen - to play Deutsch ich spiele du spielst er spielt English SINGULAR I play you (fam.) play he plays Ich spiele gern Basketball. Spielst du Schach? (chess) Er spielt mit mir. (with me) Sample Sentences

sie spielt es spielt

she plays it plays

Sie spielt Karten. (cards) Es spielt keine Rolle. It doesn't matter. PLURAL Wir spielen Basketball. Sie spielen Golf. Spielen Sie heute? (Sie, formal "you," is both singular and plural.)

wir spielen ihr spielt sie spielen Sie spielen

we play they play you play

you (guys) play Spielt ihr Monopoly?

Now let's look at another German verb. This one is only slightly different from the others. The verb arbeiten (to work) belongs to a category of verbs that add a "connecting" e in the 2nd person singular and plural, and the 3rd person singular (du/ihr, er/sie/es) in the present tense: er arbeitet. Verbs whose stem ends in d or t do this. The following are examples of verbs in this category: antworten (answer), bedeuten (mean), enden (end), senden (send). (The more common verbs in this group are included on our 50 Common German Verbs page.) In the chart below we have marked the 2nd and 3rd person conjugations with *. arbeiten - to work Deutsch ich arbeite du arbeitest * er arbeitet * sie arbeitet * es arbeitet * wir arbeiten ihr arbeitet * sie arbeiten Sie arbeiten English SINGULAR I work he works she works it works we work they work you work Ich arbeite am Samstag. Er arbeitet mit mir. (with me) Sie arbeitet nicht. -PLURAL Wir arbeiten zu viel. Sie arbeiten bei BMW. Arbeiten Sie heute? (Sie, formal "you," is both singular and plural.) you (guys) work Arbeitet ihr am Montag? you (fam.) work Arbeitest du in der Stadt? Sample Sentences

Sample Stem-Changing Verbs Deutsch English Sample Sentence In the examples below, er stands for all three third-person pronouns (er, sie, es). Stemchanging verbs only change in the singular (except for ich). Their plural forms are completely regular.

fahren er fhrt du fhrst lesen er liest du liest nehmen er nimmt du nimmst vergessen er vergisst du vergisst

to travel he travels you travel to read he reads you read to take he takes you take to forget he forgets you forget

Er fhrt nach Berlin. He's traveling/going to Berlin. Ich fahre nach Berlin. I'm traveling/going to Berlin. Maria liest die Zeitung. Maria's reading the newspaper. Wir lesen die Zeitung. We read the newspaper. Karl nimmt sein Geld. Karl's taking his money. Ich nehme mein Geld. I'm taking my money. Er vergisst immer. He always forgets. Vergiss es! / Vergessen Sie es! Forget it!

50 Common German Verbs Click on any linked verb for a full conjugation Deutsch antworten arbeiten bedeuten beginnen bekommen bestellen besuchen bezahlen bleiben bringen danken English to answer to work to mean, signify to begin to get, receive to order to visit to pay to stay, remain to bring, take to thank 2nd/3rd Per. Sing. Sample Sentence Er antwortet nicht. Er arbeitet heute. Was bedeutet dieses Wort? Wann beginnt der Film? Was bekommen Sie? What can I get for you? Er bestellt es online. Wir besuchen meine Tante in Berlin. Bezahlen wir jetzt? Wir bleiben hier. Ich bringe Sie zum Flughafen. I'll take you to the airport. Ich danke Ihnen. (dative verb) Was denken Sie darber? What do you think about that? du/er isst

Danke! > 10 Ways to Say 'Thank You' in German denken essen to think to eat

Wann isst du zu Mittag? When do you eat lunch? fahren finden fliegen fragen geben gehen helfen hren kaufen to travel, drive, go to find to fly to ask to give to go to help to hear, listen to buy du fhrst/er fhrt Ich fahre morgen nach Dresden. I'm going/traveling to Dresden tomorrow. Wie finden Sie den Film? What do you think of the movie? Er fliegt nach Boston. Fragst du mich? du gibst/er gibt Wann gibst du ihm das Buch? es gibt = there is/there are Wir gehen ins Kino. du hilfst/er hilft Helfen Sie mir! (dative verb) Hrst du die Musik? Ich kaufe die Postkarte.

Also see: Present Tense Quiz 1 A self-scoring quiz on the German regular verbs. kommen kosten lesen lieben machen nehmen ffnen to come to cost to read to love to make, do to take to open Wann kommt er nach Hause? Was kostet das Buch? du/er liest Ich lese die Zeitung. Ich liebe dich. Was macht er? du nimmst/er nimmt Nehmt ihr das Geld? Sie ffnet die Tr. Probieren geht ber Studieren. (saying)The proof's in the pudding. Es regnet heute. Er reist nach Teneriffa. Er sagt nein. du schlfst/er schlft Wir schlafen gut. Das schmeckt! That tastes good! Er schreibt eine Mail.

MORE > Verb-Lexikon - 500+ German verbs probieren regnen reisen sagen schlafen schmecken schreiben to try (out) to rain to travel to say, tell to sleep to taste, be tasty to write

schwimmen sehen senden setzen singen spielen sprechen suchen trinken vergessen verstehen warten wohnen zeigen

to swim to see to send, transmit to put, set to sing to play, act to speak to seek, search look for to drink to forget to understand to wait to reside, live (in) to show, indicate

Er schwimmt gern. He likes to swim. du siehst/er sieht Ich sehe ihn nicht. Er sendet eine E-Mail. Er setzt sich. He sits down. Sie singt sehr schn. Hans spielt Fuball. du sprichst/er spricht Ich spreche Deutsch. Was suchst du? What are you looking for? Ich trinke lieber Kaffee. I'd rather drink coffee. du vergisst/er vergisst Ich vergesse den Namen. Er versteht Deutsch. Sie wartet auf den Bus. She's waiting for the bus. Mein Vater wohnt in Hamburg. Ich zeige Ihnen, wo das ist.

The Top 20 Most-Used German Verbs

Ranked by Frequency of Use Infinitiv Common Forms Examples COMMANDS Sei still! Be quiet! Seien Sie bitte so freundlich! Would you be so kind! OTHER Ich bin's. It's me. Wie wr's mit einem Bier? How about a beer? COMMANDS Hab dich nicht so! Don't make such a fuss! OTHER Er hat keine Zeit. He has no time. Wenn ich nur das Geld htte. If I only had the money. COMMANDS werde! become! werden Sie! become! OTHER Es wird dunkel. It's getting dark. Sie wird uns schreiben. She will write us. (future) Der Brief wurde geschrieben. The letter was written. (passive) COMMANDS No imperative OTHER Er kann Deutsch. He knows German. Ich habe es nicht sagen knnen. I couldn't say it. COMMANDS No imperative OTHER Ich muss nicht. I don't have to. Er muss nach Berlin. He has to go to

1 sein to be

ich bin I am du bist you are er war he was er ist gewesen he was/has been es wre it would be

2 haben to have

ich habe I have du hast you have er hat he has Sie haben gehabt You had/have had wir htten we would have

3 werden to become Also used to form the future tense and the passive voice.

ich werde I become du wirst you become er ist geworden he became es wurde it became es wrde.. it would...

4 knnen to be able, can

ich kann I can du kannst you can er konnte he could Sie knnen you can

5 mssen to have to, must

ich muss I must/have to du musst you must er muss he must sie musste she had to wir mssen we have to

Berlin. COMMANDS Imperative rare OTHER Er will nichts trinken. He doesn't want to drink anything. Das habe ich nicht gewollt. I didn't mean to (do that). Wir wollen morgen abfahren. We want to leave tomorrow. COMMANDS No imperative OTHER Er mag die Suppe. He likes the soup. Was mchten Sie? What would you like? COMMANDS wisse! know! wisset! know! OTHER Er wei es nicht. He doesn't know. Sie wusste weder ein noch aus. She didn't know which way was up. Wissen Sie, wann sie ankommen? Do you know when they arrive? COMMANDS Machen Sie sich keine Gedanken! Don't worry about it! OTHER Das macht nichts. It doesn't matter. Was macht das? What does it come to? (How much?) Was machen wir jetzt? Now what do we do? COMMANDS No imperative OTHER Ich sollte dort bleiben. I ought to stay there.

6 wollen to want (to)

ich will I want (to) du willst you want (to) er will he wants (to) er wollte he wanted to sie hat gewollt she wanted to

7 mgen to like (to)

ich mag I like ich mchte I would like du magst you like er mochte he liked Sie mgen you like

8 wissen to know

ich wei I know du weit you know wir wissen we know er wusste he knew ich habe gewusst I knew, have known

9 machen to make, do

ich mache I do, make du machst you make er macht he does wir machten we did, made er hat gemacht he did, has done ich werde machen I will do, make

10 sollen should, ought to,

ich soll I should du sollst you should er soll he should sie sollte she was supposed to

supposed to

wir sollen we ought to

Es soll schn sein. It's said to be/supposed to be nice. Was soll das? What's that supposed to mean?

Infinitiv

Common Forms

Examples COMMANDS N/A OTHER Wie heien Sie? What's your name? (last name) Ich heie Jones. My name is Jones. Er heit Braun. His name is Braun. Wie heit du? What's your name? (child) Ich heie Karl. My name is Karl. (child) Was soll das heien? What's that supposed to mean?/What do you mean by that?

11 Tie heien to be called, named (my/his) name is

ich heie my name is sie heit her name is du heit your name is er hie his name was er hat geheien he was named wir heien our name is Heien Sie? Is your name?

11 Tie sagen to say, tell

COMMANDS Sag das nicht! Don't say it! ich sage I say Sagen Sie mir! Tell me! du sagst you say OTHER er sagte he said Er sagt, was er denkt. He says what he er hat gesagt he said/has said means/thinks. wir sagen we say Das sagt mir nichts. That doesn't mean sagen Sie? do you say?/are you saying? anything to me. Du hast nichts zu sagen. You have no say (in the matter). COMMANDS gehe! go! geht! go! gehen Sie! go! OTHER Das geht nicht. That won't do/work. Wie geht es Ihnen? How are you? Meine Uhr geht nach. My watch is slow. Sie geht zu Fu She goes on foot./She walks.

12 gehen to go

ich gehe I go, am going du gehst you go er geht he goes sie ist gegangen she went/has gone er ging he went

13 sehen to see

ich sehe I see du siehst you see er sieht he sees er hat gesehen he saw/has seen sie sah she saw wir sahen we saw

COMMANDS sehe! see! sehen Sie! see! OTHER Sie sieht nicht gut. She doesn't see well. Wo hast du ihn gesehen? Where did you see him? COMMANDS gebt! give! gib! give! geben Sie! give! OTHER Geben Sie mir den Bleistift! Give me the pencil. Es gibt kein Geld. There is no money. Ich gab ihr das Buch. I gave her the book. Er hat mir das Geld gegeben. He gave me the money. COMMANDS komm! come! kommt! come! kommen Sie! come! OTHER Ich komme nicht nach Hause. I'm not coming home. Er ist nach Berlin gekommen. He came to Berlin.Woher kommt sie? Where does she come from?Es kam ganz anders, als erwartet. It turned out very differently than we expected. COMMANDS Lassen Sie das! Stop that! Leave that alone! OTHER Er lie sich keine Zeit. He didn't allow himself any time. Das lasse ich mir nicht gefallen. I won't put up with that. Er lsst sich die Haare schneiden. He's

14 geben to give

ich gebe I give du gibst you give er gab he gave Sie geben you give es gibt there is/are

15 kommen to come

ich komme I come, am coming du kommst you come er kam he came sie ist gekommen she came

16 lassen to let, allow, leave

ich lasse I let du lsst you let er lsst he lets Sie haben gelassen You have let er lie he let

getting a haircut. COMMANDS finde! find! findet! find! finden Sie! find! OTHER Er fand die Suppe gut. He liked the soup. Wir finden keinen Platz. We can't find a seat.

17 finden to find

ich finde I find ich fand I found du findest you find er fand he found Sie haben gefunden you found/have found

18 bleiben to stay, remain

COMMANDS bleib! stay! bleibt! stay! ich bleibe I stay Bitte, bleiben Sie sitzen! Please remain du bleibst you stay seated! wir bleiben we stay OTHER er blieb he stayed Er bleibt in Kln. He's staying in ich bin geblieben I stayed, have stayed Cologne. Alles blieb beim Alten. Everything stayed the same./Nothing changed. Es bleibt dabei. Agreed. It's a deal. COMMANDS nimm! take! nehmt! take! nehmen Sie! take! Nehmen Sie Platz! Have a seat! OTHER Er nahm das Geld. He took the money. Sie nahm es auf sich, das zu machen. She took it upon herself to do that. Wir haben den Tag freigenommen. We took the day off. COMMANDS bring! bring bringt! bring bringen Sie! bring OTHER Ich bringe Sie dorthin. I'll take you there. Er hat es weit gebracht. He has been very successful./He has come far. Was bringt das? What will that accomplish?

19 nehmen to take

ich nehme I take du nimmst you take er nimmt he takes wir nehmen we take er hat genommen he took, has taken ich werde nehmen I will take

20 bringen to bring

ich bringe I bring du bringst you bring er brachte he brought sie hat gebracht she brought, has brought

Das hat mich zum Lachen gebracht. That made me laugh.

Adjective Endings German adjectives, like English ones, usually go in front of the noun they modify: "der gute Mann" (the good man), "das groe Haus" (the big house/building), "die schne Dame" (the pretty lady). Unlike English adjectives, a German adjective in front of a noun has to have an ending (-e in the examples above). Just what that ending will be depends on several factors, including gender (der, die, das) and case (nominative, accusative, dative). But most of the time the ending is an -e or an -en (in the plural). With ein-words, the ending varies according to the modified noun's gender (see below). Look at the following table for the adjective endings in the nominative (subject) case: With definite article (der, die, das) - Nominative case
AUDIO Click on a phrase to hear it spoken.

Masculine der der neue Wagen


the new car

Feminine die die schne Stadt


the beautiful city

Neuter das das alte Auto


the old car

Plural die die neuen Bcher


the new books

AUDIO: HEAR ALL FOUR PHRASES (MP3) Hear all four phrases (MP3)

With indefinite article (eine, kein, mein) - Nom. case


AUDIO Click on a phrase to hear it spoken.

Masculine ein ein neuer Wagen


a new car

Feminine eine eine schne Stadt


a beautiful city

Neuter ein ein altes Auto


an old car

Plural keine keine neuen Bcher


no new books

AUDIO: HEAR ALL FOUR PHRASES (MP3) Hear all four phrases (MP3)

Note that with ein-words, since the article may not tell us the gender of the following noun, the adjective ending often does this instead (-es = das, -er = der; see above). As in English, a German adjective can also come after the verb (predicate adjective): "Das Haus ist gro." (The house is large.) In such cases the adjective will have NO ending.

German Verb Prefixes


Separable and Inseparable Verb Prefixes Part 1: Inseparable Prefixes
Verb Prefixes There are three kinds of verb prefixes in German: (1) separable (trennbar), (2) inseparable (untrennbar), and (3) dual prefixes (usually a preposition) that can be both. Separable prefixes are stressed (betont) in their pronunciation; inseparable prefixes are unstressed (unbetont). In this verb prefix chart, we have divided the prefixes into their three categories. By adding various prefixes to a base verb, German can produce new meanings: kommen > abkommen (digress), ankommen (arrive), bekommen (get), entkommen (escape). (English does the same thing, using Greek and Latin prefixes: form > deform, inform, perform, etc.) Knowing the basic meaning of a verb prefix can be helpful in learning German vocabulary, but not all prefixes have a specific meaning, nor does each prefix always have the same meaning. For instance, knowing the meaning of the prefix ver- may or may not help you understand the meaning of verbs like verschlafen (to oversleep) or versprechen (to promise). The prefix meanings can be interesting and helpful, but they are no substitute for learning vocabulary. If you are not already familiar with how separable and inseparable verbs are used in a sentence, see Lesson 19 and our Sample Sentences page for examples. Also see additional comments at the end of each section of the prefix chart.

Inseparable Prefixes Untrennbare Prfixe


Prefix Meaning like English bebemakes verb take a direct object (acc.) Examples s. befinden (be located) befolgen (follow) befreunden (befriend) begegnen (meet) bekommen (get) bemerken (notice, remark) empfangen (receive) empfehlen (recommend) empfinden (feel) entarten (degenerate) entbehren (miss, do without) entdecken (discover) entfallen (elude, slip) entfernen (remove, take out) entkalken (decalcify)

emp-

sense, receive

away from entEnglish de-/dis-

entkleiden (disrobe, undress) entkommen (escape, get away) entlassen (discharge, release) entstehen (originate, be formed/created) entwerten (devalue, cancel) fatal, dead erlike English reerhngen (hang, execute) erschiessen (shoot dead) ertrinken (drown) s. erinnern (remember) erkennen (recognize) erholen (recover, relax) gebrauchen (use, make use of) gedenken (commemorate, intend) gefallen (like) gehren (belong to) gelangen (arrive at) geloben (vow) genesen (recover, recuperate) gestalten (shape, form) gestehen (confess) gewhren (grant, give, offer) missachten (disregard, disdain) missbrauchen (abuse, misuse) misstrauen (mistrust) missverstehen (misunderstand) verachten (despise) verbilden (miseducate) verderben (go bad, spoil) s. verfahren (go astray, get lost) verkommen (go to ruin, become run down) verschlafen (oversleep) verdrngen (drive out) verduften (lose its aroma) verlassen (leave, abandon) verlieren (lose) verbieten (forbid) vergeben (forgive) vergessen (forget) verbinden (bandage, link, tie) vergrern (enlarge) verhaften (arrest) versprechen (promise) vollenden (complete, finish) vollfhren (execute, perform) vollstrecken (enforce, execute)

ge-

--

miss-

English mis-

bad, awry English mis-

ver-

lose, away/out

English for-

???

voll-*

full, complete

Separable Prefixes 1 Trennbare Prfixe 1


*NOTE: Some verbal expressions with voll treat voll as an adverb rather than a prefix, and are spelled with the adverb voll separated from the verb, even in the infinitive form. Examples include: voll drhnen (dope/tank up), voll essen (gorge oneself), voll machen (fill [up]). zercollapse, shatter, shred zerbrechen (shatter) zerreissen (rip up, shred) zerstren (destroy)

NOTE: Inseparable-prefix verbs do not add the normal past participle prefix ge- in the perfect tenses. See the examples below. Comments: Inseparable Prefix Verbs There are verbs in English that are constructed and used much like German inseparableprefix verbs: contend, extend, pretend, and intend are all based on the verb "tend." A similar example in German is the verb finden (find). By adding various inseparable prefixes, German alters the meaning of finden to create new meanings: sich befinden (be located), empfinden (feel), or erfinden (invent). As you can see, many common German verbs are inseparable-prefix verbs. German verbs with inseparable prefixes do not add the normal past participle prefix ge- in the perfect tenses. Examples: bekommen (to get) hat/hatte bekommen; erwarten (to expect, await) hat/hatte erwartet; verstehen (to understand) hat/hatte verstanden. For more about German verb tenses, see our German Verbs section.

Part 2: Separable Verb Prefixes Verbalprfixe - Vorsilben bei Zeitwrtern


This verb prefix guide, with a prefix chart, is part of Lesson 19 of our of free German for Beginners course. To learn more about German verbs, also see our German Verbs section and the Verb-Lexikon. Also see: Verb Prefixes and Rechtschreibreform

Separable Prefixes 1 Below we have listed the most common separable prefixes in German. For more of the separable prefixes, including less common ones (fehl-, statt-, etc.), see Separable Prefixes 2.

Verb Prefixes: Inseparable > Separable 1 > Separable 2 > Dual > Rechtschreibreform > Sample Sentences with verb prefixes

Prefix

Meaning

Examples abblenden (screen, fade out, dim [lights]) abdanken (abdicate, resign) abkommem (get away) abnehmen (pick up; decrease, reduce) abschaffen (abolish, do away with) abziehen (deduct, withdraw, print [photos]) anbauen (cultivate, grow, plant) anbringen (fasten, install, display) anfangen (begin, start) anhngen (attach) ankommen (arrive) anschauen (look at, examine) aufbauen (build up, put up, add on) aufdrehen (turn on, unscrew, wind up) auffallen (stand out, be noticeable) aufgeben (give up; check [luggage]) aufkommen (arise, spring up; bear [costs]) aufschlieen (unlock; develop [land]) ausbilden (educate, train) ausbreiten (extend, spread out) ausfallen (fail, fall out, be canceled) ausgehen (go out) ausmachen (10 meanings!) aussehen (appear, look [like]) auswechseln (exchange, replace [parts])

ab-

from

an-

at, to

auf-

on, out, up, un-

aus-

out, from

See The 10 Meanings of the German Verb 'ausmachen'. beibringen (teach; inflict) beikommen (get hold of, deal with) beischlafen (have sexual relations with) beisetzen (bury, inter) beitragen (contribute [to]) beitreten (join) durchhalten (withstand, endure; hold out) durchfahren (drive through)

bei-

along, with

durch-*

through

*The prefix durch- is usually separable, but it can also be inseparable. See Dual Prefixes. einatmen (inhale) einberufen (conscript, draft; convene, summon) einbrechen (break in; break down/through, cave in) eindringen (force entry into, penetrate, besiege) einfallen (collapse; occur to, remind) eingehen (enter, sink in, be received) fortbilden (continue education) fortbringen (take away [for repair], post) fortpflanzen (propagate, reproduce; be transmitted) fortsetzen (continue) forttreiben (drive away) mitarbeiten (cooperate, collaborate) mitbestimmen (co-determine, have a say in) mitbringen (bring along) mitfahren (go/travel with, get a lift) mitmachen (join in, go along with) mitteilen (inform, communicate) nachahmen (imitate, emulate, copy) nachbessern (retouch) nachdrucken (reprint) nachfllen (refill, top up/off) nachgehen (follow, go after; run slow [clock]) nachlassen (slacken, loosen) vorbereiten (prepare) vorbeugen (prevent; bend forward) vorbringen (propose, bring up; bring forward, produce) vorfhren (present, perform) vorgehen (proceed, go on, go first) vorlegen (present, submit) wegbleiben (stay away) wegfahren (leave, drive off, sail away) wegfallen (be discontinued, cease to apply, be omitted) weghaben (have got done, have got done) wegnehmen (take away) wegtauchen (disappear)

ein-

in, into, inward, down

fort-

away, forth, onward

mit-

along, with, co-

nach-

after, copy, re-

vor-

before, forward, pre-, pro-

weg-

away, off

zu-

shut/closed, to, towards, upon

zubringen (bring/take to) zudecken (cover up, tuck in) zuerkennen (bestow, confer [on]) zufahren (drive/ride towards) zufassen (make a grab for) zulassen (authorize, license) zunehmen (increase, gain, add weight) zurckblenden (flash back [to]) zurckgehen (go back, return) zurckschlagen (hit/strike back) zurckschrecken (shrink back/from, recoil, shy away) zurcksetzen (reverse, mark down, put back) zurckweisen (refuse, repulse, turn back/away) zusammenbauen (assemble) zusammenfassen (summarize) zusammenklappen (fold up, shut) zusammenkommen (meet, come together) zusammensetzen (seat/put together) zusammenstoen (collide, clash)

zurck-

back, re-

zusammen- together

NOTE: All of the separable verbs form their past participle with ge-, as in zurckgegangen (zurckgehen).

Comments: Separable Prefix Verbs German separable prefix verbs can be compared to English verbs like "call up," "clear out" or "fill in." While in English you can say either "Clear out your drawers" or "Clear your drawers out," in German the separable prefix is almost always at the end, as in the second English example. A German example with anrufen: Heute ruft er seine Freundin an. = Today he's calling his girlfriend (up). This applies to most "normal" German sentences, but in some cases (infinitive forms or in dependent clauses) the "separable" prefix does not separate. See Lesson 19 and the Sample Sentences page for more about this. In spoken German, separable verb prefixes are stressed. All of the separable-prefix verbs form their past participle with ge-. Examples: Sie hat gestern angerufen, She called/telephoned yesterday. Er war schon zurckgegangen, He had already gone back. - For more about German verb tenses, see our German Verbs section.
Separable Prefixes 2 In Part 1 we listed the most common separable prefixes in German. For many other, less frequently used separable prefixes, see the chart below. While some of the separable prefixes below, such as fehl- or statt-, are used in only two or three German verbs, they often turn out to be important, useful verbs that one should know. Verb Prefixes > Inseparable | Separable 1 | Separable 2 | Dual > Sample Sentences with verb prefixes

Separable Prefixes 2 Trennbare Prfixe 2

Prefix

Meaning

Examples dableiben (stay behind) dalassen (leave there) dabeibleiben (stay/stick with it) dabeisitzen (sit in on) darangeben (sacrifice) daranmachen (set about it, get down to it) emporarbeiten (work one's way up) emporblicken (raise one's eyes up, look up) emporragen (tower, rise above/over) entgegenarbeiten (oppose, work against) entgegenkommen (approach, come towards) entlanggehen (go/walk along) entlangschrammen (scrape by) fehlgehen (go astray, err) fehlschlagen (go wrong, come to nothing) festlaufen (run aground) festlegen (establish, fix) festsitzen (be stuck, cling) gegenberliegen (face, be opposite) gegenberstellen (confront, compare) gleichkommen (equal, match) gleichsetzen (equate, treat as equivalent) herfahren (come/get here) herstellen (manufacture, produce; establish)

da-

there

dabei-

there

daran-

on/to it

empor-

up, upward, over

entgegen-

against, towards

entlang-

along

fehl-

awry, wrong

fest-

firm, fixed

gegenber-

across from, opposite, con-

gleich-

equal

her-

from, here

herauf-

up from, out of

heraufarbeiten (work one's way up) heraufbeschwren (evoke, give rise to) herauskriegen (get out of, find out) herausfordern (challenge, provoke) hinarbeiten (work towards) hinfahren (go/drive there) hinweggehen (disregard, pass over) hinwegkommen (dismiss, get over) hinbekommen (get in addition) hinzufgen (add, enclose) losbellen (start barking) losfahren (set/drive off) stattfinden (take place, be held [event]) stattgeben (grant) zusammenarbeiten (co-operate, collaborate) zusammengeben (mix [ingredients]) zusammenhauen (smash to pieces) zusammenheften (staple together) zusammenkrachen (crash [down]) zusammenreien (pull oneself together) zwischenblenden (blend in; insert [film, music]) zwischenlanden (stop over [flying])

heraus-

from, out of

hin-

to, towards, there

hinweg-

away, over

hinzu-

in addition

los-

away, start

statt-

--

zusammen-

together, to pieces

zwischen-

between

NOTE: All of the separable verbs form their past participle with ge-, as in zurckgegangen (zurckgehen).

Part 3: Dual Prefixes Verbalprfixe - Vorsilben bei Zeitwrtern


This verb prefix guide, with a prefix chart, is part of Lesson 19 of our of free German for Beginners course. To learn more about German verbs, also see our German Verbs section .

Verb Prefixes > Inseparable | Separable | Dual > Rechtschreibreform > Sample Sentences with verb prefixes Dual or Variable Prefixes Separable/Inseparable Prefixes (Can be either one or the other) Prefix Meaning Examples durchdringen (sep., penetrate) durchfahren (sep., drive through) durchfressen (insep., eat through [acid, rust, etc.]) hinterlassen (insep., leave; bequeath) hinterlassen (sep., allow s.o. to go behind) berfahren (insep., run over) berfahren (sep., ferry across, cross over) berfallen (insep., attack, hold up [a bank]) bersetzen (insep., translate) bersetzen (sep., ferry across) berwinden (insep., overcome) umarmen (insep., embrace, hug) umbauen (sep., renovate, convert) umbauen (insep., enclose, surround) umbinden (sep., tie on) umkehren (sep., turn back, turn inside out) umschreiben (sep., rewrite, transcribe) umschreiben (insep., paraphrase, outline; skate around [fig.]) umziehen (sep., move [to new residence], change [clothes]) unterbrechen (insep., interrupt, disconnect) unterbringen (sep., accomodate) unterdrcken (insep., oppress, repress, suppress) untergehen (sep., sink, perish)

durch-

through

hinter-

behind

ber-

over, across

um-

around

unter-

down

unternehmen (insep., do, undertake) unterwerfen (insep., conquer, subjugate) unterzeichnen (insep., sign [a document]) widerklingen (sep., resound) widerlegen (insep., refute, disprove) widerraten (insep., advise/counsel against) widersprechen (insep., contradict) widertnen (sep., echo) wiedergeben (insep., restore, give back; recite, perform; represent, reproduce, convey) wiederkehren (sep., return, repeat, recur) wiedersehen (sep., see/meet again)

wider-

against, re-

wieder- again

Note: All of the dual verb prefixes are stressed when separable, unstressed when inseparable: bersetzen (ferry across) vs. bersetzen (translate).

Comments: Dual-Prefix (Variable-Prefix) Verbs In most cases, dual prefixes tend to be either mostly separable or inseparable. For example, the prefix durch- is usually separable. Its use as an inseparable prefix is limited to only a few instances, such as the verbs durchfressen, to eat through (chemically) or durchblitzen, to flash through (one's mind). On the other hand, the prefix ber- is usually inseparable, as in bersetzen, to translate. Others, such as hinter-, are used in very few verbs at all. So it is best to concentrate on learning the few exceptions for the dual prefixes. Simply learn those exceptional dual-prefix verbs as vocabulary. Another helpful guideline concerns the meaning of verbs with dual prefixes. If the verb is used in its literal sense (bersetzen, carry across, transfer), the prefix is separable. If the prefix is used in a figurative sense (bersetzen, to translate), the prefix is inseparable. The same verb spelling can have different meanings. For instance, when separable, umbauen means "to renovate." When inseparable, umbauen means "to enclose, surround" (to build around). In spoken German, separable verb prefixes are stressed, while the inseparable prefixes are unstressed. This also applies to the dual prefixes, depending on whether they are separable or inseparable. The form of the past participle for dual-prefix verbs also depends on whether the prefix is separable or inseparable, as outlined on the previous pages. For more about German verb tenses, also see our German Verbs section.

Colors - Farben

The German words for colors usually function as adjectives and take the normal adjective endings (but see exceptions below). In certain situations, colors can also be nouns and are thus capitalized: "eine Bluse in Blau" (a blouse in blue); "das Blaue vom Himmel versprechen" (to promise heaven and earth, lit., "the blue of the heavens"). The chart below shows some of the more common colors with sample phrases. For many more colors, see our German Colors page (with audio). And for more about colors and color idioms in German, see Farbenfroh: Colorful Expressions. You'll learn that the colors in "feeling blue" or "seeing red" may not mean the same thing in German. A black eye in German is "blau" (blue).

Colors - Farben Click on Audio to hear a color and its sample phrases. Farbe Color "Colorful" Phrases (color adjectives) der rote Wagen (the red car), der Wagen ist rot > Audio die rosa Rose (the pink rose)* > Audio ein blaues Auge (a black* eye), er ist blau (he's drunk) *In German, a black eye is blue. > Audio

rot

red

rosa

pink

blau

blue

hellblau dunkelblau grn gelb orange

light blue dark blue green yellow orange

die hellblaue Bluse (the light blue blouse)** > Audio

die dunkelblaue Bluse (the dark blue blouse) > Audio

der grne Hut (the green hat) > Audio ein gelbes Licht (a yellow light) > Audio das orange Buch (the orange book) > Audio

braun beige violett lila wei schwarz grau trkis silber

brown beige violet

die braunen Schuhe (the brown shoes) > Audio der beige Kasten (the beige box) > Audio der violette Hut (the violet hat) > Audio

lilac/mauve der lila Hut (the lilac hat)* > Audio white black gray turquoise silver das weie Papier (the white paper) > Audio der schwarze Koffer (the black suitcase) > Audio der graue Pulli (the gray sweater) > Audio eine trkise Karte (a turquoise card) > Audio eine silberne Mnze (a silver coin) > Audio eine goldene Mnze (a gold coin), eine Goldmnze > Audio

gold

gold

* Colors ending in -a (lila, rosa) or -e (beige, orange) do not take the normal adjective endings. ** Light or dark colors are preceded by hell- (light) or dunkel- (dark), as in hellgrn (light green) or dunkelgrn (dark green). Also see > Farbenfroh: Colorful Expressions in German

Farbenfroh: Colorful Expressions


Color Meanings in German
German Color Symbolism and Expressions

Every language has its own colorful expressions and symbolism, including German. But here we're talking about colorful (bunt, farbenfroh) in a literal sense: expressions that contain grn, rot, blau, schwarz, braun, and other colors. In English we can "feel blue," "be yellow," or "see red." In German these colors may or may not have the same meaning. In an earlier feature, Idioms: Talk like a German, I mentioned several blau idioms, because "blau" can have numerous meanings in German, including "drunk" or "black" (as in "black eye"). You may also want to look at our German Colors (Farben) page and its complete color chart. In Germany and Austria political parties are often identified by or associated with a specific color. Both the Austrian and German conservative parties are black (schwarz), while the

socialists are red (rot). Various other political parties in German-speaking Europe are identified by other colors, and one political coalition is even called a "traffic-light" coalition (Ampelkoalition, i.e., red, yellow, green - SPD, FDP, Grne). Below, we expand on the color(ful) vocabulary theme to include a mix of several colors. This is a representative collection and is not meant to be exhaustive. It also leaves out expressions that are similar or the same in English, i.e., "rot sehen" (to see red), "die Welt durch eine rosa Brille sehen" (to see the world through rose colored glasses), etc. But it includes words that contain a color (eine Farbe), especially when the meaning varies from the English. Also see German Idioms for color expressions.
Colorful Expressions Deutsch BLAU blau anlaufen lassen das Blaue vom Himmel versprechen BLUE to temper (metal) to promise the moon a Monday off (usually for personal reasons); "St. Monday" (flashing) blue light (police) BROWN to tan, get brown (curly) kale brown (bituminous) coal YELLOW the "yellow party" (Free Democrats, FDP - Ger. political party) the "yellow post" (office); mail service, as opposed to banking, telephone, and telegraph; yellow is the color of German mail boxes and postal vehicles English

blauer Montag

das Blaulicht BRAUN braun werden der Braunkohl die Braunkohle GELB

die gelbe Partei

die gelbe Post WEB > Deutsche Post AG

die Gelben Seiten

the Yellow Pages

Yellow (gelb) has no association with cowardice in German, as it does in English. GRAU alles grau in grau malen es graut; beim Grauen des Tages* in grauer Ferne GRAY/GREY to paint everything black, be pessimistic dawn is breaking; at day-break in the distant (indefinite) future

* "grauen" - as in "es graut mir" (it horrifies me) - is a different verb. GRN grne Welle die Grnen im Grnen; bei Mutter Grn ROT GREEN green wave (synchronized traffic lights) The Greens (Ger. political party) outdoors, in the open air RED to mark something in red (as a special day, a "red letter day," etc.) the Reds (socialists, SPD - Ger. political party) leitmotiv, theme (novel, opera, play, etc.) red wave (unsynchronized traffic lights - ironic humor) BLACK Catholic, conservative (political); orthodox; illegal(ly) CDU/CSU (Ger. political party) to work illegally (w/o paying taxes, etc.)

etwas rot anstreichen

die Roten (pl) roter Faden

rote Welle

SCHWARZ

schwarz

schwarz schwarzarbeiten

schwrzen; Schwrzer schwarzfahren ins Schwarze treffen WEISS weibluten weie Woche

to smuggle; smuggler to ride without a ticket; stow away to hit the bull's eye; hit the nail on the head WHITE to bleed (someone) dry (money) white sale (white week) Germany's "Mason-Dixon Line" (north-south border)

die Weiwurstgrenze (Mainlinie)**

** "Weiwurstgrenze" refers to a type of Bavarian "white" sausage (Weiwurst)

Land und Leute kennenlernen


Part 2: More countries and people Nations of the World: Index Staaten der Welt ENGLISH Afghanistan Albania DEUTSCH Afghanistan Albanien Sprache/Language Afghanisch/Afghan Albanisch/Albanian Arabisch/Arabic Franzsisch/French Spanisch/Spanish Armenisch/Armenian Englisch/English Deutsch/German

Algeria

Algerien

Argentina Armenia Australia Austria

Argentinien Armenien Australien sterreich

Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahama Islands Bahrain

Aserbaidschan Bahamas pl. Bahamainseln pl. Bahrein Bangladesh Bangladesch Belarus Weirussland

Aseri/Azeri

Englisch/English

Arabisch/Arabic

Bangladesh

Bangla/Bangla

Belarus (White Russia)

Russisch/Russian Weirussisch/Belarusian Flmisch/Flemish Franzsisch/French Spanisch/Spanish Portugiesisch/Portuguese Bulgarisch/Bulgarian Englisch/English Franzsisch/French Spanisch/Spanish Chinesisch/Chinese

Belgium

Belgien

Bolivia Brazil Bulgaria

Bolivien Brasilien Bulgarien

Canada

Kanada

Chile China Cte d'Ivoire Ivory Coast Cuba Croatia Czech Republic Denmark Dominican Republic Egypt

Chile China

Elfenbeinkste f.

Franzsisch/French

Kuba Kroatien Tschechien Dnemark Dominikanische Republik f. gypten

Spanisch/Spanish Kroatisch/Croatian Tschechisch/Czech Dnisch/Danish Spanisch/Spanish gyptisch/Egyptian

England Estonia Finland France Germany Ghana Great Britain Greece Haiti

England Estland Finnland Frankreich Deutschland Ghana Grobritannien Griechenland Haiti Holland See Netherlands Ungarn Island Indien Indonesien Iran m. Irak m. Irland Israel Italien

Englisch/English Estisch/Estonian Finnisch/Finnish Franzsisch/French Deutsch/German Englisch/English Englisch/English Griechisch/Greek Franzsisch/French

Holland

Hollndisch/Dutch

Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran Iraq Ireland Israel Italy

Ungarisch/Hungarian Islandisch/Icelandic Englisch/English Malaiisch/Malay Iranisch/Iranian Irakisch/Iraqi Englisch/English Hebrisch/Hebrew Italienisch/Italian

Mountains > World Mountains in English and German Rivers > World Rivers in English and German MORE > English-German Almanach - Facts in German

Ivory Coast Cte d'Ivoire Jamaica Japan Jordan

Elfenbeinkste f.

Franzsisch/French

Jamaika Japan Jordan m.

Englisch/English Japanisch/Japanese Arabisch/Arabic Swahili/Swahili Englisch/English

Kenya

Kenia

Korea

Korea See North, South K.

Koreanisch/Korean

Lebanon

Libanon m.

Arabisch/Arabic Franzsisch/French Englisch/English Arabisch/Arabic Deutsch/German Litauisch/Lithuanian Franzsisch/French Madagassisch/Malagasy Franzsisch/French Maltesisch/Maltese Englisch/English Spanisch/Spanish Franzsisch/French Arabisch/Arabic Franzsisch/French Portugiesisch/Portuguese

Liberia Libya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg

Liberien Libyen Liechtenstein Litauen Luxemburg

Madagascar

Madagaskar

Malta

Malta

Mexico Monaco

Mexiko Monaco

Morocco

Marokko

Mozambique

Mosambik

Namibia

Namibia

Afrikaans/Afrikaans Deutsch/German Englisch/English Niederlndisch/Dutch Englisch/English

Netherlands New Zealand

Niederlande pl. Neuseeland Nordkorea Also see South K. Norwegen Philippinen pl. Polen Portugal Rumnien Russland Saudi-Arabien Schottland Slowakien Slowenien

North Korea

Koreanisch/Korean

Norway Philippines Poland Portugal Romania Russia Saudi Arabia Scotland Slovakia Slovenia

Norwegisch/Norwegian Philippinisch/Pilipino Polnisch/Polish Portugiesisch/Portuguese Rumnisch/Romanian Russisch/Russian Arabisch/Arabic Schottisch/Scottish Slowakisch/Slovak Slowenisch/Slovenian Somalisch/Somali Arabisch/Arabic Afrikaans/Afrikaans Englisch/English

Somalia

Somalia

South Africa

Sdafrika

South Korea

Sddkorea Also see North K. Spanien Sudan m.

Koreanisch/Korean

Spain Sudan

Spanisch/Spanish Arabisch/Arabic

Sweden

Schweden

Schwedisch/Swedish Deutsch/German Franzsisch/French Arabisch/Arabic Arabisch/Arabic Trkisch/Turkish

Switzerland

Schweiz f.

Syrian Tunesia Turkey

Syrien Tunesien Trkei f. Ukraine f. (ooh-KRA-eenuh) Vereinigte Arabische Emirate pl. Vereinigtes Knigreich Vereinigte Staaten pl. Vatikanstadt Venezuela Weirussland Belarus Jemen m.

Ukraine

Ukrainisch/Ukrainian

United Arab Emirates

Arabisch/Arabic

United Kingdom United States Vatican City Venezuela White Russia (Belarus) Yemen

Englisch/English Amerikanisch/American English Italienisch/Italian Spanisch/Spanish Russisch/Russian Weirussisch/Belarusian Arabisch/Arabic Englisch/English Bantu/Bantu

Zambia

Sambia

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe (tsim-BAHB-vay)

Englisch/English

Meine Familie und ich


Talking about family and relations Familienmitglieder - Family Members Notice in the phrases below that when you talk about a feminine (die) person (or thing), the possessive pronoun mein ends in e. When talking about a masculine (der) person (or thing), mein has no ending in the nominative (subject) case. Other possessive forms (sein, his; dein, your, etc.) work the same way. The final e in German is always pronounced: (meine = MINE-ah)! Deutsch die Mutter - meine Mutter der Vater - mein Vater die Eltern - meine Eltern (pl.) der Sohn - sein Sohn die Tochter - seine Tochter der Bruder - ihr Bruder die Schwester - seine Schwester mother - my mother father - my father parents - my parents son - his son daughter - his daughter brother - her brother sister - his sister Englisch

AUDIO (mp3 or wav) for these words siblings / brothers & sisters - my brothers and sisters grandmother - my grandmother grandma/granny - my grandma grandfather - your grandfather grandpa/gramps - his grandpa grandson - my grandson granddaughter - his granddaughter

die Geschwister - meine Geschwister (pl.)

die Gromutter - meine Gromutter die Oma - meine Oma der Grovater - dein Grovater der Opa - sein Opa der Enkelsohn - mein Enkelsohn die Enkelin - seine Enkelin

Die Familie - The Family


Talking about family and relations
The Family - die Familie

An annotated English-German glossary Englisch A ancestor - ancestors aunt - aunts B baby - babies blended family (-ies) das Baby - die Babys die Fortsetzungsfamilie (-n) der Vorfahre/die Vorfahrin - die Vorfahren die Tante - die Tanten Deutsch

Blended family: i.e., a continuing family, serial family, a family with children from a previous marriage. boy - boys brother - brothers brother-in-law - brothers-in-law C child - children das Kind - die Kinder der Junge - die Jungen der Bruder - die Brder der Schwager - die Schwger

"We have no children." = "Wir haben keine Kinder." "We have three children." = "Wir haben drei Kinder." die Kusine - die Kusinen die Base (old-fashioned term) der Cousin - die Cousins der Vetter - die Vettern

cousin (f.) - cousins

cousin (m.) - cousins

D dad - dads daughter - daughters daughter-in-law - daughters-in-law F family - families die Familie - die Familien der Stammbaum - die Stammbume die Stammtafel - die Stammtafeln die Ahnentafel - die Ahnentafeln der Vater - die Vter der Vorfahre/die Vorfahrin - die Vorfahren der Vati - die Vatis die Tochter - die Tchter die Schwiegertochter - die Schwiegertchter

family tree - family trees

father - fathers forefather - forefathers G

genealogy

die Genealogie die Ahnenforschung

Also see our Genealogy Glossary. This glossary is related to Lesson 9 of our free online course: German for Beginners girl - girls das Mdchen - die Mdchen

Mdchen, like all German nouns ending in -chen or -lein, is neuter even though it means "girl." A similar example would das Frulein, miss, unmarried woman. For more on noun gender, see German Gender Hints. grandchild - grandchildren das Enkelkind - die Enkelkinder die Enkelin - die Enkelinnen die Enkeltochter - die Enkeltchter der Grovater - die Grovter die Gromutter - die Gromtter

granddaughter - granddaughters

grandfather - grandfathers grandmother - grandmothers

grandma/granny - grandmas grandpa/gramps - grandpas grandparents

die Oma - die Omas der Opa - die Opas die Groeltern (Pl.) der Enkel - die Enkel der Enkelsohn - die Enkelshne der Urgrovater (-vter) Ur- (as in Urgromutter)

grandson - grandsons

greatgrandfather(s) great- (prefix) H half brother - half brothers half sister - half sisters

der Halbbruder - die Halbbrder die Halbschwester - die Halbschwestern der Mann, Ehemann die (Ehe)Mnner (Pl.)
The Family - die Familie M-Z

husband

An annotated English-German glossary Englisch M Marital Status - der Familienstand bachelor divorced (adj.) divorcee married (adj.) single, unmarried (adj.) widowed (adj.) widow widower mom - moms mother - mothers N nephew - nephews niece - nieces der Neffe - die Neffen die Nichte - die Nichten der Junggeselle geschieden der/die Geschiedene verheiratet ledig, unverheiratet verwitwet die Witwe der Witwer die Mutti - die Muttis die Mutter - die Mtter Deutsch

P parents partner (m.) - partners partner (f.) - partners R related to be related to someone the relations, relatives relative - relatives EXPRESSIONS: the relatives, the relations all my/our/the relatives to be one of the family We're not related. S siblings / brothers & sisters significant other, life partner die Geschwister (Pl.) der Lebensgefhrte / die Lebensgefhrtin "Do you have any brothers or sisters? = "Haben Sie Geschwister?" In addition to Lebensgefhrte, another word for "significant other" or "life partner" is Partner (above). sister - sisters sister-in-law - sisters-in-law son - sons son-in-law - sons-in-law stepfather - stepfathers stepdaughter - stepdaughters stepmother - stepmothers stepson - stepsons step- (prefix) U uncle - uncles W wife - wives die Frau, Ehefrau - die (Ehe)Frauen der Onkel - die Onkel die Schwester - die Schwestern die Schwgerin - die Schwgerinnen der Sohn - die Shne der Schwiegersohn - die Schwiegershne der Stiefvater - die Stiefvter die Stieftochter - die Stieftchter die Stiefmutter - die Stiefmtter der Stiefsohn - die Stiefshne Stief- (as in Stiefbruder, etc.) die ganze Verwandtschaft zur Verwandtschaft gehren Wir sind nicht verwandt. verwandt mit jemandem verwandt sein die Verwandtschaft der/die Verwandte - die Verwandten die Eltern (Pl.) der Partner - die Partner die Partnerin - die Partnerinnen

Directions: How do I get there? Wie komme ich dorthin?


Wann? Adverbs of Time

In this lesson you'll learn vocabulary and grammar related to going places, asking for simple directions and receiving directions. You'll learn words and phrases that will let you talk about going places, as well as understand what someone else says when giving simple directions.
How do I get there? Wie komme ich dorthin? What directions is this cluster of signs in Berlin giving us? Foto: Hyde Flippo

One word of caution before we begin. Asking for directions is easy. Understanding the torrent of German you may get back is another story! Most German textbooks/courses teach you how to ask the questions, but fail to deal adequately with the understanding aspect. That's why we will also teach you some coping skills in this lesson to help in such situations. One example is to ask your question in such a way that it will elicit a simple ja or nein, or a simple "left," "straight ahead" or "right" answer. And don't forget those ever reliable hand signals that work in any language!

WO vs. WOHIN German has two question words for asking "where." One (wo?) is for asking the location of someone or something. The other (wohin?) is for asking about motion or direction ("where to").

For instance, in English you would use "where" to ask both "Where are the keys?" (location) and "Where are you going?" (motion/direction). In German these two questions require two different forms of "where":
Wo sind die Schlssel? ("Where are the keys?")

Wohin gehen Sie? ("Where are you going?") In English this can be compared to the difference between the location question "where's it at?" (poor English, but it gets the idea across) and the direction question "where to?" But in German you can only use wo? for "where's it at?" (location) and wohin? for "where to?" (direction). Sometimes wohin gets split in two, as in: "Wo gehen Sie hin?" But you can't use wo without hin to ask about motion or direction in German. - You must always use the correct form of "where" for location (wo?) or motion/direction (wohin?).

We'll cover this in more detail in Part 3, and test your understanding of this grammatical concept later in the exercises for this lesson. Now let's look at some common words and expressions related to directions and places we might go to. You need to memorize this vocabulary. DIRECTIONS - RICHTUNGEN Notice that in some of the phrases below, the gender (der/die/das) may affect the article, as in "in die Kirche" or "an den See". Notice that der sometimes changes to den, and so on. You'll learn more about the grammar for this in a future lesson. For now, just notice what's going on related to gender! Englisch along/down Go along/down this street. back Go back. in the direction of/towards... the train station the church the hotel left - to the left right - to the right straight ahead Keep going straight ahead. up to, until up to the traffic light up to the cinema Deutsch entlang Gehen Sie diese Strae entlang! zurck Gehen Sie zurck! in Richtung auf... den Bahnhof die Kirche das Hotel links - nach links rechts - nach rechts geradeaus (guh-RAH-duh-ouse) Gehen Sie immer geradeaus! bis zum (masc./neut.) bis zur (fem.) bis zur Ampel bis zum Kino COMPASS DIRECTIONS HIMMELSRICHTUNGEN north - to the north north of (Leipzig) south - to the south south of (Munich) east - to the east east of (Frankfurt) west - to the west west of (Cologne) der Nord(en) - nach Norden nrdlich von (Leipzig) der Sd(en) - nach Sden sdlich von (Mnchen) der Ost(en) - nach Osten stlich von (Frankfurt) der West(en) - nach Westen westlich von (Kln)

Note: More compass directions can be formed in German just as in English by combining more than one element. Northwest - Nordwesten, Northeast - Nordosten, Southwest Sdwesten, etc.
EIN STADTPLAN (City Map)

Wie komme ich zum Bahnhof? Graphic: Hyde Flippo

In English we can say we're going to the bank, to Boston, or to Switzerland, but in German there is more than one way to say "to"and each one of these "to" phrases would use a different German preposition! However, there are some rules and guidelines you can learn for these situations. Most geographic place names (countries, states, cities, etc.) use nach for "to." Only a few countries that are feminine, masculine or plural (rather than the normal neuter das) use in for "to." Notice the exceptions listed below. For more about countries, see the special Glossary of Nations and Lektion 6. When going to a location in town, such as to the bakery or a restaurant, the most common prepositions for "to" are in and zu (usually in a compound such as zum or zur). If you'd like more information about nach vs zu, see How to Say "to" in German. For now, observe the examples in the chart below.
PLACES TO GO - 1 Town & Country Englisch IN DER STADT - IN TOWN to the bakery to the restaurant to the supermarket from (the bank) to (the hotel) from (the hotel) to (the bank) zur Bckerei ins Restaurant zum Supermarkt von (der Bank) bis (zum Hotel) von (dem Hotel) bis (zur Bank) More places to go in the city in Part 3. LNDER/STDTE - COUNTRIES/CITIES from (Frankfurt) to (Berlin) to... (countries/cities) Germany France Australia Munich von (Frankfurt) nach (Berlin) nach... (Nationen/Stdte) Deutschland Frankreich Australien Mnchen Deutsch

Berlin to Switzerland to the US to Iran (Iran and Irak can be der or das)

Berlin in die Schweiz in die USA

in den Iran (der) / nach Iran (das)

More countries and cities in Country Glossary.

Now here are some adverbs that tell us when we're going someplacealong with sample sentences.
WANN? - WHEN? GRAMMATIK: Notice that in German, TIME comes before PLACE! In English, it's the other way around. See the sample sentences below. Englisch yesterday - today - tomorrow We're going to the cinema tomorrow. (the) day before yesterday (the) day after tomorrow We're driving to Vienna (the) day after tomorrow. this morning/afternoon He's traveling to Hamburg this morning. now - later I'm going to work later. at eight o'clock I'm going to the station at eight. Also see Day by Day: Day Expressions in German. Deutsch gestern - heute - morgen Wir gehen morgen ins Kino.

vorgestern bermorgen Wir fahren bermorgen nach Wien.

heute Morgen/Nachmittag Er fhrt heute Morgen nach Hamburg. jetzt - spter Ich gehe spter zur Arbeit. um acht Uhr Ich gehe um acht zum Bahnhof.

PLACES TO GO - 2 In der Stadt / In Town

This section is vocabulary for places in town. Both the basic word and the "to" phrase are given for each item. For example, die Bckerei is the bakery, but if we want to say "to the bakery," it's zur Bckerei (the short form of zu der Bckerei). Some of the phrases below may have more than one way to say "to." We have listed the most common way. Note the following contractions: ins = in das, zum = zu dem, zur = zu der Englisch bakery - to the bakery bank - to the bank bar/pub - to the bar/pub butcher to the butcher hotel - to the hotel market/fleamarket to the market cinema - to the movies/cinema the post office - to the post office restaurant - to the restaurant to a/the Chinese restaurant to an/the Italian restaurant to a/the Greek restaurant school - to school the shopping center to the shopping center the traffic light/signal (up) to the signal the train station - to the station work - to work the youth hostel to the youth hostel the lake - to the lake the sea - to the sea the toilet/restroom to the toilet/restroom Deutsch die Bckerei - zur Bckerei die Bank - zur Bank die Kneipe - in die Kneipe der Fleischer/der Metzger zum Fleischer/zum Metzger das Hotel - zum Hotel der Markt/der Flohmarkt zum Markt/zum Flohmarkt das Kino - ins/zum Kino die Post - zur Post das Restaurant - ins/zum Restaurant zum Chinesen zum Italiener zum Griechen die Schule - zur Schule das Einkaufszentrum zum Einkaufszentrum die Ampel bis zur Ampel der Bahnhof - zum Bahnhof die Arbeit - zur Arbeit die Jugendherberge in die Jugendherberge ANDERSWO - ELSEWHERE der See - an den See die See/das Meer - ans Meer die Toilette/das Klo/das WC zur Toilette/zum Klo/zum WC

Here are some sample questions and answers related to asking and giving directions. FRAGEN und ANTWORTEN Questions and Answers in German and English

In the sentences below, the TO-phrases are in bold type both in German and English. There is some grammar here that we will ignore until a later lesson. For now, learn the patterns for the various articles (der/die/das) for each gender (masc./fem./neuter). NOTE: The sentences below are answers to the question in red (rot). Wohin fahren Sie? / Wohin fhrst du? Where are you going? (driving/traveling) Ich fahre morgen an den See. I'm going to the lake tomorrow. Ich fahre morgen nach Dresden. I'm going to Dresden tomorrow. Wie komme ich... How do I get... ...zur Bank? - Gehen Sie zwei Straen und dann rechts. ...to the bank? - Go two blocks (streets) and then right. ...zum Hotel? - Fahren Sie diese Strae entlang. ...to the hotel? - Drive down/along this street. ...zur Post? - Gehen Sie bis zur Ampel und dann links. ...to the post office? - Go up to the traffic light and then left. NOTE: For the items above, if you are walking, you use gehen; if you are driving, you use fahren. Extra-Ausdrcke Extra Expressions an der Kirche vorbei past the church am Kino vorbei past the cinema rechts/links an der Ampel right/left at the traffic light am Marktplatz at the market square an der Ecke at the corner die nchste Strae the next street ber die Strae across/over the street ber den Marktplatz across the market square vor dem Bahnhof in front of the train station vor der Kirche in front of the church

Give and Take - The Accusative Case Command Forms


geben - nehmen

geben (give)/es gibt (there is/are) nehmen (take)/er nimmt (he takes) In this lesson you'll learn how to express in German the concepts of giving (geben) and taking (nehmen). This involves the grammatical elements known as the accusative case (the direct object case in German), irregular stem-changing verbs and the command forms (imperative). If that sort of grammar terminology scares you, don't worry. We'll introduce it all in such a way that you'll hardly feel a thing. The important thing is that after studying this lesson, you'll be able to express the important and useful concepts of giving and taking.

geben (give) - nehmen (take)

These two German verbs have something in common. See if you can find what it is by observing the following:
geben ich gebe (I give), du gibst (you give) er gibt (he gives), sie gibt (she gives) wir geben (we give), sie geben (they give)

nehmen ich nehme (I take), du nimmst (you take) er nimmt (he takes), sie nimmt (she takes) wir nehmen (we take), sie nehmen (they take) Now can you tell what essential change these two verbs have in common? If you said that they both change from e to i in the same situations, then you're right! (The verb nehmen also changes its spelling slightly, but the e-to-i change is what these two verbs have in common.) Both of these verbs belong to a class of German verbs known as "stemchanging" verbs. In the infinitive form (ending in -en) they have an e in their stem, or base form. But when they are conjugated (used with a pronoun or noun in a sentence), the stem vowel changes under certain conditions from e to i: nehmen (infinitive) --> er nimmt (conjugated, 3rd person sing.); geben (infinitive) --> er gibt (conjugated, 3rd person sing.) All stem-changing verbs only change their stem vowel in the singular. Most only change when used with er, sie, es (3rd person) and du (2nd person, familiar). Other e-to-i stemchanging verbs include: helfen/hilft (help), treffen/trifft (meet) and sprechen/spricht

(speak). (For a detailed look at all the German irregular verbs, including geben and nehmen, see our Strong Verbs chart.) Now study the chart below. It shows all the forms of the two verbs in the present tensein English and German. In the example sentences, observe also how direct objects (the things you give or take) that are masculine (der) change to den or einen when they function as direct objects (rather than the subject). In the accusative (direct object) case, der is the only gender that has this change. Neuter (das), feminine (die) and plural nouns are unaffected.
The STEM-CHANGING Verbs geben - nehmen The words me, us, them (mir, uns, ihnen) and so on in the sentences with geben are indirect objects in the dative case. You will learn more about the dative in a future lesson. For now, just learn these words as vocabulary. Englisch geben there is/there are Today there are no apples. es gibt Heute gibt es keine pfel. Deutsch

The expression es gibt (there is/are) always takes the accusative case: "Heute gibt es keinen Wind." = "There is no wind today." I give I give her the new ball. you (fam.) give Are you giving him the money? he gives He gives me the green book. she gives She gives us a book. we give We aren't giving them any money. you (pl.) give You (guys) give me a key. they give ich gebe Ich gebe ihr den neuen Ball. du gibst Gibst du ihm das Geld? er gibt Er gibt mir das grne Buch. sie gibt Sie gibt uns ein Buch. wir geben Wir geben ihnen kein Geld. ihr gebt Ihr gebt mir einen Schlssel. sie geben

They give him no opportunity. you (formal) give Are you giving me the pencil?

Sie geben ihm keine Gelegenheit. Sie geben Geben Sie mir den Bleistift? nehmen

I take I take the ball. you (fam.) take Are you taking the money? he takes He's taking the green book. she takes She takes a book. we take We aren't taking any money. you (pl.) take You (guys) take a key. they take They take everything. you (formal) take Are you taking the pencil?

ich nehme Ich nehme den Ball. du nimmst Nimmst du das Geld? er nimmt Er nimmt das grne Buch. sie nimmt Sie nimmt ein Buch. wir nehmen Wir nehmen kein Geld. ihr nehmt Ihr nehmt einen Schlssel. sie nehmen Sie nehmen alles. Sie nehmen Nehmen Sie den Bleistift?

By their nature, these two verbs are often used in the imperative (command) form. Below you'll find how to say things like "Give me the pen!" or "Take the money!" If you are talking to one person, the command will be different than if you are addressing two or more people. Note that, as usual, German makes a distinction between a formal Sie (sing. & pl.) command and a familiar du (sing.) or ihr (pl.) command. If you tell a child to give you something, the command will not be the same as when you are addressing an adult formally (Sie). If you are telling more than one child (ihr) to do something, that will also be a different command than if you are only addressing one child (du). The du command form of most verbs is almost always the normal du form of the verb minus the -st ending. (Du nimmst das Buch. - Nimm das Buch!) Study the chart below.
IMPERATIVE Command Forms for

geben - nehmen The German imperative verb forms vary according to whom you are commanding or telling to do something. Each form of YOU in German (du, ihr, Sie) has its own command form. Note that only the Sie command includes the pronoun in the command! The du and ihr commands do not usually include du or ihr. Englisch geben Give me the (ballpoint) pen! (Sie) Give me the (ballpoint) pen! (du) Give me the (ballpoint) pen! (ihr) Geben Sie mir den Kuli! Gib mir den Kuli! Gebt mir den Kuli! nehmen Take the (ballpoint) pen! (Sie) Take the (ballpoint) pen! (du) Take the (ballpoint) pen! (ihr) Nehmen Sie den Kuli! Nimm den Kuli! Nehmt den Kuli! Deutsch

The Calendar and Appointments


Days of the Week, Months, Dative Phrases

After studying this lesson, you'll be able to: (1) say the days and months in German, (2) express calendar dates, (3) talk about the seasons and (4) talk about dates and deadlines (Termine) in German. We'll also review some of the vocabulary for time and telling time that you learned in earlier lessons. Luckily, because they are based on Latin, the English and German words for the months are almost identical. The days in many cases are also similar because of a common Germanic heritage. Most of the days bear the names of Teutonic gods in both languages. For example, the Germanic god of war and thunder, Thor, lends his name to both English Thursday and German Donnerstag (thunder = Donner). Let's start with the days of the week (Tage der Woche). Most of the days in German end in the word (der) Tag, just as the English days end in "day." The German week (and calendar) starts with Monday (Montag) rather than Sunday. Each day is shown with its common twoletter abbreviation.

Druckversion - Printer version

Tage der Woche Days of the Week DEUTSCH Montag (Mo) (Mond-Tag) Dienstag (Di) (Zies-Tag) Mittwoch (Mi) (mid-week) Donnerstag (Do) "thunder-day" Freitag (Fr) (Freya-Tag) Samstag (Sa) Sonnabend (Sa) (used in No. Germany) Sonntag (So) (Sonne-Tag) ENGLISCH Monday "moon day"

Tuesday

Wednesday (Wodan's day) Thursday (Thor's day) Friday (Freya's day)

Saturday (Saturn's day)

Sunday "sun day"

The seven days of the week are masculine gender (der) since they usually end in -tag (der Tag). The two exceptions, Mittwoch and Sonnabend, are also masculine. Note that there are two words for Saturday. Samstag is used in most of Germany, in Austria and in German Switzerland. Sonnabend ("Sunday eve") is used in eastern Germany and roughly north of the city of Mnster in northern Germany. So, in Hamburg, Rostock, Leipzig or Berlin, it's Sonnabend; in Cologne, Frankfurt, Munich or Vienna "Saturday" is Samstag. Both words for "Saturday" are understood all over the German-speaking world, but you should try to use the one most common in the region you're in. Note the two-letter abbreviation for each of the days (Mo, Di, Mi, etc.). These are used on calendars, schedules and German/Swiss watches that indicate the day and date.

When you're ready, don't forget to try the Exercises for This Page

To say "on Monday" or "on Friday" you use the prepositional phrase am Montag or am Freitag. (The word am is actually a contraction of an and dem, the dative form of der. We'll explain more about that below.) Here are some commonly used phrases for the days of the week:
Day Phrases Englisch on Monday (on Tuesday, Wednesday, etc.) (on) Mondays (on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, etc.) every Monday, Mondays (every Tuesday, Wednesday, etc.) this Tuesday last Wednesday the Thursday after next every other Friday Today is Tuesday. Tomorrow is Wednesday. Yesterday was Monday. Also see > Day by Day: Day Expressions in German Deutsch am Montag (am Dienstag, Mittwoch, usw.) montags (dienstags, mittwochs, usw.) jeden Montag (jeden Dienstag, Mittwoch, usw.) (am) kommenden Dienstag letzten Mittwoch bernchsten Donnerstag jeden zweiten Freitag Heute ist Dienstag. Morgen ist Mittwoch. Gestern war Montag.

A few words about the DATIVE case. In Lesson 11 we looked at the accusative (direct object) case. Below is a chart of what happens to the articles (der, die, das) in the three main cases (only the genitive is yet to come). The dative case is used as the object of certain prepositions (as with dates) and as the indirect object of a verb. Here we are concentrating on

the use of the accusative and dative in expressing dates. Here is a chart of those changes. (Items in the darker boxes do not change.)
NOMINATIV-AKKUSATIV-DATIV GENDER MASC. NEUT. FEM. Nominativ der/jeder das die Akkusativ den/jeden das die Dativ dem dem der

EXAMPLES: am Dienstag (on Tuesday, dative), jeden Tag (every day, accusative) NOTE: The masculine (der) and neuter (das) make the same changes (look the same) in the DATIV case. Adjectives or numbers used in the dative will have an -en ending: am sechsten April.

Now we want to apply the information in the chart above. When we use the prepositions an (on) and in (in) with days, months or dates, they take the dative case. Days and months are masculine, so we end up with a combination of an or in plus dem, which equals am or im. Additionally, some date expressions that do not use prepositions (jeden Dienstag, letzten Mittwoch) are in the accusative case. Don't worry if you haven't completely grasped the accusative/dative business. We'll go into more detail in later lessons. But for now, be sure to learn the basic phrases for days, dates and months. See Part Two of this lesson for the months, dates and the four seasons.

The Calendar and Appointments


The Months, Dates and Seasons

In this section of Lesson 12 we look at the months, the seasons, and how to say a calendar date in German. In the list of months below, you can see that the English and German are either close or identical, but note the pronunication shown for some of the months.
Die Monate - The Months DEUTSCH Januar YAHN-oo-ahr Februar ENGLISCH

January

February

Mrz MEHRZ April Mai MYE Juni YOO-nee Juli YOO-lee August ow-GOOST September Oktober November Dezember

March

April

May

June

July

August

September October November December

Months: Latin-Deutsch-English Time and Calendar Glossary English-German Glossaries

The months are all masculine gender (der). There are two words used for July. Juli (YOOLEE) is the standard form, but German-speakers often say Julei (YOO-LYE) to avoid confusion with Juni - in much the same way that zwo is used for zwei. Before we talk more about the months, let's also look at the four seasons, die vier Jahreszeiten.
Die Jahreszeiten - The Seasons Jahreszeit der Frhling das Frhjahr (Adj.) frhlingshaft Monate

Mrz, April, Mai im Frhling - in the spring

der Sommer (Adj.) sommerlich der Herbst (Adj.) herbstlich der Winter (Adj.) winterlich

Juni, Juli, August im Sommer - in the summer Sept., Okt., Nov. im Herbst - in the fall/autumn Dez., Jan., Feb. im Winter - in the winter

The seasons are all masculine gender (except for das Frhjahr, another word for spring). The months for each season above are, of course, for the northern hemisphere where Germany and the other German-speaking countries lie. When speaking of a season in general ("Autumn is my favorite season."), in German you almost always use the article: "Der Herbst ist meine Lieblingsjahreszeit." The adjectival forms shown above translate as "springlike, springy," "summerlike" or "autumnal, falllike" (sommerliche Temperaturen = "summerlike/summery temperatures"). In some cases, the noun form is used as a prefix, as in die Winterkleidung = "winter clothing" or die Sommermonate = "the summer months." The prepositional phrase im (in dem) is used for all the seasons when you want to say, for instance, "in (the) spring" (im Frhling). This is the same as for the months.

When you're ready, don't forget to try the Exercises for This Page

More on the Months To say "in May" or "in November" you use the prepositional phrase im Mai or im November. (The word im is a contraction of in and dem, the dative form of der.) To give a date, such as "on July 4th," you use am (as with the days) and the ordinal number (4th, 5th): am vierten Juli, usually written am 4. Juli. The period after the number represents the -ten ending on the number and is the same as the -th, -rd, or -nd ending used for English ordinal numbers. Note that numbered dates in German (and in all of the European languages) are always written in the order of day, month, year - rather than month, day, year. For example, in German the date 1/6/01 would be written 6.1.01 (which is Epiphany or Three Kings, the 6th of January 2001). This is the logical order, moving from the smallest unit (the day) to the largest (the year). To review the ordinal numbers, see our German Numbers page. Here are some commonly used phrases for the months and calendar dates:
Calendar Date Phrases

Englisch in August (in June, October, etc.) on June 14th (spoken) on June 14, 2001 (written) on the first of May (spoken) on May 1, 2001 (written)

Deutsch im August (im Juni, Oktober, usw.) am vierzehnten Juni am 14. Juni 2001 - 14.7.01 am ersten Mai am 1. Mai 2001 - 1.5.01

To review the cardinal numbers, see Lektion 7 and Lektion 8. For the ordinal numbers, see below and our German Numbers page.

The ordinal numbers are so-called because they express the order in a series, in this case for dates. But the same principle applies to the "first door" (die erste Tr) or the "fifth element" (das fnfte Element). In most cases, the ordinal number is the cardinal number with a -te or -ten ending. Just as in English, some German numbers have irregular ordinals: one/first (eins/erste) or three/third (drei/dritte). Below is a sample chart with ordinal numbers that would be required for dates. For all of the ordinal numbers in German, see our German Numbers page. (Audio for German Numbers)
Sample Ordinal Numbers (Dates) Englisch 1 the first - on the first/1st 2 the second - on the second/2nd 3 the third - on the third/3rd 4 the fourth - on the fourth/4th 5 the fifth - on the fifth/5th 6 the sixth - on the sixth/6th 11 the eleventh on the eleventh/11th 21 the twenty-first Deutsch der erste - am ersten/1. der zweite - am zweiten/2. der dritte - am dritten/3. der vierte - am vierten/4. der fnfte - am fnften/5. der sechste - am sechsten/6.

der elfte - am elften/11.

der einundzwanzigste

on the twenty-first/21st 31 the thirty-first on the thirty-first/31st

am einundzwanzigsten/21. der einunddreiigste am einunddreiigsten/31.

Essen und Trinken - Eating and Drinking Lebensmittel - Groceries


This lesson introduces: (1) food words and vocabulary for eating, drinking and grocery shopping, (2) expressions related to those topics and (3) related German grammar. A very important supplement to this lesson is our German-English Menu and Dining Guide. Read and study the following dialog. If you need help with the vocabulary or grammar, see the German-English version and the short glossary below. LERNTIPP: You will comprehend and learn this dialog better if you use this German-only version as much as possible, only turning to the dual-language version when you need to. You can easily switch between the two. Also see the glossary at the bottom of the dialog. Your goal is to get to the point where you can read this German dialog with full comprehension (no dictionary/help needed). Wo kaufe ich das? Useful words and expressions in English and German Lebensmittel - Groceries WO (where) WAS (what) fast alles almost everything die Lebensmittel groceries das Gemse vegetables das Obst fruit die Milch milk der Kse cheese das Brot bread das Brtchen roll die Semmeln rolls (So. Germany, Austria) die Torte cake der Kuchen cake der Fisch fish das Fleisch meat das Rindfleisch beef das Geflgel fowl das Kalbfleisch veal

der Supermarkt the supermarket im Supermarkt at the supermarket

der Bcker the baker beim Bcker at the baker's die Bckerei bakery der Fleischer the butcher* die Fleischerei butcher shop beim Fleischer at the butcher's der Metzger the butcher die Metzgerei the butcher shop

beim Metzger at the butcher's

der Schinken ham das Schweinefleisch pork die Wurst sausage

*The German terms for "butcher" and "butcher shop" are regional. Metzger tends to be used more in southern Germany, while Fleischer is more common in the north. The official term for the trade is Fleischer. Older, rarely used terms are Fleischhacker, Fleischhauer and Schlachter. der Getrnkemarkt beverage shop Here you buy beverages (beer, cola, mineral water, etc.) by the case. Supermarkets now usually have a similar department. Getrnke beverages das Getrnk beverage, drink das Bier beer der Wein wine die Limonade soda, soft drink die Cola cola drink das Mineralwasser mineral water A growing trend in Germany is the gas station mini-mart, selling everything from groceries to videos and CDs. It offers shoppers an alternative to regular stores that by law are closed on Sundays and after 8pm, if not earlier.

der Markt the market der Tante-Emma-Laden corner market die Tankstelle gas station (market)

Der gedeckte Tisch Useful words and expressions in English and German ENGLISH CUTLERY, TABLEWARE fork knife spoon teaspoon tablespoon knife cake knife, slicer die Gabel das Messer der Lffel der Teelffel der Esslffel das Messer der Tortenheber When you're ready, DEUTSCH DAS BESTECK

don't forget to try the Photo Exercise for This Page DINNERWARE, CHINA, DISHES bowl cup/mug saucer plate, salad plate CONTAINERS can - beer can, cola can a can of beer/cola glass - beer glass, wine glass a glass of beer/wine/milk bottle - beer bottle, wine bottle a bottle of beer/wine/milk a cup of coffee/tea a cup/dish of ice cream dish, (serving) bowl pitcher, jug tea pot (small) tea pot (large) coffee pot (small) coffee pot (large) (cooking) pot OTHER THINGS DAS GESCHIRR die Schale, die Schssel die Tasse/der Becher die Untertasse der Teller, der Salatteller BEHLTER die Dose - Bierdose, Coladose eine Dose Bier/Cola das Glas - Bierglas, Weinglas ein Glas Bier/Wein/Milch die Flasche - Bierflasche, Weinflasche eine Flasche Bier/Wein/Milch eine Tasse Kaffee/Tee ein(en) Becher Eis die Schale, die Schssel der Krug das Teeknnchen die Teekanne das Kaffeeknnchen die Kaffeekanne der Topf ANDERE SACHEN

coaster, beer coaster/mat napkin, serviette place setting place mat salt/pepper shaker

der Untersetzer, der Bierdeckel die Serviette das Gedeck das Set der Salzstreuer/Pfefferstreuer

Was sind Sie von Beruf? Whats your occupation?


This lesson introduces: (1) vocabulary related to occupations and trades, (2) expressions related to that vocabulary and (3) the grammar of accusative prepositions. A recommended review for this lesson is Part 2 of Lesson 11 (accusative case). Print this page (without ads) CULTURAL NOTE: Although it is quite common for English-speakers to ask new acquaintances what their profession is, Germans are less likely to do so. Some Germans wouldn't mind, but others may consider it an invasion of their personal sphere. This is something you'll just have to play by ear. Below you'll find a list of common occupations and professions. Note that all professions in German have both a feminine and a masculine form. We have listed the feminine form only in cases where it is not just the standard -in ending (as in der Arzt/die rztin), when there is also a difference in English (waiter/waitress), or when a job is more likely to be feminine (nurse, secretary) or the German feminine form is very common (student). GRAMMAR NOTE: When you say "I'm a student." or "He's an architect." in German, you normally leave out the "a" or "an": Ich bin Student(in). - Er ist Architekt. (no "ein" or "eine"). Only if an adjective is added, do you use "ein/eine" as in: Er ist ein guter Student. - Sie ist eine neue Architektin. See the examples in the chart below.
Berufe - Professions Englisch architect auto mechanic der Architekt der Automechaniker Deutsch

baker bank teller bricklayer, stone mason broker stock broker real estate agent/broker bus driver computer programer

der Bcker der Bankangestellte, die Bankangestellte der Maurer der Makler der Brsenmakler der Immobilienmakler der Busfahrer der Programmierer, die Programmiererin der Koch, der Chefkoch die Kchin, die Chefkchin der Arzt, die rztin der Angestellte, die Angestellte der Arbeiter, die Arbeiterin Angestellte/Angestellter in der Informatik der Tischler der Journalist der Musiker der Krankenpfleger, die Krankenschwester der Fotograf, die Fotografin der Sekretr, die Sekretrin der Schler, die Schlerin der Student, die Studentin

cook, chef

doctor, physician employee, white-collar worker employee, blue-collar worker IT worker joiner, cabinetmaker journalist musician nurse photographer secretary student, pupil (K-12) student (college, univ.)

Student: Note that German makes a distinction between a school student/pupil and a college-level student.

taxi driver teacher

der Taxifahrer der Lehrer, die Lehrerin der Lkw-Fahrer der Fernfahrer/Brummifahrer der Kellner - die Kellnerin der Arbeiter Q & A - Fragen und Antworten Questions and Answers

truck/lorry driver

waiter - waitress worker, laborer

Q: What's your occupation? Q: What do you do for a living? A: I'm a... Q: What's your occupation? A: I'm in insurance. A: I work at a bank. A: I work at a bookstore. Q: What does he/she do for a living? A: He/She runs a small business. Q: What does an auto mechanic do? A: He repairs cars. Q: Where do you work? A: At McDonald's. Q: Where does a nurse work? A: In a hospital. Q: At which company does he work? A: He's with DaimlerChrysler.

F: Was sind Sie von Beruf? F: Was machen Sie beruflich? A: Ich bin... F: Was machen Sie beruflich? A: Ich bin in der Versicherungbranche. A: Ich arbeite bei einer Bank. A: Ich arbeite bei einer Buchhandlung. F: Was macht er/sie beruflich? A: Er/Sie fhrt einen kleinen Betrieb. F: Was macht ein Automechaniker? A: Er repariert Autos. F: Wo arbeiten Sie? A: Bei McDonald's. F: Wo arbeitet eine Krankenschwester? A: Im Krankenhaus/im Spital. F: Bei welcher Firma arbeitet er? A: Er ist bei DaimlerChrysler. Wo arbeiten Sie? Where do you work?

at Deutsche Bank

bei der Deutschen Bank

at home at McDonald's at the office in a garage, auto repair shop in a hospital with a big/small company

zu Hause bei McDonald's im Bro in einer/in der Autowerkstatt in einem/im Krankenhaus/Spital bei einem groen/kleinen Unternehmen

Also see: German Stores and Businesses - English-German glossary sich um eine Stelle bewerben Applying for a Position company, firm employer employment office interview job application I'm applying for a job. resume, CV die Firma der Arbeitgeber das Arbeitsamt (Web link) das Interview die Bewerbung Ich bewerbe mich um eine Stelle/einen Job. der Lebenslauf

Accusative Case in German


Accusative Prepositions Pronouns in the Accusative

Lesson 14: Part 1 > Part 2 > Exercises 1 > Exercises 2


Druckversion - Printer version

Below is an overview of the German accusative prepositions. When studying the prepositions, it is wise to remember that they don't always translate the same way in English and German. For example (zum Beispiel), English "for" can be expressed in German by the dative case or all of these prepositions: auf, fr, nach, um, and zu. Of these, only fr and um are accusative prepositions. Prepositions can be a dangerous minefield, so study them well, and carefully observe how they are used. Notice also that some of the prepositions below (durch, um) can mean more than one thing in English. (See our feature entitled Prepositional Pitfalls for more about this.) By "accusative prepositions" we mean those that always "govern" or "take" the accusative case. An accusative preposition will always be followed by an object (a noun or pronoun) in the accusative case. We will cover the dative and genitive prepositions in later lessons. Luckily, there are only five accusative prepositions you need to learn and memorize. In the chart below, we have listed each preposition in German and English (left column) with example prepositional phrases (right column). Another thing that makes this group of prepositions easier is the fact that only the masculine gender (der) changes in the accusative case. As we already pointed out in Lektion 11, neither the plural nor the feminine (die) and neuter (das) genders change in the accusative. GRAMMAR NOTE: The pronoun er (he) follows the same pattern as the definite article der (with which it rhymes!). Just as der changes to den, er changes to ihn (also with an "n" at the end). Also keep in mind that the pronoun er can mean "it" when it refers to a masculine nonpersonal noun: der Wagen (the car) = er (it). Like er, all of the German personal pronouns have an accusative form that is different from the nominative (subject) form except for Sie/sie and es. This is similar to the case changes in English (he/him, I/me, she/her).
Accusative Prepositions Prpositionen Beispiele - Examples durch die Stadt through the city durch den Wald through the forest durch den Wind (caused) by the wind

durch through, by

entlang along, down

die Strae entlang down the street den Fluss entlang along the river Gehen Sie diesen Weg entlang. Go down this path.

NOTE: The accusative preposition entlang, unlike the others, usually goes after its object, as shown above. fr das Buch for the book fr ihn for him fr mich for me gegen alle Erwartungen against all expectations gegen die Mauer against the wall gegen Kopfschmerzen (medicine) for a headache gegen mich against me ohne den Wagen without the car ohne ihn without him ohne mich without me (count me out) um den See around the lake um eine Stelle (apply) for a job Er bewirbt sich um eine Stelle. He's applying for a position. um zehn Uhr at ten o'clock

fr for

gegen against, for

ohne without

um around, for, at

NOTE: The German preposition bis (until, to, by) is technically an accusative preposition, but since it's almost always used with a second preposition (bis zu, bis auf, etc.) in a different case, or without an article (bis April, bis Montag), it's not listed above. PERSONAL PRONOUNS in the ACCUSATIVE NOMINATIVE ich I du you (fam.) er he sie she es it mich me dich you ihn him sie her es it ACCUSATIVE

wir we ihr you (guys) sie they Sie you (formal)

uns us euch you (guys) sie them Sie you (formal) da- Compounds

All of the accusative prepositions except "entlang," "ohne" and "bis" form what are called "dacompounds" to express what would be a prepositional phrase in English. Da-compounds are not used for people (personal pronouns). Prepositions beginning with a vowel add a connecting r. See the examples below. THING dadurch through it, by it dafr for it dagegen against it darum for that reason PERSON durch ihn/sie through him/her fr ihn/sie for him/her gegen ihn/sie against him/her um ihn/sie around him/her

From Head to Toe - Parts of the Body in German

You are here: Contents | Lesson 14 > Lesson 15 > Lesson 16 In this lesson we introduce: (1) vocabulary related to parts of the body (Krperteile) and talking about your health (die Gesundheit) and how you feel, (2) expressions related to that vocabulary and (3) the grammar of the dative reflexive case. The German words for many parts of the body are similar or identical to English: der Arm, die Hand, der Finger, das Haar, das Kinn. (English is, after all, a Germanic language.) But of course they're not all that easy, and you still need to learn the genders of even the easy ones. (Don't ask me why a hand is feminine but a finger is masculine. It's pointless to worry about such things.)

Hals- und Beinbruch! Break a leg! (Neck and leg break!) (Although it adds the neck, the German expression actually wishes someone good luck, as in English.)

One element of this lesson relates to the way that German-speakers talk about the body. In the classic film "Casablanca," Humphrey Bogart's character says to Ingrid Bergman: "Here's lookin' at you, kid." In the German version, that Americanism became "Ich schau dir in die Augen, Kleines." Instead of saying "your eyes," German tends to be more like the English expression "I'm looking you in the eye," using the definite article with the dative to show personal possession. In Part 3 of this lesson we'll look at that dative use and the dative reflexive. But first, let's learn the basic vocabulary of Krperteile (parts of the body). In this glossary, the plural form is given only for those items that usually come in pairs or multiples (eyes, ears, fingers, etc.). You'll notice that our glossary runs from the top of the body (head) to the bottom (foot, von Kopf bis Fu).
der menschliche Krper von Kopf bis Fu The Human Body from head to toe (foot) Englisch hair* Deutsch das Haar/die Haare (pl.)

*In German "hair" can be referred to as singular or plural, when it is only singular in English: "my hair" = mein Haar (sing.) or meine Haare (pl.); "her long hair" = ihr langes Haar (sing.) or ihre langen Haare (pl.) head ear, ears face forehead eyebrow, eyebrows eyelash, eyelashes der Kopf das Ohr, die Ohren (pl.) das Gesicht die Stirn die Augenbraue, die Augenbrauen die Wimper, die Wimpern

eye, eyes nose lip, lips mouth*

das Auge, die Augen die Nase die Lippe, die Lippen der Mund

*An animal's mouth is called das Maul. When used for people, it's considered rude: "Halt's Maul!" = "Shut up!" tooth, teeth chin neck shoulder, shoulders back arm, arms elbow, elbows wrist, wrists hand, hands finger, fingers thumb, thumbs* der Zahn, die Zhne das Kinn der Hals die Schulter, die Schultern der Rcken der Arm, die Arme der Ell(en)bogen, die Ell(en)bogen das Handgelenk, die Handgelenke die Hand, die Hnde der Finger, die Finger der Daumen, die Daumen

*Instead of crossing your fingers, in German you "press your thumb" for good luck: Daumen drcken! = "Cross your fingers!" index finger finger nail (nails) chest der Zeigefinger der Fingernagel (-ngel) die Brust

breast, breasts (bosom) stomach, belly

die Brust, die Brste (der Busen) der Bauch

der menschliche Krper 2 von Kopf bis Fu The Human Body from head to toe (foot) Englisch waist hip, hips buttocks, posterior leg, legs thigh, thighs knee, knees calf, calves (of leg) ankle, ankles foot, feet heel, heels toe, toes* Deutsch die Taille (pron. TYE-ya) die Hfte, die Hften das Ges/das Hinterteil das Bein, die Beine der Oberschenkel, die Oberschenkel das Knie, die Knie die Wade, die Waden der Fuknchel, die Fuknchel der Fu, die Fe die Ferse, die Fersen der Zeh, die Zehen

*Some German-speakers also say die Zehe for toe. The plural is always die Zehen. big toe der groe Zeh, groer Zeh General Body Terms bone der Knochen

skin joint, joints muscle, muscles

die Haut das Gelenk, die Gelenke der Muskel, die Muskeln Adjectives

long - short healthy - sick red, dark, blond (hair) grey, brown (brunette) red hair grey hair

lang - kurz gesund - krank rot, dunkel, blond grau, braun rote Haare/rotes Haar graue Haare/graues Haar PREVIOUS > More Body Vocabulary (Part 1) Verben/Dative (mit) Verbs/Dative (with)

You see with your eyes. I see with my eyes. We see with our eyes. You write with your hand. I write with my hand. We write with our hand. You speak with your mouth. I speak with my mouth. We speak with our mouth. You hear with your ears. He hears with his ears. You smell with your nose. You (fam.) smell with your nose.

Man sieht mit den Augen. Ich sehe mit den Augen. Wir sehen mit den Augen. Man schreibt mit der Hand. Ich schreibe mit der Hand. Wir schreiben mit der Hand. Man spricht mit dem Mund. Ich spreche mit dem Mund. Wir sprechen mit dem Mund. Man hrt mit den Ohren. Er hrt mit den Ohren. Man riecht mit der Nase. Du riechst mit der Nase.

You chew with your teeth.

Man kaut mit den Zhnen.

Note in the examples above that German uses the definite article (der, dem) where English uses the possessive adjective (my, your, our). The preposition mit takes the dative. (See Part 3 of this lesson for more about the dative case.)

Die Stirne khl, die Fe warm, das macht den reichsten Doktor arm. The forehead cool, the feet warm, that makes the richest doctor poor.
Fragen und Antworten Questions and Answers Q: What color are her eyes? A: Her eyes are blue. A: She has green eyes. Q: What color is his hair? A: His hair is brown. A: He has brown hair. F: Welche Farbe haben ihre Augen? A: Ihre Augen sind blau. A: Sie hat grne Augen. F: Welche Farbe haben seine Haare? A: Seine Haare sind braun. A: Er hat braune Haare.

Wehwehchen - Aches and Pains Wo tut's weh? - Where does it hurt? Also see: Medical Vocabulary - Talking to the doctor Q: Where does it hurt? A: Here's where it hurts. Q: What's bothering you? A: I have a headache. A: I have a toothache. A: I have a stomachache. Q: What hurts? (1) A: My head is aching. A: His tooth hurts/aches. F: Wo tut es weh? A: Hier tut es weh. F: Was fehlt dir? A: Ich habe Kopfweh/Kopfschmerzen. A: Ich habe Zahnschmerzen. A: Ich habe Bauchschmerzen. F: Was tut weh? A: Mein Kopf tut weh. A: Sein Zahn tut weh.

A: Her feet hurt. Q: What's hurting you/him? (2) A: My head is aching. A: His tooth hurts/aches. A: Her feet hurt.

A: Ihre Fe tun weh. F: Was tut dir/ihm weh? A: Mir tut der Kopf weh. A: Ihm tut der Zahn weh. A: Ihr tun die Fe weh.

Notice the two different ways of saying that something hurts (above). In (1) the German is similar to English, using possessive pronouns (mein, sein). In (2) German uses the dative pronoun (mir, ihr) to indicate whose head or feet hurt. The dative forms are generally used more often.

Dative Reflexive In this section we examine the dative reflexive, and particularly how it's used with the vocabulary in this lesson. Since reflexive verb forms are used frequently in German and have very practical, everyday applications, you need to learn them. (Also see Reflexive Verbs and the other parts of this lesson.) Note that only two pronouns (ich and du) show any difference from the accusative reflexive forms in the dative reflexive. But since those two pronouns are very often used in the dative reflexive, it is important to know them.
Dativ/der Wemfall The Dative Reflexive Nom. pronoun ich du wir ihr er sie es Sie sie mich (myself) dich (yourself) uns (ourselves) euch (yourselves) Accusative pronoun mir (myself) dir (yourself) uns (ourselves) euch (yourselves) Dative pronoun

sich (himself/herself/itself)

sich (himself/herself/itself)

sich (yourself/themselves)

sich (yourself/themselves)

When talking about combing or washing your hair, washing your face or brushing your teeth in German, you use the dative reflexive forms shown above. German has two reflexive forms, accusative and dative. If you just say, "I'm washing myself." (nothing specific) then you use the "normal" accusative reflexive: "Ich wasche mich." But if you are washing your hair, instead of expressing that as English would ("my hair" = "meine Haare"), German uses the reflexive: "Ich wasche mir die Haare." (lit., "I wash myself the hair." - no possessive "my") Look at the examples below and observe how the dative reflexive functions with different pronouns (du/dir, wir/uns, etc.).
Dative Reflexive Sample sentences I'm washing my hands. I'm combing my hair. He's washing his hands. Are you washing your hands? We're brushing our teeth. I'm washing my face. Ich wasche mir die Hnde. Ich kmme mir die Haare. Er wscht sich die Hnde. Wscht du dir die Hnde? Wir putzen uns die Zhne. Ich wasche mir das Gesicht.

German uses the dative reflexive to express the English possessive forms with personal toiletry verbs (comb, wash, brush, etc.). Note that only the forms dir and mir are different from the accusative reflexive forms (dich, mich). Contrast the sentences above with the accusative reflexive forms below: I'm washing myself. Are you washing yourself? I'm shaving (myself). He's shaving (himself). I'm getting dressed. He's getting dressed. Ich wasche mich. Wscht du dich? Ich rasiere mich. Er rasiert sich. Ich ziehe mich an. Er zieht sich an.

Note that with the accusative reflexive the reflexive pronoun is the only object. (The English equivalent may not even be reflexive, i.e., there may be NO "yourself" or "myself" in the English sentence as in "I'm shaving.") In accusative reflexive sentences the reflexive pronoun itself is the direct object, while in dative reflexive sentences something else is the direct object (hand, hair, face, etc.) The German accusative reflexive forms are covered in more detail in the lesson on German Reflexive Verbs.

Reflexive sentences can be in any tense. Reflexive verbs are conjugated just like any other German verb. (See our German Verbs page for more.) Here are a few examples:
Dative Reflexive Sentences in Various Tenses I washed my hands. (past) I'll comb my hair. (future) Did you wash your hands? (past) Ich habe mir die Hnde gewaschen. Ich werde mir die Haare kmmen. Hast du dir die Hnde gewaschen?

ust Say Know: kennen und wissen + knnen The 3 German Verbs for to know
Plus German Modal Verbs in Part 3

Print this page (without ads) Yes, there really are three German verbs that can be translated as "to know" in English! But German-speakers don't really have to worry about it, and you won't either after you've covered this lesson. The two main German verbs that mean "to know" are kennen and wissen. A third verb, knnen, is a modal verb that usually means "to be able" or "can" but in certain situations can also mean "to know." (Learn more about modals in Part 3 of this lesson.) Here are three different "know" examples, with three different German verbs, that translate into English "know" sentences...

Ich wei Bescheid. I know about it. Wir kennen ihn nicht. We don't know him. Er kann Deutsch. He knows German.

Each example above represents a different meaning of "know." In fact, in many other languages (including French, German, Italian and Spanish), unlike English, there are usually two different verbs used to express English "know." These other languages have one verb

that means "to know a person" or "to be acquainted with" (a person or something), and another verb that means "to know a fact" or "to know about something." In German, kennen means "to know, be familiar with" and wissen means "to know a fact, know when/how." German-speakers always know (wissen) when to use which one. If they are talking about knowing a person or being familar with something, they will use kennen. If they are talking about knowing a fact or knowing when something will happen, they'll use wissen. In most cases, German uses knnen (can) to express the idea of knowing how to do something. Often such sentences can also be translated using "can" or "is able to." The German ich kann Franzsisch equals "I can (speak, write, read, understand) French" or "I know French." Er kann schwimmen. = "He knows how to swim." or "He can swim."
Knowing How to Say Know The Three German "Know" Verbs Englisch to know (someone) to know (a fact) to know (how) Deutsch kennen wissen knnen

? Wissen Sie, wie spt es ist? Ich wei (es) nicht. Kennst du ihn/sie? Weit du, wann der Zug abfhrt? Den Film kenne ich nicht. Sie wei immer alles besser. Nicht, dass ich wsste. Man kann nie wissen. Er will nichts von ihr wissen. Das kenne ich schon. Das kennen wir hier nicht. Sie kennen keine Armut. Wir kannten kein Mass. Ich kenne mich hier nicht aus.*

Do you know English? Do you know (have) the time? I don't know. Do you know him/her? Do you know when the train is departing? I don't know that film. IDIOMS/EXPRESSIONS She always knows better. Not as far as I know. You (just) never know. He wants nothing to do with her. I've heard that (all/one) before. We don't put up with that here. They don't have/know any poverty. We went too far. / We overdid it. I don't know my way around here.

* sich auskennen = to know one's way around Was ich nicht wei, macht mich nicht hei. Mein Name ist Hase, ich wei von nichts. Ich wei nichts davon. Ich wei Bescheid. Wir haben uns vor zwei Jahren kennen gelernt.* Wir lernten uns in Berlin kennen.* What I don't know won't hurt me. (My name is rabbit and) I know nothing. I don't know anything about it. I know about it. (I've been informed.) We became acquainted two years ago. We met in Berlin.

* kennen lernen = to become acquainted, get to know

In the first part of this lesson we learned how the modal verb knnen can be used to mean to know, but it has many other uses. In this part of Lesson 16 we'll take a closer look at the verb knnen and the other modal verbs in German. Modal verbs in German are used in much the same way as they are in English. Notice the close resemblance between these English and German sentence pairs, with the modal verb in red: I must do it. / Ich muss es tun. - Can you go? / Kannst du gehen? Below is a chart with the six German modal verbs and their meanings. Note that each modal verb has two basic forms, a singular form and a plural form:

Modalverben

German Modal Verbs To learn the conjugation of these verbs, click on a verb for a detailed conjugation table. English be permitted, may be able, can, know like, want, may have to, must should, ought/supposed to Deutsch darf - drfen kann - knnen mag - mgen muss - mssen soll - sollen

want to

will - wollen

Im Kaufhaus - KaDeWe
At the Department Store

A German lesson about shopping in Germany Print this page (without ads) You'll find department stores all over the world, but that doesn't mean they're all the same. Although it is common to find a grocery section (Lebensmittelabteilung) in a German or British department store, it is rare in America. Just like Harrod's in London, Berlin's famous KaDeWe (kah-day-vay) department store, the largest on the European continent, has an entire floor devoted to its gourmet food section. KaDeWe's legendary Feinschmecker-Etage is on the sixth floor (which would be the seventh floor in the U.S.). But most larger German department stores have a supermarket or grocery department (usually in the basement) and a good restaurant (often on the top floor), in addition to the usual departments found in most Kaufhuser. In this lesson you'll learn not only vocabulary related to shopping in a German department store (das Kaufhaus/Warenhaus) but also important and practical cultural background information concerning things such as das Ladenschlussgesetz (Germany's store hours law), Etagen/Stockwerke (floors, stories), the Mehrwertsteuer (German sales tax/VAT) and even the seasons (Jahreszeiten). Since many German department stores have Web sites, we will also link to some online department stores for vocabulary and cultural practice. Additional vocabulary for this lesson can be found in the following English-German glossaries: Clothing/Fashion, Colors/Farben, Euro & Money, Flashcards, Travel and more. Grammatik - The grammar in this lesson will include prepositional phrases for floor and time expressions, the dative of interest and a few other related items. Also see: Im Kaufhaus - Lesestck A reading selection for this lesson. With AUDIO and questions.
Schilder im Kaufhaus Dept. Store Signs
Abteilung department (die) Aufzug elevator, lift (der)

Das KaDeWe in Zahlen Before we get started, let's look at some interesting facts and figures concerning Germany's (and Europe's) largest department store, according to KaDeWe's own Web site. By the way, KaDeWe is short for Kaufhaus des Westens, the department store of the west. Most people use the short form. It has been said that there is almost nothing that can't be bought at KaDeWe. Among many other services, Berlin's famous KaDeWe offers: shoe repair, vacation planning, pet shampooing, a currency exchange and a first aid station.

Ausgang exit (der) Ausverkauf sale (der) Etage floor (die) Kasse cashier (die) Kundendienst customer service (der) ffnungszeiten opening hours (pl.) Parkhaus car park, parking garage (das) Parterre ground floor (das) Rolltreppe escalator (die) Selbstbedienung self-service (die) Sommerschlussverkauf end-of-summer sale (der) Sonderangebot special (sale) (das) Stockwerk floor (das) Winterschlussverkauf end-of-winter sale (der) Zutritt nur fr Befugte authorized personnel only (der Zutritt)

Etagen: 8 floors/acht Etagen (pron: ay-taj-zhen) Produkte: Over 380,000 items for sale Aufzge: 26 elevators/lifts Fahrtreppen: 64 escalators (also called Rolltreppen) Mitarbeiter: 2400 employees Besucher: durchschnittlich 80.000 pro Tag (avg. 80,000 visitors a day)

Berlin's KaDeWe first opened for business in 1907 on Tauentzienstrae across from the Wittenbergplatz and not far from the zoo station and the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedchtniskirche. The building, constantly remodeled over the years, was heavily damaged during the Second World War by a U.S. bomber that crashed into it. Only two floors were re-opened for business by 1950. Today KaDeWe has reclaimed its former glory and then some. If you get a chance, don't miss a visit to the amazing gourmet section and its 33,000 food items on sale! Ladenschluss Just be sure not to go to KaDeWe or other German stores on Sunday! Germany's strict store closing law, das Ladenschlussgesetz, sets specific hours and days when German retailers and shops can be open for business. Not that many years ago, all German stores were required to close by 6:00 or 6:30 pm (18.00 oder 18.30 Uhr) Monday-Friday. Most stores closed by 2:00 pm (or earlier) on Saturday. Although the store hours law has been liberalized in the last few years, no shops can remain open after 8:00 pm (20.00 Uhr) on weekdays. Stores must close by 4:00 pm on Saturdays. Sunday is still a day of rest. Only restaurants, gas stations and stores serving travelers can be open on Sunday. During the Christmas shopping season and once a month during the rest of the year, some stores stay open until 6:00 pm on Saturday. But many smaller shops still have more limited business hours.

Also see: Abteilungen in Part Two

The intention of Germany's strict shopping hours law is to give employees and shoppers more time with their families, but German consumers have grown increasingly frustrated with shopping hours that are much more restricted than those in neighboring countries such as France. Austria and Switzerland have Ladenschluss laws that are similar to Germany's.

KaDeWe advertises these store hours: Montag - Freitag: durchgehend von 9.30 - 20.00 Uhr - Samstag: durchgehend von 9.00 - 16.00 Uhr. The term "durchgehend" (continuously) means they don't close for lunch, as many smaller German businesses and even some banks do. If you need to review the 24-hour time used in daily life throughout Europe, see Lektion 8. On the next page, we look at a typical German department store. You can click on some departments to see what you can buy there - auf Deutsch of course.

Im Kaufhaus - Abteilungen
At the Department Store

A German lesson about shopping in Germany Print this page (without ads)

Galeries Lafayette: Ein Kaufhaus in Berlin. Foto: Hyde Flippo Now let's look at some typical departments or sections (Abteilungen) you would find in a German Kaufhaus. But first, a little background on German department stores. Some well-known German department store names include Galeria Kaufhof, Hertie (short for founder Hermann Tietz, her-tie), Karstadt, Peek & Cloppenburg and Wertheim. (But Karstadt AG owns KaDeWe and also operates stores under the names Hertie, Karstadt and Wertheim.) The French Galeries Lafayette has a large, modern department store in Berlin and the British Marks & Spencer recently opened its first department store in Germany, in Cologne (Kln). The now defunct American chain Woolworth is still a well-known brand in Germany, with stores all across the country. The American discount chain Wal-Mart has also established a presence in Germany over the last few years. Most historians claim the Magasin au Bon March in Paris was the world's first department store (1852). But US department stores such as Macy's in New York (1858) and Marshall Field in Chicago (1865) were also early pioneers. By 1900 there were department stores in every large US and Canadian city. The first German Kaufhuser appeared in Berlin and Hamburg around 1904, although the stores they elvolved from were founded earlier than that. The two German words for "department store" - das Kaufhaus and das Warenhaus - are interchangeable, but Kaufhaus is used more. Do not confuse the English word "warehouse" with Warenhaus! A warehouse is das Lagerhaus or die Lagerhalle in German.

You should study this page and its related content (pop-ups, glossaries), as well as try the exercises on the next page (17.3).
Abteilungen Departments/Sections Typical departments found in a German Kaufhaus Click on a department to see typical items. Deutsch Bett- und Tischwsche Bettwaren und Matratzen Bcher Brobedarf/Schreibwaren Englisch Bed and Table Linen Beds and Mattresses Books Office Supplies/Stationery

For related vocabulary: Im Bro Babyartikel/Babymode Computer & Software Baby Things - Baby Fashions Computer & Software

For related vocabulary: Computer & Internet Glossary Damenmode Ladies' Fashions

For related vocabulary: Clothing/Fashion Eltekro-Grogerte Elektro-Kleingerte Foto - Filme Haushaltswaren - Glas, Porzellan Herrenmode Large Electrical Appliances Small Electrical Appliances Photo - Film Household - Glass, Porcelain Men's Clothing

For related vocabulary: Clothing/Fashion

Kindermode Lebensmittel Restaurant

Children's Clothing Groceries Restaurant For related vocabulary: Food & Drink

Schuhe Spielwaren Sportswear Tontrger - CD - DVD/Video TV - Video - Hifi Uhren/Schmuck

Shoes Toys Sportswear Recordings - CDs - DVD/Video TV - Video - Hi-Fi Watches/Jewelry

Click on a department to see typical items. Other Departments not listed above: Autozubehr (auto accessories), Bademoden (swimwear), Geschenkartikel (gifts), Lederwaren (leather apparel), Lampen/Glhbirnen (lamps, lightbulbs), Parfmerie (perfumes), Tabakwaren (tobacco shop), Gardinen und Zubehr (curtains and fixtures), Berufskleidung (work clothes, uniforms), Swaren (confectionery), Telekommunikation (telecommunication)

Below is a graphic of an imaginary Kaufhaus showing various floors and eine Abteilung located on each floor. The diagram also indicates the German floor numbering system (DE) compared to the US. (The letter E stands for das Erdgeschoss, the ground floor, also called das Parterre.) There are two common words for "floor" or "story" in German: the Frenchbased die Etage (like das Parterre) and the Germanic der Stock/das Stockwerk. Most German department stores seem to prefer the French version. In the examples, notice how German says phrases like on the fifth floor or to the second floor. Another term used for floors is das Obergeschoss. The second floor, for example, is sometimes called das zweite Obergeschoss. Any floor above the Erdgeschoss is an Obergeschoss. A basement floor below the Erdgeschoss is called an Untergeschoss (subfloor). To say "on the second subfloor" you would say "im zweiten Untergeschoss." Study the sample questions and answers (in German and English) next to the diagram, so that you can answer similar questions in the exercises that follow. If you need to review your ordinal numbers (first, second, etc. for the floors), see Lektion 12. All answers are based on

the diagram and use the German floor system.

Frage: In welcher Etage befindet sich die SpielwarenAbteilung? Antwort: Die Spielwaren-Abteilung ist in der 3. (dritten) Etage. Q: On which floor is the Toy Department located? A: The Toy Department is on the third floor. F: In welche Etage muss ich hingehen, um eine Bluse zu kaufen? A: Gehen Sie in die 1. (erste) Etage. Dort finden Sie Damenmode. Q: Which floor do I have to go to in order to buy a blouse? A: Go to the first floor. That's where you'll find Ladies' Clothing. (Note that this would be called the 2nd floor in the US!) F: Wo kann ich einen Rechner kaufen? A: Die Computer-Abteilung ist in der 6. (sechsten) Etage/im 6. Stock. Q: Where can I buy a computer? A: The Computer Department is on the sixth floor. F: Wo ist das Restaurant? A: Es ist ist ganz oben in der 7. (siebten) Etage/im 7. Stock. Q: Where is the restaurant? A: It's all the way at the top on the seventh floor. F: Wo kauft man Parfum/Parfm? A: Das findet man im Erdgeschoss. Q: Where can one buy perfume? A: That's on the ground floor. (First floor in the US.) Although our graphic doesn't show it, German department stores often have one or more floors below the ground. Sometimes the English/French word Basement is used, but more often the floors below the ground level are referred to as...

1. Untergeschoss (erstes/1.U) = first subfloor 2. Untergeschoss (zweites/2.U) = 2nd subfloor 3. Untergeschoss (drittes/3.U) = 3rd subfloor

...in which the ground level (Erdgeschoss) is "zero" and each floor below that is 1, 2, 3, etc., with 3 below 2. This floor naming system is also used in parking garages (Parkhuser) that have levels below ground.

The Dative of Interest German has a dative construction that is similar to the English I'm going to buy myself a computer. - In German, the dative reflexive form can be used with the verbs kaufen (buy) and anschaffen (acquire, get) to indicate for whom something is being bought: myself, himself, themselves, etc. Here are some examples: Er kauft sich einen Hut. - He's buying himself a hat. Wir wollen uns ein neues Auto anschaffen. - We want to get ourselves a new car. Ich kaufe mir eine Krawatte. - I'm buying myself a tie. Habt ihr euch einen neuen Khlschrank gekauft? - Did you guys buy yourselves a new refrigerator? Kaufst du dir ein Buch? - Are you buying yourself a book? Dative Reflexive Prounouns ich - mir du - dir er - sich sie - sich es - sich wir - uns ihr - euch sie - sich Sie - sich

Haus und Hof


House and Home

A German lesson about housing and real estate in Germany Talking about the house, rooms, and furniture Because Germany's rate of home ownership is the lowest in Europe, most Germans live in a rented apartment or flat (die Wohnung) rather than in their own single-family house (das Einfamilienhaus). For various reasons, including high costs, only about 42 percent of German families own the home they live in, compared to a rate of about 70 percent in the U.S. and Britain.
Ein Wohnblock in Berlin. Foto H. Flippo

Even if they own their home, the typical German family often lives in a condominium (die Eigentumswohnung) or row house (das Reihenhaus) rather than in a detached single-

family house. Despite a high standard of living, the costs of land and home financing in Germany, especially in larger cities, keep the German dream home (das Traumhaus) beyond the means of most people. In this lesson you'll learn vocabulary related to a German house or apartment and the furniture (die Mbel) found in a typical home. You'll also learn how to talk about where things are located in the home, and where typical activities might be likely to occur (bathing, sleeping, cooking, watching TV, etc.). We will also link to the Web sites of some online German furniture outlets. We'll also introduce you to the basics of looking for a home and reading classified ads for housing. Additional vocabulary on that topic can be found in the English-German or German-English versions of our Real Estate Glossary and in our special Real Estate Ad Abbreviatons glossary.
Die Zimmer in einem Haus oder in einer Wohnung Rooms in an Apartment or House Full Glossary
der Abstellraum storage room das Arbeitszimmer office, workroom das Badezimmer das Bad bathroom/bath der Balkon balcony das Bro office der Dachboden attic das Esszimmer dining room der Flur hall, entry die Garage garage der Keller cellar, basement das Kinderzimmer

Die Zimmer (Rooms) On the right is an alphabetical list of the various rooms found in a house or flat. As part of this lesson, you'll learn the words for these rooms and the furniture or appliances usually found in each one. Review these words before reading Dirks Wohnung below. Also note the genders for each room, since you'll need to know that when we start talking about what is "in" each room. In the next paragraph, Dirk tells us about the apartment where he lives. If you need vocabulary help, see the extra vocabulary in the reading selection and on the right.

children's room die Kche kitchen das Schlafzimmer bedroom die Toilette/das WC toilet (room) das Treppenhaus stairwell die Waschkche laundry room

DIRKS WOHNUNG

DIRK: Unsere Wohnung ist im zweiten Stock eines 7-stckigen Wohnblocks. Obwohl es einen Aufzug gibt, benutze ich meistens die Treppe, weil es schneller und gesnder ist.
im zweiten Stock on the 3rd floor (US) eines Wohnblocks of an apartment building (der Wohnblock) der Aufzug elevator renoviert remodeled damit with it zufrieden satisfied die Badewanne bath tub die Handdusche handheld shower attachment htte gern would like echt genuine, real

das Wohnzimmer living room

In meiner Familie sind vier Leute: meine Eltern, meine kleine Schwester und ich. Wir haben drei Schlafzimmer, aber nur ein Bad (mit WC).

Das Wohnzimmer und das Esszimmer sind zusammen in einem Raum mit einem kleinen Balkon. Natrlich ist die Kche neben dem Esszimmer. Die Kche haben wir vor einem Monat total renoviert, und meine Mutter ist damit sehr zufrieden. Der Flur ist im Zentrum der Wohnung. An einem Ende ist die Eingangstr und am anderen gibt es einen kleinen Abstellraum. Wenn man in die Wohnung kommt, sind die Schlafzimmer und ein Arbeitszimmer rechts und das Badezimmer links. Die Tr zum Wohnzimmer ist auch auf der linken Seite. Im Badezimmer ist ein Waschbecken, die Toilette, eine Badewanne (mit Handdusche) und auch die Waschmaschine. (Meine Mutter htte gern eine echte Waschkche, aber dafr haben wir keinen Platz.) Unser Fernseher ist im Wohnzimmer. Dort spielen meine Schwester und ich Videospiele. Mein Vater hat sein Bro mit einem Computer in seinem Arbeitszimmer.

Dirk and his family live in a Wohnung in a Wohnblock or Mietshaus, but there are other kinds of residences. A Reihenhaus is a row house or attached house, with each house attached to the other (see photo on the next page). A singlefamily house is an Einfamilienhaus, while a duplex is a Zweifamilienhaus. The German word Appartement or Apartment is a false cognate that actually means a studio apartment

or what the British call a "bed sit" or an "appartement." For even more types of housing in German, see our Wohnungssuche und Immobilien glossary. A German lesson about housing and real estate in Germany You are here: Lesson 18: Part 1 > Part 2 > Part 3 > Web Links
Ein Reihenhaus in Frankfurt am Main. Foto H. Flippo

Before we move on to furniture and appliances in German, let's talk about what is outside the house. The front yard (Brit., front garden) is called der Vorgarten or just der Garten. The back yard is der Hintergarten. German-speakers often use the word Garten in a general way to refer to a lawn (der Rasen) or yard, a flower garden (der Blumengarten) or a vegetable garden (der Gemsegarten), just as the word Haus can refer to a house or a building. If they have a yard or garden, they may also have einen englischen Rasen, a well-trimmed lawn. Although the adjective englisch means "rare" when talking about a steak, it means "well manicured" when referring to a lawn or garden. (The Englischer Garten in Munich got its name from the fact that it is an artificial park made to look like nature.) Many Germans prefer a more German lawn, that is, one that looks more like a natural meadow. (Most Americans would want to get rid of the dandelions right away!) They use their Rasenmher (lawn mower) less frequently than someone who has einen englischen Rasen.
Mbel und Haushaltsgerte Furniture and Household Appliances
der Anrufbeantworter answering machine der Backofen oven das Bett bed das Bcherregal bookshelf der Computer der Rechner computer

die Couch couch der Fernseher das Fernsehgert TV set die Geschirrsplmaschine dish washer der Herd range, stove die Kaffeemaschine coffee maker der Kleiderschrank clothes closet/cabinet die Kommode chest of drawers der Khlschrank refrigerator die Lampe lamp, light der Nachttisch night stand der Schreibtisch desk der Sessel easy chair das Sofa sofa die Stehlampe floor lamp der Staubsauger vacuum cleaner der Stuhl chair das Telefon telephone der Trockner drier die Waschmaschine

washer

Andere Wrter Other Words


das Bild (-er) picture das Dach (Dcher) roof das Fenster (-) window der Spiegel (-) mirror die Treppe (-n) stairway, stairs die Tr (-en) door die Wand (Wnde) wall (inside)

Big-city apartment dwellers in Germany sometimes have a Schrebergarten or Kleingarten. This is a small garden plot in a group of such mini-gardens located away from the apartment complex, often alongside a railway. They are regulated in size and may have a small shed for part-time use. Some people turn their Kleingarten into a miniature vacation spot for weekends and holidays. It is just another way that Germans cope with their densely populated country.

The Germans are great believers in the adage good fences make good neighbors. A yard or garden without a fence (der Zaun) is rare. Sometimes a trimmed hedge (die Hecke) stands in for a fence. But we'll have to save gardening and lawn care for another lesson. Time to go back inside. Print this Page

WAS IST WO? On the left is an alphabetical list of items found in a typical home. Study these words for furniture and appliances, since we'll be using them in this part of the lesson. You may also want to review the vocabulary for rooms in Part One, because we'll be using those, too.

This exercise also requires the use of the two-way preposition in, for which we'll offer a brief overview. (If you need to, see more detailed info in the article The Two-Way Prepositions and the grammar section on Accusative Prepositions.) Wo findet man das? - We'll start by asking in which room you might find a particular item. Since the German preposition in is a two-way preposition, remember that when you answer the question wo, you'll need a dative phrase. For example, if something is in the kitchen, it's in der Kche because the dative of die Kche is der Kche. All die nouns will change to der in the dative. If we're talking about a room that is not feminine (das or der), the dative phrase will be im, as in im Wohnzimmer (in the living room). Here are two more examples before we start: Wo ist der Fernseher? Er ist im Wohnzimmer. (Where is the TV set? - It's in the living room.) Wo finde ich die Kaffeemaschine? Sie ist in der Kche. (Where will I find the coffeemaker? - It's in the kitchen.) Now, see if you can answer these 8 questions in German. Give a logical answer following the model above. 1. Wo ist der Trockner? _____________

2. Wo ist der Staubsauger? _____________ 3. Wo finde ich den Rechner? _____________ 4. Wo ist der Sessel? _____________ 5. Wo finde ich die Kommode? _____________ 6. Wo ist der Kleiderschrank? _____________ 7. Wo finde ich den Anrufbeantworter? _____________ 8. Wo ist der Herd? _____________ > Antworten (Answer Key)
German Verbs: The Present Perfect Tense

You are here: Lesson 18: Part 1 > Part 2 > Part 3 > Web Links > Lesson 19
Weil das Wetter schn war, haben wir im Garten gesessen. Foto H. Flippo

In this section of Lesson 18, we'll look at household activities and the German present perfect tense. If we did some baking (backen) in the kitchen or watched TV (fernsehen) in the living room, then how do we express that? Although we will present a brief overview of the present perfect tense here, if you need to study or review the present perfect, see our Verb Review 3 on that tense and our German Verbs section. The Conversational Past - When Germans talk about what they have done in the past, they use the present perfect tense, also known as the conversational past because it is used more in spoken form than in writing. (The other past tense, the simple past or Imperfekt is used more in writing, but neither form is used exclusively in written or spoken German.) The present perfect tense is a compound tense that gets its name from the fact that it combines two verb forms (making a compound) to express an action or condition in the past. The present is the present tense of the helping verb (haben or sein) that is combined with the past participle of the verb being used to form the Perfekt, and thus the present perfect tense. For example, to say I worked on the computer in German, you would say: Ich habe am Computer gearbeitet. The helping verb haben is in the present tense (conjugated to agree with ich) and combined with the past participle of arbeiten to form the present perfect.

Was haben wir gemacht? What did we do?


abrumen abgerumt to clear out, remove aufrumen aufgerumt to put in order, straighten up backen gebacken to bake hngen gehngt* to hang *also gehangen when at rest kochen gekocht to cook mhen gemht to mow ffnen geffnet to open putzen geputzt to clean schlafen geschlafen to sleep sitzen gesessen to sit waschen gewaschen to wash

Verbs of Contrast Motion vs. At Rest Transitive and Intransitive

legen/liegen gelegt/gelegen lay (put)/lie stellen/stehen gestellt/gestanden to put, place/stand hngen/hngen gehngt/gehangen hang/be hanging

WAS HABEN WIR GEMACHT? On the left is an alphabetical list of verbs related to household activities. Each verb is shown in its infinitive form and with its past participle (backen/gebacken). Study these verbs, since we'll be using them in this activity. You may also want to review some of the previous vocabulary in parts One and Two, because we'll be using some of those terms as well. bung 2 - Wo hast du das gemacht? (Where'd you do that?)

Wo? (I - watch TV) Ich habe im Wohnzimmer ferngesehen. (I watched TV in the living room.) Wo? (she - bake) Sie hat in der Kche gebacken. (She baked in the kitchen.) Now, follow the examples above to complete this exercise. 1. Wo? (we - sit) _____________ 2. Wo? (he - mow lawn) _____________ 3. Wo? (I - wash) _____________ 4. Wo? (they - sleep) _____________ 5. Wo? (du - clean) _____________ 6. Wo? (we - open window) _____________ 7. Wo? (she - clear out) _____________ > Antworten (Answer Key)

bung 3 - Wohin hast du das gestellt? (Where'd you put that?) Wohin? (put - mirror - table) Ich habe den Spiegel auf den Tisch gestellt. (I put the mirror on the table.) Wohin? (hang - picture - wall) Ich habe das Bild an die Wand gehngt. (I hung the picture on the wall.) Now, follow the examples above to complete this exercise. 1. Wohin? (put - chair - office) _____________ 2. Wohin? (hang - mirror - wall) _____________

3. Wohin? (put - computer - desk) _____________ 4. Wohin? (put - vacuum - garage) _____________ 5. Wohin? (lay - book - table) _____________

Das Wetter | The Weather


Wie ist das Wetter heute?

Talking about the weather With dative expressions


Die Wettervorhersage im Fernsehen. The weather forecast on TV. Foto: ARD/Das Erste

We all like to talk about the weather. In this lesson you'll learn how to do so in German, which means you'll also have to adjust to how most of the world outside the U.S. measures things like barometric pressure and temperatures. There are even a few hidden vocabulary dangers in talking about how warm or cold you are! (We'll tell you how to avoid that problem.) In this lesson we'll also introduce you to reading or listening to a weather forecast in German. When you're in German-speaking Europe, you need to know how to understand a typical weather forecast. Will you need an umbrella (einen Regenschirm) today, or not? You'll also find some exercises for practicing what you learn. Let's start with some common weather phrases and vocabulary. Review the chart below for many common weather expressions. Also see: Weather Glossary > Weather Forecasts & Exercises Print this Page
DAS WETTER - THE WEATHER Useful Phrases DEUTSCH Fragen - Questions Wie ist das Wetter heute? What's the weather like today? ENGLISH

Ist es warm/kalt/khl?

Is it warm/cold/cool? What's the temperature? "How many degrees is it?" Is the sun shining? Where's my umbrella? PHRASES 1 - ES + VERB

Wie viel Grad sind es?

Scheint die Sonne? Wo ist mein Regenschirm?

Es regnet. Es blitzt. Es donnert. Es schneit. Es hagelt.

It's raining. There's lightning. It's thundering. It's snowing. It's hailing. PHRASES 2 - ES IST + ADJECTIVE

Es ist schn. Es ist bewlkt. Es ist hei. Es ist kalt. Es ist windig. Es ist schwl. So ein Sauwetter!

It's nice. It's cloudy. It's hot. It's cold. It's windy. It's muggy/humid. Such lousy weather! DATIVE PHRASES - MIR + IST

Mir ist kalt. Ist es dir zu hei?

I feel cold./I'm cold. Do you feel too hot?/Are you too hot?

DATIVE PHRASES: Although it is okay to say "I'm hot/cold" in English, this is not the case in German. To express that you feel hot or cold in German, you use a dative pronoun (dir and mir in the examples above). The German says "to me it is hot" rather than "I am hot" which means something like you are "in heat"!

The Four German Cases


Part 1: Summary
Summary | Nominative | Accusative | Dative | Genitive Werfall | Wenfall | Wemfall | Wesfall Nominativ | Akkusativ | Dativ | Genitiv English also has cases, but they are only apparent with pronouns, not with nouns, as in German. When "he" changes to "him" in English, that's exactly the same thing that happens when der changes to den in German (and er changes to ihn). This allows German to have more flexibility in word order, as in the examples below, in which the nominative (subject) case is red:
Der Hund beit den Mann. The dog bites the man. Den Mann beit der Hund. The dog bites the man. Beit der Hund den Mann? Is the dog biting the man? Beit den Mann der Hund? Is the dog biting the man? Since English does not have the same case markers (der/den), it must depend on word order. If you say "Man bites dog" in English, rather than "Dog bites man," you change the meaning. In German the word order can be changed for emphasis (as above)without altering the basic meaning.

The following charts show the four cases with the definite article (der, die, das), the indefinite article and the third-person pronouns (er, sie, es). Changes from the nominative (subject) case are indicated in red. For more about each case, see the links below.

Definite Articles (the) Fall Case Nom Akk Dat Gen Mnnlich Masculine der den dem des Weiblich Feminine die die der der Indefinite Articles (a/an) Fall Case Nom Akk Dat Gen Mnnlich Masculine ein einen einem eines Weiblich Feminine eine eine einer einer Schlich Neuter ein ein einem eines Mehrzahl Plural keine* keine* keinen* keiner* Schlich Neuter das das dem des Mehrzahl Plural die die den der

*Note: keine is the negative of eine, which has no plural form. But keine (no/none) can be used in the plural: "Er hat keine Bcher." (He has no books.) - "In Venedig gibt es keine Autos." (In Venice there are no cars.) The Germanic word for each case reflects how that case functions in the use of forms of wer (who): der Werfall (nom.), der Wenfall (acc.), der Wemfall (dat.) and der Wesfall (gen.). For more details about each case and to read articles related to the cases, see the links below.

The Nominative Case


Summary | Nominative | Accusative | Dative | Genitive Werfall | Wenfall | Wemfall | Wesfall Nominativ | Akkusativ | Dativ | Genitiv
Der Nominativ Der Werfall

The nominative casein German and in Englishis the subject of a sentence. The term nominative is from Latin and means to name (think of "nominate"). All German nouns have one of three possible genders: masculine (der), feminine (die) or neuter (das). The nominative plural of any gender is always die (pron. DEE). These gender words are also called definite articles ("the"). The most common gender in German is the masculine. (Keep that in mind the next time you're guessing.). These gender formsder, die, dasare the nominative forms. They are the article or gender that is found in a German dictionary, but they may change form (be "declined") when in one of the other three German cases. In English, only persons and personal pronouns have gender, with rare exceptions ("she's a good ship"). In German, every noun (person, place or thing), whether it refers to a tree, a thought, a planet, a car or a man (all masculine nouns in German), has a gender. However, it is the word (das Wort), not the object or concept itself, that has gender. For more about German gender, see the article Gender Hints and Lektion 3 of German for Beginners - Nouns and Gender. In the examples below, the nominative word or expression is in red:
Der Hund beit den Mann. The dog bites the man. Dieser Gedanke ist bld. This thought is stupid. Meine Mutter ist Architektin. My mother is an architect.

The nominative case can also be found in the predicate, as in the last example. The verb "is" acts like an equal sign (my mother = architect). But the nominative is most often the subject of a sentence. Print this page (without ads)

Definite Articles (the) Fall Case

Masc.

Fem.

Neu.

Plur.

Nom

der the

die the

das the

die the

Third Person Pronouns (he, she, it, they) er he sie she es it sie they

Nom

Notice that each pronoun ends in the same letter as its corresponding definite article? (der/er, r/e/s/e) Interrogative Pronouns (questions) Nom (people) Nom (things) wer? who? was? what?

wer?

wer?

wer?

was?

was?

was?

Indefinite Articles (a, an) Fall Case

Masc.

Fem.

Neu.

Plur.

Nom

ein a/an

eine a/an

ein a/an

keine* no/none

*Note: keine is the negative of eine, which has no plural form. But keine (no/none) can be used in the plural: "Keine Autos drfen hier fahren." (No cars can be used here.)

The Germanic word for the nominative case, der Werfall, reflects the der gender and the question word wer (who): Wer hat mich gestern gesehen? (Who saw me yesterday?)

The Accusative Case

Summary | Nominative | Accusative | Dative | Genitive Werfall | Wenfall | Wemfall | Wesfall Nominativ | Akkusativ | Dativ | Genitiv
Der Akkusativ Der Wenfall

ALSO > The accusative case with prepositions If you misuse the accusative case in German, it could be very similar to saying something like "him has the book" or "her saw he yesterday" in English. With the confusion this might cause, you can see this is not something to take lightly! It's not just some esoteric grammar point; it impacts whether people will understand your German or not (and whether you'll understand them). In English the accusative case is known as the objective case (direct object). In German you can tell that a noun is in the accusative case by the masculine article, which changes from der/ein to den/einen. (Since the accusative only changes in the masculine gender, you don't need to worry about the feminine, neuter or plural.) The masculine pronoun er (he) changes to ihn (him), in much the same way as English. In the examples below, the accusative (direct object) word is in red:
Der Hund beit den Mann. The dog bites the man. Er beit ihn. He (the dog) bites him (the man). Den Mann beit der Hund. The dog bites the man. Beit der Hund den Mann? Is the dog biting the man? Beit den Mann der Hund? Is the dog biting the man?

The direct object (accusative) functions as the receiver of the action of a transitive verb. In the examples above, the man is acted upon by the dog, i.e., receives the action of the subject ("dog"). To give a few more transitive verb examples, when you buy (kaufen) something or have (haben) something, the "something" is a direct object. The subject (the person buying or having) is acting on some object.

Definite Article (the) Fall Case Nom

Masc.

Fem.

Neu.

Plur.

der den den Bleistift den Mann den Wagen den Prsidenten* den Jungen*

die

das

die

Akk

die

das

die

*Note: Some masc. nouns add an -en or -n ending in the accusative and in all other cases besides the nominative. Interrogative Pronoun (who? - whom?) Nom (people) Acc (people) wer? who? wen? whom? wer? who? wen? whom? wer? who? wen? whom? wer? who? wen? whom?

Indefinite Article (a/an) Fall Case Nom

Masc.

Fem.

Neu.

Plur.

ein einen einen Bleistift einen Mann einen Wagen einen Prsidenten**

eine

ein

keine*

Akk

eine

ein

keine*

einen Jungen** *Note: keine is the negative of eine, which has no plural form. But keine (no/none) can be used in the plural: "In Venedig gibt es keine Autos." (In Venice there are no cars.) **Note: Some masc. nouns add -en or -n in the accusative and in all other cases except the nominative.

You can test for a transitive verb by saying it without an object. If it sounds odd, and seems to need an object to sound right, then it is probably a transitive verb. Example: I have... / Ich habe...; He bought... / Er kaufte... - Both of these phrases answer the implied question "what?" What do you have? What did he buy? And whatever that is, is the direct object and in the accusative case in German. On the other hand if you do this with an intransitive verb, such as "to sleep," "to die," or "to wait," no direct-object completion is needed. You can't "sleep," "die" or "wait" something. (Two apparent exceptions to this test, become and be, are actually not exceptions, since they are intransitive verbs that act like an equal sign, and can not take an object.) A good additional clue in German: all verbs that take the helping verb sein (to be) are intransitive. (See our German Verbs page for verbs that take sein.) Some verbs in English and German can be either transitive or intransitive, but the key is to remember that if you have a direct object, you'll have the accusative case in German. The Germanic word for the accusative case, der Wenfall, reflects the der-to-den change. The question word in the accusative is, naturally enough, wen (whom): Wen hast du gestern gesehen?, Whom did you see yesterday?
Accusative Time Expressions

The accusative is used in some standard time and distance expressions.


Das Hotel liegt einen Kilometer von hier. The hotel lies a kilometer from here. Er verbrachte einen Monat in Paris. He spent a month in Paris.
Accusative Prepositions

Prpositionen mit Akkusativ


Certain German prepositions are governed by the accusative case. That is, they take an object in the accusative case. The accusative prepositions tend to be used a lot and it is important to learn them early in your study of German. In English, prepositions take the objective case (object of the preposition) and all prepositions take the same case. In German, prepositions come in several "flavors," only one of which is accusative.

There are two kinds of accusative prepositions: (1) those that are always accusative and never anything else, and (2) certain "two-way" prepositions that can be either accusative or dative depending on how they are used. See the chart below for a complete list of each type. In the German-English examples below, the accusative preposition is red. The object of the preposition is blue:
Ohne Geld geht's nicht. Without money it won't work. Sie geht den Fluss entlang. She walking along the river. Er arbeitet fr eine groe Firma. He works for a big company. Wir fahren durch die Stadt. We're driving through the city. Schreibst du einen Brief an deinen Vater? Are you writing a letter to your father? Notice in the second example above that the object (Fluss) comes before the preposition (entlang). Some German prepositions use this reverse word order, but the object must still be in the correct case.

Here is a list of the accusative-only prepositions. The most common, important ones are in red. You should memorize them with their meanings.
Accusative Prepositions Deutsch bis* durch entlang until, to, by through, by along, down Englisch

NOTE: The accusative preposition entlang, unlike the others, usually goes after its object, as in the example above. fr gegen ohne for against, for without

um

around, for; at (time)

*NOTE: The German preposition bis is technically an accusative preposition, but it is almost always used with a second preposition (bis zu, bis auf, etc.) in a different case, or without an article (bis April, bis Montag, bis Bonn).

For more on the accusative-only prepositions, with examples, see German for Beginners Lektion 14B - The Acccusative Prepositions.
Two-Way Prepositions Accusative/Dative NOTE: The meaning of a two-way preposition often depends on whether it is used with the accusative or dative case. See below for the grammar rules. Deutsch an auf hinter in neben ber unter at, on, to at, to, on, upon behind in, into beside, near, next to about, above, across, over under, among in front of, before; ago (time) between Englisch

vor

zwischen

The basic rule for determining whether a two-way preposition should have an object in the accusative or dative case is motion versus location. If there is motion towards something or to a specific location (wohin?, where to?), then usually that is accusative. If there is no motion at all or random motion going nowhere in particular (wo?, where (at)?), then that is usually dative. This rule applies only to the so-called "two-way" or "dual" prepositions in German. (For example, a dative-only preposition like nach is always dative, whether there is motion or not.) Here are two sets of examples:

Wir gehen ins Kino. (in das, accus.) We're going to the movies/cinema. (motion towards) Wir sind im Kino. (in dem, dat.) We're at the movies/cinema. (location)

Legen Sie das Buch auf den Tisch. (accusative) Put/Lay the book on the table. (motion towards) Das Buch liegt auf dem Tisch. (dative) The book's lying on the table. (location)
A single German two-way prepositionsuch as in or aufmay have more than one English translation, as you can see above. In addition, you'll find many of these prepositions have yet another meaning in common everyday idioms and expressions: auf dem Lande (in the country), um drei Uhr (at three o'clock), unter uns (among us), am Mittwoch (on Wednesday), vor einer Woche (a week ago), etc. Such expressions can be learned as vocabulary without worrying about the grammar involved.

For more on the accusative/dative (two-way) prepositions, see the article The Two-Way Prepositions in German, which includes a self-scoring quiz on the use of the two-way prepositions. Be sure to also look at Lektion 14B of German for Beginners for more on the accusative-only prepositions.
Dative - Der Wemfall

Summary | Nominative | Accusative | Dative | Genitive Werfall | Wenfall | Wemfall | Wesfall Nominativ | Akkusativ | Dativ | Genitiv
The Dative Case Used with Nouns

ALSO > The dative case with Prepositions The dative case in German is a vital element of communicating in German. In English the dative case is known as the indirect object. Unlike the accusative, which only changes in the masculine gender, the dative changes in all genders and in the plural. The pronouns also change correspondingly. In addition to its function as the indirect object, the dative is also used after certain dative verbs and with dative prepositions. In the examples below, the dative word or expression is in red:
Der Polizist gibt dem Fahrer einen Strafzettel. The policeman is giving the driver a ticket. Ich danke Ihnen. I thank you. Wir machen das mit einem Computer. We do that with a computer.

The indirect object (dative) is usually the receiver of the direct object (accusative). In the first example above, the driver got the ticket. Often the dative can be translated with "to"-"the policeman gives the ticket to the driver." The following color-coded chart shows how the dative forms are used in various situations.
Definite Article (the) Fall Case Nom

Masc.

Fem.

der dem dem Bleistift dem Mann dem Wagen dem Prsidenten* dem Jungen*

die

Dat

der der Frau der Verkuferin

*Note: Some masc. nouns add an -en or -n ending in the dative and in all other cases besides the nominative. Fall Case Nom

Neu.

Plur.

das dem dem Mdchen dem Haus

die den den Leuten den Autos

Dat

Note: In the dative, plural nouns add an -en or -n if the plural does not already end in -n, except for plurals ending in -s. Indefinite Article (ein, eine, keine) Fall Case Nom

Masc.

Fem.

ein

eine

einem einem Bleistift einem Mann einem Wagen einem Prsidenten* einem Jungen* *Note: Some masc. nouns add an -en or -n ending in the dative and in all other cases besides the nominative. Fall Case Nom

Dat

einer einer Frau einer Verkuferin

Neu.

Plur.

ein einem einem Mdchen einem Haus

keine keinen keinen Leuten keinen Autos

Dat

Note: In the dative, plural nouns add an -en or -n if the plural does not already end in -n, except for plurals ending in -s.

The Germanic word for the dative case, der Wemfall, reflects the der-to-dem change. The question word in the dative is, naturally enough, wem ([to] whom): Wem hast du das Buch gegeben?, Whom did you give book? (Who'd you give the book to?) Some German verbs do not take an accusative object. For more about these exceptions, see Dative Verbs (including genitive verbs).

Dative Prepositions

The Dative Case with Prepositions


Dative Prepositions + Dual Prepositions (Acc/Dat) Summary | Nominative | Accusative | Dative | Genitive Werfall | Wenfall | Wemfall | Wesfall Nominativ | Akkusativ | Dativ | Genitiv Also see: The Dative Case (Part 1)

Prpositionen mit Dativ


Certain German prepositions are governed by the dative case. That is, they take an object in the dative case. Many dative prepositions tend to be very common vocabulary in German: nach (after, to), von (by, of) and mit (with). In English, prepositions take the objective case (object of the preposition) and all prepositions take the same case. In German, prepositions come in several "flavors," only one of which is dative. There are two kinds of dative prepositions: (1) those that are always dative and never anything else, and (2) certain "two-way" or "dual" prepositions that can be either dative or accusativedepending on how they are used. See the chart below for a complete list of each type. In the German-English examples below, the dative preposition is red. The object of the preposition is blue:
Mit der Bahn fahren wir. We're going by train. Meiner Meinung nach ist es zu teuer. In my opinion it's too expensive. Das Hotel ist dem Bahnhof gegenber. The hotel is across from the train station. Er arbeitet bei einer groen Firma. He works at a big company. Wir verbringen eine Woche am See. We're spending a week at the lake. Notice in the second and third examples above that the object comes before the preposition. (With gegenber this is optional.) Some German prepositions use this reverse word order, but the object must still be in the correct case.

Here is a list of the dative-only prepositions. You should memorize them with their meanings.
Dative Prepositions Deutsch aus auer bei from, out of except for, besides at, near Englisch

gegenber Gegenber can go before or after its object. mit nach seit von zu

across from, opposite

with, by after, to since (time), for by, from at, to

NOTE: The genitive prepositions statt (instead of), trotz (in spite of), whrend (during) and wegen (because of) are often used with the dative in spoken German, particularly in certain regions. If you want to "blend in" and not sound too stuffy, you can use them in the dative also. Two-Way Prepositions Dative/Accusative NOTE: The meaning of a two-way preposition also depends on whether it is in the accusative or dative. See below for the grammar rules. Deutsch an auf hinter in neben ber unter at, on, to at, to, on, upon behind in, into beside, near, next to about, above, across, over under, among in front of, before; ago (time) Englisch

vor

zwischen

between

The basic rule for determining whether a two-way preposition should have an object in the accusative or dative case is motion (wohin?, where to?) versus location (wo?, where?, at rest). If there is motion towards something or a specific location, then usually that is accusative. If there is no motion at all or random motion going nowhere in particular, then that is usually dative. Remember, this applies only to the two-way prepositions! Here are two sets of examples:
Wir gehen ins Kino. (in das, accus.) We're going to the movies/cinema. (motion towards) Wir sind im Kino. (in dem, dat.) We're at the movies/cinema. (location)

Legen Sie das Buch auf den Tisch. (accusative) Put/Lay the book on the table. (motion towards) Das Buch liegt auf dem Tisch. (dative) The book's lying on the table. (location)
A single German two-way preposition such as in or auf may have more than one English translation, as you can see above. In addition, you'll find many of these prepositions have yet another meaning in common everyday idioms and expressions: auf dem Lande (in the country), um drei Uhr (at three o'clock), unter uns (among us), am Mittwoch (on Wednesday), vor einer Woche (a week ago), etc. Such expressions can be learned as vocabulary without worrying about the grammar involved.

The Genitive Case


Summary | Nominative | Accusative | Genitive Werfall | Wenfall | Wemfall | Wesfall Nominativ | Akkusativ | Dativ | Genitiv
Der Genitiv Der Wesfall

Also see: The genitive case with prepositions The genitive case in German shows possession and is expressed in English by the possessive "of" or an apostrophe-s ('s). The genitive case is also used with some verb idioms and with the genitive prepositions. The genitive is used more in written German than in spoken form. In spoken, everyday German, von plus the dative often replaces the genitive: Das Auto von meinem Bruder = My brother's car. You can tell that a noun is in the genitive case by the article, which changes to des/eines (masculine and neuter) or der/einer (feminine and plural). Since the genitive only has two forms (des or der), you only need to learn those two. However, in the masculine and neuter, there is also an additional noun ending, either -es or -s:

das Auto meines Bruders my brother's car (the car of my brother) die Bluse des Mdchens the girl's blouse (the blouse of the girl) der Titel des Filmes (Films) the title of the film Feminine and plural nouns do not add an ending in the genitive. The feminine genitive (der/einer) is identical to the feminine dative. The one-word genitive article usually translates as two words (of the / of a/an) in English. Print this page (without ads) Definite Articles (the) Fall Case Nom Gen

Masc.

Neu.

Fem.

Plur.

der des (-es/s)*

das

die der

die

Indefinite Article (a/an) Nom Gen ein eines (-es/s)* ein eine (k)einer keine

*Note: Some masc. nouns add an -en or -n ending in the genitive and in all other cases besides the nominative. Adjective endings: In the genitive case, adjectives almost always have an -en ending. Examples: des neuen Autos, der hohen Kosten

The Germanic word for the genitive case is der Wesfall. The question word in the genitive is wessen (whose): Wessen Buch hast du? (Whose book do you have?) When showing possession with the names of people, countries or cities, German adds an s (without an apostrophe): Karls Haus, Marias Buch, die Geschichte Deutschlands (Germany's history). Unfortunately, many German-speakers have adopted the English practice of using an apostrophe (Karl's Auto) for the possessive forms, but it is still considered to be substandard German. Genitive Expressions The genitive is used in some idiomatic expressions.

Ende der Woche gehen wir. At the end of the week we're going. Ich muss das Anfang des Monats bezahlen. I have to pay that at the start of the month.

For more examples, see A Closer Look at the Genitive Case, an article by your Guide. Genitive Prepositions

Prpositionen mit Genitiv


ALSO > The Genitive Case (1) and A Closer Look A few German prepositions are governed by the genitive case. That is, they take an object in the genitive case. There are only a few common genitive prepositions* in German, including: (an)statt (instead of), auerhalb/innerhalb (outside/inside of), trotz (in spite of), whrend (during) and wegen (because of). Notice that most of the time the genitive prepositions can be translated with "of" in English. Even whrend can be rendered as "in the course of" as well as "during."
* Other genitive prepositions in addition to those listed above include: angesichts (in view of), beiderseits (on both sides of), diesseits (this side of), jenseits (on the other side of), and laut (according to).

The genitive prepositions are often used with the dative in spoken German, particularly in certain regions. If you want to "blend in" and not sound too stuffy, you can use them in the dative also, but purists will want to learn the genitive forms. In the German-English examples below, the genitive preposition is red. The object of the preposition is blue:
Whrend der Woche arbeiten wir. During the week we work. Trotz des Wetters fahren wir heute nach Hause. In spite of the weather we're driving home today.

Here is a list of common genitive prepositions. You should memorize them with their meanings.
Genitive Prepositions Deutsch anstatt statt auerhalb Englisch

instead of

outside of

innerhalb trotz whrend wegen

inside of despite, in spite of during, in the course of because of

NOTE: The genitive prepositions listed above are often used with the dative in spoken German, particularly in certain regions. Examples: trotz dem Wetter - in spite of the weather whrend der Woche - during the week (same as genitive) wegen den Kosten - because of the costs