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German Grammar

Welcome to the 8th lesson about German grammar. We will first learn about prepositions, negation, questions, adverbs, and pronouns including: personal, object and possessive pronouns.

We will start with prepositions. In general, they are used to link words to other words. For example: I speak German and English the preposition is [and] because it connects both words German and English. The following is a list of the most used prepositions in German.

Prepositions - German
and und Audio
above über Audio
under unter Audio
before vor Audio
after nach Audio
in front of vor Audio
behind hinter Audio
far from weit entfernt Audio
near in der Nähe von Audio
in in Audio
inside innen Audio
outside außerhalb Audio
with mit Audio
without ohne Audio
about über Audio
between zwischen Audio
but aber Audio
for für Audio
from von Audio
to zu Audio

Preposition Grammar Rules

The following examples use prepositions in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a sentence.

Prepositions + Rules - German
I eat without a knife
[preposition + noun] Ich esse ohne Messer Audio
she lives near the church
[verb + preposition] Sie wohnt in der Nähe der Kirche Audio
he is taller than her
[adjective + preposition] Er ist größer als sie. Audio
he came with his small dog
[preposition + pronoun] Er kam mit seinem kleinen Hund Audio
can you come with me?
[preposition + pronoun] Können Sie mit mir kommen? Audio

Negation in German

Now let's learn how to make a negative sentence (negation). For example: Saying no, I can't, I don't ... The following examples use negation in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a sentence.

Negation + Rules - German
I understand you
[affirmative form] Ich verstehe dich Audio
I don't understand you
[negation + verb] Ich verstehe dich nicht Audio
this is not the correct word
[negation + adjective] Dies ist nicht das richtige Wort Audio
don't leave me
[imperative negation] Verlass mich nicht Audio
no problem
[negation + noun] Kein Problem Audio

Negative Sentences - German
I don't speak French
[negation + present tense] Ich spreche kein Französisch Audio
she didn't visit Germany
[negation + past tense] Sie hat Deutschland nicht besucht. Audio
he cannot see us
[negative modal verb] Er kann uns nicht sehen Audio
can't she play chess?
[interrogative negation] Kann sie nicht Schach spielen? Audio
we will not come late
[negation + future tense] Wir werden uns nicht verspäten. Audio

Questions in German

Now let's learn how to ask questions (interrogative). Such as: what, why, can you ...? Here are some common examples:

English - German
how? Wie? Audio
what? Was? Audio
who? Wer? Audio
why? Warum? Audio
where? Wo? Audio

More of the interrogative form, now in a sentence:

Questions + Rules - German
where do you live?
[interrogative + verb] Wo wohnst du? Audio
does she speak Chinese?
[interrogative verb] Spricht sie Chinesisch? Audio
how much is this?
[interrogative preposition] Wie viel kostet dies? Audio
can I help you?
[interrogative modal verb] Kann ich Ihnen helfen? Audio
what is your name?
[interrogative preposition] Wie heißen Sie? Audio

Adverbs in German

It's time to learn the adverbs in German. But what is an adverb? In general, adverbs modify verbs and adjectives. For example: You speak fast. The adverb is [fast] because it describes the verb and answers the question how do you speak?. Here is a list of the most common ones:

Adverbs - German
now jetzt Audio
yesterday gestern Audio
today heute Audio
tonight heute Abend Audio
tomorrow morgen Audio
soon bald Audio
quickly schnell Audio
slowly langsam Audio
together zusammen Audio
very sehr Audio
almost fast Audio
always immer Audio
usually normalerweise Audio
sometimes manchmal Audio
rarely selten Audio
never nie Audio

The following examples use the adverbs in different ways and places to demonstrate how it behaves in a sentence.

Adverbs + Rules - German
do you understand me now?
[pronoun + adverb] Verstehst du mich jetzt? Audio
I need help immediately
[noun + adverb] Ich brauche sofort Hilfe Audio
she is very intelligent
[adverb + adjective] Sie ist sehr intelligent Audio
I will always love you
[verb + adverb] Ich werde dich immer lieben Audio
can we learn German together?
[adverb in a question] Können wir gemeinsam Deutsch lernen? Audio

Pronouns in German

We're almost done! This time we will learn the pronouns in German. In general, a pronoun can be used instead of a noun. For example instead of saying my teacher speaks 3 languages, you can use the pronoun he, and say he speaks 3 languages. Here is a list of the most common ones:

Personal Pronouns - German
I ich Audio
you du, Sie Audio
he er Audio
she sie Audio
we wir Audio
they sie Audio

Object Pronouns - German
me mir, mich Audio
you dir, dich, Ihnen, Sie Audio
him ihm, ihn Audio
her ihr, sie Audio
us uns Audio
them ihnen, sie Audio

Possessive Pronouns - German
my mein, meine Audio
your dein, deine, Ihr, Ihre Audio
his sein, seine Audio
her ihr, ihre Audio
our unser, unsere Audio
their ihr, ihre Audio

I think it's better to put the above example in a sentence to better assist you. The following examples use pronouns in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a sentence. We will start with the personal pronouns.

Personal Pronouns - German
I am your friend
[1st pronoun + verb] Ich bin dein Freund Audio
you speak very fast
[2nd pronoun + adverb] Sie sprechen sehr schnell Audio
he has three dogs
[3rd pronoun + verb] Er hat drei Hunde Audio
she can speak German
[3rd pronoun + verb] Sie kann Deutsch sprechen. Audio
we will not come late
[1st plural pronoun] Wir werden uns nicht verspäten. Audio
they bought milk and bread
[3rd plural pronoun] Sie kauften Milch und Brot Audio

The object pronoun is used as a target by a verb, and usually come after that verb. For example: I gave him my book. The object pronoun here is him. Here are more examples:

Object Pronouns - German
can you tell me your name?
[1st object pronoun] Können Sie mir Ihren Namen sagen? Audio
I will give you money
[2nd object pronoun] Ich werde dir Geld geben. Audio
she wrote him a letter
[3rd object pronoun] Sie schrieb ihm einen Brief Audio
they visited her yesterday
[3rd object pronoun] Sie besuchten sie gestern Audio
can she help us?
[1st pl. object pronoun] Kann sie uns helfen? Audio
he gave them food
[3rd pl. object pronoun] Er gab ihnen Lebensmittel Audio

Possessive Pronouns - German
my name is Maya
[1st possessive pronoun] Mein Name ist Maya Audio
your brother lives here
[2nd possessive pronoun] Ihr/Dein Bruder lebt hier Audio
her mother cooks for us
[3rd possessive pronoun] Ihre Mutter kocht für uns Audio
his hobby is reading books
[3rd possessive pronoun] Sein Hobby ist Bücher zu lesen Audio
our dream is to visit Paris
[1st pl. possessive pronoun] Unser Traum ist es, Paris zu besuchen Audio
their house is not far
[3rd pl. possessive pronoun] Ihr Haus ist nicht weit Audio

One more thing you need to know is the demonstrative pronouns. They're very easy to learn.

Demonstrative Pronouns - German
this is my house Dies ist mein Haus Audio
that restaurant is far Das Restaurant ist weit Audio
these apples are delicious Diese Äpfel sind lecker Audio
those stars are shiny Jene Sterne glänzen Audio

I hope you learned a lot about the German grammar in this lesson. Please check out our main menu here for more lessons: homepage. The next lesson is below, have fun!

Inspirational Quote: First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. Epictetus

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