Sprachgebrauch - Questions about subtle points of usage of German words or phrases.

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2
votes
2answers
923 views

What's the opposite of “jawohl”?

I understand that in military or police or some other formal situations "jawohl" is the positive response to a command, much like "yes sir" in English; but how does a soldier say "no sir"? In ...
4
votes
1answer
418 views

Schriftliche Höflichkeitsformel – Du oder du

Diese Frage wurde auch hier (auf Englisch) beantwortet: Is it still good form to use a capital D for Du or Dir in a letter? In einem E-Mail an meinen Kunden schreibe ich immer ...
0
votes
2answers
205 views

On verbal parentheses [closed]

I know that one of the peculiarities of the German language is this thing called verbal parentheses, which extends all the way from the auxiliary verb to the unonjugated form of the verb. What I ...
7
votes
3answers
160 views

What is the accurate translation of “stands to reason” within a “logical” context?

Taking the following example: It stands to reason that most people will not buy a new car if they don't think they can pay for it. The "stands to reason" could be replaced by "logical" as in: ...
2
votes
2answers
12k views

“Schönes Wochenende” versus “Schönen Wochenende”

Is there any preference to using "Schönes Wochenende" or "Schönen Wochenende" as a parting statement? Are they both allowed, or is there a preference for one over the other? Different people have told ...
0
votes
1answer
74 views

Difference between “Kind”and “Jugend” [duplicate]

I am interested in not only the literal but the figurative differences between "Kind" and "Jugend" Thanks for your input!
12
votes
4answers
3k views

Usage of “zwar”

Can anyone explain how the word zwar is generally used? I see it a lot and it doesn't seem like it usually translates very well into English, if at all. Here's an example sentence: Frage: Hat ...
5
votes
2answers
252 views

Anything better than “weltweit” for “All over the world”?

I would like to say something like, "You have really lived all over the world!" ...like in response to someone saying they've been to many different countries. I did a Google search for this and ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

Correct usage of “sogar” and “einmal” to mean “even”

I would appreciate any clarification on the correct usage of sogar and einmal as translations of the English word "even" when used in the following sense: He didn't drink anything...not even the ...
7
votes
1answer
325 views

When to use possessive pronouns vs. dative pronoun + definite article

German uses a reflexive dative pronoun and a regular definite article in many places where English would use a possessive pronoun. For example: I broke my leg. Ich habe mir das Bein gebrochen. ...
15
votes
2answers
2k views

Difference between “Es sind” and “Es gibt” for asserting existence of something

In English we say There are... and I know that I've seen es gibt used in German. I've also seen es sind. Are these phrases identical? There are many flowers in the garden = Es gibt viele Blumen ...
-7
votes
1answer
724 views

Can someone give the examples ( few sentences ) with words: da, deutete, dabei? [closed]

I read a book on german and meet these words very often, but the context still not clearly for me. So I want to see a few examples with these 3 words with translation. upd As I read a book further ...
5
votes
2answers
272 views

What is the proper use of the word “bang?”

The original context is "Bang fleht ein liebkranker Mann." (Viljaslied, Die Lustige Witwe). I once wrote a poem beginning, Ich schaue dich so gerne an. Du liesst mich immer so BANG. Bang is ...
9
votes
3answers
4k views

What's the difference between “jedenfalls” and “auf jeden Fall”?

They mean the same thing, I think, but are used differently? When can I use one, and when can I use the other?
6
votes
2answers
315 views

Konditionalsätze mit “würde”?

Im Englischen machen viele non-native speaker gerne den Fehler im if-clause "would" zu nutzen. Meine Frage: Ist dies nicht auch im Deutschen falsch? Wenn ich die Zeit hätte, würde ich mehr lesen. ...
1
vote
1answer
918 views

Modal verbs: preterite or perfect?

I was told that while speaking people generally use perfect instead of preterite. Is it also common for modal verbs? Which is used in which cases? Ich konnte ... or Ich habe gekonnt ...
5
votes
1answer
700 views

War “auf meinem Mist gewachsen” ursprünglich positiv oder negativ belegt?

Der Ausdruck "Das ist auf meinem Mist gewachsen" wird heutzutage m.W. eher negativ aufgenommen und häufiger als eine leichte Entschuldigung verwendet. Vermutlich liegt das an der negativen Wahrnehmung ...
6
votes
3answers
430 views

„Welcher“ zur Kennzeichnung explikativer Relativsätze?

Beim Meditieren über diese Frage ist mir eingefallen, dass ich welcher u. Ä. manchmal als Relativpronomen nutze, um zu betonen, dass der Relativsatz explikativ ist. Ein Beispiel: A) Derjenige ...
1
vote
1answer
235 views

How to use perfect in this sentence

I have a problem understanding how to use perfect in the following sentence: Ich bin mit dem Bus in das Stadtzentrum gefahren. I know we are supposed to use the auxiliary verb haben in perfect ...
5
votes
1answer
144 views

Bindestrich zur besseren Lesbarkeit [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Zusammengesetzes Wort: Bindestrich oder nicht? Ich möchte das Wort webtechnologielastig lesbarer Gestalten. Dazu habe ich die Alternativen Webtechnologie-lastig ...
8
votes
2answers
4k views

What is the difference between “ändern” and “verändern”?

I'm still confused about the difference between ändern and verändern. I have read something about ändern only being used with small changes and verändern when something changes totally. But where ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Gebräuchlichkeit von Wörter mit und ohne “-s” am Ende (Beispiel: “nochmal / nochmals”)

Es gibt einige Wörter im Deutschen, die am Wortende gegebenenfalls mit einem -s geschrieben werden können, wo es aber auch durchaus weggelassen werden kann. Historisch gibt es viele Wörter, die einst ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Welche Präposition gehört zu “Exposition”?

Wenn ich einem Stoff (z.B. einem Umweltgift) ausgesetzt bin, ist das dann eine Exposition durch diesen Stoff? Oder was nimmt man da?
12
votes
4answers
254 views

Wann wird ein Beruf mit dem unbestimmten Artikel verwendet? Beispiel: “Ich bin Neurobiologe” oder “Ich bin ein Neurobiologe”?

Ich muss gleich vorweg sagen, dass ich selber kein Muttersprachler bin. Jedoch finde ich Konstrukte wie Ich bin ein (|Beruf- bzw. Statusbezeichnung|). etwas unnatürlich und empfinde sie als ...
4
votes
1answer
79 views

Kann “schlechthin” auch mit unbestimmtem Artikel stehen?

In einer Kommentardiskussion zu einer anderen Frage hat sich eine weitere interessante Fragestellung ergeben, nämlich ob schlechthin immer mit betontem bestimmtem Artikel steht oder auch mit ...
4
votes
3answers
353 views

Ist “exorbitant” heute noch gebräuchlich?

Vor kurzem bin ich in einem Bericht über Lance Armstrong über das Wort "exorbitant" gestolpert, das man u. a. mit "außergewöhnlich" gleichsetzen kann. Ich habe dieses Wort nur früher gehört, heute ...
4
votes
3answers
131 views

Was versteht man unter einem “maßlosen Sinn”?

Ich habe bei dict.leo.org gerade (sinnfrei) nach den englischen Übersetzungen für Sinn gesucht und bin dabei auf etwas gestoßen, das ich erst nur komisch zu lesen fand. Und beim Sinnen über den Sinn ...
5
votes
5answers
467 views

Adapting a Quote in Old English Style

I'd like to give someone a gift (who speaks German, and is also a fountain pen user) and include a quote from S.B.R.E. Brown (podcast here) written down with my own calligraphy. The problem is that ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Usage of Perfekt and Präteritum in the spoken language

I have read the question When to use Perfekt and Präteritum? but it doesn't answer my question. I am looking for a rule for beginner / intermediate level learners which tells when to use Perfekt or ...
16
votes
4answers
9k views

“Cute” in German

Is there any difference between all the translations of "cute" listed here? It's quite confusing. Except the one tagged [ugs] which means colloquial, I'm not sure which one is preferred in which ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Difference between “Jägermeister” and “Waidmann”

I learned a new German word today, Waidmann, but I already knew the word Jägermeister, so I wondered what the difference between them is. When would a German use one over the other?
9
votes
5answers
12k views

“denn” vs. “dann”

I'm having a hard time finding out when to use "denn" and when "dann". This happens when I want to say the word as the equivalent of the English "then". For instance, A: I bet Germany wins the ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

When should I use ruhig / still?

A friend of mine says that one is typically used for people and the other one is for objects. The dictionary is no help, it gives the same translation for both. Is there a significant difference or ...
2
votes
0answers
79 views

Using “-lein” and “-chen” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are there any rules how to build the diminutive? I was reading this article on Duden's webpage and began wondering about the diminutive forms of "-lein" and "-chen". ...
10
votes
3answers
546 views

“Personen” or “Menschen”

While reading some recent newspaper stories as well as book jacket introductions, I noticed that when describing the characters of the story the writers were often using "Personen" and "Menschen" ...
5
votes
3answers
181 views

Does “dürfen” + other negatives imply the same thing as “dürfen nicht”?

Do negations used with "dürfen" carry the same meaning as "must not" in German? That is, does a sentence like: Sie dürfen nicht jemandem erzählen. mean the same thing as Sie dürfen niemandem ...
10
votes
2answers
12k views

What is the difference between Entschuldigen and Entschuldigung?

The dictionary definitions seem semantically identical. Do you use one instead of the other in certain situations? (I am a native English speaker who is learning German)
6
votes
4answers
153 views

Does form of address change when other listeners or readers are present?

I was part of an email exchange that included a group of professionals—some of whom know each other quite well and use "Du" with one another, and some of whom do not. One of the respondents on the ...
9
votes
1answer
492 views

What time is it?

When learning German in college, I was taught "Was Uhr ist das?" or possibly "Wieviel Uhr ist es" (not sure which). However most online translators such as Google show "Wie spät ist es?". What is ...
15
votes
4answers
2k views

Difference between “ziemlich” & “ganz”

I learned that ziemlich means "quite, rather" and ganz means "whole, entire." but I just encountered this tweet: ganz leichter Schneefall. sehr dekorativ. My dictionary agrees that ganz can also ...
10
votes
5answers
636 views

What's the difference between “das Domizil” and “der Wohnsitz”?

What is the difference between these two terms? In what contexts are they used? Also, which one best fits with "gewählt- ~"? Dictionaries were not helpful enough this time. Edit: I wanted to ...
5
votes
1answer
295 views

Explaining case and usage of “Richtung”

Just curious. How would you explain to someone the proper use and appropriate case of Richtung as a directional indicator, in simple terms? whether showing movement or simple location or direction ...
4
votes
2answers
189 views

Hochdeutsch only or also regionalisms?

When making a sales call, for example, should you: only speak standard Hochdeutsch with the customer no matter what, use that customer's regional language or dialect if you know it to "get on their ...
3
votes
2answers
147 views

Höfliches Ersuchen mit “ruhig”

Wird es in der Alltagssprache als zu gehoben (oder gar altmodisch) bezeichnet, wenn man eine höfliche Bitte mit "ruhig" sanfter macht? Zum Beispiel: "Nehmen Sie ruhig Platz!" "Geben Sie mir ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Using “nen” instead of “einen”

Would one sound like a native German speaker saying "nen" instead of "einen" or is there another special point behind it? Does it have colloquial usage only?
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Was ist der Unterschied zwischen “gerade”, “nur” und “bloß”?

Ich spreche Englisch als Muttersprache, und einige der Modalpartikeln verstehe ich gar nicht. Gibt es noch mehr, die "just" auf Englisch bedeuten? Was ist der Unterschied zwischen all diesen ...
8
votes
2answers
110 views

Gebrauch von “-wert” gegenüber “-würdig”

Gibt's einen deutlichen Unterschied zwischen den Wortendungen "-wert" und "-würdig"? Wie z.B.: "bemerkenswert" oder "merkwürdig" Ich spüre also dazwischen einen feinen Nuanceunterschied im ...
10
votes
3answers
437 views

Kehren und fegen

I'm currently learning the verb Kehren with the meaning to sweep. But I recently realized that I've already learnt fegen as meaning to sweep. Is this correct, are fegen and kehren totally ...
6
votes
4answers
6k views

“noch immer” vs “immer noch”

I thought this question was dealt within a previous discussion, but it has been pointed out to me that it remains somewhat open. My impression was that if you say "er liebt sie immer noch" you were ...
8
votes
2answers
695 views

Continuing situations in German

In English I'm often using the word still to emphasize I'm in a continuing situation. For example I still haven't done my Christmas shopping. It is still raining here. I hope the film will ...