Tag Info

Hot answers tagged

82

Quatsch is not vulgar at all and can be used in normal everyday speech to denote "nonsense": Kinder machen Quatsch. (The children fool around in a harmless and funny way, e.g. making faces.) But replying with "Quatsch!" might be percieved as offensive in the same way as "Nonsense!" would be in English - depending on the tone, facial expression and ...


27

Writing "Ich habe" is the accepted correct written form. It is always OK to use it. It is never OK to use "ich hab" in professional or official written communication. "Ich hab" is fine in informal conversations like forums, chat rooms or personal E-Mails. However, even if the spoken form would be thick with colloquialisms, it is perfectly normal for ...


21

You can capitalise personal pronouns, but you don't always have to: If you are speaking formally, always capitalise Sie, Ihre, and so forth. If you communicate with someone informally, you have a free choice - though capitalising personal pronouns is more polite. In general, informal text (as opposed to private correspondence), never capitalise informal ...


20

Wikipedia says it was mandatory to capitalize Du in letters until 1996, then the it was forbidden until 2006, now it's optional. In my experience, most people who learned to read and write before 1996 are perfectly fine with capitalizing Du in letters, it's definitely not too formal.


20

I have never connected dingsbums with bumsen. I don't think this connection is usually made. To me dingsbums is a perfectly fine word to use, albeit very colloquial and hence not necessarily appropriate in serious situations. It's only rude if you keep referring to somebody as dingsbums whose name you should know. ;-) Dingsda, dingenskirchen and ...


15

Santa Claus wird im Deutschen einfach 'der Weihnachtsmann' genannt, und alle duzen ihn, auch die Erwachsenen, falls diese sich dazu herablassen, den Weihnachtsmann persönlich anzureden. Mutter zu Dennis: »Schreib mal einen Brief an den Weihnachtsmann.« – Dennis: »Ja, gut.« Lieber Weihnachtsmann, ich wünsche mir eine Million Euro, ein Furzkissen und dass ...


13

Several possibilities there: You can ask the child in a cutesy tone (Duzen), if it's a rather young child. The mother will probably smile from ear to ear and wait for the kid to answer, or eventually answer the question for her kid (or call the police for harassment ;) If the kid is your friend (similar age, same school, etc. etc.), you can just quickly ...


11

This is part of the revision of the revision of German orthography. The first revision disallowed the use of a capital letter for du and ihr. The second revision allows both versions. As far as I know, Sie was never affected and is always written with a capital S. To answer the question: I know many people that wouldn't think twice over writing Du and ...


11

Does writing or talking like this seem juvenile? No, it doesn't sound juvenlie. It's very common in spoken language. Would it be OK in a professional meeting or letter? It's probably OK in most meetings. I'd avoid it in formal texts and letters though. Is it ever too formal to write or say „ich habe“? No. By the way, there is an ...


10

No, it's not automatically appropriate to respond with "du" to someone addressing you informally. If there's a difference in the level of age/esteem/reputation, you should not assume that it is Ok to address the other person informally. Child-adult or student-professor relationships are classical examples of such a difference. Note that the rules governing ...


10

First of all, I don't think there is any typical phrase, but I will mention some examples which are very likely. At least, whatever someone will say it will be very similar. I think there are three ways how to determine to say "du": You meet a person and you assume it's OK to say "du" and you just do it (e.g. children or younger person). You meet a person ...


10

I don't know about others, but I painstakingly capitalise "Du", "Dir", "Dich", "Dein" etc, in written communication, be they paper or E-mails. For me, the personal pronoun is the equivalent of the person's name and it is a matter of respect to capitalise it. Ich weiss nicht, wie andere es halten, aber ich achte peinlich genau darauf, "Du", "Dir", "Dich", ...


10

The least problematic variant for both, formality, and familiarity in a case, when you communicate with strangers but expect to have a somewhat closer relationship in the future would be adressing them with their last name, and use 'Liebe...' Examples: Liebe Beate Müller, lieber Hans Müller, Liebe Familie Müller,* Only in case they already had ...


9

In addition to splattne's answer, it also depends on where you meet the husband. If you're very close with your colleague and, let's say, she invites you to her birthday party, then it would seem a bit awkward if you say "Sie" to her husband. However, if you only know her from work and meet the husband on a business event, you should really start with ...


8

Liebe Angela, lieber Peer, ... or Liebe Angela und lieber Peer, both sound perfect to me, if they both signed their last email with Angela und Peer. If you address both the parents and their children* (!), you can use Liebe Familie Müller, Only an official sender (like the tax office) would use Eheleute Müller and only in the ...


7

zu 1) Es gibt verschiedene Kirchen, und jede pflegt ihre eigene Kultur. Geht man vom dt. Sprachraum aus, und dem speziellen Begriff "Kirche", im Ggs. zu "Moschee" oder "Synagoge", so könnte sich Deine Frage implizit auf die 2 großen, christlichen Religionen beziehen, die aber auch mehr oder weniger eigene Subkulturen ausbilden. Insofern diese ...


7

A literal translation of Weltanschauung is "world view." It is the prism ("spectacles" if you will) through which one views the world. Ideologie refers to one's BELIEFS/ATTIUDES about the world. It stems from Weltanchauung, and is shaped by it, but is not the same. That is, Weltanshauung underpins Ideologie. One is cause, the other is effect. For instance, ...


6

Regarding your specific question: if the situation is not a very formal one, I would say it's not offensive calling him "du" from the beginning, especially if you're the same age or if he's not much older than you. I would hesitate if the couple was much older. Some people would see it as lack of respect. The common rule is between total strangers of a ...


6

Im geschäftlichen Bereich sollte es immer „sehr geehrte/r“ sein. Wenn der Kommunikationspartner das anders sieht, ist das sein gutes Recht. Es ist aber nicht zu erwarten, dass er dieses Nichtstandardverhalten auf seine Kommunikationspartner projiziert. Man sollte also mit Sehr geehrte Frau B, antworten und im Folgenden rein sachlich bleiben. Ich ...


5

Personally, I'd use "Ideologie" for some technical meanings (similar to "Philosophie"), while "Weltanschauung" seems to be only related to people. Duden lists both as synonym, but has this as the meaning for the latter: Gesamtheit von Anschauungen, die die Welt und die Stellung des Menschen in der Welt betreffen Entirety of views regarding the world ...


4

Für E-Mail Korrespondenz gibt es keine allgemein gültigen Regeln. Mit einer Standardanrede wie in einer schriftlichen Korrespondenz auf Papier macht man sicher nichts falsch, üblicherweise kann man aber für E-Mails durchaus einen lockereren Ton anwenden. Bei völlig fremden Personen und in einem formellen Anschreiben empfiehlt sich nach wie vor die ...


4

It's not rude, most people wouldn't associate it with 'bumsen'. But it is definitely a very very informal word (if it can be called a word at all) and would seem very sloppy or even clumsy in any kind of formal setting. So just keep using it to score with German friends and otherwise don't use it at all. :) Same is true for 'dingsda' that's even more of a ...


4

I agree with Hauser regarding the (initial) effect of using "mal": makes the imperative's roughness easy. But I think there's no connection with "einmal" in the meaning "once". "Einmal" may in fact mean "once", "zweimal" twice and so on. There are more meanings of "einmal": eines Tages, später: eventually, one day; vor langer Zeit, einst, früher: a long ...


4

In addition to the previous answer: If it's a setting where most people say 'Du' but a newcomer says 'Sie' out of respect, which can happen in a company or a club, for example, it's also ok to say "Also wir sind hier alle per Du" or "Eigentlich sind wir hier per Du". To deny the informal way, I use "Wir sind nicht per Du" or, in an ironic way, "Seit wann ...


4

If the wife has offered you to communicate on a first-name basis then, as you correctly perceive, it is O.K. for you to take her up on that offer. However, the husband may be a bit taken aback by being addressed as "Lieber Hans" by a perfect stranger. On the other hand, addressing them as "Sehr geehrte(r) Herr und Frau Schmidt" may strike them as needlessly ...


4

First, it is not correct to leave out the Herr or Frau. “Sehr geehrter Prof. X” sounds uncomplete. It is possible to leave out the academic title (Prof., Dr.), but it depends heavily on the context whether it is advisable. Generally, the need for including the Prof. increases the older and the more conservative the recipient is, the more hierarchical their ...


4

I don’t think there is a conventional way to ask for this, although it is sometimes difficult to know whether to use “Sie” or “du” for native speakers as well. You could use something like this: Wollen wir uns duzen oder siezen? Still, in cases where I am unsure I’d prefer to avoid any pronoun completely, or if it is unavoidable, use Sie. If the other ...


3

Sie können mich duzen! ist die angemessene Übersetzung, um jemandem das Du anzubieten. Im Endeffekt ist es genauso aufdringlich wie ein Darf ich 'du' sagen? weil es den anderen in die unangenehme Situation versetzt, eine gewisse Vertraulichkeit im Umgang zu bestreiten. Es ist immer schwieriger Distanz wieder herzustellen, als sie zu wahren. ...


3

I have some experience with the catholic church in Germany, but I think the same things may apply to other christian denominations. Is there a liturgical form of German for a pastor or priest to use during the service? No. However, some of the texts spoken have not changed over a long time and sound a little bit old fashioned. Example: Lasset uns ...



Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible