German Grammar

By taking the time to understand how the German language works, you'll be able to speak German naturally, and read and write in German. We know this can be one of the more challenging parts of your course, and we’re here to help! You can browse the topics, do a search in the top right corner of this page, or start a new topic at the bottom. Don’t be shy!

Was ist die Flugnummer vs Wie lautet die Flugnummer

I have seen both sentences. When would you use “Wie lautet…” instead?

3 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 8, 2019

Dative vs. Accusative Strategies

Are these words dative verbs?

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 8, 2019

Accusative preposition = in/ins

I understand that “ins” is a contraction for “in das” which means you can write a sentence like “He goes into the car” like “Er geht ins Auto”, as an alternative to “Er geht in das Auto”, which is easy way to apply the preposition “in” in the accusative c...

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 8, 2019

Immer noch, Es tut mir leid and Other Questions

Hi, I have a few more questions: 1. What is the difference between “es ist immer noch frei” and “es ist noch frei”? When I translate both sentences, I get the following in English “is it still free”.   2. When is it necessary to say “eins” instead of “e...

3 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 7, 2019

“Sind” instead of “wird”?

Yesterday, I was reading a news article and saw this sentence “In manchen Ländern wird die Opposition aber unterdrückt und daran gehindert, ihre Arbeit zu Machen” Is it possible to use “sind” instead of “wird” in this sentence? If not, why?

2 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 7, 2019

Mit meiner Hose vs. Mit meinen Hosen

I have been writing this sentence in English “Visit the cutter with my pants and shirt” in German as “Besuch die Scheider mit meinen Hosen und meinem Hemp”. I know that “Mit” result in the used of dative form for “Hosen” and “Hemp”. Further, in the sente...

4 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 7, 2019

“Welchen Tag haben wir heute” and “Welchen Datum haben wir heute”

I saw these two sentences today. One thing I noticed is that “n” is added to "Welche". Please explain why we do that.

2 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 7, 2019

Dative preposition = in/im

I understand that “im” is a contraction for “in dem” which means you can write a sentence like “He is in the car” like “Er ist im Auto”, as an alternative to “Er ist in dem Auto”, which is easier way to apply the preposition “in” in the dative case form. ...

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 7, 2019

Dative preposition = an/am

I understand that “am” is a contraction for “an dem” which means you can write a sentence like “He is at the window” like “Er ist am Fenster”, as an alternative to “Er ist an dem Fenster”, which is practical when you apply the preposition “in” in the dati...

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 7, 2019

“An” at the end of a sentence

I have just seen these sentences and was wondering why “an” is added to the end of the sentence. Further, do you have some guidance to when it should be applied. “Wann kommt der Flugzeug an = When does the plane arrive” “Wir fragen sofort an” = We start...

1 reply - Last post by sfpugh - May 4, 2019

“Ab” at the end of a sentence

When and why do we add “ab” to the end of a sentence? I just saw these sentences and was wondering when and why it is done. “Der Bus fährt in fünf Minuten ab” “Fährt der Zug pünktlich ab” “Biegen Sie links ab” “Biegen Sie recht ab”

1 reply - Last post by sfpugh - May 4, 2019

“Ein” at the end of a sentence?

I have just seen this sentence “Nehmen Sie Medikamente ein = Do you take medicine”. I was wondering why we are putting “ein” last and when we should do that.

1 reply - Last post by sfpugh - May 4, 2019

Entlang

Is “Entlang” a two-way preposition? Dative and Accusative? Some websites include “Entlang” as a two-way preposition and some does not.

1 reply - Last post by sfpugh - April 26, 2019

Accusative preposition = an/ans

I understand that “ans” is a contraction for “an das” which means you can write a sentence like “He goes to the Car” like “Er geht ans Auto”, as an alternative to “Er geht an das Auto”, which is practical when you apply the preposition “in” in the accusat...

0 replies - Last post by RexV - April 24, 2019

Können vs Könnten

I have just seen this sentence “Könnten Sie bitte ein Foto für mich Machen?”. Why is it written with “Könnten” instead of “Können”?

2 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - April 24, 2019

“Wie” vs “Was”

I saw this sentence yesterday “Wie ist der Wechselkurs”. 1. Can you use “Was” instead? If not, why? 2. Is there a specific rule for when to use “Wie” instead of “Was”?

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - April 24, 2019

Bekommen and Haben

I saw this sentence yesterday “Könnte ich einen Stadtplan bekommen”. When will you be using “Haben” instead of “Bekommen” in such as sentence? Personally, I would most likely say this sentence as “Könnte ich einen Stadtplan haben”.

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - April 24, 2019

Bei vs beim

When should you write ”beim” instead of ”bei”? I am asking because I saw this sentence ” Karin ist beim Arzt” which I assume can also be written as “Karin ist bei dem Arzt”

2 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - April 24, 2019

Nicht Placement

I understand that “nicht” should be placed in the front of a proper noun e.g. “Sie heißt nicht Maria“.   1. Where should I place “nicht” if I am referring to a title e.g. “That is not a soldier”. Should “nicht”. 2. When talking about proper nouns does it ...

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - April 24, 2019

Zu vs zum

I understand that “zum” is a contraction of “zu dem”. Is it in a sentence okay to write both “zu dem” and “zum” or would one of them be considered less formal?

4 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - April 16, 2019

Dative (Dem Mann gefallt das Hotel nicht)

Why is “Mann” it this sentence needs to be “Dem Mann” and not “Der Mann”? Sentence: Dem Mann gefallt das Hotel nicht

4 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - April 16, 2019

Am vs bei

When should you use “am” and when should you use “bei?

2 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - April 16, 2019

is mieten here being used reflexively?

In lesson on car renting it is written: Sie wollen sich für die Zeit eine kleine Wohnung mieten.  Mieten is not reflexive, the accusative object is Wohnung.  So why is sich inserted here?

3 replies - Last post by sfpugh - April 9, 2019

Wonach suchst du? vs. Was suchst du?

Hi, Two quick question: What is the difference between using “aber” and “sondern”?   When should you say “Wonach suchst du?”  or “Was suchst du”?

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - March 26, 2019

Noch, zu and zum

Hi everyone, A few more questions: 1. I have seen that “will it be finished today” is written “Wird es Heute noch fertig”. Why is it written with “noch” and can it not be written like “Wird es heute fertig”?   2. When do you use “zu” or “zum”? Thanks be...

2 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - March 26, 2019

Preposition with Accusative

In lesson 20.5 it says bis takes the accusative.  The example is "bis zum Morgen grauen".  If zum is a contraction for zu dem and dem is the dative, how is this then the accusative?

1 reply - Last post by sfpugh - March 25, 2019

A few extra quesitons

A few extra questions: When do you use either “davor”, “bevor” or “vor”   When do you use either “danach”, nachher”, “nach”   When do you say “ich hätte gern” and “ich hätte gerne”   When to use “aber” and when to use “sondern” Thanks beforehand!

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - March 19, 2019

Correct Pronoun?

Es ist ein großer schwarzer Koffer mit kleinen Rädern. It's a large black suitcase with small wheels.   Why does this start with Es instead of Er to go with masculine Koffer?

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - March 19, 2019

"nach" and "zu"

Hi, When should you use "nach" or "zu" when saying "to" in english?

1 reply - Last post by sfpugh - March 18, 2019

"Als" and "wann"

Hi there, When should you use either "als" or "wann"? Rex

1 reply - Last post by sfpugh - March 16, 2019

Adjective Ending in Lesson 19.8

Why is it das Kliener Bier instead of das Kliene Bier?

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - March 14, 2019

19.4 Das Thema der Ausstellung waren die Höhlenmenschen. Why is waren plural?

These two sentences appear in the Extra Vocab section of 19.4 Die Ausstellung war über die Höhlenmenschen. The exhibition was about cavemen. Das Thema der Ausstellung waren die Höhlenmenschen. The theme of the exhibition was cavemen. Why is war...

3 replies - Last post by Leah-Rocket-German-Tutor - March 7, 2019

Das sieht aus wie ein altes Comic.

From 17.3 and Extra vocab 17.4 Das sieht ja aus wie ein altes Comic. This looks like an old comic strip. Das sieht aus wie ein altes Comic. This looks like an old comic strip.  I thought that aussehen should have the "aus" pushed to the end of t...

4 replies - Last post by sfpugh - March 1, 2019

10.3 Und da habe ich gedacht, dass ich mich am besten schon mal informiere, um ein gutes Angebot ausfindig zu machen.

From 10.3 Und da habe ich gedacht, dass ich mich am besten schon mal informiere, um ein gutes Angebot ausfindig zu machen. And I thought, that I'm the best informed at finding a good offer. I am having trouble analysing this sentence, mainly with...

4 replies - Last post by sfpugh - February 23, 2019

17.9 Singular and Plural Words

A section in 17.9 begins with:  "Then you have some where the noun seems singular in English but you use the plural to form the verb:" But hat follows are a series of examples where just the opposite it true.  Example:   Die Umgebung ist sehr ruhig. ...

3 replies - Last post by sfpugh - February 20, 2019

19.1 ​Jedes Gebäude hier hat soviel Geschichte.

From 19.1 ​Jedes Gebäude hier hat soviel Geschichte. Each building has so much history here. Isn't the verb supposed to come second in a sentence? Why is hier before hat? From earlier in the lesson we have: Die Häuser sind hier alle so prachtvoll ...

3 replies - Last post by RobertR34 - February 16, 2019

Klar, ich hätte da noch ein paar. Aber dazu später.

From 17.5 Klar, ich hätte da noch ein paar. Aber dazu später. Sure, I'll have a couple. But more on that later. Why is the konjuntiv 2 hätte used here? Also I don't understand the translation doesn't ein paar mean a few and why is it translated as f...

2 replies - Last post by sfpugh - February 15, 2019

Anrufen

Hi, In 3.7 there is an example "Wer ruft mich?", shouldn't it be "Wer ruft mich an?" instead? If not, then when do we drop the prefix of "Anrufen"? BR, yahya

5 replies - Last post by HugoM5 - January 27, 2019

(15.4) ​Ich weiss ja noch nicht einmal, was ich nächste Woche mache,

From 15.4 Ich weiss ja noch nicht einmal, was ich nächste Woche mache, I don't even know what I will be doing next week, What is the function of einmal in this phrase? I think it might be a modal particle if so what is its purpose? I assume ja is als...

5 replies - Last post by RobertR34 - January 22, 2019

dass ich die für Ihre Stelle erforderlichen Kenntnisse und Qualifikationen habe.

From 13.2 Ich bin auf jeden Fall der Meinung, I am definitely of the opinion dass ich die für Ihre Stelle erforderlichen Kenntnisse und Qualifikationen habe. that I have the necessary skills and qualifications for this position. I don't unders...

2 replies - Last post by sfpugh - January 15, 2019

Weder ... oder / weder...noch - neither nor

From 17.5 Und ja manches stimmt natürlich, keine Frage. Wir Deutschen sind pünktlich, weder zu spät oder zu früh. And yes, some is true of course, no question. We Germans are punctual, neither too late nor too early. Are Weder ... oder and wede...

2 replies - Last post by Leah-Rocket-German-Tutor - January 15, 2019

Probable missing comma in 9.5

From 9.5 Ja,  wenn das möglich ist  würde ich gerne ein Doppelzimmer in der Woche danach buchen. I think there is a missing comma after  wenn das möglich ist.  Just checking my understanding, is this a case where a sub clause precedes the main clause?

1 reply - Last post by Leah-Rocket-German-Tutor - January 9, 2019

help with a phrase from 21.3

This phrase appears in 21.3 Ich weiß nicht ob die hier Traveller Cheques akzeptieren. I don't know if they accept Traveler's Cheques here. Why use die here? Why not sie?

6 replies - Last post by Leah-Rocket-German-Tutor - January 6, 2019

Having trouble understanding a phrase from 18.2

From 18.2 Ja etwas zum Essen kaufen, das musst du immer und überall; das ist Teil des täglichen Lebens wo auch immer du bist. Yes you must always buy something to eat everywhere, that's part of life wherever you are. (casual, singular) I am having...

2 replies - Last post by sfpugh - December 24, 2018

Dative case

Hi, in 7.1 (Er ist in seinem Büro), why is the "buro" in the dative? BR, yahya

2 replies - Last post by Leah-Rocket-German-Tutor - December 24, 2018

17.5 why is "Du" capitalised

From 17.5 Hallo Matthias! Schön, dass Du Zeit für eine gemeinsame Mittagspause hast. Hi Matthias! Nice that you have time for a common lunch break. (casual, singular) Why is "Du" capitalised here?  I put it through Duden's proof reader as "du" and it...

2 replies - Last post by sfpugh - December 19, 2018

What is the difference between auf vs für

What is the difference between auf vs für ?

13 replies - Last post by Leah-Rocket-German-Tutor - December 13, 2018

2.3 irgendetwas Verbotenes

why does verboten change to verbotenes in this sentence? : "Haben Sie irgendetwas Verbotenes im Koffer?"

13 replies - Last post by Leah-Rocket-German-Tutor - December 13, 2018

Das ist beides

Hi,  in 3.3 (Das Rathaus) and (Die Kirche) are referred to in the follwoing sentence as (Das ist beides im Zentrum). Could you please clarify why a singular expression referred to two things?  (i.e. why "Sie sind beide im Zentrum" is used instead?) regar...

2 replies - Last post by sfpugh - November 10, 2018

würde and wären

I am struggling a bit with why a tense has been chosen (which may be more to do with my poor grasp of English grammar than anything else). One sentence is given as: "Wieviel würde das kosten?" (How much would that cost?), which I think I understand. Howe...

14 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - November 3, 2018

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