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German Grammar

Grammar is one of the parts of learning a new language that can send otherwise rational people into a fit. They may recall the trouble they had learning English grammar when they were younger. However, grammar doesn’t have to be a source of frustration of confusion. When you take the time to learn the basics of German grammar, you will find that it is not as difficult as you might have once thought. Having just a basic overview of the grammar, and understanding a bit about German verbs should be more than enough to get you underway in the language. This will help you to learn German quickly, and to have fun while you are doing it.

The Sentence Order

In English, the sentence order follows the subject-verb-object pattern, or the SVO pattern. The first word refers to the subject of the sentence, the second word the action, and the third the object acted upon in the sentence. The phrase “I eat cereal” meets the SVO pattern exactly. German grammar, is somewhat different in this respect. In German, there are two common word orders, one for main clauses and one for subordinate clauses. The main clauses are like the English SVO, while the subordinate clauses have a conjunction in the first position followed by the subject and the object, with the verb appearing at the end. In the sentence “I eat cereal because I like it”, you have a main and a subordinate clause. The main clause is “I eat ice cream”, and the subordinate clause is “because I like it”.

In English, when you are forming a question, you simply have to rearrange the words to create a question. For example, “She is here” could be rearranged to form a question “is she here?” It is the same in German.

Just as in English, you will have to conjugate your German verbs in the language. However, the rules work similarly as in English. Depending on the subject in the sentence, the verb is going to change. For example, “I go” would become “she goes”. The German language also has a number of different tenses that you will want to learn. While they have 6 tenses, most speakers will only use 4 regularly.

Just as in other languages, it does take some time to get a grasp of the grammar. However, with dedication and by learning the basics slowly while learning other aspects of the language it is possible for anyone to learn German.