In the online Oxford German Dictionary, there are properties enumerated beneath it.

For example 'hatte' has:

1.u. 3. Pers.Sg.Prät. v

What do those abbreviations and symbols mean?

  • 1
    I appreciate this is a really dumb question, but short ngrams are hard to google for.
    – Rol
    Commented Jan 7, 2021 at 14:41
  • 4
    Welcome, @Rol! Every decent dictionary provides a guide to usage, where the abbreviations and acronyms that it uses are explained. I believe that your Oxford's does so, too, for the following edition does: books.google.de/… Commented Jan 7, 2021 at 14:52
  • @BjörnFriedrich it's the iOS german oxford dictionary app. It's not great software. Thanks for that link.
    – Rol
    Commented Jan 7, 2021 at 14:55
  • @choXer what does und mean in this context?
    – Rol
    Commented Jan 7, 2021 at 14:56
  • @Rol: und means, that the same form is used for first and third person singular. Is the quote complete? I would expect something like von "haben"?
    – guidot
    Commented Jan 7, 2021 at 22:27

1 Answer 1


The Oxford German Dictionary must have a glossar and I'm sure, you will find all abbreviations there.

The verb "hatte" is:

    1. Person Singular Indikativ Präteritum Aktiv des Verbs »haben«
    1. Person Singular Indikativ Präteritum Aktiv des Verbs »haben«

Person = person
Singular = singular
Indikativ = indicative mood
Präteritum = a German tense similar (but not equal to) English past tense
Aktiv = active voice
Verb = verb (German genitive case of "das Verb" is "des Verbs" haben = to have

  • Thanks, the print version does (at least).
    – Rol
    Commented Jan 8, 2021 at 12:26

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