Wortgebrauch - Questions on usages in German language.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

9
votes
1answer
401 views

Word composition in German

When we have a German word composed of two or more terms, is there always an 's' between the two words? Someone who lived in Germany for a long time told me that there is always an 's', but as far as ...
-7
votes
1answer
631 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
171 views

Can “liegen” be used for people?

Can "liegen" be used for people. For instance I am here. - Ich liege hier. or it is wrong? Is Ich bin hier better?
1
vote
2answers
415 views

Alternate sentence construction using “lassen”

The sentence: "Er hat Reim in seinem Gedicht benutzt." My instructor has suggested that I rewrite the sentence using "a more sophisticated construction, such as one with 'lassen'." How would I do ...
2
votes
1answer
101 views

Kann man einen “fachlich geprägten Kunden” einem “technisch argumentierenden Entwickler” entgegen setzen?

It is about Software Engineering, where it usually comes to problems in communication between the customers (domain-specific, functional, professional lexis) and developers (technical, generic lexis). ...
10
votes
5answers
513 views

Why is the title “Friseuse” considered as inappropriate?

I learned that I should not entitle a female hairdresser "Friseuse" as this may be considered as rude. Duden lists "Friseuse" as both, colloquial and antiquated, and recommends the usage of the ...
7
votes
7answers
486 views

dann doch noch schnell

What does the phrase "dann doch noch schnell" mean? As in Ich habe mir heute dann doch noch schnell einen neuen Hartschalenkoffer gekauft. is this some kind of an idiom?
0
votes
2answers
159 views

Schuld oder Scham

Wikipedia spricht davon, dass Überlebende von Flugzeugabstürzen sich gelegentlich für ihr Weiterleben schuldig fühlen, obwohl sie objektiv keine Schuld am Flugzeugabsturz tragen. Weder haben sie ...
9
votes
4answers
7k views

How do I use the word “da”

I have just learned German. I have heard a lot of people say the word "da" in conversation, but I don't know what it means. And dictionary doesn't help. Can somebody help me translate this word and ...
8
votes
3answers
376 views

Usage of the word “wenn”

Wenn can either mean when or if, but my question is, doesn't that cause confusion? Like if you said Wenn ich zu deiner Party gehe... Would this imply your attendance at the party is ...
10
votes
3answers
5k views

What's the difference between “ehrlich” and “wirklich”?

During conversation, I've seen both words used singularly as a question: Ehrlich? And: Wirklich? In this context, are they both essentially the same as the English: Really? More ...
7
votes
1answer
733 views

How should I correctly use “sollen”?

What do these two sentences mean? Ich soll das Buch lesen. Ich sollte das Buch lesen. I have mostly seen "should" translated as "sollte", but that seems to be past tense. The first one ...
5
votes
1answer
138 views

Hat, nimmt, oder macht man eine “Brotzeit”; ist man “in” oder “auf” einer solchen?

Im süddeutschen Raum hört man ab und an: Ich mache jetzt erstmal Brotzeit. Damit ist offenbar die Pause gemeint, in der man eine Mahlzeit zu sich nimmt. Ich habe aber auch schon folgendes ...
3
votes
2answers
379 views

What is the difference between “belehren” and “lehren”?

I realize many verbs add the "be" to the beginning, which fundamentally changes the meaning, e.g., kommen and bekommen, or stehen and bestehen. However, it seems as though the "be" in belehren doesn't ...
6
votes
2answers
3k 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 ...
14
votes
5answers
416 views

How is the familiar “You” (Du) used in online conversations?

I remain fairly fluent in German from my experience living in Germany back in the 70's and 80's. However, the use of familiar "Du" among relative strangers online surprised me when I recently read ...
4
votes
4answers
398 views

Usage of “dort” or “da” in proper context

I read the question "How to use “hier”, “dort” and “da” properly in German?" and in the answer says that if the distance is far away, you use 'da' and the farthest is 'dort'. I was given a home work ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Usage of “let me know” in Letter writing

For my A1 exam, we have a letter writing part and there is a requirement that we should write a minimum of 30 words in the body of the letter. In some contexts, the usage of please let me know is ...
19
votes
5answers
1k views

Names and total number of floors in buildings: what is correct?

I'm learning German and we've just looked into the topic "Wohnung", including numbering floors in a building. For example, let's imagine a house: ------------------------------- | dritter Stock, ...
10
votes
1answer
3k views

Dies oder dieses?

Ich stoße immer wieder in den Dokumenten, die ich geschäftlich bearbeite, auf das Wort "dieses", wo ich aber immer einfach nur "dies" schreiben würde. Beispiel: XYZ wird vorläufig nicht umgesetzt. ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

“IT” oder “EDV”? Empfindet man “IT” als Anglizismus?

Wenn es um IT geht, finde ich es immer schwer EDV zu benutzen (oder verstehen). Es fällt mir einfach nicht ein. Mein Frage ist: empfindet man IT als Anglizismus? Sollte ich anstreben EDV zu ...
5
votes
2answers
338 views

Technical drawing glossary: How do you translate “cross section” (of a boat)?

I'm designer and 3D artist and I'm translating my portfolio in German. I'm uncertain how to translate some specific design words, in this case: (of a boat, yacht) side cross section I found ...
13
votes
1answer
4k views

How to use “hier”, “dort” and “da” properly in German?

In English "here" and "there" are typical pairs to indicate space and distance. The same is true of Hungarian ("itt" and "ott"). But in German it's a bit different: I have seen "da" many times in ...
5
votes
3answers
5k views

Verwendung von “dieser” und “jener”

Ich habe bisher nicht oft „dieser“ und „jener“ sinnvoll verwendet, aber oft gelesen, dass „dieser“ auf zeitlich und räumlich Näheres verweist als „jener“. Dies gilt auch für zeitlich näher Erwähntes ...
2
votes
2answers
146 views

Liturgical or church German

In a church setting, Is there a liturgical form of German for a pastor or priest to use during the service? Is it more appropriate to use formal or poetic forms of speech for everyone, anyone, or no ...
16
votes
2answers
576 views

Why is “blauäugig” used with a negative connotation?

Still today the cliche of a German is being tall, blond and blue-eyed. Surprisingly the expression "blauäugig" is most often used with an obvious negative connotation: Professor Otmar Issing, der ...
11
votes
1answer
240 views

Neid ohne Missgunst

Der Begriff "Neid" bedeutet, dass man jemand anderem seinen Besitz missgönnt und diesen für sich selbst haben will. Gibt es ein Wort, das ausdrückt, dass man den Besitz des anderen für sich selbst ...
6
votes
3answers
312 views

Plural of Assembly

What is the correct plural of "assembly" in a German document? I googled "assemblys" to validate the spelling. Google suggests: Did you mean "assemblies"? But the third search result is a link to the ...
5
votes
2answers
5k views

Platonic term of “endearment” vs. “romantic”

Would "mein Schatz" be used between platonic male and female friends or is there a romantic connotation?
11
votes
2answers
256 views

What is the role of “von” when specifying a person?

I've asked a phrase translation: Original sentence: Past friday the server at xxx stopped, disk failure, I have been dealing with this ever since! The suggested translation was: Am letzten ...
7
votes
0answers
368 views

Sinnvoll sein - Sinn haben - Sinn machen [closed]

Als ich noch zur Schule ging, bzw. auch als ich noch studierte (bis ca. 1990), taten wir Dinge, die sinnlos waren und andere Dinge, die sinnvoll waren. Am Samstag mit Freunden ins Kino zu gehen, das ...
10
votes
1answer
604 views

In der Diagnose links, rechts: Aus wessen Sicht?

Vielleicht kann mir jemand auf eine Frage zur deutschen Fachsprache helfen. Wenn ich eine Diagnose von einem Arzt in der Hand halte, ist dann links, rechts aus der Sicht des Patienten formuliert, ...
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 ...
1
vote
1answer
166 views

What is the meaning of “afterburne”

I just wonder and I'm asking this here, because I couldn't find any closer match to the very interesting word "afterburne" . Well, I know it written incorrectly, but I've heard this one, with "Jemand ...
5
votes
2answers
881 views

When to use 'Ich bin', 'es geht mir', 'Ich habe' and 'mir ist'?

If you wanted to translate "I'm hot" into German, like "I'm burning up cause it's hot outside", it would translate to "Ich bin heiß" which has a bad connotation. So it is translated to "Mir ist heiß". ...
4
votes
2answers
297 views

What is the meaning of (the perhaps swisswide used) “resonieren”

In the swiss german song for children Joggeli sött go Birli schüttle I came accross the word resoniere of which the written german equivalent should (probably) be resonieren. [...] Do goht de ...
4
votes
1answer
870 views

How do we use “Verschlimmbesserung”?

Sometimes we can hear or read of a "Verschlimmbesserung": Schmidt bezeichnete Elena als Beispiel „für die schlimmste Verschlimmbesserung von Verfahren“. Was als Projekt zum Bürokratieabbau gedacht ...
6
votes
3answers
232 views

Is “dümpeln” also used and understood in southern German speaking regions?

I learned that "dümpeln" or "dahindümpeln" comes from low German "dümpelen" where in the sailors language it means that a boat is bobbing around not moving forward. Today it may also be used when work ...
5
votes
2answers
274 views

Using Abflug vs Abfahrt

What's the exact difference and how should those words be used? P.S.: Is it when we talk about air travel and land travel?
10
votes
2answers
10k 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)
3
votes
2answers
190 views

Is there a different usage of “Erpel” vs. “Enterich”?

When referring to a male duck I was told that I should always use the appropriate term "Erpel" when talking about the bird as depicted here: Wikimedia Usage of the alternative term "Enterich" should ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Has “scheiße” become a “normal” word?

The reason I put this topic here is not trying to pull attention to the question by using swear words, but because of asking this myself the other day, when I heard this in Sunday school. I ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

What are the differences between “vorher”, “davor” and “zuvor”?

I understand that they are all adverbs (as opposed to "vor" and "bevor"), but can they be used interchangeably?
4
votes
3answers
464 views

“Ellbogen” vs. “Ellenbogen” - is there a difference in usage?

Both, "Ellbogen"", and "Ellenbogen" are German synonyms for elbow. All dictionaries I consulted, including English-German dictionaries, don't say that one or the other is correct but they sometimes ...
5
votes
3answers
836 views

When is “gehen” properly used?

When is the word "gehen" properly used? Is it only used to indicate walking? For example, are any of these correct: ich gehe nach Moskau (if I live in, say, South America) ich gehe mit dem ...
3
votes
1answer
403 views

Wissenswertes über “Fleppen”?

Fleppen (Plural) ist ein umgangssprachliches(?) Synonym für Führerschein. Ohne "Fleppen" erwischt - Nordkurier, 23.03.10 Mit Alkohol, ohne Fleppen und Helm - Märkische Allgemeine, 17.12.08 Der ...
2
votes
2answers
168 views

“Nicht unerheblich” vs. “erheblich” - is there a difference?

We can see that both, "erheblich", and "nicht unerheblich" are used in the meaning of e.g. "considerable, extensive, remarkable". Branchengerüchten zufolge können die Besucherzahlen dank des ...
5
votes
3answers
143 views

Did the connotation of “emsig” change?

When looking up the meaning of "emsig" (assiduous, diligent) it seems it has an entirely positive connotation unausgesetzt fleißig, ununterbrochen tätig DWDS The first that come to mind with ...
11
votes
7answers
1k views

How are we polite without using “bitte”?

When asking someone for a favour it is considered rude to omit "please" in English. This seems not to be the case in German. In a shop or a restaurant I can frequently hear: "Was bekommen Sie?" - ...
5
votes
2answers
382 views

Richtige Verwendung von “offenbar”

Nach meinem Sprachgefühl ist ein Sachverhalt "offenbar", wenn er in irgendeinem Sinn offensichtlich erkennbar ist. In deutschen Zeitungen findet sich aber "offenbar" oft im Sinne von "scheinbar", ...