8

The question of whether to use das Haar or die Haare has been asked several times on this group, with a variety of different and informative answers. Here I want to ask about something that might be simply a trivial matter of style, or something more important ... (unfortunately, for a non-native speaker, it's not obvious which!)

The Goethe Zertifikat A1 Wortliste includes the following two sentences:

Sie hat lange Haare. ... given as the example sentence for das Haar

Ricardo hat kurzes Haar. ... given as the example sentence for kurz

Has either the choice of adjective (lang, kurz), or the gender of the subject, influenced the choice of whether to use Haar or Haare, or was it purely a matter of variety and style?

1
  • 2
    The usage note at Wiktionary pretty much covers it I think. As a learner I'd say always use the plural since it's more common and never wrong, but be aware that the uncountable form is used sometimes.
    – RDBury
    Nov 18 '20 at 10:26
13

The latter, in my opinion, i.e. a matter of style.

Both Sie hat langes Haar and Ricardo hat kurze Haare work equally well.

5

"Haar" is a little bit more poetic.

Her long "Haar" was tussled by the wind.

"Ich schnitt Ihr die Haare" is used in every day language whereas when you tell someone "Ich schnitt Ihr das Haar" will earn you a smile and you will be remembered for your poetic language.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.