Category Archives: Grammar Basics

Word of the Day – WitD – “verwirren vs. verwechseln”

verwirren-verwechseln-diffeHello everyone,

so a couple of weeks ago we had a poll as to when you’d like a new post to come out and I just wanted to date you up on … I mean update you on the result. And they show how cool and awesome and relaxed you all are because a clear majority¹ says.. .drumroll

Surprise me!

(¹ People who didn’t vote for “Surprise me”are just as cool and amazing and relaxed as the others.)

So random days it is :)
All right.
With that out of the way, welcome to another Word of the Day, or to be more precise a What is the difference special. And today we’ll look two words that both mean to confuse. Today, we’ll look at the difference between

verwirren and verwechseln

And since that difference isn’t a big deal at all we’ll also take a look at how to say confusing and confused because there’s a lot of …  confusion.
So… are you ready to untangle some hair, to descramble some eggs, to unravel some Debussy?…. (man… that was so clever)….
Are you ready for all this?
Cool. Continue reading

What the heck do wo-words mean?

Hello everyone,

and welcome to another part of our German is Easy Learn German Online online German-Learning Course for German online learning learners.
And after we’ve done some easy-peasy lemon-squeezy  words the last few times, I think it’s time to do some grammar.
Now that would be your turn to say “Yeay” or “Swell!”… come on… no cheer? We’ll do GRAMMAR!… nothing?
Hmmm okay, I guess your exited internally. And you should be because today, we’ll take an intense look at the

wo-words.

Or how a reader recently called them… the woe-words.
Woran, wonach, wobei, wogegen, wovon, vomit. Those ones. Today, we’ll learn what they mean and when and how to use them.
And just to get it out of the way… of course English has wo-words to… the where-words. Whereby, wherein, whereon and so on. But the use is so different that we’ll kind of just ignore them here.
That said, are you ready to expose another elusive  and intriguing bit of the German language for the boring complicated structure crap it actually is?
Cool :).

Continue reading

Grammar Jargon – What the heck are adverbs

adverbsHello everyone,

and welcome to another episode of Grammar Jargon, where we explain one of these cryptic nerdy terms that teachers and textbooks use, because for some strange reason they think it’s … helpful.
Well… IT’S NOT! Stop it!! Stop feeding us stupid, yawn-inducing Latin vocabulary that half the class has no idea what it means, and that no one can remember because it so complicated, and that sucks out all the fun. You hear me? IT SUCKS IT OUT! THE FUN. ALL OF I.. oh… I uh… I think I’m getting a little worked up …. must … breathe.. phaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa…
all right. I’m sorry. I hate jargon.  I really do.
But it’s there, we have to cope. And there are some terms like verb or noun or subject that are so basic, well established and hard to replace that everyone should know them. Today we’ll look at one of those terms. Today, we’ll try to find out, once and for all, just what are

adverbs  

To do that let’s… take a detour and first look at adjectives.
The term adjective comes from old Latin. At the core is the Latin verb iacere which meant to throw or to cast. This is where the word jet comes from by the way. The ad means… well… pretty much the same as at… or add.  So,  adjective literally means something like “thing that is thrown or slapped at stuff” and that is pretty much what they’re used for. Adjectives are like little tags that are added to nouns to give us more information about them.

  • Princess Lyra gazed at the flower.

Sounds interesting…but a bit bland. We need to be a little more descriptive. How is the flower? Beautiful …  and fair. That sounds nice. Continue reading

German is Easy – QAS 2

qas-2Hello everyone,

and welcome to the second episode of our little Q and A and S section, where we look at some nice questions you guys have asked and whatever else matters.
And first of all I need to say:

danke, danke, danke, danke, danke, danke, danke,
danke, danke, danke, danke, danke, danke, danke,
danke, danke, danke, danke, danke, danke, danke,
danke… und nochmals danke

to the people who have made a donation. And I did not just copy and paste the “dankes”… I typed them  and I mean them. Seriously… it is sooooo motivating and definitely made my days. You’re the best!!!
And yes, I do like Jay-Z (I don’t like Kanye though :), alles gute with your studies. And yes, whenever the book is finished, it’ll be in available in Canada too, and I’ll make sure you get a free copy. All of you.
Oh and while we’re at it…. all the others, you guys who read and comment and ask questions… you’re definitely the second best… uhm, which uhm…. which is still very very  good.
Damn. That doesn’t sound nice at all  ;)… but seriously, if it wasn’t for you, I would have probably stopped this already… you’re all awesome!
And so were some of the questions you have asked over the last couple of weeks. So without any further ado, let’s get right to it, shall we?
Cool.

“Neither do I” or … how to agree to stuff

This question comes from Grateful Reader who is one of the most active people and who speaks … or at least writes German amazingly well. So … the question is about how to agree to a negative statement about oneself… or as the title already says:

  • How to say “Neither do I.”?

Continue reading

Word of the Day – “ansehen”

Hello everyone,

and welcome to our German Word of the Day. This time we will have a look at the meaning of the word:

ansehen

Sehen means to see and an means at or on or to or in and we’ll go with… uhm… at this time. But ansehen is actually not so much the sum of its parts. The glamour is in the grammar. And that is not just a stupid rhyme by the way… those two were the same word once (don’t believe me? Check it here) . But then the Scots extracted the glamour, and ever since “grammar” has the appeal of eating sand. I don’t like grammar…it’s coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere.
But just like Tatooine is nothing without sand, ansehen is nothing without grammar.
So let’s take a look at the different meanings and how to build them.  Sounds good? Cool. Continue reading