The verb haben (to have) Edit

In English, you can say "I'm having bread" when you really mean that you're eating or about to eat bread. This does not work in German. The verb haben refers to possession only. Hence, the sentence Ich habe Brot only translates to I have bread, not I'm having bread. Of course, the same applies to drinks. Ich habe Wasser only translates to I have water, not I'm having water.

Having said that, the verb haben is sometimes used to describe physical conditions, emotional conditions, and states of being.

For instance, the German for I am hungry is Ich habe Hunger. You can think of it as having the condition of being hungry.

Ich habe Hunger = I am hungry

Ich habe Durst = I am thirsty

Sie hat Recht = She is right

Er hat Angst = He is afraid

Mittagessen - lunch or dinner? Edit

We're aware that dinner is sometimes used synonymously with lunch, but for the purpose of this course, we're defining Frühstück as breakfast, Mittagessen as lunch, and dinner / supper as Abendessen / Abendbrot.

Compound words Edit

A compound word is a word that consists of two or more words. These are written as one word (no spaces).

The gender of a compound noun is always determined by its last element. This shouldn't be too difficult to remember because the last element is always the most important one. All the previous elements merely describe the last element.

die Autobahn (das Auto + die Bahn)

der Orangensaft (die Orange + der Saft)

das Hundefutter (der Hund + das Futter)

Sometimes, there's a connecting sound (Fugenlaut) between two elements. For instance, die Orange + der Saft becomes der Orangensaft, der Hund + das Futter becomes das Hundefutterdie Liebe + das Lied becomes das Liebeslied, and der Tag + das Gericht becomes das Tagesgericht

Cute like sugar! Edit

The word süß means sweet when referring to food, and cute when referring to living beings.

Der Zucker ist süß. (The sugar is sweet.)

Die Katze ist süß. (The cat is cute.)

Does Gemüse mean vegetable or vegetables? Edit

In German, "Gemüse" is used as a mass noun. That means it's grammatically singular and takes a singular verb.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.