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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26
votes
8answers
15k views

Why did English lose declensions while German retained them?

Why did (or more specifically what caused) English lose declensions whilst they were retained in German? I ask as I have recently been reading into the various Germanic languages and it struck me that ...
5
votes
6answers
792 views

German (-stell-) and Slavic (-stav-) languages: who was first?

I have been wondering about the following close parallel between German (I'm not aware of any other Germanic language for which this would hold) and Czech in particular: postavit ~ stellen (to place ...
-6
votes
3answers
782 views

Why does German require extra commas that may be considered useless by speakers of other languages?

Let us consider the following English sentence: I set the table if you take out the trash. One doesn't have to set a comma between "table" and "if" – in contrast to the German rules for comma ...
4
votes
3answers
588 views

What exactly is the “German Language”

After reading up on this topic on Wikipedia, I am left in confusion. Before I started to read the article I thought that "German" usually refers to standard German. If it is actually defined like ...
4
votes
3answers
4k views

German is SOV: should it not have been “Ich ein Berliner bin”?

German is typically described as a Subject-Object-Verb language. For former American President Kennedy's mistake to be grammatical (i.e. without the indefinite article "ein"), why should it not have ...
4
votes
2answers
202 views

Can one word be classified as two different word classes?

Over at German Language Stack Exchange, the question was asked what the structure of the sentence Ihr Antrag ist abgelehnt. is, and what the word abgelehnt can be classified as. Traditional German ...
3
votes
2answers
406 views

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 ...
2
votes
0answers
158 views

Combinatory Categorial Grammar developments and lexicon for German language?

I am trying to apply Cornell Semantic Parsing framework (implementation of Combinatory Categorial Grammars CCG) to the German language. This framework takes natural language texts, learns grammar and ...
8
votes
6answers
19k views

Is learning German easier for people who know Sanskrit, and vice versa?

I've heard many times that learning German is easier for those who speak Sanskrit, and vice versa. Is there any linguistic basis for this? What similarities exist between the two languages that may be ...
4
votes
2answers
136 views

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 ...