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The Long Goodbye

That is actually the title of a classic detective novel by Raymond Chandler, but the long and short of it is that there are a number of ways to say goodbye in German – some of them longer than others! Let's start with what you probably already know:

 

Ja, damit sind wir fertig. Auf Wiedersehen!

Yes, with that we are finished. Goodbye!

Caption 77, Das 1. Newtonsche Gesetz - erklärt am Beispiel des Dodomobils

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Ich sehe Sie dann morgen. Auf Wiederhören.

I'll see you tomorrow then. Goodbye.

Caption 52, Berufsleben - das Vorstellungsgespräch

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Because of the -sehen in Wiedersehen ("see you again") and -hören in Wiederhören ("hear from you again"), auf Wiederhören is the proper form to use on the telephone.

 

Wiedersehen, vielen Dank! -Tschüss. -Tschüss.

Goodbye, many thanks! -Bye. -Bye.

Caption 25, Großstadtrevier - Von Monstern und Mördern

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Tschüss is an informal waym of saying goodbye that originally stems from the Spanish word for goodbye, adios.

 

Bis morgen. Ciao.

See you tomorrow. Ciao.

Caption 40, Bäppi im Fernsehstudio - Bäppis best model by Hilde Klump

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"Ciao" is actually from the Italian and can, depending upon the context, be used for hello or goodbye. It is not even translated as "bye" here as it has been adopted into English by most American and British dictionaries. It's usage in German is very informal.

 

Sie wissen schon, was wir meinen. Adieu.

You do know what we mean. Adieu.

Captions 64-65, Die Pfefferkörner - Endspurt

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The French word for goodbye, adieu, has also been adopted by English and is thus generally not translated.

 

Ich hab was vergessen. -Aha. -Wir sehen uns.

I forgot something. -Aha. -See you.

Caption 66, Die Pfefferkörner - Eigentor

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It is also common to say Wir sehen uns morgen ("We'll see each other tomorrow" or "See you tomorrow"), or Wir sehen uns wieder ("We'll see each other again"), and so forth. It sounds a bit impersonal to the ears of an English speaker, but you can also say man sieht sich, which translates as "We'll see each other" or simply "See you." 

 

Mir hat's super gefallen. Bis dann!

I really enjoyed it. Until then!

Caption 93, Frisbee - Karlsruher Weihnachtsturnier

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Hast du die Mathehausaufgaben denn schon fertig? -Ja, bis später.

Have you finished the math homework already? -Yes, see you later.

Caption 2, Knallerfrauen - Mathehausaufgaben

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Mach's gut, Herbert. Bis bald.

Take care, Herbert. See you soon.

Caption 4, Nicos Weg - A1 Folge 3: Tschüss!

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Bis zum nächsten Mal.

Until next time.

Caption 21, Berlin - Domäne Dahlem

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Many of the ways to say goodbye using bis and some point in the future may be translated, depending upon the context, as either "till," "until," or "see you..." So if somebody says bis morgen, you could translate it as "till tomorrow," "until tomorrow," or "see you tomorrow."

 

Note that macht's gut, which could be literally translated as "fare well" or "farewell," is used as an informal way to say goodbye in some German regional dialects. Another good equivalent translation could be "have a good one."

 

But how do you say "to say goodbye" as in "to take leave" of somebody? The most common ways are Abschied nehmen and the reflexive verb sich verabschieden:

 

Aber als Flüchtling muss man eben oft Abschied nehmen.

But as a refugee, you often have to say goodbye.

Caption 35, Filmtrailer - Als Hitler das rosa Kaninchen stahl

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Und hier verabschieden wir uns auch von euch.

And we will say goodbye to you here.

Caption 39, 48 h in Innsbruck - Sehenswürdigkeiten & Tipps

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Further Learning
I hope that learning about goodbye didn't take too long—this is a lesson and not a novel, after all! Look for some of the ways of saying goodbye on Yabla German, and take special note of how some are used in formal contexts and others in more casual situations. So until next time, mach's gut and stay healthy!

Der, die, or das? Part 1: Masculine Nouns

Der, die, or das? - Part 2: Feminine Nouns

Der, die, or das? - Part 3: Neuter Nouns

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As we know, German nouns can be masculine, feminine, or neuter, and the article used with a noun is dependent on its gender. You may have already been advised to memorize the definite article der, die, or das as an essential part of the noun itself, as there are few patterns that will reliably help you retrieve the gender of the noun later on. At Yabla, we try to help with this by always including the definite article of any new vocabulary words presented in our newsletters.

 

However, because new words are not always presented with their definite article in Yabla videos or in real life situations, it may be good to learn a few tendencies that exist for certain word endings. Let’s start with some typically masculine endings, keeping in mind that these rules do have exceptions and that memorizing the article along with each individual noun will always be a better idea.

 

Often, words ending with -er, -or, -en, -ling, -smus, -ig, -eig-ant, or -eich are masculine and require the definite article der.

 

Der Teig hat doch eine ganze Stunde gebraucht, um fertig zu werden.

The batter did indeed take a whole hour to be ready.

Caption 17, Weihnachtsplätzchen backen - mit Diane und vielen kleinen Helfern

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Dann wird der Honig in Gläser abgefüllt.

Then the honey is filled into jars.

Caption 28, Piggeldy und Frederick - Vergessen

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Der Garten, den ihr hier seht,

The garden, which you see here,

der gehört zur Domäne Dahlem.

belongs to the Dömane Dahlem [name of museum].

Caption 4, Berlin - Domäne Dahlem

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It is important to note that these rules often don’t apply to monosyllabic words. For example, words ending in -eich are often masculine, but not das Reich ("the empire").

 

Und der hintere Bereich jetzt hier, wo kommen wir jetzt hin?

And the area now behind here, where are we going now?

Caption 14, Karlsruher Stadtgeburtstag - die Majolika-Manufaktur

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And don't forget: these “rules” are really only tendencies due to exceptions. As we see here, there are words ending with -ant that are not masculine.

 

Der Elefant wollte an seine Frau nach Afrika schreiben.

The elephant wanted to write to his wife in Africa.

Caption 34, Janoschs Traumstunde - Post für den Tiger

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„Wie heißt das Restaurant, dessen Essen so...

"What is the name of the restaurant whose food...

dessen Essen so gut sein soll?"

whose food is supposed to be so good?"

Caption 5, Deutschkurs in Blaubeuren - Der Relativsatz

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Further Learning
We will be back next week with typical endings for feminine nouns. In the meantime, make some flashcards with vocabulary from past lessons or your favorite videos on Yabla German, and always include the definite article so that you learn the gender of the noun. If you have flashcards but have not included the articles, add them now! It is important to get into the habit of doing so.

 

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