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Nuances of sprechen: Part I

One of the very first verbs you'll learn when studying German is sprechen ("to speak"). While watching videos on Yabla, however, you may have noticed that there are many verbs that consist of sprechen and a prefix. 


Some separable verbs include the words for "to say out loud" and "to repeat out loud":


Ich spreche vor und du kannst sie nachsprechen.

I'll say them out loud, and you can repeat them.

Caption 35, Deutsch mit Eylin: Umlaute

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The verb aussprechen can mean "to express" or "to pronounce" depending on the context. 


Und lassen Sie mich auch hier Dank aussprechen an Menschen, denen zu selten gedankt wird. 

And let me at this point also express gratitude to people who are too rarely thanked. 

Captions 1-2, Coronavirus: Fernsehansprache von Angela Merkel

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Das deutsche „Z“ wird immer so ausgesprochen.

The German "Z" is always pronounced like this.

Caption 21, Deutsch mit Eylin: S und Z

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The verb ansprechen means "to address." Like in English, you can address a person or address a topic:


Ich war mir nicht sicher, wie ich es ansprechen sollte.

I was not sure how to address it.

Caption 11, Die Wohngemeinschaft: Probleme

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Sie ist sofort abgehauen, als Frau Lenz die Sache angesprochen hat.

She immediately took off when Ms. Lenz raised the matter.

Caption 65, Die Pfefferkörner: Endspurt

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There are also some inseparable verbs that you have likely already encountered. For a topic that's being discussed, you can use sprechen über or the verb besprechen.


Um die Einzelheiten zu besprechen.

To talk about the specific details.

Caption 11, Berufsleben:  Probleme mit Mitarbeitern

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Dieses Thema haben wir schon in einem anderen Video besprochen.

We already spoke about this theme in another video.

Caption 3, Eva erklärt: die Steigerung von Adjektiven und Adverbien

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And though it's a bit different, let's include the verb versprechen ("to promise") as well:


Na gut, aber ihr müsst versprechen, dass ihr wach bleibt. -Versprochen.

All right, but you have to promise that you will stay awake. -Promised.

Caption 25, Peppa Wutz: Sterne - Zahnfee - Übernachtungsparty

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Further Learning
You can find many examples of these verbs conjugated on Yabla German. Stay tuned for a follow-up lesson in a few weeks!

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