Questions tagged [german]

A Germanic language spoken in, among others, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. For non-linguistic questions about the German language, visit our sister site German Language Stack Exchange.

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Correlation between the English -wise and German -weise suffixes

The English meaning of -wise is the following. -wise adverb combining form Definition of -wise (Entry 5 of 5) 1a : in the manner of crabwise fanwise b : in the position or direction of ...
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Proximity of Dutch and German explained by the history of language

It seems to me that Dutch is closer to German in its pronunciation than in its writing. It is a bit approximative to say so, and that's rather a personal impression, shared by some German native ...
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French & Spanish Accusative & Dative cases like German [closed]

I started learning French a couple of months back. My German proficiency is at B2 level (CEFRL). I wanted to know if French also has the different Accusative & Dative forms for Personal Pronouns, ...
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German contraction "wara" - morphology or phonology?

The regular form War er ... 'was he ...' would, in certain positions of sentence in my idiomatic sociolect, sound approximately as * wara /vaːʁɐ/. I can not imagine at the moment how this came ...
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Is there a clear linguistic reason for Swiss German not being considered its own Germanic language?

This question has been inspired by the fact that I’ve recently heard the Swiss talk among each other and I started to dig deeper. Having done minors in Italian and American studies which each included ...
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5 votes
3 answers
361 views

Can an object be in functional case A even though it's declined like case B?

Pardon my word choice, since I'm obviously lacking the background in linguistics. I know that language-specific questions are off-topic, yet I still like to use Finnish as an example, since it spawned ...
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4 votes
1 answer
680 views

Beta vs eszett character difference

How to write the Greek letter beta and the German letter eszett so that they look different enough? I've seen variants of beta with the final arc ending on the vertical line and ones which have a ...
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How similar are Low German and Dutch?

In Duisburg and Düsseldorf I have heard people talking a mixture of German and Dutch which really confused me! Can anyone please explain how similar to Dutch this so called Low German language is?
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4 votes
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Fewest number of vowels in a Germanic language?

Yiddish has an unusually small vowel inventory for a Germanic language, which are generally notorious for their large number of vowel phonemes. Probably under the influence of the surrounding gentile ...
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What is the syntactic function (if there is any) of the prefix in some German verbs?

Consider the following sentence: "Ich rufe dich an". It is a very simple Standard German sentence with the verb "anrufen", the unusual thing about it is this prefix that comes ...
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Why did 'r' disappear in English "speak" (compare German "sprechen") and in German "Welt" (compare English "world")?

I cannot help but notice some 'r'-s seem to have randomly disappeared in both German and English. What is going on there?
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10 votes
3 answers
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Days of the week in Yiddish -- why so similar to Germanic?

I note that Saturday is Shabbes but the other days are similar to German which are based on Norse mythology -- one could easily see this being a problem and that a choice to use the Hebrew words for ...
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Are the longest German and Turkish words really single words?

First, I don't speak/understand any so-called agglutinative languages, like Turkish. I also don't know German. I understand there's no good definition for the concept of "word", which could ...
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What is the official/correct orthography for Alsatian / Elsässisch German?

As per the Wikipedia article on the Alsatian language (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alsatian_dialect#Orthography) the orthography includes the latin letters A,B,C ... X,Y,Z and the following vowels ...
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What is the mutual intelligibility between the Standard German and Hessisch?

If a native Standard German speaker from Leipzig listens to Hessisch spoken by an elderly person from Lich(a small town in Hessen), will he/she understand it?
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Einbilden vs. Imagine

One of the German words for Imagine is Einbilden, which I believe literally translates to "in-picture". This made me think of the fact that Imagine itself has the prefix Im-, which (together ...
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-5 votes
3 answers
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Why the words for pineapple sound so similar in Hebrew and in German?

A word for "pineapple" in Hebrew is "אננס" and in German is "Ananas". The pronunciation of "אננס" in Hebrew and "Ananas" in German are so similar that I wonder if it is merely a coincidence or there ...
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German: hin and her prefixes [closed]

I have found the words with prefixes her and hin and I am little bit confused. I understand, hopefully correctly that hin means from me -> to somewhere else direction and her from somewhere -> to me ...
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3 votes
3 answers
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Case in German Nouns

German has an interesting situation in its noun phrases - articles and adjectives reflect case, but the noun itself does not. Der große Mann sieht das Haus. ("The big man sees the house," ...
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GVS similarity in cognate words other Germanic Languages

I am no professional Linguist (nor have I ever studied it) so there might be a straightforward explanation to this which I could't find searching in ordinary places. I was analysing a few words from ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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V to T movement in German

Consider the the embedded clause "du Schach gespielt hast" in this sentence Ich glaube dass du Schach gespielt hast. I think that you chess played have ‘I think that you have ...
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4 votes
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Is there a name for this type of language divergence and isolation?

In South Australia there is a region called the Barossa Valley. At some point [after WW2? not sure] it was settled by a lot of German farmers who bought land and started dairy farms. They applied ...
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5 votes
3 answers
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German Noun Roots of Germanic Origin with Multiple Non-Schwa Syllables

With non-schwa syllables I mean bisyllabic words ending in -e, -en, -er, -el don't count. But trisyllabic words with similar endings do. Some examples I've found: Arbeit, Armut, Heimat, Heirat ...
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1 vote
4 answers
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Bisyllabic German Verb Roots with the Stress Being on the First Syllable

I'm looking for German verbs with a bisyllabic root that have are stressed on their first syllable. But verbs like ändern or wechseln and also eignen don't count, which would be verb roots that end in ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Are there any corpora of informal and unstructured text labelled for Named Entity Recognition?

I have been searching since last week for annotated informal texts (with a lot of misspelled words, slang, etc.) to test some Named Entity Recognition tools for research purposes. For example, it ...
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Does the voicing of morpheme-initial /z d/ in German transmit to the preceding voiceless consonant in the same consonant cluster?

Here are som examples: [t͡sʰ], [t͡s] or [ʣ]? Wie alt sind Sie? nicht sehr [s] or [z]? Was sind Sie von Beruf? Das Sofa [st], [sd] or [zd]? das du weißt The consonant clusters ...
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4 votes
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How does the Sankt Goar isogloss work?

The Sankt Goar line crosses the german town of Sankt Goar and separates the dialects that have t in words like wat and dat and the dialects that have s in the corresponding words was and das. Is this ...
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5 votes
2 answers
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Pronunciation of umlaut vowels in the history of German

I know that the umlaut vowels were also written as ae oe and ue, and this orthography shows the process of assimilation with a high vowel. But were these vowels ever actually pronounced as a diphthong,...
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3 votes
3 answers
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Why are English and German West Germanic languages while Scandinavian Germanic languages are an own branch

The Germanic languages are according to Wikipedia subdivided into North Germanic languages and West Germanic languages (historically, there also existed East Germanic languages). The most important (...
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34 votes
2 answers
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Why is “ß” not used in Swiss German?

What are some of the historical reasons why the orthographic symbol ß is not used in Swiss Standard German and “ss” is used instead?
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Are the English "Woe" and the German "Wo" related?

Is the English "Woe" and the German "Wo" related? I just heard a colleague say, "Wo ist mein ..." and I thought of the band Woe is me. Are these words just false cognates... or is there some common ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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Stark differences in French and German

Both the German and French languages, along with English, evolved from the same roots. This is reflected in some of their words and grammatical structures. So then why are the pronunciations of both ...
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Looking for tool to split german text into sentences

I want to train a german embedding and need to split text into sentences. That is not easy since "z. B." and "Dr." are not endings of a sentence. Does anybody know a tool to do that for german texts? ...
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4 votes
2 answers
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How intelligible are German and Dutch to each other?

I'm asking this because I stumbled upon what I believe is a Dutch copy of The Brothers Grimm at a used book store. I initially thought it was archaic German and looked over it to see if I could make ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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German vowel charts with phonetic accuracy

German vowel charts used in the wikipedia article Standard German phonology do not locate vowels with great details. For example German [e] is a bit higher than the IPA [e] (something like what is ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Why did German <d> and <t> flip over?

I speak English and Norwegian and a little German and a little Dutch and I discovered a pattern while thinking about words which are obviously cognate. The pattern is wherever English, Norwegian and ...
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7 votes
3 answers
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Does the English "Garden" come from the French "Jardin" or the German "Garten"?

I always assumed that the English word "Garden" was similar to the German "Garten" due to the Germanic roots of English. But according to Wikipedia, "Garden" in English is related to the French "...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Is there any epenthesis in German by which "eins" sounds like "eints" and how frequent is the phenomenon?

The phenomenon works also on the cluster ls and thus it becomes [lts]. Both examples are alveolar sounds. The epenthesis does not occur universally, but often works on "eins" anyway. This does not ...
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5 votes
2 answers
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Why do some languages distinguish between "identical" and "indistinguishable", and others don't?

In some languages, there's a very prevalent distinction between different meanings of the English word "same" as in "These two items are the same". For example German: dasselbe / das gleiche Greek: ...
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2 votes
2 answers
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Are there any minimal pairs for German lax/tense vowels?

As we know, most German vowels have a 'tense' (or long) pronunciation and a 'lax' (or short) pronunciation. Most of the time, which pronunciation should be used can be determined by the context that ...
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3 votes
4 answers
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What was the original pronunciation of 'ä' in German?

I always learnt it was pronounced the same as how 'e' is usually pronounced in German (in either its short or long forms respectively). But then the question is: why have a different letter for it? ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Dependency parsing that preserves structural ambiguities?

Does a (publicly available) dependency parser exist, that either preserves structural ambiguities in its output or that allows me to generate all possible parse trees for a given input? I am ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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German corpus for grapheme-phoneme (G2P or P2G) mapping

TIMIT is a well known, publicly accessible corpus that contains phonetic and lexicalic transcription of language (American English). A sample sentence of TIMIT looks like: She had your dark suit in ...
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Etymology of the unit “Marc” (German►English)

Friends! First of all, thanks for your time and help. I'm conducting a research on the word "Mark", and before I explain all I know so far, let me tell you: The goal is to trace the ...
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How to find words to other languages that have no clear translation in English

For a work of fiction, I have a character who speaks Russian, German and Hungarian, none of which I speak. The character wrote a fictional novel that appears only in its English translation, but the ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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How did Adolf Hitler pronounce his own name?

Adolf Hitler was an Austrian, who used the alveolar trill [r] in his speech, not the Standard German [ʁ]. This is only to be expected for an Austrian. According to the German Wikipedia, in Austrian ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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In German, doesn't using 'von' for agents of passive sentences result in ambiguity?

In German, the agent of a passive construction can be re-introduced using the preposition 'von' (well, 'durch' can be used too, but that's not really relevant). But what if there's another noun ...
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4 votes
2 answers
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What methods do languages use to re-introduce the subject of a passive construction?

In German and Spanish (I think), you use the word for 'from'. In Japanese though, I think they use 'ni' (which can either mean 'to' or 'at'). In English we use the preposition 'by', which is rarely ...
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3 votes
0 answers
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How to get morphological information from Stanford POS tagger?

I'm using the Stanford POS tagger to process German text and I'm interested in assessing the number (singular/plural) of the nouns in the sentence, so that I can classify them accordingly. This is ...
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Why is it problematic to assume a null morpheme signifying the singular number of nouns in German?

In a lecture, my professor said that assumig a null morpheme signifying the singular number of nouns in German is problematic. Now I´m wondering why. The issue came up during a discussion on whether ...
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