Menschen 2.1 Lektion 1, title is

"Mein Opa war auch schon Bäcker.

What does it mean? I'm Korean It's so weird to translate 'auch schon' into Korean so I understood it like this. I don't know if he is a baker now because I don't have a context, but he was a baker in the past. Can I understand it like this?

  • To be honest, in the past, it means he was also Feb 5, 2022 at 4:31
  • 1
    It means either he was a baker in the past among several other occupations, or he succeeded a line of ancestors.
    – TaW
    Feb 6, 2022 at 7:29

3 Answers 3


auch means "as well", schon means "already".

The sentence states that the grandfather of the speaker was a baker: Mein Opa war Bäcker. - "My grandfather was a baker".

The auch implies that the speaker is a baker themselves: Mein Großvater war auch Bäcker - "My grandfather was a baker as well [just like me]."

The schon is there to evoke some concept of continuation: Mein Großvater war auch schon Bäcker - "Already my grandfather was a baker. [And I am continuing this tradition.]" It implies that the speaker puts themselves in a row with their grandfather, in which the grandfather's example of being a baker is a predecessor to the speaker being a baker. You would assume that the grandfather is seen as a role-model for the speaker. (After such a sentence I would also consider it quite probable that one of the parents was/is a baker as well.)

As Arno pointed out in a comment, it does not need to be the speaker who is continuing the tradition. It can also be another member of the family. I was just assuming this implication, due to lack of context. But Arno is totally correct, it is merely an assumption, and is not contained in the sentence itself.

  • 5
    It doesn't have to the speaker themselves continuing that tradition. The sentence would also work if the speaker has eg just reported that their sibling is a baker, or their parent corresponding to the grandfather.
    – Arno
    Feb 4, 2022 at 22:02

The Opa/Grandfather used to be baker in the past (war) but isn’t anymore. If the Grandfather was still baker the sentence could be „mein Opa war auch schon damals Bäcker“

I think without context you can‘t say too much for sure. The speaker or a other person is most likely now baker. Could be the speaker now: Mein Opa war auch schon Bäcker, so wie ich jetzt. Or could be another person: Mein Opa war auch schon Bäcker, so wie mein Bruder jetzt.

Then it is is likely but not sure that the speaker is now Backer but depending on the context could be another person. For example: Question: Dein Onkel war Bäcker bevor er starb? Answer: Ja, er folgte der Familientradition. Mein Opa war auch schon Bäcker.

„Schon“ in this meaning is a kind of continuation/ repetition of occupation in this case.


Although I am a German Beginner and 13, with my first year with German. All the time the teacher speaks German 😂 and I try to understand, I return home, and say the words which I don't understand then I understand them. These words I hear the teacher say it a lot.

  • Auch means also
  • schon means already

and in the sentence, it means as well or a meaning like that, which you can also say he was

So the final sentence --> My grandfather was also a baker

Hope you understand

  • Although I am not from Germany, it's ok Feb 5, 2022 at 4:30

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