In an online translation exercise I was asked to translate:

"The men are cooking"

My attempt was:

Die Männer kochen

The answer shown was:

Die Männer kochen gerade

What does "gerade" at the end of the sentence do here?

The source for this was:


  • possible duplicate of "present continuous" form - have vs having
    – Stephie
    Commented May 9, 2015 at 16:45
  • But not a true duplicate … the other question is asking how to translate the present progressive into German while this one is asking for the specific word gerade, which just happens to be a present progressive in this context. However, I would still vote for closing, because the answer can easily be found in a dictionary (all you need to know is the difference between adjectives and adverbs – pretty trivialish in my opinion.)
    – Jan
    Commented May 10, 2015 at 11:18

2 Answers 2


"gerade" just means "at the moment"


As Feirell explained, “gerade” means “currently” or “at the moment”. It's obviously intended to render the distinction between “The men cook” and “The men are cooking” in German but it's not quite right to suggest that this is the only correct translation.

Depending on the context, “Die Männer kochen” can be a perfectly fine translation for “The men are cooking”. You can also use modifiers like “gerade”, “momentan” or “zurzeit” to stress the fact that the action is currently taking place but it is not always necessary.

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