12
votes
1answer
162 views

peculiar verbal sentence opening

"Dennoch ist es tiefgründiger, als man zunächst meinen könnte. Erscheinen doch beide Faktoren zunächst als Antagonisten: Ist die Unsicherheit groß, so ist das Vertrauen gering." The sentence ...
9
votes
3answers
378 views

Telling your conversational partner they can use “du” instead of “Sie”

I have just read with interest this question and its answers which covers when it is appropriate to use "du" or "sie". My question is, is there something that is often said in German which translates ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Translation for “Und dass sowas von sowas kommt”

I don't understand the meaning of this line: Und dass sowas von sowas kommt From the song "99 Luftballoons". A translation and a grammatical explanation will be great.
11
votes
7answers
3k views

How is “ch” pronounced correctly?

I'm interested (or rather "re-interested") in learning German. When I looked up some basic lessons to get myself started, I found this on about.com. If you click on any of those words, you can hear ...
4
votes
4answers
282 views

Analogon zu “hospitalisieren”

Der Begriff "Hospitalisieren" meint, so wie ich es verstehe, einen - kritisch gesehenen - Vorgang, bei dem eine als krank definierte Person in eine Klinik eingewiesen wird. (Manchmal wird auch die ...
7
votes
2answers
300 views

Substantiv oder Infinitiv?

In Angeboten und Rechnungen finden sich oft Tätigkeitsbeschreibungen wie "Webseite erstellen" oder "Druckerei beauftragen", gefolgt von einer Stundenzahl. Wir und viele andere schreiben die Vorgänge ...
6
votes
2answers
237 views

What do you greet in German when someone gets something new

In my mother language, Hebrew, there is a greeting especially for cases when someone gets or buys something new: תתחדש. Is there something similar in German? If not, what will you say to someone who, ...
1
vote
2answers
238 views

“without me” in German

I got confused while making a German sentence meaning: How you can enjoy your time without me? How can I translate the without me part? Does it depend on the case, like "wie"? For example: ...
5
votes
1answer
161 views

“It's time to pluck a pigeon”

Während mir klar ist, was der Satz bedeuten soll, habe ich keine geeignete Weise gefunden den ins Deutsche zu übersetzen (wortwörtlich wäre ja Käse). Ideen? Edit: Bedeutung ist laut online ...
6
votes
1answer
170 views

How to say 'learn by ear' in German?

In English we say someone can learn by ear when speaking of music or language. Is there a German equivalent?
9
votes
1answer
228 views

Is there a difference between “Messer” and “Kniff?”

The word I was taught for "knife" is "Messer". But someone, who appears to be a native speaker, answered a question to the effect that "Kniff" looked like its English counterpart "knife". Certain ...
4
votes
4answers
480 views
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Komma vor “und” bei Aufzählungen mit Mehrdeutigkeit

Die Regeln sind erstmal eindeutig. Es wird bei Aufzählungen ein Komma gesetzt, wenn denn dann nicht ein und, oder, etc. verwendet wird. DUDEN Ich aß einen Apfel, eine Birne und eine Banane. Die ...
6
votes
2answers
8k views

What do I need to know to pass the A1 or A2 exams from Goethe Institut?

Can someone share what I need to know to pass the A1 or A2 exams from Goethe Institut? For instance, do I need to know all cases (nominative, accusative, dative, genitive)? the past form of every ...
15
votes
1answer
323 views

Is there any source to find German books categorised in terms of reading ease?

There are numerous readability measures like Flesch Readability test, Wiener Sachtextformel, etc. But is there someplace I could actually find common books listed with their respective reading ease ...
9
votes
3answers
1k 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
196 views

Gibt es ein Wort, das 'etwas' und 'jemand' zusammenfasst?

etwas bezieht sich nur auf Dinge (und Tiere?), jemand nur auf Personen. Gibt es ein Wort, das beide Sachen bedeuten kann? Hintergrund: Ich übersetze gerade ein paar prädikatenlogische Klauseln in ...
25
votes
8answers
3k views

What is the German equivalent for these speech fillers from English: “umm…” and “like”?

Do Germans use words like "um" and "like" to fill their speech? "Like" is obviously used by teens in Canada, etc., but I'm sure adults say "um" when they are unsure of something while speaking. I'm ...
6
votes
4answers
4k views

Wie kann ich “swipe” am besten übersetzen?

Ich übersetze eine Bedienungsanleitung, aber ich finde keine gute Übersetzung für das Wort "to swipe". Es handelt sich hierbei um "swipe on the screen up or down ...", wie man es von der Benutzung ...
6
votes
2answers
416 views

Wird Hochdeutsch relativ schnell gesprochen?

Momentan läuft eine Debatte über Deutsche in der Schweiz. Dabei stieß ich auf diesen Artikel (nicht das ich die Seite regelmäßig lese :)), wo behauptet wird, "Maschinengewehr-Hochdeutsch" (ziemliche ...
6
votes
2answers
430 views

Origin, usage and meaning of “Wischiwaschi”

In colloquial German we sometimes see "Wischiwaschi" which was used since the 19th Century. In "Der Misogyn" Lessing wrote in 1748: Wumshäter (zur Laura.) Da, sieh einmal, wie verwirrt du ihn ...
4
votes
2answers
409 views

Nouns and verbs which share the same form

Beside "leben" - to live and "Leben" - life, are there other nouns which have the same form as their verbs?
5
votes
1answer
187 views

Origin (and Derivative) of the Name Marlene?

I have read that "Marlene" Dietrich was originally named Maria Magdelena Dietrich. If this is true, would Marlene then be a contraction of of Maria Magdelena? Or did the name exist before Ms. Dietrich ...
6
votes
1answer
147 views

“Die machen kein Problem für dich” or “die sind kein Problem für dich”?

When I want to say So they're no problem for you. in German, which of the two sentences is (more) correct or common? More context: I was talking about the two special German words, "Sie" and ...
8
votes
1answer
144 views

Typographische Konvention zum bis-Strich in der Fraktur

Jemand sagte mir, dass der Halbgeviertstrich »–« in der Fraktur nicht verwandt wurde. Wie hat man dann in der Fraktur Bereiche ausgedrückt? Im Antiquasatz verwendet man den Halbgeviertstrich als ...
5
votes
3answers
395 views

Adjectives with capital letters and no inflection

I’ve just learned Schweizer, which strikes me as unusual for an adjective in: having a capital letter; not being inflected for case/gender/number. Do the two always go hand-in-hand, and is ...
4
votes
2answers
268 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 ...
15
votes
4answers
5k views

Wie ist die richtige Schreibweise – “geliket”? “geliked”?

Offen gestanden denke ich, dass es eher geliket sein müsste, da deutsche Partizipien gewöhnlich auf t enden, wie z. B. gemacht, getanzt, etc. Dagegen spricht meine Beobachtung, ich habe geliket fast ...
7
votes
2answers
514 views

How do we define the strength of coffee?

Coffee is the most consumed drink in Germany. No wonder it comes in a huge variety of flavours. However the list of coffee specialities does not say much on the strength of the brew. I heard of ...
2
votes
0answers
76 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". ...
5
votes
2answers
605 views

Position of verbs in clauses

When should you place the verb at the end of a clause? I know that you're supposed to place the main verb at the end of a clause if it follows another clause; such as: Ich werde es nicht kaufen, ...
2
votes
1answer
118 views

What's the matter: Yiddish “was is der mehr?”

We have in Yiddish an expression for "what's the matter" that sounds like "was is der mehr?". Is this German or what? I can't make sense of it.
5
votes
1answer
264 views

What is a good translation of “Aus dem Nähkästchen erzählen”?

Can you help me finding a good translation for the German idiom Aus dem Nähkästchen erzählen/plaudern.
10
votes
2answers
205 views

“bis der Tod euch scheide” or “bis der Tod euch scheidet”?

In one of Rammstein's most famous songs, "Du hast", the lyrics go like this: Willst du bis der Tod euch scheide Treu ihr sein für alle Tage? Nein! Now, I am a bit puzzled why there is ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Contraction of prepositions and definite articles in German

I could not find a table of the contractions of prepositions and definite articles in German, so I made one by my own: Is this an exhausting table of all the contraction there are?
9
votes
3answers
216 views

Do I need to use a definite article?

Is this correct? Ich freue mich, dass es Wochenende ist. Or should I say: Ich freue mich, dass es das Wochenende ist. With or without the article? I have definitely heard the first, but I ...
5
votes
1answer
144 views

Is the title of the “Vincent will Meer” grammatically correct?

I just watched the film Vincent will Meer and enjoyed it. The only thing bothering me is the title that does not seem to be grammatically correct in the absence of an article before meer. Is it some ...
15
votes
2answers
231 views

“Geht's” becomes “gehts”

This is a title from the book "German Grammar in a Nutshell" by Langenscheidt I suppose the word gehts stands for geht's (which is a clitic form of geht es). Is it correct to drop out the ...
7
votes
2answers
204 views

What is a “Vorentscheidung”?

After the match Dortmund–Bayern München (1:0) of yesterday, I read that this victory has marked a "Vorentscheidung" for the race to the German football championship. But what exactly is meant by ...
5
votes
2answers
185 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
3answers
292 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
1answer
160 views

German postpositions

The German adpositions are predominantly prepositions, with some cases such as entlang that can be used both as a preposition and a postposition. are there any adposition in German that are used only ...
3
votes
3answers
104 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
219 views

Ironic constructions in German

As part of my masters in linguistics, I am taking a course on the subject of irony. We were given examples of sentences that are most likely ironic, as the English sentence "he is not exceptionally ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

How would you translate “fremdschämen”?

I was hanging out with friends tonight and we were watching a documentary on (Australian) TV. There was this obnoxious main character. For all her actions "habe ich mich fremdgeschämt", but I wasn't ...
10
votes
4answers
260 views

“Noted” in German

What's the German translation of "noted" in the following context: A: Note that if you have a parenthesis outside the Mathjax immediately following a curly brace inside, the curly brace won’t ...
4
votes
5answers
217 views

Warum ist das Theater sächlich?

Sind nicht normalerweise alle Nomen auf -er männlich? Ist das Theater eine Ausnahme? Oder gilt hier eine andere Regel?
2
votes
1answer
142 views

Woher kommt der Gebrauch von “umsetzen” für das Erledigen von Aufgaben in der IT?

Bei der Softwareentwicklung sagt man oft Diese Kundenwünsche wurden umgesetzt. um auszudrücken, dass bestimmte Aufgaben erledigt sind. Wo kommt dieser Sprachgebrauch her?
5
votes
2answers
169 views

Welche Präposition nutzt man, um “das Bild gehört ihr” zu sagen?

Gibt es eine Präposition, die Zugehörigkeit vermittelt? "Das Bild von ihr" bedeutet, dass man sie im Bild sehen kann, oder? Wie sagt man, dass das Bild ihr gehört? Ist "von" richtig in folgendem ...
6
votes
1answer
537 views

Learning German as a native Dutch speaker

Is there a method for learning German that leverages the close relationship between Dutch and German? My main concern here is the vocabulary (many words are pronounced the same way, and mean the ...

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