German Lessons

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Das Halloween in Deutschland

Halloween in Germany is not the major celebration that it often is in the United States, but it has definitely gotten more popular in recent decades, with kids' costumes showing up in the shops and people having costume parties. This latter tradition is, of course, already a part of German culture as found in the ancient carnival or Fasching customs. You can brush up on some of your spooky German with examples from the following videos.

 

In der Nacht vor Allerheiligen sind die Monster los.
In the night before All Hallow's Eve, the monsters are on the loose.
Captions 1-2, Halloween: Gruselvergnügen auf Burg Frankenstein

 

Geister, Untote, paranormale Phänomene... 
Spirits, zombies, paranormal phenomena... 
Caption 1, Paranormal?: Auf Geisterjagd in Ludwigsburg

 

Da reiben sich die Hexen mit Flugsalbe ein und fahren auf ihren Besen.
Then the witches rub on flying ointment and ride on their brooms.
Captions 23-24, Geschichte: Hexenverbrennung im Odenwald

 

Das Grauen ist hier real!
The horror is real here!
Caption 22, Halloween: Gruselvergnügen auf Burg Frankenstein

 

Vermutlich geht Halloween auf eine Tradition der alten Kelten zurück.
Supposedly Halloween goes back to a tradition of the ancient Celts.
Caption 4, Cettina erklärt: Halloween

 

Further Learning
Watch the above videos to get into the Halloween spirit and search on Yabla German for more videos related to the topic. Most important of all, we wish you a happy and safe Halloween!

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Sayings with Scriptural Backgrounds

When the Old Testament was translated from clerical Latin into the common spoken languages in the 16th century, it had a profound effect on European spoken languages and literature. Many of the phrases derived from this work are so common that people are often not even aware of the source. Here are some examples of phrases with a scriptural background that German and English languages use in everyday speech.

 

Und 1995 hatte ich dann die erste Ausstellung zu diesem Thema. Es werde Licht.
And in 1995 I then had the first exhibition on this theme. Let there be light.
Captions 17-18, Malerei: Benno Treiber

 

Essen kann er auch in Ruh'. Vater drückt ein Auge zu.
He can eat in peace. Father turns a blind eye.
Caption 4, Der Struwwelpeter: Ausschnitte

 

Selbstverständlich, wie auf meinen eigenen Augapfel.
Of course, like the apple of my eye.
Caption 11, Abenteuer und Sport: Fallschirmspringen

 

Hochmut kommt vor dem Fall.
Pride comes before the fall.

Caption 24, Eva erklärt: Sprichwörter

 

Worte zu Asche und Staub zu Staub.
Words to ashes and dust to dust.
Caption 46, Luxuslärm: Interview

 

The above is a play on the usual saying "Ashes to ashes, dust to dust."

 

Further Learning
Be sure and see the latest Yabla video Eva erklärt: Sprichwörter for a selection of more German phrases on Yabla German

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Speaking German in Brazil

The German language is not nearly as widely spoken as some other languages, like Mandarin Chinese or Spanish, for instance. According to a list of languages spoken around the world on Wikipedia, German is the 11th most-spoken language on the planet, with 89 million speakers or about 1.27% of the world population. Still, many people are surprised to hear that German is an official main language in six countries. Let's start with the obvious: 

 

Deutschland geht es gut, auch wenn das nächste Jahr ohne Zweifel schwieriger wird als dieses.
Germany is doing well, even if next year will undoubtedly be more difficult than this year.
Captions 44-45, Angela Merkel: Neujahrsansprache

 

And in second place, Austria:

 

Am nächsten Wochenende werde ich in Österreich sein.
Next weekend I will be in Austria.
Caption 49, Konjugation: Das Verb „sein“

 

Followed by Switzerland: 

 

Der Rhein entspringt in den Alpen, in der Schweiz.    
The Rhine has its source in the alps, in Switzerland.
Caption 12, Unterwegs mit Cettina: an der Rheinfähre

 

So far, so good. Most people know that German is spoken in the three countries listed above, but have no idea where to go from there. Let's start with the small country of Liechtenstein: 

 

Die Schweiz, Deutschland, Liechtenstein, Österreich und die Niederlande.
Switzerland, Germany, Liechtenstein, Austria, and the Netherlands.
Caption 15, Unterwegs mit Cettina: an der Rheinfähre

 

And in place number five:

 

Ein scharfer Abschluss einer überraschend interessanten Reise durchs unbekannte Luxemburg.
A spicy ending to a surprisingly interesting journey through unknown Luxembourg.
Caption 62, Reisebericht: Luxemburg

 

The national language of Luxembourg is Luxembourgish, but German is also an officially recognized language. And the last country where German is, surprisingly for some, considered a nationwide, co-official language: 

 

Vor allem aus Belgien… kommen immer mehr Campingfans.
Above all from Belgium… more and more camping fans are coming.
Captions 38-39, Reisebericht: Luxemburg

 

French and Flemish are the dominant languages in Belgium, but some districts near its eastern border with Germany speak predominantly German. German is also a co-official language in provinces of some other countries, including South Tyrol in Italy, the Opole and Silesian districts of Poland, and the Espírito Santo, Santa Catarina, and Rio Grande do Sul districts in Brazil

 

Further Learning
Read this article on Wikipedia about places where German is spoken throughout the world, and look for further examples of where these countries appear on Yabla German.

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A Fraction of the Time

This week we are going to review one aspect of telling the time in German that should be easy for intermediate and advanced German speakers, but a bit tricky for beginners. The telling of time in German uses quarterly divisions: Viertel (quarter), halb (half), and in some German dialects, drei viertel (three-quarters). 

 

For 15 minutes past the hour, you use Viertel nach

 

Heute morgen um Viertel nach sechs ist die Nationalmannschaft in Frankfurt gelandet.
This morning at a quarter past six, the national team landed in Frankfurt.
Caption 16, Umfragen: Nach der WM

 

For a 15 minutes before the hour, you use Viertel vor

 

Es ist Viertel vor acht.
It is a quarter till eight.
Caption 22, Lydia erklärt: die Uhrzeit

 

In American English, when the clock reads 1:30, it is called "one thirty", but the informal British English equivalent is "half one." For native British English speakers, the German rendering of 1:30 can be especially confusing: 

 

Es ist jetzt halb eins.    
It is now twelve thirty.
Caption 23, Jenny zeigt uns: Das Heidelberger Schloss

 

So as you see, the British English "half one" is 1:30, but the German halb eins is 12:30. You just have to remember that when halb is used in telling time, it is always going a half hour back in time.

 

In some German dialects, instead of saying Viertel vor, they say drei viertel or "three quarters." In dialect, 12:45 could be drei viertel eins instead of Viertel vor eins

 

Note too that for grammatical reasons, Viertel nach and Viertel vor are capitalized, but halb and drei viertel are not. It is also important to note that the word Uhr, in this context the equivalent of "o'clock," is not used when telling the time with time divisions. At 10 o'clock you say it is zehn Uhr, but at 10:15 you simply say it is Viertel nach zehn, omitting the word Uhr.

 

Further Learning
Watch the video Lydia erklärt die Uhrzeit on Yabla German to review the proper telling of time in German.

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In the Bucket

We've all heard the English idiom "to kick the bucket," which means "to die." There are various theories about where the phrase originated from, the Oxford English Dictionary mentioning that the Old French word buquet was a beam on which animals were hung by the feet after being slaughtered, hence "kicking the bucket." The closest to this idiom in German is probably ins Gras beißen, or literally "to bite into the grass," which itself is a close parallel to the English idiom "to bite the dust," again meaning "to die." 

 

There is, however, a German idiom relating to the word "bucket" with negative connotations:

 

Dann ist das ganze Lied im Eimer.
Then the whole song is in the bucket.
Caption 29, Monsters of Liedermaching: Kleiner Zeh mit Ansage

 

Wenn Thorsten beim HSV nicht genommen wird, ist seine Karriere im Eimer.
If Thorsten is not accepted at the HSV his career will be in the bucket.
Captions 18-19, Die Pfefferkörner: Eigentor

 

If someone or a situation is im Eimer, it means he or she or the situation is completely ruined. According to the Duden Dictionary, Eimer in this case is alluding to der Abfalleimer, or trash can. Der Eimer is also German slang for an old ship or an old car. This has English parallels in the slang expression "rust bucket" for an old boat or an old car.

 

Further Learning
Look for further examples of Eimer on Yabla German and see more examples of how this word is used in a real world context. 

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Are you crazy?

You probably fall well within the standard psychological definitions of a sane person, but it's possible nevertheless that, at some point, somebody might accuse you in German of being bonkers, nuts, whack, cuckoo, psycho, mad, cracked, bonkers, potty, barmy, mental, unhinged, or just plain crazy. If you are familiar with a few of the German adjectives on the topic, you will be better prepared to react calmly and rationally, belying the accusation by the very coolness of your manner. 

 

Sag mal, spinnst du?
Tell me, are you crazy
Caption 58, Mama arbeitet wieder: Papa ist weg

 

The verb spinnen in formal usage is the spinning of wool, but  "are you spinning?" is a slang idiom for "are you crazy?"

 

Bei euch piept's wohl! 
It's really chirping with you!
Caption 41, JoNaLu: Prinz Dreckspatz

 

The verb piepen in its standard usage means to make a high, whistling sound like a bird, but bei jemandem piept es is a slang idiom for suggesting they are crazy. 

 

Hast du eine Macke oder was? 
Do you have a defect or something?
Caption 6, Einsatz für Christophorus: Gehwegradler

 

The noun die Macke in formal usage is "defect," but in casual use eine Macke haben means to be crazy, to "have a screw loose" so to speak.

 

Further Learning
Some formal German adjectives referring to a loss of sanity include irrsinnig, psychotisch, geistig behindert, and geistig gestört. The term geisteskrank was a formal term in decades past, but is now considered outdated. As in English, there are very many informal or slang adjectives, including verrückt, wahnsinnig, irre, blödsinnigblöd, and bescheuert, to name a few. Go to Yabla German and see how they are used in a real world context, but be careful how you use these words out there. The person you are accusing might really be crazy, after all!

 

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Sie liebt dich, yeah, yeah, yeah

The classic rock band the Beatles played a lot in Hamburg at the start of their career and thus felt it was important to release some of their first recordings in German too. The song "She loves you" was also released in 1964 as "Sie liebt dich," and you can listen to it here. The expression is also the climax of a classic fairy tale:

 

Oh, Biest! Ich liebe dich. Es ist mir egal, wie du aussiehst.
Oh, Beast! I love you. It doesn't matter to me how you look.
Caption 84, Märchen, Sagenhaft: Die Schöne und das Biest

 

And another classic German expression for being in love:

 

Ich habe mich in dich verliebt.
I've fallen in love with you.
Caption 31, Filmtrailer: Keinohrhasen

 

The phrase in sich verlieben is one of the times when the German preposition in has the noun following it in the accusative case. In the Berlin dialect, it is often in the dative case (ich liebe dir, ich bin in dir verliebt), but this is not good High German. Let's stick with ich liebe dich and ich bin in dich verliebt!

 

Nacht, mein Schatz. Ich hab' dich vermisst.    
Good night, my precious. I've missed you.
Caption 4, Mama arbeitet wieder: Die Trennung

 

Der Schatz is a classic German term of endearment, but it also means "treasure." When I lived in Germany as a teenager, I often heard male American soldiers using the dialect version of the word, Schatzi, to accost unfortunate female passers-by. The word "schatzi" is even included in a number of American dictionaries as an acceptable English word, evidence of a relatively recent addition of a German word into English. And of course, if you love someone, you miss them (vermissen) when they are gone.

 

Further Learning
Look for further examples of lieben and verlieben on Yabla German and see how they are used in a real world context. PS The Beatles also released a German version of  "I Want to Hold Your Hand" as "Komm, gib mir deine Hand"...

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Where it's at!

A preposition is a type of word that express spatial or temporal relations. Here is a list of known English prepositions. There is no set of rules for learning prepositions, and the prepositions from one language often do not translate directly into another. It's best to learn English prepositions by getting used to using them in context. Today, let's take a look at the preposition "at."

 

The preposition "at" can be used to express the time of day: 

 

And at three o'clock the Queen comes on and she gives her speech.
Caption 24, Christmas traditions: in the UK

 

Or to indicate a place: 

 

As you can see behind me, we are at Buckingham Palace.
Caption 1, In London with Lauren: Buckingham Palace

 

Or to indicate an activity or proficiency with something:

 

So I'm very good at working as part of a team.
Caption 34, Business English: The job interview

 

Or very commonly when mentioning an email address. The "at symbol" (@) in an email address is also called... at!

 

You can email us at
Caption 50, The Egoscue Clinic of Austin: Exercises for low back pain

 

Further Learning
Search for examples of the preposition "at" on Yabla English to see them used in a real-world context. 

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Happiness is...

In the last lesson, we discussed the uses of das Unglück, often translated as "misfortune" or "bad luck" in English. Let's take a happier approach this week and look at some of the uses of das Glück and some words related to it. Das Glück is often translated as "lucky," especially when combined with the verb haben:

 

Mann, da hab' ich noch mal Glück gehabt!
Man, I was lucky again!
Caption 32, Die Pfefferkörner: Cybermobbing

 

Das Glück can also mean "happiness": 

 

Und wie lange dauert überhaupt das Glück?
And how long does happiness last after all?
Caption 6,  Die Toten Hosen: Ertrinken

 

Glücklich is an adjectival variant of das Glück

 

Glücklich und zufrieden legten sie sich anschließend zur Ruhe.    
Happy and satisfied, they afterwards lay down to rest.
Caption 62, Märchen, Sagenhaft: Die Bremer Stadtmusikanten

 

Der Glückwunsch can be translated as "congratulations" or "best wishes": 

 

Herzlichen Glückwunsch zum Geburtstag!
Heartfelt best wishes on your birthday!
Caption 22, Mama arbeitet wieder: Kapitel 3, Papa ist weg

 

Further Learning
There are dozens of German compound words that are formed with the noun das Glück, among them der Glücksbringer, die Glückseligkeit, der Glücksgriff, das Glücksspiel, and die Glückszahl. See if you can guess what these words mean without using a dictionary, and then go to Yabla German and see how they are used in a real world context. 

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Luck in Misfortune?

The German noun das Unglück is often translated as "misfortune" or "bad luck" in English:

 

König Priamos erklärte, es würde Unglück bringen.
King Priam said it would bring bad luck.
Caption 51, Märchen, Sagenhaft: Das Trojanische Pferd

 

But das Unglück can also be an accident or a disaster: 

 

Es war ein großes Unglück mit dem Vulkanausbruch in Island.
It has been a big disaster with the volcano erupting in Iceland.
Caption 3, Reisen: während des Vulkanausbruchs

 

There is also an idiomatic usage of das Unglück

 

Wir haben Glück im Unglück, dass wir jetzt ein paar Tage länger hier in Spanien sein dürfen.    
We have luck in misfortune that we may now spend a few more days in Spain.
Caption 24, Reisen: während des Vulkanausbruchs

 

The rendering as "luck in misfortune" is literal, but the idiom is akin to the English "a blessing in disguise," when good things come out of seemingly bad occurrences. 

 

Further Learning
But let's not end this lesson on a sour note, instead let's give it das Happy End or das Happyend (a German pseudo-anglicism for a "happy ending"). The opposite of das Unglück is das Glück, which can be translated as "happiness," "good luck," or "good fortune," among other happier words. Do a search for the word Glück on Yabla German and see how the different contexts of its usage can help you understand it better in a real world context. 

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The Message or the News?

The German noun die Nachricht is often translated into "message" in English, such as a message left on your voicemail:

 

Sie haben eine neue Nachricht.
You have a new message.
Caption 27, Die Pfefferkörner: Gerüchteküche

 

In a slightly confusing twist, both the singular and plural form of die Nachricht (plural: die Nachrichten) are often translated into "news" in English: 

 

Die Nachricht von der schlafenden Prinzessin verbreitete sich in vielen Ländern.
The news of the sleeping princess spread throughout many countries.
Captions 57-58, Märchen, Sagenhaft: Dornröschen

 

Gute Nachrichten für Hessens Wirtschaftsminister Tarek Al-Wazir. 
Good news for Hessia's Minister for Economic Affairs Tarek Al-Wazir.
Caption 1, Frankfurt wird Handelszentrum: für die chinesische Währung Yuan

 

This may seem odd, but the reason that the word is translated the same regardless of whether it is singular or plural in German is that the word "news" is a mass noun in English. The Oxford dictionary defines a mass noun as "A noun denoting something that cannot be counted (e.g., a substance or quality), in English usually a noun that lacks a plural in ordinary usage and is not used with the indefinite article e.g. luggage, china, happiness."

 

Further Learning
Do a search for the word Nachricht on Yabla German and see how the different contexts of its usage can help you understand whether it's best to translate this word as "message" or "news," as well as decide when you should choose die Nachricht or its plural die Nachrichten when using it to mean "news."

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False Friends in Big Numbers

It's easy to get confused by the names of large numbers in German, as many of them are false friends — number names that are the same as in English but represent different numbers entirely. Let's start relatively small with a mere million: 

 

Rund eine Million Menschen wird in der Stadt erwartet.
Around one million people are expected in the city.
Captions 23-24, Rhein-Main-TV: Feier zur deutschen Einheit in Frankfurt wird gigantisch 

 

Thus "million" in English is the same as die Million in German: a 1 followed by 6 zeros, 1,000,000. But when we ramp it up to an English billion, we find our first false friend:

 

Drei Milliarden Jahre lang war kein Lebewesen auf der Erde mit bloßem Auge zu erkennen.
For three billion years no living thing on earth was visible to the naked eye.
Captions 19-20, Zeit: Die Vergangenheit und Zukunft von allem

 

An English billion is die Milliarde in German (plural Milliarden). That's a 1 followed by 9 zeros, 1,000,000,000. Let's get even bigger with our next false friend: 

 

Ich bin eine aus sechs Billionen.
I am one of six trillion.
Caption 7, Frida Gold: 6 Billionen 

 

An English trillion is die Billion (plural Billionen) in German. That's a 1 followed by 12 zeros, 1,000,000,000,000. I'm not sure what Frida Gold is referring to, since the population of planet Earth is 7.4 billion (in English, 7,4 Milliarden in German), so even if she means the English "billion," the count should be 7 billion, not 6 billion! Maybe it just sounded better in the song...

 

So let's recap what we've learned and go a bit further (false friends are highlighted in bold): 

 

English / German 
Million / die Million (1 plus 6 zeros)
Billion / die Milliarde (1 plus 9 zeros)
Trillion / die Billion (1 plus 12 zeros)
Quadrillion / die Billiarde (1 plus 15 zeros)
Quintillion / die Trillion (1 plus 18 zeros)
Sextillion / die Trilliarde (1 plus 21 zeros)
Septillion / die Quadrillion (1 plus 24 zeros)
Octillion / die Quadrilliarde (1 plus 27 zeros)
Nonillion / die Quintillion (or: die Quinquillion) (1 plus 30 zeros)

 

Note that all plurals of these high-count words in German end with -en.

 

Further Learning
Take a look here at the complete list of names of large German numbers and do a search for some big numbers on Yabla German and see some more examples of how they are used in German in a real world context! 

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For or Against

The preposition gegen is usually translated as "against" in English, but there are some exceptions, especially when gegen comes up in a health context. When discussing whether a medicine is effective for a specific health condition, gegen is usually translated as "for":

 

Gegen die Halsschmerzen hilft ein Hustenbonbon.
For sore throats, a cough drop helps.
Caption 9, Krank sein: mit Eva

 

Das kann ganz gut gegen das Bauchweh helfen.    
This can help a lot for a stomachache.
Caption 17, Krank sein: mit Eva

 

However, gegen in regards to allergies is usually translated as "to": 

 

Ich bin erst mal allergisch gegen Pferde geworden…
I first became allergic to horses…
Caption 44, Curly Horses: Pferdeglück auch für Allergiker

 

One exception, however, is regarding immunization, where gegen is usually translated as "against": 

 

Bist du eigentlich gegen die Schweinegrippe geimpft?
Are you actually immunized against the swine flu?
Caption 24, Deutsche Musik: Thomas Godoj

 

Further Learning
Do a search for gegen on Yabla German and see some more examples of how this preposition is used in German in a real world context! 

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Ein Mann will nach oben

There are a number of ways to indicate that something is going "up" in German, but today let's take a look at the prepositional phrase nach oben, which can be translated into English in a number of ways, depending on the context. Let's take a look at some different interpretations of the phrase in German Yabla videos.

 

Vielleicht halten Sie's grad so ein bisschen nach oben.    
Maybe you could hold it up a little bit.
Caption 29, Fußball: Torwandschießen

 

… dass ein unsichtbarer Faden am Kopf den ganzen Körper nach oben zieht.
… that an invisible thread on top of your head is pulling the whole body upward.
Caption 15, Flirt-Coach-Serie: Die richtige Körpersprache

 

Das war ein langer Weg nach oben.
It was a long way to the top.
Caption 3, Preisverleihung: Bestes Magazin

 

Nach oben sind dem Preis keine Grenzen gesetzt.
No price limits are set at the top.
Caption 13, Highend-Fashion aus dem Kloster: Ein Mönch als Maßschneider

 

Als der Frosch nach oben in ihr Bett getragen werden wollte …    
When the Frog wanted to be carried upstairs to her bed …
Caption 57, Märchen, Sagenhaft: Der Froschkönig

 

In the examples above, you see nach oben used to mean "up," "upward," "to the top," "at the top," and "upstairs." Note that when you say in German that you are going upstairs, it is more common to simply say you are going nach oben than to use the more literal die Treppe hinaufgehen.

 

The prepositional phrase nach oben also has a number of idiomatic usages: 

 

Das heißt natürlich nicht, dass hier alle Leute die Nase nach oben tragen.
Of course, that doesn't mean that all the people here put their noses up
Caption 5, Rhein-Main-TV: Badesee Rodgau

 

Die Nase nach oben tragen means "to be conceited."

 

Es gibt noch Potential nach oben.
There is still upward potential.
Caption 21, Rhein-Main-TV: Green-Region-Konferenz zur Nachhaltigkeit

 

And here, Potential nach oben means there is room for improvement.

 

Ein Mann will nach oben is the title of a novel by Hans Fallada, whose final novel from 1947, Jeder stirbt für sich allein (English title: "Alone in Berlin"), became a surprise bestseller in its English translation in 2009. Ein Mann will nach oben was made into a 13-part TV film in 1978.

 

Ein Mann will nach oben.    
A man wants to move up.
Caption 1, Mathieu Carriere: Ein Mann will nach oben

 

Further Learning
Do a search for nach oben on Yabla German and see some more examples of how this phrase is used in German in a real world context! 

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Like totally whatever...

Let's take a break this week from the downward spiral of dismal news reports and have a look at something that's, like, totally whatever. The English interjection "whatever" can be rendered as the German phrase wie auch immer, which directly translates to the rather clumsy sounding "as always too." 

 

Na ja, gut, wie auch immer. Wie auch immer.
Well, good, whatever. Whatever.
Captions 17-18, Warten auf: Rihanna

 

If the interjection "whatever" is used in a disparaging way, however, to mean "I don't care" or "it doesn't matter," then there is a somewhat less than entirely polite solution: 

 

… mit oder ohne Bindestrich, scheißegal!
… with or without the dash, whatever!
Caption 82, Frankfurter Oktoberfest: Dirndl und Lederhosen

 

The English pronoun "whatever" is usually simply rendered with the German was

 

Man kann machen und tun, was man will.
You can make and do whatever you want.
Caption 20, Abenteuer und Sport: Fallschirmspringen

 

The English adjective "whatever" has several possible translations in German: 

 

In welchen Höhen und welchen Tiefen wir gemeinsam waren...
In whatever ups and whatever downs we were in together...
Caption 11: Die Toten Hosen: Altes Fieber

 

Egal, wo ich hingekommen bin, in irgendein Auto eingestiegen bin, lief immer FFH.
No matter where I went, or whatever car I got inside of, FFH was always playing.
Caption 8, Formel-1-Rennfahrer: Timo Glock

 

The more common translation of welche is "which," and irgendein is usually rendered as "any" or "some," but those would not have worked very well in the examples above. As always with translations, the most important consideration is the context.

 

Further Learning
Do a search for the word "whatever" on Yabla German and see the many examples of how this word is used in German in a real world context! 

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Ruf die Polizei!

Not to be alarmist, but with police troubles in the USA and the rest of the troubles around the world, this might be a good time to note that although the noun "the police" is always plural in English, the noun die Polizei is dealt with quite differently in German.

 

Die Polizei ermittelt wegen Hausfriedensbruch.
The police are investigating because of trespassing.
Caption 12, Atomkraft: Streit um AKW-Laufzeiten

 

Ruh dich aus, bis die Polizei kommt.
Relax until the police come.
Caption 15, Die Pfefferkörner: Eigentor

 

Die Polizei sprach von hunderttausend Menschen.    
The police spoke of one hundred thousand people.
Caption 4, Papst Benedikt: Erster Rücktritt eines Papstes in der Neuzeit

 

In English, there is no singular for the noun "the police", but in the German die Polizei, there is no plural noun form. As you can see in the above examples: die Polizei ermittelt, die Polizei kommt, and die Polizei sprach, the conjugations of the verbs used reflect a singular noun.

 

Further Learning
Do a search for the noun Polizei on Yabla German and see the many examples of how this word is used in German in a real world context! 

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The German Perspective on the Brexit

German Chancellor Angela Merkel gave an important speech before the German Bundestag (Parliament) on June 28, giving a clear summary of the German perspective on the recent British referendum to leave the European Union. For those of you who don't yet subscribe to Yabla, we are publishing an excerpt of her speech here as an example of the kind of content that you can have access to by subscribing. For Yabla subscribers, it's a great way to view this excerpt of her speech in its entirety.

 

Nach Artikel 50 der Europäischen Verträge 
According to Article 50 of the European Treaties,
hat Großbritannien formal den Europäischen Rat darüber zu unterrichten,
Great Britain must formally inform the European Council
dass es seine Mitgliedschaft beenden möchte.
that it would like to end its membership.
Nach diesem Antrag werden die 27 anderen Mitgliedsstaaten
After this request, the 27 other member countries will specify
die in Artikel 50, Absatz 2, der Europäischen Verträge erwähnten Leitlinien
the guidelines—mentioned in Article 50, paragraph 2 of the European treaties
des Europäischen Rates für die Verhandlungen festlegen.
of the European Council—for the negotiations.
Und nach der Festlegung dieser Leitlinien können die Verhandlungen beginnen,
And after the establishment of these guidelines, the negotiations can begin,
nicht vorher, weder formell noch informell.
not before, neither formally nor informally.
Um es klipp und klar zusammenzufassen: Wir nehmen zur Kenntnis, dass Großbritannien
To summarize it in plain language: We acknowledge that Great Britain
einen Antrag gemäß Artikel 50 der EU-Verträge noch nicht stellen will,
does not yet want to submit a request in accordance with Article 50 of the EU Treaties
und Großbritannien seinerseits muss zur Kenntnis nehmen,
and Great Britain must for its part acknowledge
dass es keine wie auch immer gearteten Verhandlungen oder
that there can and will be no negotiations or
Vorgespräche geben kann und wird, solange der Antrag
preliminary discussions whatsoever as long as the motion in accordance
nach Artikel 50 nicht gestellt wurde, weder formell noch informell.
with Article 50 has not been submitted, neither formal nor informal.
Und ich kann unseren britischen Freunden nur raten, sich hier nichts vorzumachen
And I can only advise our British friends not to have any misconceptions
bei den notwendigen Entscheidungen, die in Großbritannien getroffen werden müssen.
regarding the necessary decisions that must be reached in Great Britain.
Sobald beziehungsweise erst wenn der Antrag gemäß Artikel 50
As soon as, or respectively, only when the motion in accordance with Article 50
der EU-Verträge vorliegt, beginnt eine zweijährige Frist für die Verhandlungen.
of the EU Treaties is submitted, will a two year period for the negotiations begin.
Diese Frist kann verlängert werden, und zwar wieder nur durch einen einstimmigen Beschluss.
This time period can be extended and only—indeed once again—through a unanimous ruling.
An ihrem Ende wird eine Vereinbarung über die genauen Einzelheiten
At its end, an arrangement about the exact details
des Austritts Großbritanniens aus der Europäischen Union stehen.
of Great Britain's exit from the European Union will be produced.
Solange die Verhandlungen laufen, bleibt Großbritannien Mitglied der Europäischen Union.
As long as the negotiations are in progress, Great Britain will remain a member of the European Union.
Alle Rechte und Pflichten, die sich aus dieser Mitgliedschaft ergeben,
All rights and obligations that result from this membership
sind bis zum tatsächlichen Austritt vollständig zu achten und einzuhalten,
are, until the actual exit, to be completely respected and complied with,
und das gilt für beide Seiten gleichermaßen.
and that applies for both sides equally.
Captions 1-25, Brexit-Votum: Merkel warnt vor Spaltung Europa

 

Further Learning
Do a search on Yabla German for some of the bureaucratic terms in Merkel's speech that you may be less familiar with to see the words used in other contexts. Here is a list to start with: der Antrag, der Beschluss, die Frist, der Mitgliedsstaat, die Verhandlung, die Vereinbarung. You can also read Chancellor Merkel's entire speech here. If you have not yet subscribed to Yabla German, try these sample videos to see how our language learning system works! 

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German Bank Accounts

If you are planning a longer-term stay in Germany to study or just to live, you may want to familiarize yourself with some of the typical terms used when banking in Germany. Our latest Yabla video Eva erklärt Bankkonten does just that!  

 

Damit man dieses Geld auch bekommt, benötigt man ein Bankkonto beziehungsweise ein Girokonto.
In order to also receive this money, you need a bank account or respectively a checking account.
Captions 7-8, Eva erklärt: Bankkonten

 

Terms: das Bankkonto, das Girokonto

 

Um das Konto einzurichten, benötigt die Bank eine Anmeldebestätigung des Bürgeramtes.    
In order to set up the account, the bank needs a confirmation of registration from the municipal office.
Captions 15-16, Eva erklärt: Bankkonten

 

Terms: die Anmeldebestätigung, das Bürgeramt

 

Wenn man das möchte, kann man bei der Bank auch einen Dispositionskredit beantragen.
If you would like, you can also apply for a credit line at the bank.
Captions 20-21, Eva erklärt: Bankkonten

 

Term: der Dispositionskredit

 

Mit dieser kann man Geld abheben, Kontoauszüge holen und beim Einkaufen bezahlen.
With this, you can withdraw money, get bank statements, and pay when shopping.
Captions 26-27, Eva erklärt: Bankkonten

 

Terms: abheben, der Kontoauszug

 

Further Learning
Do a search on Yabla German for more terms related to opening a bank account and familiarize yourself with any terms you may not know. Here is a list to start with: die Bankgebühr, die Bankkarte, die Filiale, der Geldautomat, die Geldkarte, das Guthaben, die Hypothek, die Kreditwürdigkeit, der Personalausweis, der Reisepass. 

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