German I Tutorial: Basic Phrases, Vocabulary and Grammar
     

If you'd like to download the mp3s, use the DownThemAll add-on for Firefox to download all the mp3s at once instead of right-clicking on each link. Recordings done by a native speaker of German from Austria. I've also recommended some German books from Amazon.


1. Basic Phrases

NEW! If you'd like to study these phrases (and their pronunciations) individually, please go to Basic German Phrases.

Guten Morgen
goot-en mor-gen
Good Morning
Guten Tag
goot-en tahk
Hello/Good Day
Guten Abend
goot-en ah-bent
Good Evening
Gute Nacht
goot-eh nakht
Good Night
Tag / Hallo / Servus
tahk / hah-loh / sair-voohs
Hi / Hello / Hi & Bye (Southern Germany & Austria)
Auf Wiedersehen
owf vee-dair-zayn
Goodbye
Grüß dich / Grüß Gott!
Hello! / Greetings! (Southern Germany & Austria)
Tschüs / Tschau
tchews / chow
Bye!
Gehen wir!
geh-en veer
Let's go!
Bis später
biss shpay-ter
See you later
Bis bald
biss bahlt
See you soon
Bis morgen
biss mohr-gen
See you tomorrow
Bitte
bih-tuh
Please
Danke (schön / sehr)
dahn-kuh shurn/zair
Thank you
Bitte schön
bih-tuh shurn
You're welcome
Es tut mir leid.
ehs toot meer lite
I'm sorry
Entschuldigen Sie
ehnt-shool-dih-gun zee
Excuse me
Verzeihung
Pardon me
Wie geht es Ihnen?
vee gayt es ee-nen
How are you? (formal)
Wie geht's?
vee gayts
How are you? (informal)
(Sehr) Gut / So lala
zair goot / zo lahlah
(Very) Good / OK
Schlecht / Nicht Gut
shlekht / nisht goot
Bad / Not good
Es geht.
ess gate
I'm ok. (informal)
Ja / Nein
yah / nine
Yes / No
Wie heißen Sie?
vee hie-ssen zee
What's your name? (formal)
Wie heißt du?
vee hiesst doo
What's your name? (informal)
Ich heiße...
ikh hie-ssuh
My name is... [I am called...]
Es freut mich.
froyt mikh
Pleased to meet you.
Gleichfalls.
glykh-fals
Likewise.
Herr / Frau / Fräulein
hair / frow / froi-line
Mister / Misses / Miss
Woher kommen Sie?
vo-hair koh-men zee
Where are you from? (formal)
Woher kommst du?
vo-hair kohmst doo
Where are you from? (informal)
Ich komme aus...
ikh koh-muh ows...
I'm from...
Wo wohnen Sie?
vo voh-nen zee
Where do you live? (formal)
Wo wohnst du?
vo vohnst doo
Where do you live? (informal)
Ich wohne in...
ikh voh-nuh in
I live in...
Wie alt sind Sie?
vee alt zint zee
How old are you? (formal)
Wie alt bist du?
vee alt bisst doo
How old are you? (informal)
Ich bin ____ Jahre alt.
ikh bin ____ yaa-reh alt
I am ____ years old.
Sprechen Sie deutsch?
shpreck-en zee doytch
Do you speak German? (formal)
Sprichst du englisch?
shprikhst doo eng-lish
Do you speak English? (informal)
Ich spreche (kein)...
ikh shpreck-uh kine
I (don't) speak...
Verstehen Sie? / Verstehst du?
fehr-shtay-en zee / fehr-shtayst doo
Do you understand? (formal / informal)
Ich verstehe (nicht).
ikh fehr-shtay-eh nikht
I (don't) understand.
Ich weiß (nicht).
ikh vise nikht
I (don't) know.
Können Sie mir helfen?
ker-nen zee meer hell-fen
Can you help me? (formal)
Kannst du mir helfen?
kahnst doo meer hell-fen
Can you help me? (informal)
Natürlich / Gerne
nah-tewr-likh / gair-nuh
Of course / Gladly
Kann ich Ihnen helfen?
kahn ikh ee-nen hell-fen
May I help you? (formal)
Kann ich dir helfen?
kahn ikh deer hell-fen
May I help you? (informal)
Wie bitte?
vee bih-tuh
What? Pardon me?
Wie heißt ___ auf deutsch?
vee heist ___ owf doytch
How do you say ___ in German?
Wo ist / Wo sind... ?
voh ist / voh zint
Where is / Where are... ?
Es gibt...
ess geept
There is / are...
Was ist los?
vahs ist lohs
What's the matter?
Das macht nichts.
dass makht nikhts
It doesn't matter.
Das ist mir egal.
dass ist meer eh-gahl
I don't care.
Keine Angst!
ky-nuh ahngst
Don't worry!
Ich habe es vergessen.
ikh hah-buh ess fehr-geh-sen
I forgot.
Jetzt muss ich gehen.
yetz mooss ikh geh-en
I must go now.
Ich habe Hunger / Durst.
ikh hah-buh hoong-er / dirst
I'm hungry / thirsty.
Ich bin krank / müde.
ikh bin krahnk moo-duh
I'm sick / tired.
Ich habe Langeweile.
ikh hah-buh lahn-guh-vy-luh
I'm bored.
Ich möchte / Ich hätte gern...
ikh merkh-tuh / ikh heh-tuh gairn
I'd like...
Das gefällt mir.
dahs geh-fehlt meer
I like it.
Prima / Toll / Super!
pree-mah / tohl / zoo-pair
Great / Fantastic!
Gesundheit!
geh-soont-hyt
Bless you!
Herzlichen Glückwunsch!
herts-likh-en glewk-voonsh
Congratulations!
Sei ruhig!
zy roo-hikh
Be quiet! (informal)
Willkommen!
vil-koh-men
Welcome!
Viel Glück!
feel glewk
Good luck!
Schauen Sie mal! / Schau mal!
show-en zee mal / show mal
Look! (formal / informal)
Bitte schön?
Yes? / What would you like to order?
Was darf's sein?
What can I get you? / How can I help you?
Sonst noch etwas?
Anything else?
Bitte schön.
Here you go. (handing something to someone)
Zahlen bitte!
The check, please!
Stimmt so.
Keep the change.
Ich bin satt.
I'm full.
Mir ist schlecht.
I feel sick.
Es tut mir weh.
It hurts.
Ich liebe dich.
ikh leeb-uh dikh
I love you. (informal)
Du fehlst mir.
I miss you. (informal)
Alles ist in Ordnung.
Everything is fine.
Wie wäre es mit ... ?
How about...?
Was für ein...?
What kind of (a)...?
Nicht wahr?
[general tag question]

Ich is not actually pronounced ikh, unless you are speaking a northern dialect of German. If you are speaking a southern dialect, then it is more like ish. There is no equivalent sound in English.  In standard German, it is somewhere between ish and ikh. Technically, it is a voiceless palatal fricative and its voiced counterpart is the y sound in yes.


2. Pronunciation

German Vowels
English Pronunciation
[i] viel meet, eat
[y] kühl ee rounded / long vowel
[ɪ] Tisch mitt, it
[ʏ] hübsch ih rounded / short vowel
[e] Tee mate, wait
[ø] schön ay rounded / long vowel
[ɛ] Bett met, wet
[œ] zwölf eh rounded / short vowel
[a] Mann mop, not
[ɑ] kam ah / longer vowel than [a]
[u] gut boot, suit
[ʊ] muss put, soot
[o] Sohn coat, goat
[ɔ] Stock caught, bought
[ə] bitte cut, what
[ɐ] Wetter uhr / also short vowel like [ə]

Highlighted vowels do not exist in English.

Notice that words spelled with ö and ü can be pronounced with a long or short vowel, so determining the pronunciation based on the spelling is not possible. The other umlauted letter, ä, is generally pronounced as [e], though it can be pronounced as [ɛ] in some dialects. A general rule for pronunciation, however, states that the short vowels / ɪ ʏ ʊ ɛ ɔ / must be followed by a consonant, whereas the long vowels / i y u e ø o / can occur at the end of the syllable or word.

German Diphthongs
English Pronunciation
[aɪ] ein, mein eye, buy, why
[aʊ] auf, kaufen cow, now, how
[ɔɪ] neu, Gebäude toy, boy, foil

German Consonants

There are a few German consonants that do not exist in English, and some consonant combinations that are not common in English. Notice that the pronunciation of the German r changes according to the location in the countries that speak German, i.e. [R] in northern Germany and [r] in southern Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Spelling IPA Sample words How to pronounce:
ch (with vowels e and i) [ç] Chemie, mich, nicht Make yuh sound voiceless (no vibration of vocal cords)
ch (with vowels a, o, u) [x] Buch, lachen, kochen Make kuh sound a fricative (continuous airflow)
pf [pf] Apfel, Pferd, Pfanne Pronounce together as one sound
z [ts] Zeit, Zug, Tanz Pronounce together as one sound
j [j] ja, Januar, Junge yuh
qu [kv] Quote, Quiz, Quitte kv
st / sp (at beginning of syllable) [ʃt] / [ʃp] Stadt, sprechen sht / shp
sch [ʃ] schenken, schlafen sh
th [t] Theater, Thron t
v [f] Vater, verboten f
w [v] Wasser, warm v
ß [s] Straße, groß s
s (before vowel) [z] Salz, seit, Sitz z

In addition, the sounds [b], [d], and [g] lose their voicing at the end of a syllable, so they are pronounced as their voiceless counterparts [p], [t], and [k], respectively. However, the spelling does not reflect the pronunciation.

Stress

Stress generally falls on the first syllable of the word, except in words borrowed from other languages, where the stress falls on the last syllable (especially with French words.)


3. Alphabet

a ah j yoht s ess
b bay k kah t tay
c tsay l el u oo
d day m em v fow
e ay n en w vay
f eff o oh x eeks
g gay p pay y irp-se-lon
h hah q koo z tset
i ee r ehr

There is another letter in written German, ß (es-zet), pronounced like [s]. However, this letter is only used after long vowels or diphthongs, and it is not used at all in Switzerland.


4. Nouns & Cases

All nouns have a gender in German, either masculine, feminine or neuter.  There really isn't a lot of logic to which nouns are which gender, so you must memorize the gender of each noun.  

1. Male persons or animals, the seasons, months, and days are all masculine, as are nouns ending in -ant, -ast, -ich, -ig, -ismus, -ling, -or and -us.  

2. Female persons or animals, and numerals are all feminine, as are nouns ending in -a, -anz, -ei, -enz, -heit, -ie, -ik, -in, -keit, -schaft, -sion, -sis, -tät, -tion, -ung and -ur.  

3. Young persons or animals, metals, chemical elements, letters of the alphabet, hotels, restaurants, cinemas, continents, countries and provinces are all neuter, as are nouns that end in -chen, -icht, -il, -it, -lein, -ma, -ment, -tel, -tum, and -um.  Nouns referring to things that end in -al, -an, -ar, -ät, -ent, -ett, -ier, -iv, -o and -on, as well as most words with the prefix ge- and most nouns ending in -nis and -sal are also neuter.  

All nouns in German are capitalized in writing.

All nouns (as well as pronouns and adjectives) have a case depending on what function they serve in the sentence.  These may seem strange, but remember that English uses cases also; however, we would say direct object instead of accusative, or indirect object instead of dative.  Although these cases may make learning new words difficult, they actually help with word order because the position of words in a sentence is not as fixed in German as it is in English.  And the reason for that is because words can occur in these four cases:

Nominative subject of the sentence The girl is reading.
Accusative direct objects We see the mountain.
I bought a gift.
Dative indirect objects We talk to the guide.
I gave my mom a gift.
Genitive indicates possession or relationship The book of the girl.
The dog's tail.

The nouns you look up in a dictionary will be in the nominative case.


5. Articles & Demonstratives

Definite Articles (The)
Masculine Feminine Neuter Plural
Nominative der (dare) die (dee) das (dahs) die
Accusative den (dane) die das die
Dative dem (dame) der dem den
Genitive des (dess) der des der

Indefinite Articles (A, An)
Masculine Feminine Neuter
Nom. ein (ine) eine (ine-uh) ein
Acc. einen (ine-en) eine ein
Dat. einem (ine-em) einer(ine-er) einem
Gen. eines (ine-es) einer eines

Demonstratives (This, That, These, Those)
This / These That / Those
Masc. Fem. Neu. Pl. Masc. Fem. Neu. Pl.
Nom. dieser diese dieses diese der die das die
Acc. diesen diese dieses diese den die das die
Dat. diesem dieser diesem diesen dem der dem den
Gen. dieses dieser dieses dieser des der des der

Jener is an older word  found in written German that was used to mean that or those, but today in spoken German the definite articles are used.  Dort or da may accompany the definite articles for emphasis.  Das is also a universal demonstrative and therefore shows no agreement.  Notice the last letter of each of the words above.  They correspond to the last letters of the words for the definite articles.  Words that are formed this same way are called der-words because they follow the pattern of the der-die-das declension.  Other der-words are:  jeder-every, and welcher-which.  Mancher (many) and solcher (such) are also der-words, but they are used almost always in the plural.


6. Subject (Nominative) Pronouns

Subject Pronouns
ich

ikh

I wir

veer

we
du

doo

you (familiar) ihr

eer

you (all)
er, sie, es, man

air, zee, ess, mahn

he, she, it, one sie, Sie

zee

they, you (formal)

Man can be translated as one, we, they or the people in general.  When referring to nouns as it, you use er for masculine nouns, sie for feminine nouns and es for neuter nouns.  However, the definite articles der, die and das can be substituted for er, sie and es to show more emphasis.


7. To Be, to Have, & to Become


Present tense of sein - to be (zine)
I am ich bin ikh bin we are wir sind veer zint
you are (familiar) du bist doo bihst you (plural) are ihr seid eer zide
he/she/it is er/sie/es ist air/zee/ess isst they/you (formal) are sie/Sie sind zee zint

Past tense of sein
I was ich war ikh var we were wir waren veer vah-ren
you were (familiar) du warst doo varst you (plural) were ihr wart eer vart
he/she/it was er/sie/es war air/zee/es var they/you (formal) were sie/Sie waren zee vah-ren

Present tense of haben - to have (hah-ben)
ich habe hah-buh wir haben hah-ben
du hast hahst ihr habt hahbt
er/sie/es hat haht sie/Sie haben hah-ben

Past tense of haben
ich hatte hah-tuh wir hatten hah-ten
du hattest hah-test ihr hattet hah-tet
er/sie/es hatte hah-tuh sie/Sie hatten hah-ten

Present tense of werden - to become (vair-den)
ich werde vair-duh wir werden vair-den
du wirst veerst ihr werdet vair-det
er/sie/es wird veert sie/Sie werden vair-den

Past tense of werden
ich wurde voor-duh wir wurden voor-den
du wurdest voor-dest ihr wurdet voor-det
er/sie/es wurde voor-duh sie/Sie wurden voor-den

Haben is frequently used in expressions that would normally take to be in English.
Ich habe Hunger. = I am hungry.
Ich hatte Durst. = I was thirsty.
Ich habe Langeweile. = I am bored.
Ich hatte Heimweh. = I was homesick.
Ich habe Angst. = I am afraid.

In everyday speech, the final -e on the ich conjugations can be dropped: ich hab' or hab' ich


8. Useful Words

and und oont isn't it? nicht wahr? nikht vahr
but aber ah-ber too bad schade shah-duh
very sehr zair gladly gern gehrn
or oder oh-der immediately sofort zoh-fort
here hier here sure(ly) sicher(lich) zikh-er-likh
also auch owkh but, rather sondern zohn-dehrn
both beide by-duh finally schließlich shleess-likh
some etwas eht-vahss right! stimmt shtimt
only nur noor anyway überhaupt oo-ber-howpt
again wieder vee-der enough genug guh-nook
hopefully hoffentlich hoh-fent-likh exact(ly) genau guh-now
between zwischen zvish-en sometimes manchmal mahnch-mal
therefore deshalb des-halp always immer im-er
a lot, many viel(e) feel(uh) never nie nee
really wirklich veerk-lish often oft ohft
together zusammen tsoo-zah-men of course klar klahr
all alle ahl-luh perhaps vielleicht fee-likht
now jetzt yetst a little ein bisschen ine biss-khen
so also al-zoh a little ein wenig ine vay-nikh
another noch ein nohkh ine not at all gar nicht gar nikht
already schon shone not a bit kein bisschen kine biss-khen

Es gibt is commonly used to mean there is/are and it is always followed by the accusative case.


9. Question Words

Who wer vehr Whom (acc.) wen vain
What was vahs Whom (dat.) wem vaim
Why warum vah-room How come wieso vee-zo
When wann vahn Where from woher vo-hair
Where wo voh Where to wohin vo-hin
How wie vee Which welche/-r/-s velsh-uh/er/es


10. Numbers / Die Nummern

0 null nool    
1 eins ines 1st erste
2 zwei tsvy 2nd zweite
3 drei dry 3rd dritte
4 vier feer 4th vierte
5 fünf fewnf 5th fünfte
6 sechs zecks 6th sechste
7 sieben zee-bun 7th siebte
8 acht ahkht 8th achte
9 neun noyn 9th neunte
10 zehn tsayn 10th zehnte
11 elf elf 11th elfte
12 zwölf tsvurlf 12th zwölfte
13 dreizehn dry-tsayn 13th dreizehnte
14 vierzehn feer-tsayn 14th vierzehnte
15 fünfzehn fewnf-tsayn 15th fünfzehnte
16 sechzehn zeck-tsayn 16th sechzehnte
17 siebzehn zeep-tsayn 17th siebzehnte
18 achtzehn ahkh-tsayn 18th achtzehnte
19 neunzehn noyn-tsayn 19th neunzehnte
20 zwanzig tsvahn-tsikh 20th zwanzigste
21 einundzwanzig ine-oont-tsvahn-tsikh 21st einundzwanzigste
22 zweiundzwanzig tsvy-oont-tsvahn-tsikh 22nd zweiundzwanzigste
23 dreiundzwanzig dry-oont-tsvahn-tsikh 23rd dreiundzwanzigste
24 vierundzwanzig feer-oont-tsvahn-tsikh 24th vierundzwanzigste
30 dreißig dry-sikh 30th dreißigste
40 vierzig feer-tsikh 40th vierzigste
50 fünfzig fewnf-tsikh 50th fünfzigste
60 sechzig zekh-tsikh 60th sechzigste
70 siebzig zeep-tsikh 70th siebzigste
80 achtzig ahkh-tsikh 80th achtzigste
90 neunzig noyn-tsikh 90th neunzigste
100 (ein)hundert ine-hoon-duhrt    
1,000 (ein)tausend ine-tow-zuhnt    

Sometimes zwo (tsvoh) is used instead of zwei to avoid confusion with drei when talking on the telephone.  The use of commas and periods is switched in German, though a space is commonly used to separate thousandths, i.e. 1,000 would be 1 000. When saying telephone numbers, you can either say each number individually or group them in twos. For years, you use the hundreds: 1972 is neunzehn hundert zweiundsiebzig; or the thousands: 2005 is zwei tausend fünf.

Wann sind Sie geboren? When were you born?
Ich bin in 1982 geboren. I was born in 1982.


11. Days of the Week / Die Tage

Monday Montag mohn-tahk
Tuesday Dienstag deens-tahk
Wednesday Mittwoch mit-vock
Thursday Donnerstag don-ers-tahk
Friday Freitag fry-tahk
Saturday
(N & E Germany)
Samstag
Sonnabend
zahms-tahk
zon-nah-bent
Sunday Sonntag zon-tahk
day der Tag (-e) dehr tahk
morning der Morgen (-) mawr-gun
afternoon der Nachmittag (-e) nakh-mih-tahk
evening der Abend (-e) ah-bunt
night die Nacht (ä, -e) nahkt
today heute hoy-tuh
tomorrow morgen mawr-gun
tonight heute Abend hoy-tuh ah-bunt
yesterday gestern geh-stairn
last night gestern Abend geh-stairn ah-bunt
week die Woche (-n) voh-kuh
weekend das Wochenende (-n) voh-ken-en-duh
daily täglich teh-glikh
weekly wöchentlich wer-khent-likh

To say on a certain day or the weekend, use am.  Add an -s to the day to express "on Mondays, Tuesdays, etc."  All days, months and seasons are masculine so they all use the same form of these words:  jeden - every, nächsten - next, letzten - last (as in the last of a series), vorigen - previous.  In der Woche is the expression for "during the week" in Northern and Eastern Germany, while unter der Woche is used in Southern Germany, Austria and Switzerland.


12. Months of the Year / Die Monate

January Januar yah-noo-ahr
(Austria) Jänner yeh-ner
February Februar fay-broo-ahr
March März mehrts
April April ah-pril
May Mai my
June Juni yoo-nee
July Juli yoo-lee
August August ow-goost
September September zehp-tehm-ber
October Oktober ok-toh-ber
November November no-vehm-ber
December Dezember deh-tsem-ber
month der Monat (-e) moh-naht
year das Jahr (-e) yaar
monthly monatlich moh-naht-likh
yearly jährlich jehr-likh

To say in a certain month, use im.

Wann hast du Geburtstag? When is your birthday?
Mein Geburtstag ist im Mai.
My birthday is in May.


13. Seasons / Die Jahreszeiten

Winter der Winter dehr vin-ter
Spring der Frühling dehr frew-ling
Summer der Sommer dehr zom-mer
Autumn der Herbst dehr hehrpst

To say in the + a season, use im.


14. Directions / Die Richtungen

right rechts
left links
straight geradeaus
North der Norden
South der Süden
East der Osten
West der Westen

 

im Norden = in the North
nach Osten = to the East
aus Westen = from the West


15. Colors & Shapes / Die Farben & Die Formen

orange orange square das Viereck
pink rosa circle der Kreis
purple violett / lila triangle das Dreieck
blue blau rectangle das Rechteck
yellow gelb oval das Oval
red rot octagon das Achteck
black schwarz cube der Würfel
brown braun sphere die Kugel
gray grau cone der Kegel
white weiß cylinder der Zylinder
green grün
turquoise türkis  
beige beige  
silver silber  
gold gold  

Because colors are adjectives, they must agree in gender and number with the noun they describe if they are placed before the noun. However, not all adjectives agree, such as colors ending in -a or -e; nor do they agree when they are used as predicate adjectives. More about Adjectives in German III. To say that a color is light, put hell- before it, and to say that a color is dark, put dunkel- before it.

Das Viereck ist braun. The square is brown.
Das Rechteck ist hellblau. The rectange is light blue.


16. Time / Die Zeit

What time is it? Wie spät ist es? vee shpayt isst ess
(It is) 2 AM Es ist zwei Uhr nachts ess ist tsvy oor nahkts
2 PM Es ist zwei Uhr nachmittags tsvy oor nahk-mih-tahks
6:20 Es ist sechs Uhr zwanzig zex oor tsvahn-tsikh
half past 3 Es ist halb vier hahlp feer
quarter past 4 Es ist Viertel nach vier feer-tel nahk feer
quarter to 5 Es ist Viertel vor fünf feer-tel for fewnf
10 past 11 Es ist zehn nach elf tsyan nahk elf
20 to 7 Es ist zwanzig vor sieben tsvahn-tsikh for zee-bun
noon Es ist nachmittag nakh-mih-tahk
midnight Es ist mitternacht mih-ter-nahk
in the morning morgens / früh mawr-guns / frew
in the evening abends aah-bunts
It's exactly... Es ist genau... ess ist guh-now
At 8. Um 8 Uhr. oom akht oor
early(ier) früh(er) frew(er)
late(r) spät(er) shpayt(er)

Official time, such as for bus and train schedules, always uses the 24 hour clock. Notice that halb + number means half to, not half past, so you have to use the hour that comes next.


17. Weather / Das Wetter

How's the weather today? Wie ist das Wetter heute? vie ist dahs vet-ter hoy-tuh
It's hot Es ist heiß ess isst hise
It's cold Es ist kalt ess isst kahlt
It's beautiful Es ist schön ess isst shern
It's bad Es ist schlecht ess isst shlehkt
It's clear Es ist klar ess isst klahr
It's icy Es ist eisig ess isst ise-ikh
It's warm Es ist warm ess isst varm
It's sunny Es ist sonnig ess isst zohn-ikh
It's windy Es ist windig ess isst vin-dikh
It's cloudy Es ist bewölkt ess isst beh-verlkt
It's hazy Es ist dunstig ess isst doons-tikh
It's muggy Es ist schwül ess isst schvool
It's humid Es ist feucht ess isst foikht
It's foggy Es ist nebelig ess isst neh-beh-likh
It's snowing Es schneit ess schnite
It's raining Es regnet ess rayg-net
It's freezing Es friert ess freert
It looks like rain. Es sieht nach Regen aus. es seet nahkh ray-gen ows
The weather is clearing Das Wetter klärt sich auf. dahs vett-er klairt sikh owf


18. Family / Die Familie

Parents die Eltern Relative der Verwandte (-n)
Mother die Mutter (ü) Man der Mann (ä, -er)
Father der Vater (ä) Sir / Mister der Herr (-en)
Son der Sohn (ö, -e) Woman / Ma'am / Mrs. / Ms. die Frau (-en)
Daughter die Tochter (ö) Husband der Ehemann (ä, -er)
Brother der Bruder (ü) Wife die Ehefrau (-en)
Sister die Schwester (-n) Boy der Junge (-n)
Grandparents die Großeltern Girl das Mädchen (-)
Grandfather der Großvater (ä) Grandpa der Opa (-s)
Grandmother die Großmutter (ü) Grandma die Oma (-s)
Grandchildren die Enkelkinder Dad der Vati
Grandson der Enkel (-) Mom die Mutti
Granddaughter   die Enkelin (-nen) Friend (m) der Freund (-e)
Niece die Nichte (-n) Friend (f) die Freundin (-nen)
Nephew der Neffe (-n) Partner / Significant Other (m) der Partner (-)
Cousin (m) der Vetter (-n) Partner / Significant Other (f) die Partnerin (-nen)
Cousin (f) die Kusine (-n) Marital Status der Familienstand
Uncle der Onkel (-) Single ledig
Aunt die Tante (-n) Married verheiratet
Siblings die Geschwister Divorced geschieden
Baby das Baby (-s) Male männlich
Godfather der Pate (-n) Female weiblich
Godmother die Patin (-nen) Child das Kind (-er)
Step- der/die Stief- Toddler das Kleinkind (-er)
-in-law der/die Schwieger- Teenager der Teenager (-)
Brother-in-law der Schwager (ä) Adult der Erwachsene (-n)
Sister-in-law die Schwägerin (-nen)
Twin der Zwilling (-e)


The letters in parentheses indicate the plural form of the noun. Notice that sometimes an umlaut is placed over the main vowel of the word in the plural. For example, der Mann is singular (the man) and die Männer is plural (the men). For step- and -in-law relations, just add Stief- or Schwieger- before the main person, except in the case of brother-in-law and sister-in-law noted above. The plurals follow the pattern for the main person, i.e. die Schwiegermutter (singular) and die Schwiegermütter (plural)


19. To Know People & Facts

kennen - to know people wissen - to know facts
ich kenne ken-nuh wir kennen ken-nun ich weiß vise wir wissen vih-sun
du kennst kenst ihr kennt kent du weißt vist ihr wisst vihst
er/sie/es kennt kent sie/Sie kennen ken-nun er/sie/es weiß vise sie/Sie wissen vih-sun

 

Kennen is a regular verb, while wissen is irregular in the present tense. You must use the subject pronouns (ich, du, er...); however, I will leave them out of future conjugations.


20. Formation of Plural Nouns

Plural nouns in German are unpredictable, so it's best to memorize the plural form with the singular.  However, here are some rules that can help:

1. Feminine nouns usually add -n or -en.  Nouns that end in -in (such as the female equivalents of masculine nouns) add -nen.

eine Lampe zwei Lampen
eine Tür zwei Türen
eine Studentin zwei Studentinnen
eine Gabel zwei Gabeln

2. Masculine and neuter nouns usually add -e or -er.  Many masculine plural nouns ending in -e add an umlaut as well, but neuter plural nouns ending in -e don't.  Plurals that end in -er add an umlaut when the stem vowel is a, o , u or au.

Masculine Neuter
ein Rock zwei Röcke ein Heft zwei Hefte
ein Mann zwei Männer ein Buch zwei Bücher

3. Masculine and neuter singular nouns that end in -er either add an umlaut or change nothing at all.  Many nouns with a stem vowel of a, o, u or au add an umlaut. Masculine and neuter singular nouns that end in -el also add nothing at all (with three exceptions: Pantoffel, Stachel, Muskel).

Masculine Neuter
ein Bruder zwei Brüder ein Fenster zwei Fenster
ein Kegel zwei Kegel ein Mittel zwei Mittel

4. Nouns that end in a vowel other than an unstressed -e and nouns of foreign origin add -s.

ein Hobby zwei Hobbys
ein Hotel zwei Hotels


 

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