Lesson 6.8

ToddS12

ToddS12

In lesson 6.8, “Ich kann Deutsch” is translated as “I know German”.  I would have expected that “Ich wei´ß Deutsch" or even ”Ich kenne Deutsch" for a beginner could be used. 

For an English speaker “I can German” is difficult to remember. Is “Ich wei´ß...” or Ich kenne..." acceptable?

Julia-Rocket-German-Tutor

Julia-Rocket-German-Tutor

Hallo ToddS12,

 

thank you for your question!

I can understand that this can be a bit tricky for an English speaker. Unfortunately using “ich weiß…” and “Ich kenne…” wouldn't be correct in this instance. The verb “können” in this case is more like “to be able to do something”, “to know how to”, “to have the necessary skills (e.g. reading/writing/listening/speaking)”. 

If you say “Ich kenne Deutsch.”, it means that you have heard of it and you might know some things about it but you can't actually speak it or communicate in German.

 

I hope this helps.

 

Viele Grüße,

Julia

sfpugh

sfpugh

Would it be helpful to think of an implied sprechen here?

Ich kann Deutsch (sprechen).

I can speak German.

ToddS12

ToddS12

Julia, sfpugh,

Thank you for the input.  I have to become more familiar with the exactness of the German language.  Although, “können” means “can”, it also means other things. As a native English speaker, English, to me, is more flexible.

Thanks again,

Scott

HugoM5

HugoM5

for me the correct way to say is Konnen Sie Deutsch sprechen? Please give your comments. Of course we have to use umlats.

Julia-Rocket-German-Tutor

Julia-Rocket-German-Tutor

Hallo nochmal!

 

“Können Sie Deutsch sprechen?” - “Can you speak German?” or “Ich kann Deutsch sprechen.” - “I can speak German." means that you are able to speak German whereas “Ich kann Deutsch." means that you have all the necessary skills to master the language (reading, writing, listening and speaking).

 

I hope this helps.

 

Grüße,

Julia

Ask a question or a post a response

If you want to ask a question or post a response you need to be a member.

If you are already a member login here .
If you are not a member you can become one by taking the free Rocket German trial here .