I'm learning about the "Trennbare Verben" now. So far, I have learned that some prefixes are separated from the main verb, and that it should be put at the very end of the sentence. I have come across a list, which was titled "Trennbar sind". Some of the verbs are:

  • abfahren
  • ankommen
  • aufstehen
  • zurückkommen
  • umsteigen

Now, when we use "abfahren", we separate the verb.

Er fährt ... ab.

However, the verbs "weggehen" and "umsteigen" are not separated when used in a sentence, although they come under the "separable verbs" category. Why is that? And how do I know if the prefix should be put at the end of the sentence or not?

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    Where did you learn that those verbs aren’t separated? That’s plain wrong, they behave exactly the same as abfahren: Er geht weg. Er steigt um. – chirlu Apr 29 '16 at 12:49
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    Are you aware that the infinitive form of a verb is not separated? When using modal verbs, for instance, you say: "Darf ich abfahren?" and not "Darf ich fahren ab?" There are further other examples, even finite forms are not always separated. – Em1 Apr 29 '16 at 13:32
  • @chirlu OP basically said: "These verbs are not separated although they claim they were separated." So, I guess he encountered a sentence in which they're plainly not separated for good reason. – Em1 Apr 29 '16 at 13:35
  • @Em1: The OP also cited the infinitive abfahren (correctly written unseparated) as an example for a verb that does have a movable prefix. – chirlu Apr 29 '16 at 13:46
  • @chirlu And in the same list, he mentioned "umsteigen"... – Em1 Apr 29 '16 at 13:52

It looks like you have snapped some wrong information. The verbs are separated, just as you would expect.

I suppose you might have seen them in a sentence like:

Ich will nicht, dass du weggehst.

In this case, when the verb is at the end of a sentence (due to other grammatical rules), we write it together - doesn't matter which prefix it has.

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