Why is the feminine of Herzog Herzogin and not Herzögin (like Gräfin)?

  • 3
    I'd be very surprised if there were any hard and fast rule for it, although I admit that a and u frequently change to ä and ü respectively: Rätin, Ärztin, Hündin, Füchsin. Most google search results for Herzögin come from 17-19th century documents, so it might be an ancient variant of Herzogin.
    – Stef
    Commented Jun 12, 2020 at 19:19
  • 1
    Related, in German: german.stackexchange.com/questions/56849/…
    – David Vogt
    Commented Jun 12, 2020 at 20:23
  • 1
    other 'exceptions': Autorin, Gemahlin, Vogtin (Vögtin also possible), Zypriotin
    – Stef
    Commented Jun 12, 2020 at 20:49

1 Answer 1


According to Wiktionary "...umlaut usually occurs in monosyllables, but rarely in polysyllables", which fits the examples given. This is German though, so there are no rules without exceptions.

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