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What is the difference between the usage of sonstige and andere? Are there other words that means the same?

Can someone explain with an example?

  • 1
    Did you try checking both words in a bilingual dictionary? – Jan Oct 11 '15 at 20:22
  • As UTF-8's answer shows, the meanings overlap in a manner which can make this difficult for a learner. Reasonable question. – Carsten S Oct 12 '15 at 10:53
  • Should i really reword my question? but i am not sure how it could be reworded? even if it is reworded it would have the same context. – Vini Oct 12 '15 at 11:00
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You can use "andere" when referring to having thins in different configurations.

Das Auto sieht schön aus, aber eine andere Farbe würde mir besser gefallen.

Ich ziehe mir schnell ein anderes T-Shirt an.

Ich mag Äpfel, aber es gibt andere Früchte, die mir besser schmecken.

In anderen Ländern werden andere Sprachen gesprochen.

You can't replace any of these "andere" with "sonstige".

"sonstiges" is mainly used when referring to something that can't be put in any useful category.

Die sonstigen Möglichkeiten sind sehr beschränkt.

[Something regarding the the election results of the major parties.] Die sonstigen Parteien machen zusammen 8% aus.

[Something about the main characters.] Die sonstigen Darsteller sind allesamt unbekannte Einsteiger-Schauspieler.

Sonstige Anwendungen.

Notice that every instance of "sonstige" can be substituted with "andere". "sonstige" is solely used to "put things aside".

  • I'm sorry, I'm new to this site. Am I supposed to answer in German or in English? There are answers to other (= "andere", not "sonstige") questions in German, that's why I'm confused. Not that I'd mind, but StackExchange is all in English, the question is in English, so of course I answered in English. Edit: Questions are in German, too, so I guess it kind of doesn't matter. – UTF-8 Oct 11 '15 at 23:28
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    Welcome! Generally, you may use English as well as German here. In this case, it is a good idea to answer in English since this question is in English. – Loong Oct 11 '15 at 23:53
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    To expand on Loong’s comment: Answer in English if the question is in English and answer in German if the question is in German. Sometimes it may seem acceptable to answer an English question in German because you feel better writing in German and you assume that the OP might understand German well enough. – Jan Oct 12 '15 at 9:01
  • Übrige is another related word that can often be exchanged with sonstige. – chirlu Oct 13 '15 at 13:17

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