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Auch, sogar, selbst: The Adverb "Even" in German

Auch im zweiten Drittel ließen die Löwen nicht locker.

Even in the second third of the game, the Löwen did not relax.

Caption 25, Eishockey - Löwen Frankfurt - EC Bad Nauheim

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You are likely used to auch meaning "also," but did you know that it can mean "even" as well? There are three words for the adverb "even" that are essentially interchangeable in German: auch, selbst, and sogar. They are often combined with wenn. Below we see that auch wenn means "even if" and sometimes "even though":


Auch wenn es mir mein Herz zerreißt

Even if it tears my heart up

Caption 5, Beatrice Egli - Irgendwann

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Doch auch wenn im Film viel Basketball gespielt wird:

But even though a lot of basketball is played in the movie,

Ein Sportfilm soll es dennoch nicht werden.

it is not intended to be a sports movie.

Captions 45-46, Dreharbeiten - zum Film „Playoff“

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In a previous lesson, we wrote about how the word selbst is used in the context of a person having made or done something themselves. However, in certain contexts, it is placed in front of the subject and means "even" as well:


Doch selbst bei Temperaturen wie im Kühlschrank...

But even at temperatures like in the refrigerator...

Caption 31, Alpenseen - Kühle Schönheiten

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Selbst ausgewachsen werden diese Tintenfische gerade mal zwanzig Zentimeter groß.

Even fully grown, these squid will only become twenty centimeters long.

Caption 28, Abenteuer Nordsee - Unter Riesenhaien und Tintenfischen

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The dual meaning of selbst means that it cannot be used in every sentence, because it would cause confusion. You have likely heard sogar more often:


In Berlin treten die besten von ihnen sogar in Wettkämpfen gegeneinander an.

In Berlin, the best of them even enter into competitions against one another.

Caption 34, Currywurst - Berlins schärfstes Stück

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Er kann sogar den Airbus A dreihundertachtzig drücken und ziehen.

It can even push and pull an Airbus A three hundred eighty.

Caption 18, Frankfurter Flughafen - Flugzeugschlepper

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Further Learning
For further examples, just do a simple search, as there are many on Yabla German!
See if you can also find examples of noch, which can also be translated as "even" when it augments an adjective. 

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