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 conversation. Don’t be shy!

Der Nächste vs. die nächste

when do we use which?

2 replies - Last post by mikeguy - July 4, 2010

Modals in passive voice

I see there are 2 ways to form passive voice sentences with modals 1) Conujugation of a modal plus a present passive infinitive 2) Conjugation of sich lassen and a present active infinitive #1 can become very awkward, especially in the future perfect w...

0 replies - Last post by SRA11 - May 29, 2010

German Shakespeare???

I'm interested in something my German friend said to me. He said that he studied Shakespeare at college in Germany. I'm confused. I cannot understand how Shakespeare can be translated into German because it would lose the essence of Shakespeare's writing ...

4 replies - Last post by Reinhard - May 16, 2010

7.7 Language and Culture - Talking about something negative

I think there might be some errors in feminine and plural forms of KEIN. Shouldn't it be : * Feminine* : Nominative : Keine Accusative : Keine Dative : Keiner Genitive : Keiner (and NOT *Keine* as shown) *Plural *: Nominative : Keine Accusative : Keine...

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - May 6, 2010

Ich mochte or Ich hatte gern

How do I know which verb to use when saying "I would like---"

2 replies - Last post by walleyenorth - March 24, 2010

Section 2.1

Hi Paul, Can you tell me in the section why it says" Das Museum Ist es geschlossen" rather than "Das Museum es ist geschlossen" Following the verb structure etc I would have thought the latter was logical. Thanks Richard

2 replies - Last post by lekkman - March 21, 2010


I am newly returned to RG via the just released series. This may be the wrong section for this question. In the opening lesson, you use the familiar du/dir, etc, and say that will be a primary usuage. My impression heretofore has been that in general u...

3 replies - Last post by Mitschuler - February 27, 2010


It seems that most words ending with "e" are pronounced (ah), but some words have a silent "e". Is there any rule as to how this final "e" should be pronounced? Danke!

0 replies - Last post by Kuckucksuhr - February 9, 2010

Do You

In lesson 3.7, it states that it is uncommon to use the equivelent of "Do You" when asking questions. Would anyone be good enough to elaborate on that? How then would you ask: Do you have a car? Do you need a taxi? etc. etc. Thanks

2 replies - Last post by Kuckucksuhr - February 5, 2010

german dialects

hi. it is interesting to know, how is better to pronounce such words, as Lehrer for example? because in the south of Germany they pronounce R in the middle of the word, but in the northern Germany they are not. and not only this word and letter. there are...

5 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - February 2, 2010

Grammar question in section 1.11

In lesson 1.1 (Advanced Numbers) in the section "Useful Expressions" there is the example "Wieviel kostes das?" Is this grammatically correct? Shouldn't the phrase be "Wieviel kostet das?"?

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - January 29, 2010


I am really enjojoying the course and have learnt quite a bit of German since starting (In earnest) about 4 months ago. However I HATE GRAMMAR, I really struggle to understand the dative, accusitive, nominative and genitive cases, and how they affect the...

8 replies - Last post by katherineh - January 4, 2010

German Pronunciation Keys?

Is there anywhere I can look up a German word and get a pronunciation key (or perhaps even audio files with the word spoken in correct German)? Thanks! Bill

3 replies - Last post by mikem - December 30, 2009

bald los

Hello, I have noticed the phrase "Er fährt bald los". Can I just use "bald"? Why use "bald los"? What is the difference?

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - December 22, 2009

German dictionaries and Grammar all in one!

I have just found a wonderful source of After putting in any German noun or verb in the space next to suchen it will take you to a page where you can change the language to English by clicking on the word English. If you do a w...

1 reply - Last post by mctneugierig - October 3, 2009

Again with the ist es

I have the same question Ken did earlier about lesson 2.1 regarding the ist es etc. The explanation he got still left me cofused. It really seems to me that "heute ist es geschlossen" is a question, not a statement. I know word order is differen...

4 replies - Last post by trunkaffe91 - September 20, 2009


In lesson 3.1 Matthias tells Sandra: Hey, du siehst ja nicht gerade sehr froh lich aus! why is the word "ja" used after nicht? Does it emphasize her not looking happy? Thank you for your help.

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - August 17, 2009

Du or Dich?

My German teacher told me that you use Dich if it is the subject and Du if you were talking to someone.I'm still confused on this front so I really need it explaining to me. :oops:

2 replies - Last post by OCDeutsch - August 9, 2009

4.8 Understanting Action Verbs - Regen

Could you clarify something for me? 4.8 Understanding Action - Part 2 - test your German. I read and understood to conjugate the verb 'regen' (rain) I remove the en and add a 't' to 'reg' when saying "it is raining". (es regt) However in the...

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - July 30, 2009

Adverbs - TMP - curious

Hello. I have an old German grammar from my childhood (over 40 years ago.). While all modern grammars (including of course RG) show adverb order as time, manner, place, this old book says time, place, manner. The example given is [color=#0000BF:38enpk...

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - July 17, 2009

Possessive Pronouns

Hello, can you help with possessive pronouns? If one were talking about a house, would one say "Das ist [color=#0000BF:3pblj3wc]meines[/color:3pblj3wc]" and "Ihr Haus ist grösser als [color=#0000BF:3pblj3wc]das meinige[/color:3pblj3wc...

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - July 17, 2009


I can't put the umlaut over the "u" but in lesson 2.4 Matthias tells Sandra she owes forty euros for fuel, and two euros for oil. Why does fur have an apostrophe and "s" when he tells what she owes for oil?

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - July 17, 2009

Word Order - etwas and einige

Hallo, I just posted a question about adverbs and TMP, but only after I had signed out did I remember why I was looking up word order anyway. (everything takes twice as long when one is so easily distracted). I heard in a German programme, someone say...

0 replies - Last post by xocwjjb - July 8, 2009

Possessive Adjective Ihr declined

Hallo, I am trying to swot up my German grammar that I knew last year but have forgotten. So in my translation exercise one sentence says "Have you begun your work already?". And I wrote "Haben Sie [color=#0000FF:119a79r5]Ihre[/color:119a...

2 replies - Last post by xocwjjb - June 30, 2009

Mystery Phrase

Hallo, (I just realized instead of posting this as a new topic i replied to someone's completely unrelated post. Oops. :P) Anyways, my cross country coach speaks German and knows that I'm learning, and he said something that sounded like "_Ya Vool...

1 reply - Last post by Bassoonist1 - June 8, 2009


I am a little confused about when to use "zu". For example, a waiter might ask "Was mochten Sie trinken? In lesson 1.2 Nik wants etwas "warmes zu trinken". Does she use zu because she has the adjective "warmes ...

1 reply - Last post by leo1 - May 3, 2009

Gern/Gerne and Beide/n/s/???

What is the difference between Gern and Gerne? I've seen both used but have no idea which one is used when. Also, Is "beide" a determiner? I've seen beide, beiden, and beides but I have no clue what each is used for.

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 16, 2009


For such a small word, this is giving me a fit on what it means and its placement in a sentence. For example: 1) Super Idee, aber liegt denn schon irgendwo Schnee? (Lesson 7.1) 2) Mochten Sie schon etwas zu trinken bestellen? (Newsletter) Any help would ...

4 replies - Last post by helipilot11 - March 31, 2009

einen versus ein

In lesson 1.2 when asking for a coffee, einen Kaffee is used. Why is einen used and not ein?

1 reply - Last post by HANX - March 23, 2009

Lesson 6.1 Question?

The first line states "Wir brauchen ein Geschenk fur meine Mutter" Isn't Mutter the indirect object? which would make it meiner Mutter instead of meine Mutter? I apologize if this question has already been asked but I'm still trying to grasp Ge...

1 reply - Last post by helipilot11 - March 22, 2009

The position of the word "Gerne"

Perhaps you can give me a definitive rule for the placement of the word "Gerne" or "Gern"....I notice that sometimes it follows the verb directly and at other times it appears at the end of the sentence....The lesson of 7.1 is a good e...

1 reply - Last post by armani - February 9, 2009


Hello, I recall from German class several years there exists 4 infinitve cases: Present Active: To drive Fahren Perfect Active To have driven Gefahren sein Present Passive To be driven Gefahren...

2 replies - Last post by SRA11 - January 28, 2009

Accusative-Dative Prepositions

Hello, If a preposition is used to show motion to a place, it is in the accusative case If a preposition is used to show location, it is in the dative case. Ich liege das Buch auf den Tisch (I lay the book on the table - accusative) Das Buch liegt auf...

1 reply - Last post by SRA11 - January 24, 2009

"fuer eines meiner Produkte"

Hi! Could someone explain the reason for the endings on the "ein" and "mein" words in the phrase "fuer eines meiner Produkte"? This is from the lesson 5.3 in MRG. Thanks very much.

2 replies - Last post by armani - January 5, 2009

Es ist OR Er ist?

In MORE ROCKET GERMAN, lesson 1.3 Lost Luggage there are the two following lines... Wie sieht Ihr Koffer aus? Können Sie ihn beschreiben? Es ist ein grosser schwarzer Koffer mit kleinen Rädern. Shouldn't "Es ist" be "Er ist" since ...

1 reply - Last post by (deleted) - December 15, 2008

Pronoucing ö

The grammar section has this listed but both the long and the short sound the same. I ran across a word in 1.2 that uses this character. möchtest and möchte I am have a heck of a time trying to figure out how to pronounce these two properly. I belie...

1 reply - Last post by onen5 - December 2, 2008

List of German Resources on my blog

I have listed my favourite German resources in my blog here => Yes! It also includes Rocket German. And many free resources. I hope it is of some use to all. In addition, I have decided that...

0 replies - Last post by amitabh1702 - November 4, 2008


The dative case The dative case shows the indirect object in a sentence. In English, you would often find a preposition like “by”, “with” or “for” in front of a noun which is used as an indirect object in a sentence, but not necessarily. Indirect objec...

4 replies - Last post by JohnK - October 19, 2008

word order

An email from a German friend in Germany had a sentence written . . . "das bin aber nicht ich". Why is "aber" stuck in the middle? How does this fit in the TMP rule? Why "ich" instead of "mich"?

1 reply - Last post by Mike-9 - September 12, 2008

ß or ss?

hey, I have a question regarding German spelling. How do you know when or when not to sue ss or the ß sign? Because from what I read, ß = ss, but in the game and vocabulary, I often see ss, and when I try using the ß sign, it marks it as wrong. Any explan...

1 reply - Last post by magomike - June 2, 2008

Why liegt?

Page 4 of lesson 3.2 Hier _liegt_ am meisten Schnee. Why not Hier ist am meisten Schnee. I'm just horribly confused. Thanks in advance for any help. Jerry

2 replies - Last post by E813 - September 3, 2008

new words for the same meaning

In lesson 6.4 the term 'Das Oktoberfest gefällt mir wirklich gut'. is used to mean 'I like the Oktoberfest a lot'. Why have we stopped using Mögen for the verb 'To like'? Is gefällt a verb? Also In one of the lessons we used 'Sowieso' to me...

3 replies - Last post by Ken1 - August 15, 2008

Adjectives: Declension & Comparative

Hallo: I think I may be confused about adjectival endings in the comparative. I believe that one uses the "er" ending for an adjective used with the indefinite article and a masculine nominative noun, e.g. ein kleiner Garten, a beautiful ga...

8 replies - Last post by Paulina-Tsangara - August 14, 2008

What time is it? - Wie spät ist es?

As much as I could learn till now, I know that when making a question we put first the auxiliary verb and then the pronoun, like: "Wie spät ist es?" Can anybody explain me why in the question: "Kõnnen Sie mir bitte sagen wie spät es ist?...

1 reply - Last post by Paulina-Tsangara - August 13, 2008

Lesson 2.2. - Wir machen Pause.

In this lesson Nik tells Paul: "Aber wir machen am Brandenburger Tor Pause." While Nik & Paul are analysing this sentence they change a little bit the sentence and they say instead "Aber wir machen Pause am Brandenburger Tor." ...

3 replies - Last post by Paulina-Tsangara - August 11, 2008

CSS Problem

Hi I just stumbled upon this forum from Google and I thought I'd drop in a little bug I noticed, which is probably of not of much consequence because I used a fairly uncommon browser. I am using Camino 1.6 on Mac. I'm not sure if this is an issue with th...

1 reply - Last post by (deleted) - July 31, 2008

Conversational German question

Hallo! Hi I'm new here been learning for about 3 weeks now and I had a quick question: in audio lesson 4.1 the following is said Paul: Brauchst du irgendetwas? Nik: Wir brauchen einen Sack Kartoffeln und Zwiebeln. Und du? Paul: Ei...

1 reply - Last post by Ashen - July 29, 2008

Unit 1.2 of Grammar - Sie and sie

Hallo alles! I was studying the last days the 1st chapter of the German Grammar and while I was making the exercises of the verb sein I had some questions that I wanted to raise concerning the Sie and sie. I wanted to know how we can distinguish wheth...

1 reply - Last post by Paulina-Tsangara - July 28, 2008

Deutsch Radio

list of internet (and broadcast) radio stations:

1 reply - Last post by Leon - July 13, 2008

Word Order Help - Time, Manner, Place

Hello, I need help with the time/manner/place rule for adverbial phrases. In the advanced grammar lesson 1, the example is given [color=blue:3pay34bv]Sabine isst heute (time) mit ihre Freundin (manner) in der Stadt (place).[/color:3pay34bv] But in Ex...

1 reply - Last post by xocwjjb - July 2, 2008

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