• German grammar
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  • 1 German pronunciation [0/1]
  • 2 German functions of words [0/5]
  • 3 German sentence structure [0/28]
  • Construct a German sentence! (Score -/-)
  • Make a German indirect speech! (Score -/-)
  • 3.1 Sentence structure of main clauses in German [0/4]
  • 3.2 Dependent clauses in German [0/12]
  • 3.3 Negation in German [0/3]
  • 3.4 Questions in German [0/2]
  • 3.5 Indirect speech in German [0/2]
  • 3.6 Conjunctions in German [0/3]
  • 4 German Articles [0/7]
  • 5 German nouns [0/28]
  • Fill in the correct form of the German noun! (Score -/-)
  • Form the correct plural form of the German nouns! (Score -/-)
  • Fill in the correct definite and indefinite article! (Score -/-)
  • Translate these nouns into German (Score -/-)
  • Match the right German word to the sentences (Score -/-)
  • 5.1 Gender of German nouns (substantives) - der, die, das [0/9]
  • 5.2 Plural of German nouns [0/4]
  • 5.3 German declension (N-declension) [0/4]
  • 5.4 Diminutive (-lein, -chen) in German [0/3]
  • 5.5 Compound nouns in German [0/2]
  • 5.6 Adjectives and verbs as nouns in German [0/1]
  • 6 German pronouns [0/19]
  • 7 German cases [0/13]
  • 8 German adjectives [0/29]
  • Exercise for building German adjectives (Score -/-)
  • Determine the form of use of these German adjectives! (Score -/-)
  • Transform these German adjectives to their nominal form (Score -/-)
  • Build the comparative and superlative of these German adjectives (Score -/-)
  • Insert the German attributive adjective! (Score -/-)
  • 8.1 Different types of adjectives in German [0/3]
  • 8.2 How to form German adjectives [0/1]
  • 8.3 German participle as adjectives [0/2]
  • 8.4 Comparative and superlative adjectives in German [0/4]
  • 8.5 Declension of German adjectives [0/2]
  • 8.6 Forming and declension of ordinal numbers in German [0/2]
  • 8.7 Possessive adjectives in German [0/2]
  • 8.8 Demonstrative adjectives in German [0/2]
  • 8.9 Interrogative and exclamatory adjectives in German [0/2]
  • 8.10 Indefinite adjectives in German [0/2]
  • 8.11 List of German Adjectives [0/2]
  • 9 German adverbs [0/13]
  • 10 German verbs [0/67]
  • Match the correct German verb to the sentences (Score -/-)
  • Form the German simple past and participle II form (Score -/-)
  • Exercise to match the right German auxiliary verb! (Score -/-)
  • Choose the right conjugation of the German verbs (Score -/-)
  • Build the German form of politeness! (Score -/-)
  • 10.1 Auxiliary verbs in German [0/5]
  • 10.2 Modal verbs in German [0/8]
  • 10.3 Separable and inseparable verbs in German [0/3]
  • 10.4 Conjugation of regular verbs (weak verbs) in German
  • 10.5 Conjugation of irregular verbs (strong verbs) in German [0/45]
  • Exercise: German irregular verbs (Score -/-)
  • 10.5.1 Conjugation of geben (to give) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.2 Conjugation of gehen (to walk, to go) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.3 Conjugation of lassen (to let) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.4 Conjugation of nehmen (to take) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.5 Conjugation of fahren (to drive) German [0/2]
  • 10.5.6 Conjugation of essen (to eat) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.7 Conjugation of lesen (to read) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.8 Conjugation of sehen (to see) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.9 Conjugation of kommen (to come) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.10 Conjugation of trinken (to drink) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.11 Conjugation of schlafen (to sleep) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.12 Conjugation of gefallen (to please) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.13 Conjugation of schreiben (to write) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.14 Conjugation of helfen (to help) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.15 Conjugation of laufen (to run) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.16 Conjugation of treffen (to meet, to hit) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.17 Conjugation of tragen (to carry) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.18 Conjugation of bleiben (to stay) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.19 Conjugation of schwimmen (to swim) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.20 Conjugation of finden (to find) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.21 Conjugation of waschen (to wash) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.22 Conjugation of bekommen (to get) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.23 Cojugation of bringen (to bring) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.24 Conjugation of sprechen (to speak) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.25 Conjugation of heißen (to be called) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.26 Conjugation of fliegen (to fly) in German [0/2]
  • 10.5.27 Conjugation of backen (to bake) in German [0/1]
  • 10.5.28 Conjugation of steigen (to rise) in German [0/1]
  • 10.6 List of common verbs in German [0/1]
  • 11 German prepositions [0/27]
  • Spot all the used German prepositions! (Score -/-)
  • Match the German prepositions! (Score -/-)
  • Prepositions and German grammar cases! (Score -/-)
  • Determine which kind of German preposition is being used! (Score -/-)
  • Complete the verbs and adjectives! (Score -/-)
  • 11.1 Locative prepositions in German [0/2]
  • 11.2 Temporal prepositions in German [0/2]
  • 11.3 Modal prepositions in German [0/2]
  • 11.4 Causal prepositions in German [0/2]
  • 11.5 German prepositions requiring the genitive [0/2]
  • 11.6 German prepositions requiring the dative [0/2]
  • 11.7 German Prepositions requiring the accusative [0/2]
  • 11.8 German prepositions with either dative or accusative [0/2]
  • 11.9 German prepositions and articles [0/2]
  • 11.10 German prepositions with verbs [0/2]
  • 11.11 German prepositions and adjectives [0/2]
  • 12 Tenses and conjugation of German verbs [0/23]
  • 13 Infinitive in German [0/8]
  • 14 Imperative in German [0/3]
  • 15 Subjunctive in German [0/6]
  • 16 Active and passive voice in German [0/2]
  • 17 Participle in German [0/6]
  • German pronunciation

    The basis of the German pronunciation is of course the German alphabet, which has a few letters more than the English one (ß, ä, ö, ü) and in which some letters are pronounced differently (w, v). This chapter introduces to you the most important rules for pronouncing German correctly

    • What is a double vowel?
    • What is the ß and when do you use it?
    • How do you pronounce "sch" and "ch"?
    • How do you pronounce "st" and "sp"?
    • What is the difference in the pronunciation of J, V, and W in German to English?
    • How to pronounce the German "Umlaute" Ä, Ö, Ü?
    • What is the "stretching-h"?

    1.) German double vowels

    Double vowels are, like the name suggests, two vowels that come up together in a word. Some of these have special rules. For example "ei" sounds just like "ai", so like the English "I". 

    Additionally, the combination of "eu" sounds exactly the same as "äu". Like "Eule" (owl) and "Häuser" (houses). So when to use which? For that you just have to look at the word-stem. "Häuser" is the plural for "Haus" (house), in German the "a" always transforms to "ä" in plural, that's why you use "äu" in this case, instead of "eu"!

    Here you have a table of the German double vowels, you can also listen to them to make sure you understand the pronunciation!

    Double vowel Pronunciation Example
    au like "ow" in "owl" Auge (eye)
    äu like "oi" in "boiling" Häuser (houses)
    eu same as "äu" Eule (owl)
    ei like "I" in English Eisen (iron)
    ai same as "ei" Mai (may)
    ie a stretched "i" sound, like "ee" in "bee" Fliege (the fly)

    2.) The German "ß"

    The letter ß, also called "Eszett" (s + z) or "scharfes S" (sharp S), is a letter that today only exists in the German language. Its pronunciation is exactly the same as the "s" in "see".

    So when is the double consonant "ss" and when is the sharp-S "ß" used? These are the rules for their uses:

    SS ß ß
    follows vowels, that are pronounced shortly follows vowels that are pronounced longer also follows double-vowels
    Fass (barrel), Fluss (river), Stress (stress), Pass (pass), Kuss (kiss) Floß (float), Maß (the measure), Spaß (fun), Fuß (foot), Schoß (lap), Straße (street) draußen (outside), weiß (white), reißen (to rip), scheußlich (horrible)

    3.) The German 'sch' and 'ch'

    The German 'ch' poses often times a problem for German beginners, since there is no real equivalent in the English language. Also the pronunciation changes slightly, depending on which vowel proceeds it.

    So for example in the word "Ich" (German for "I"), the pronunciation is soft, it can be compared t the 'h' in huge, or a variation of the English 'sh' sound (in fact, in some regions of Germany they actually pronounce it like 'sh').

    On the other hand, if for example an 'a' proceeds the 'ch', like in the word "Bach" (brook), the pronunciation becomes much harsher. In this case you pronounce it in the back of your mouth

    The German 'sch' sound is equivalent to the English 'sh' sound. 

    ch after "a,o,u,au" harsher sound, pronounced at the back of your mouth  Bach (brook)
    ch after "e,i,eu,ei,ä,ö,ü,äu,ai", or consonant similar to "h" in "huge", variation of 'sh' Fichte (spruce)
    sch always the same like the English 'sh' Schachtel (case)

    4.) How to pronounce 'st' and 'sp'?

    The pronunciation of 'st' and 'sp' is handled as if it was 'sch + t/', so it's a combination of 'sh' and t/p. This is always the case, if those two consonants stand in the beginning of the word. However, does this combination occur in the middle or end of the word, it is pronounced simply as 's + t/p' (so for example like the 'st' in "street).

    'St/Sp' as 'Sht/Sht' Normal pronounciaton of 'St/Sp'
    Straße (street) Gast (guest)
    Stein (stone) Liste (list)
    Spiel (game) Samstag (saturday)

    5.) The different pronunciation of the German 'J', 'V', and 'W'

    The three letters 'J', 'V' and 'W' are pronounced a little differently in German than in English. 

    Pronunciation of J Pronunciation of V Pronunciation of W
    like the English 'Y', as in "yes" always pronounced like 'F' always pronounced like the English 'V', as in "video"
    example: jung (young) example: Vogel (bird) example: Wein (wine)

    6.) How to pronounce the German "Umlaute" 'Ä', 'Ö' and 'Ü'?

    The "Umlaute" (or "altered sound") are letters in the German language, that are marked by the two dots on top of them. Their pronunciation is somewhat similar to their origin vowels (A, O, U), yet you need to learn their pronunciation separately. Being able to pronounce these words is very important, since their are used very frequently, for example of the plural: Haus - Häuser (house - houses).

    This table provides you with an explanation of how to pronounce the altered sounds and gives you also examples to listen to:

    Ä pronounced similar to the 'a' in apple or 'ai' in "air"

    Ärmel (sleeve)

    Äpfel (apples)

    Ö pronounced similar to the 'i' in "girl"

    König (king)

    Öfter (more often)

    Ü no English equivalent

    Übung (exercise)

    Müde (tired)

    enlightened If you don't know how to write these letters, it is also common In German to express the "Umlaute" like this: ae = ä ; oe = ö ; ue = ü

    7.) The German stretching-h

    The stretching-h indicates that a vowel in a word needs to be pronounced longer. It usually occurs in the middle of the word. However there are a few exceptions. Here is a good way to remember when to use the stretching-h and when not to.

    Stretching-h No Stretching-h
    Before the consonants l, m, n, r Words that begin with q, sch, sp or t
    Examples: das Mehl (the flour), die Wahl (the election), die Bahn (the track), die Bühne (the stage) Examples: die Schule (the school), sparen (to save), quälen (to torture), der Ton (the tone)

    enlightened Normally there is no stretching-h following au, äu, ai, eu and ei. Except for these exceptions: verzeihen (to forgive), Weihnachten (christmas)

    yes Now that you know the most important rules for the German translation, practice your knowledge with the following free exercises!

    Exercises

    Exercise: S, SS or ẞ?