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Lesson Transcript

Chuck: Chuck here, intermediate season 3 lesson 15. German tour mistakes.
Judith: Hi my name is Judith and I’m joined here by Chuck.
Chuck: Hello everyone, and welcome back to germanpod101.
Judith: What are we learning today?
Chuck: In this lesson you’ll learn how to understand a guided tour in German.
Judith: This conversation takes place near the government buildings in Berlin.
Chuck: The conversation is between Mr. Jones and the tour guides.
Judith: The speakers are in a business relationship, therefore they’ll be speaking formal German.
Chuck: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Jones: Entschuldigen Sie…
Reiseführerin: Ja, bitte?
Jones: Sind sie von BerlinBerlin und leiten die Besichtigung der Regierungsgebäude?
Reiseführerin: Ja, genau. Nehmen Sie auch an der Besichtigung um 13 Uhr teil?
Jones: Ja. Ich bin Herr Jones.
Reiseführerin: Ah, gut. Wir warten noch auf zwei andere Teilnehmer, aber dann starten wir die Besichtigung.
Jones: Wir schauen doch das Reichstagsgebäude und das Kanzleramt an, oder?
RJudith: Ja, genau. … Ah, da sind ja die anderen Teilnehmer. Dann geht es los.
RJudith: Also, vor Ihnen sehen Sie das Reichstagsgebäude. Es ist der Sitz der Abgeordneten. Der Architekt Paul Wallot hat es zwischen 1884 und 1894 gebaut. Nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg war das Gebäude stark beschädigt und erst 1961 beschloss man, das Gebäude wieder aufzubauen.
Jones: Sieht das Gebäude jetzt so aus wie vor dem Krieg?
RJudith: Nein. Es ist nicht mehr so hoch wie vorher.
Jones: Oh, ach so.
RJudith: 1991 hat die Regierung dann den Umzug der Ministerien von Bonn nach Berlin beschlossen.
Jones: War das Gebäude nicht auch einmal verhüllt?
RJudith: Ja, 1994 hat Christus das gesamte Gebäude verhüllt.
Jones: Haha, Christus?
RJudith: Haha, nein, ich meine natürlich den Künstler Christo.
Jones: Excuse me...
Tour guide: Yes, please?
Jones: Are you with the company BerlinBerlin and do you direct the tour of the government buildings?
Tour guide: Yes, exactly. Are you also participating in the tour at 1pm?
Jones: Yes. I'm Mr Jones.
Tour guide: Ah, good. We are waiting for two more participants, but then we'll start the tour.
Jones: We will be looking at the Reichstag building and the chancellor office, won't we?
Tour guide: Yes, exactly. ... Ah, the other participants are there. Then let's go.
Tour guide: So, in front of you you see the Reichstag building. It is the seat of members of parliament. The architect Paul Wallot built it between 1884 and 1894. After the second world war the building was heavily damaged and they only decided in 1961 to rebuild the building.
Jones: Does the building look like before the war now?
Tour guide: No. It's not as tall as before.
Jones: Oh, okay.
Tour guide: In 1991 the government then decided the relocation of the government departments from Bonn to Berlin.
Jones: Wasn't the building enshrouded once as well?
Tour guide: Yes, Christ enshrouded the entire building in 1994.
Jones: Haha, Christ?
Tour guide: Haha, no, of course I mean the artist Christo.
Judith: Okay, let’s talk about the [Reichstag].
Chuck: Alright!
Judith: It’s a really impressive building. You must have seen it. In Berlin of course.
Chuck: Yes.
Judith: It’s where the German Parliament meets and also met between 1894 and 1933.
Chuck: Wait I heard the Nazis set fire on it and blamed it on the [Kommunist] right?
Judith: Yes it was one of the ways that they managed to get more power in order to rule.
Chuck: Ah I guess that’s why the German parliament didn’t meet there anymore then.
Judith: Yes you are right. During the Nazi time, the parliament didn’t meet there either.
Chuck: That’s right, so after the war, when they splitted to east and west Germany, it was pretty much like west Germany is in the middle and all of east Germany is all around it. So it makes sense that East Berlin took the {01:25} of the republic to convene but then the west German government found it a bit strange to be stuck in the middle of east Berlin so they moved their place to the Bonn because it was safer.
Judith: Yes they settled down in [Bonn] and moved to parliament there until the reunification. Not immediately but the reunified Germany started moving things backwards to Berlin in 1999 and since then the German parliament is meeting in the rice park building again. Now if you want to see how the German parliament is working you can just visit them. The building is open to tourists and there are always long lines of visitors waiting to be allowed inside. Especially the dome, the dome is really beautiful.
Chuck: Actually it’s interesting that you mentioned about the rice park building that’s on the river isn’t it?
Judith: Yes.
Chuck: Actually most of the government buildings are on the river. How did that happen?
Judith: Well with Berlin being divided, they are part of the border to make it easier on the East German’s to guard the Spree which runs right through the middle of Berlin, so the river itself was surrounded by security zone on the East side and that meant that the space was free again. They dismantled the security.
Chuck: Ah that makes a lot of sense. And actually it’s also very interesting because if you visit Berlin, I would highly recommend taking one of the billed tours because if you see all the major buildings in one trip.
Judith: Yes, it’s a very nice feature.
Chuck: Great to do when you are tired of shopping the whole day. Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson. The first word is,
Judith: [leiten]
Chuck: To manage or direct.
Judith: [leiten]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Besichtigung]
Chuck: Inspection, sightseeing or tour.
Judith: [Besichtigung, die] and the plural is [Besichtigungen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Regierung]
Chuck: Government.
Judith: [Regierung, die] and the plural is [Regierungen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [teilnehmen]
Chuck: To participate.
Judith: [teilnehmen] and the forms are regular [Er nimmt teil, Er nahm teil, Er hat teilgenommen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Kanzler]
Chuck: Chancellor.
Judith: [Kanzler, der] and the plural is the same.
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Abgeordneter].
Chuck: Representative Member of Parliament.
Judith: [Abgeordneter, der] and the plural is [Abgeordnete]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [bauen]
Chuck: To build.
Judith: [bauen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Krieg]
Chuck: War.
Judith: [Krieg, der] and the plural is [Kriege]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [beschäfigen]
Chuck: To damage.
Judith: [beschädigen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [beschließen]
Chuck: To resolve or decide.
Judith: [beschließen] the forms are [Er beschließt, Er beschloss, Er hat beschlossen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Ministerium]
Chuck: Ministry or government department.
Judith: [Ministerium, das] the word is neutral and the plural is [Ministerien]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [verhüllen]
Chuck: To cloak, enshroud or cover.
Judith: [verhüllen]
Chuck: Next.
Judith: [Künstler]
Chuck: Artist.
Judith: [Künstler, der] and the plural is the same.
Chuck: Let’s have a closer look for the usage for some of the words and phrases for this lesson.
Judith: The first word is [teilnehmen]
Chuck: To participate.
Judith: From this word you get [Teilnehmer]
Chuck: Participant.
Judith: So very often, the word for someone doing something can be derived from the verb. Simply use the verb stem and add “er”.
Chuck: This is like English. You paint, painter.
Judith: Yes but in English it doesn’t work like that all the time. Other common examples in German are, for example the verb [leiten].
Chuck: To manage or direct
Judith: [Leiter]
Chuck: Manager or director.
Judith: [erzählen]
Chuck: To tell a story.
Judith: [Erzähler]
Chuck: Narrator.
Judith: See that’s a case where it doesn’t work in English.
Chuck: What about story teller.
Judith: [entdcken]
Chuck: to discover,
Judith: [Entdecker].
Chuck: Discoverer.
Judith: When you need to form a noun that is related to a verb, that does not describe a person, then you should try just using the verb stem or the stem of the verb participle. For example [sitzen]
Chuck: To sit.
Judith: And you get the noun [der Sitz].
Chuck: the seat.
Judith: And from [bauen]
Chuck: To build.
Judith: You get [Der Bau]
Chuck: The construction.
Judith: From [umziehen]
Chuck: To relocate or move a house
Judith: [Der Umzug]
Chuck: Relocation.
Judith: From [teilnehmen]
Chuck: To participate
Judith: [die Teilnahme]
Chuck: Participation.
Judith: And from [beschließen]
Chuck: To resolve or decide.
Judith: [Der Beschluss]

Lesson focus

Chuck: Resolution or decision. The focus of this lesson is the genitive plural.
Judith: In the last lesson we had a look at the genitive singular endings. So now it’s time to cover the genitive plural.
Chuck: The key ending for the genitive plural is “er” and there are no differences between masculine, feminine and neutral. SO the definite article is [der] no matter if you are talking about men, women or children.
Judith: The indefinite article does not exist in plural. This means that the adjective or the possessive pronoun will have to carry the key “er” ending if [der] is not present. On the other hand if the “er” ending is already present, then adjectives will only get the bland “en” ending.
Chuck: Wait a minute, I’m a little confused, and could you give me some examples?
Judith: Of course, we say [der guten Männer] without the article [guter Männer] and same for women and [der guten Frauen, guter Frauen] so we say [der guten Kinder, guter Kinder] it’s the same.
Chuck: And that would be after another noun?
Judith: What do you mean?[der Name der Männer].
Chuck: Okay like that. That makes a lot more sense.
Judith: For the genitive it’s not possible to have just the noun stand on its own because the meaning would be unclear. For example, with the other cases you can say [Ich liebe Hunde]
Chuck: I love dogs.
Judith: And [Hunde] standing alone there because it’s a causative plural, but you can’t say [Ich liebe das Fell Hunde]
Chuck: I love the fur dog.
Judith: You definitely need the [der] I there to mark it as genitive plural.[Ich liebe das Fell der Hunde]
Chuck: I love the fur of dogs.
Judith: The [der] has the same purpose as the English word [the] here so we use it even when talking about an unspecified group. It doesn’t have to be [der] specifically though. If you have any other word that goes with [Hunde] that’s fine too just the key “er” ending is used up somewhere to mark it up as genitive.


Chuck: That just about does it for today. Before you go, we want to tell you about a way to drastically improve your pronunciation
Judith: The voice recording tool.
Chuck: The voice recording tool in the premium learning center.
Judith: Record your voice with the click of a button
Chuck: and play it back just as easily.
Judith: So you record your voice and then you listen to it.
Chuck: Compare it to native speakers.
Judith: And adjust your pronunciation.
Chuck: This will help you improve your pronunciation fast. So see you next time.
Judith: [Also bis nächstes Mal]!