Questions tagged [formality]

Förmlichkeit - Questions on formal speech or writing.

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60 votes
8 answers
16k views

Is it still good form to use a capital D for Du or Dir in a letter?

This question also has an answer here (in German): Schriftliche Höflichkeitsformel – Du oder du I was taught (several decades ago) to write a capital D for all pronouns such as Du, Dir, Deine, ...
ogerard's user avatar
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25 votes
13 answers
8k views

Is "dingsbums" offensive, rude, vulgar, etc?

I've heard that my favourite word "dingsbums" might not be acceptable in some circumstances due to it being related to "bumsen" which, I'm told, is some kind of a word for intimate relations. Yet ...
hippietrail's user avatar
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18 votes
4 answers
744 views

Generisches Maskulinum

Ich benutze noch immer das generische Maskulinum. Da ich eine Frau bin, nimmt es mir auch keiner übel. Doch überall wo ich lese, erscheint ein anderer Ausdruck und Unterstreichung des Sexus. In ...
Amelie B. Blackstone's user avatar
19 votes
12 answers
336k views

What are informal ways to say "good bye"?

In German you may say Auf Wiedersehen or Guten Tag when leaving. Both seem rather formal and may be inappropriate in a non-formal context. What would be the alternatives? In what context can we use ...
16 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why isn't plural ihr used for Formal instead of Sie?

In most of the Indo-European languages that I know of, The T-V distinction applies, that the second plural form (referring to many people, vous, Bы, and you in English) is used in the singular as a ...
Yordan Grigorov's user avatar
14 votes
3 answers
1k views

When to use "Weltanschauung" vs. "Ideologie"? Do they basically have the same meaning?

Is Ideologie just a foreign word/scientific term for Weltanschauung? Where do you see nuances in meaning? Would you use Weltanschauung in an academic discussion? What is the correct context? For ...
Hauser's user avatar
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9 votes
2 answers
4k views

Wie sollte ich eine Lehrerin, die mich siezt, in einer E-Mail grüßen und verabschieden?

Meine Deutschlehrerin an der Universität siezt mich, aber kennt meinen Vornamen. Ich möchte ihr eine E-Mail schreiben. Sie hat mir noch nie geschrieben. Welche Begrüßung und welche Verabschiedung ...
Tim's user avatar
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35 votes
10 answers
196k views

Schlussformel für Beschwerdebrief?

Diese Frage wurde auch hier (auf Englisch) beantwortet: How to end a complaint letter in German Standardschlussformel für förmliche Briefe ist ja „Mit freundlichen Grüßen“. Wenn ich nun aber einen ...
magnattic's user avatar
  • 555
29 votes
7 answers
296k views

How does a German say "Nice to meet you"?

In English it is common to reply with "Nice to meet you" when you were introduced to somebody. Likewise you say "Was nice to meet you" on leaving. Are there any similar phrases a German would use in ...
Takkat's user avatar
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18 votes
4 answers
33k views

What is the best way to say “gentle reminder” in German?

I need to use this phrase in formal correspondence with a business customer but don’t seem to be able to find enough verifiable sources on the internet with an appropriate German equivalent. ...
Kit's user avatar
  • 281
8 votes
2 answers
2k views

Should a letter to a future host family be formal or informal?

I'm writing a letter to the German family that will be hosting me over the summer, and am wondering if I should refer to them as "Sie" or "ihr"? If I was only talking to my host sister would that be ...
Lauren's user avatar
  • 81
8 votes
2 answers
25k views

When to use 'Entschuldigen Sie'

I know that when asking a favor from an adult that I am unfamiliar with, such as asking for directions, I should start with "Entschuldigen Sie..." but should I use the formal form when I am, for ...
Eichhörnchen's user avatar
6 votes
3 answers
3k views

Is writing "Herr Prof. X" exaggerated/mandatory? Is it old-fashioned?

How necessary or exaggerated is the following Anrede? "Sehr geehrter Herr Prof. X" bzw. "Sehr geehrte Frau Dr. Z" I mean, should I write Herr Prof. X, or is Prof. X enough? Also, is it old-...
c.p.'s user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
2k views

Difference between singular and plural formal form of address

When using the formal address, both you (sing.) and you (pl.) get translated to Sie, when in nominative case, of course. This question is more general. Are there any hints in the language (e.g. verb ...
fdierre's user avatar
  • 582
5 votes
1 answer
4k views

How to end a complaint letter in German

This question also has an answer here (in German): Schlussformel für Beschwerdebrief? I am writing a complaint letter and want to know how to end it. The issue was pretty bad and I'm very ...
changesquare's user avatar
-2 votes
3 answers
5k views

Genderneutrale Formulierung im Genitiv [closed]

Wir sind gerade dabei, einige Texte genderneutral umzuformulieren. Einer der Sätze lautet: Der Beleg wird im Auftrag eines/r Kollegen/in bzw. Vorgesetzten erstellt. Vorgesetzten (im Genitiv) ist ...
Marc's user avatar
  • 261