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. If you have any question about this lesson please contact me here. The next lesson is below, have fun!

German Phrases   German Phrases

German Vocabulary   German Vocabulary



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