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  5. "Darf ich dich küssen?"

"Darf ich dich küssen?"

Translation:May I kiss you?

December 20, 2013



So, how do you say: "Shut up and kiss me"?


Halt den Mund und Küss mich!


Thank you, kfiggs. Now I have a perfect comeback for the previous pick up line. Kind Regards!


Pick up line? good luck with that lol


I like the version "Halt die Klappe und Küss mich" too (have a Geman womanizer friend. Quite educational!)


What about shut up and dance with me


Halt den Mund und tanz mit mir!


Does halt mean hold?


Does halt mean hold?

That's one of its meanings, yes.


What even did you say?


Klappe zu und küss mich


"Küss mich!… nicht reden… mmm…"        [2 Nov 2019 02:33 UTC]


Why not "Kusse", I mean, it sounds strange, at least for me, is like someone says: "May I kissES her? why "Kussen"?


Because dürfen is a modal auxiliary verb and it is being conjugated to first person (darf), while the main verb stays in indefinite form. The only example in English I can come up with is: "May I be with you". You don't say "May I am with you".


Thank you very much, I understand now :)


Actually it is exactly like English, useing the infinitive firm of the verb after most auxiliaries. You just need to remember English is an exceptional language in that that it separated the infinitive to a 'to+verb'. So when you have a bare infinitive in English, as in 'I may [to] go', instead of omitting the 'to' you have the German infinitive form.


German is a lot like English. One of the reasons I found it fairly easy to learn.


Good explanation, thank you hnatt


So it's, "CAN I" vs. “MAY I" " Kann Ich vs. Darf Ich"


Student: CAN I go to the bathroom?

Teacher: Yes, you can, but you MAY not.

Am I understanding it correctly?


yeap that is right .´darf ich ´is used a lot in germany it is kind of a polite thing to say .


Can you say kann ich dich küssen?


Well I don't want to repeat what has been said and I agree with PaoloArman2 and everyone saying the same.

But to your question:

"Kann ich...?" and "Darf ich ...?" Are used synonymously in German speech even if they can have different meanings when you take them literally.


If you (as an under aged) ask your parents for permission to go to your friends house:

"Papa, kann ich heute abend zu Thomas spielen gehen?",

"Papa, darf ich heute abend zu Thomas spielen gehen?"

Both mean: Dad, can I go to Thomas's place to play tonight? (asking for permission,) has nothing to do with to be able to something or not.

For our example: "Kann ich dich jetzt küssen?" is a grammatically proper but inappropriate sentence, it means: "Is it now the right moment to kiss you?" rolls eyes


"Kann ich dir (dabei) helfen?", is fine, but not: "Darf ich dir (dabei) helfen?", (possible though, as a polite offer)

"Darf ich dich abholen?", polite request: "Kann ich dich abholen?", also a request but more straight forward.

Context is the key, there is not really a general rule. :-)


Sometimes people make jokes if you use "kann ich" as it literally translates "am I able to". Then they might answer something like "Ich weiß nicht, ob Du es kannst, aber Du darfst" - "I don't know if you can/are able to, but you may"


That's cool, we get exactly the same thing in English. "Dad, can I drive the car?" "I don't know, can you?" "May I drive the car?" "No, you may not. You're grounded. :D"


My mother is the same way.


Yes this is true, and I also used to do this. HaHa.

This happens when over time people misuse a word and make it common language. It leads to disambiguation(s). But, such is life, languages develop and not always to the best of the language.

Linguists will probably have an answer to this phenomenon.


The difference between can and may, when many people ask if they can do something.

Although the translation is "May I kiss you" - I feel as if the literal translation word for word is, "May I (have) your kiss?" where the have is implied in English, and not required in German.

Kissing rarely happens in a singular, why do I only get one :(.


No, the literal translation does not give you the noun for kiss, but the infinitive "to kiss". In English, we would use "I would like to kiss you." but say "May I kiss you?" using the "bare" infinitive (without the word "to") with modal verbs such as "may" and "can". http://conjugueur.reverso.net/conjugaison-allemand-verbe-k%C3%BCssen.html


http://context.reverso.net/traduction/allemand-anglais/k%C3%BCssen If it were the noun, it would be plural.

Perhaps the German word order is confusing you, as the second verb goes to the end of the sentence. http://www.dartmouth.edu/~deutsch/Grammatik/WordOrder/WordOrder.html


Thank you very much.


Pls translate the last 2 examples


the last examples have nothing to do with offering a smooch.

"Kann ich dir (dabei) helfen?" May I help you with that?

"Darf ich dich abholen?" Would you mind that I pick you up? (to go out)


Would you please elaborate on your last two examples?


Do you mean oxytocinated's examples, or my examples, its really hard to follow the thread here?


I meant your examples that have 14 thumbs up, namely: "Kann ich dir (dabei) helfen?" and "Darf ich dich abholen?".


Du siehst das sich jemand mit etwas schwertut, er/sie braucht offensichtlich Hilfe. Du bietest ihr/ihm Hilfe an und du bist zuversichtlich das du helfen kannst, als auch das die Hilfe angenommen wird.

Du sagst deshalb kurz: "Kann ich helfen?", oder "Kann ich dir dabei helfen?"

This is not overly polite, but it is short and clear. (do not confuse 'kann' with "can" the meaning here is: "may I help you?"

Jemand geht seinem Hobby nach du kommst dazu und hast das gleiche Hobby. Du würdest zu gerne mithelfen oder mitmachen. Deshalb fragst du höflich: "Darf ich dir behilflich sein?", "Darf ich dir dabei helfen."
"Darf" means you ask politely to become part of it, to help or to assist. As in: "would you let me help you with that?"


Kann in German is like when you would ask your parents or teachers if you can do something, and they reply "I don't know, can you?". Kann (or Können) would translate as can/able to. Whereas Darf (Dürfen) translates as may/to be allowed to. It's like having the physical capabilities to do it, or the permission to.


You can but you may not. Can I kiss you? vs May I kiss you? May sounds better


just sounds wrong


Since i am actually a girl, i can give some of you guys my point of view. If you really like a girl, you two flirt, and after a while (2 weeks or so) ask that question, there is a high possibility that she will actually kiss you. This applies to almost any country and language.


Do german guys ask 2 WEEKS for just a kiss?

This explains a lot.


German guys usually don't ask... they just go for it... and they don't wait two weeks! I know beeing a german woman


jadefoc said this applies to almost any country and language. Your response explains more.


Well, Um, Way to dive right in there Duo.


Learning a language is kind of similar to flirting. There's always the romantic aspect weighing more than the technicalities.


Seriously?! I wrote it as "darf ich dich küssen", and was wrong because it should have been "sie", then I wrote "darf ich Sie küssen" and it corrects me saying it should be dich... what am I missing here?


If you are using the formal 'Sie' for 'you', it probably indicates someone you should not be attempting to kiss. ;)


Yep, a good reply would be something like "gerne, aber zuerst duzen wir"


On the other hand, you are asking politely. If you were already that close to the person, would you still be asking permission?


Yesssss, like your grandmother or something lol


Hahaha best grammatical explanation really !!


'Sie' is used in the formal cases like talking with the public, strangers and when you want to show some respect for Sb, but 'dich' is used in informal cases like talking with your friend or family ...


If your are still saying SIE its definitly not the time for kissing


Now I see how much my voice matters in matters of seduction, poor Miss Duolingo is doomed to die alone...


I understand that words are flipped in German when asking a question, but exactly how does it work? Here, the verb is pushed to the end, is that all it is? If so, how exactly would you ask a long question with multiple verbs, such as,

'Why are you standing outside when you could be sitting inside?'

Would this be,

'Why are standing outside you, when could be sitting inside you?'

I'm confused, please help me with this.


Note: I'm putting all verbs in the examples in a bold font.

In this case of two verbs in one clause, where you have the modal verb dürfen and an infinitive küssen, the infinitive will go to the end:

  • Ich darf dich küssen. = I may kiss you.

If it's a question, you flip the front:

  • Darf ich dich küssen? = May I kiss you?

Now, let me take your original sentence and translate it directly despite it being somewhat unnatural – so you'll hopefully get an idea of the grammar:

  • Warum stehst du draußen, wenn du drinnen sitzen könntest?

Word-for-word translation of the German:

  • Why stand you outside, when you inside sit could?

Here the modal verb was pushed to the very end because of the conjunction wenn, which automatically causes a conjugated verb to do this.

So, no, you can't just do whatever you want with the word order, it is freer than English but there are limitations. Generally, you get a feel for the word order the more exposure you have to the language, so do just that! Here are links to an explanation on German word order (by someone who I recommend you check out, you can learn a lot from him):

Hopefully this helped somewhat.


I need, "May I kiss you on the cheek?"


"Darf ich dich auf die Wange küssen?"


i think that there should be a lesson where you learn other things like this, and stuff like this. anyone else think this is a good idea?


Yes, most definitely! This lesson contained words and phrases some of us may end up using later in life! Unlike phrases such as "the bear is wearing pants" and "the shoes fit the mouse"...


Instead of beating around the bush, Duo took a chainsaw to it!


What's the difference between: "Can I...?" and "May I...?, sorry I'm not a native English speaker.


Usually, "can I..." refers to ability, as in "am I able to..." and "may I..." is asking for permission.


Thank you for explaining that!

It was not clear to me the difference.


So, maybe you can explain why "Do you mind if I kiss you?", which has been said to me by Native English speakers, isn't correct? Why would it be ("Would you mind if I kiss you?"... #justsayin ) as answered to me below? I do not see the difference, and since people have said to me the actual one I give, I do not get why it is "wrong".


can I point out that u are not likely to ask a person if you can kiss them. you JUST KISS THEM! and than hope they kiss you back


I'm a UK native English speaker;
US English—Duo's English—may differ.

Unless you're kissing a strict grammarian, the "Do/Would you mind…" distinction is insignificant in real life. Both expressions are good spoken English, but "Do you mind…" slips better off the tongue. Though the sentiments are similar, the exact meanings differ:

  1. May I kiss you? [the favoured translation] –
    Darf ich dich küssen?

  2. Do you mind if I kiss you?
    Hast du (et)was dagegen, wenn ich dich küsse?

  3. Would you mind if I kiss you?
    Hättest du (et)was dagegen, wenn ich dich küsse?
    The strict grammarian would mind, because the tenses of Would (imperfect conditional) and if…kiss (present conditional) don't match.

  4. Would you mind if I were to kiss you?
    Hättest du (et)was dagegen, wenn ich dich küssen würde?
    would satisfy the strict grammarian, since Would and were to kiss are both imperfect conditional forms. However, if you say this, the one you'd like to kiss might have left the room before you can finish your sentence…

None of 2.–4. are near translations of 1. Darf ich dich küssen? and will likely be rejected by Duo, which usually favours the closest possible correct translation.

   [Posted 25 Mar 2019; updated 8 Aug 2020 22:25 UTC]


I don't think either way is wrong, really, but it's worth remembering that the "right" grammar isn't always the grammar native speakers use.


true. i just dont really see why anyone would use this. you just kiss a person, you dont spend time asking them!! or maybe it's just because im a bradford lass. maybe thats why.


Do you mind if I kiss you? Should also work. I know it's good English because I have been asked it before by native speakers.


goodnes! how many people have asked you to kiss them?!!


Probably should be "Would you mind if I kiss you?"... #justsayin :-)


What kind of question is that!?


One for obtaining consent.


One for the kids. I never ask, I read the moment.


This one forced "I may you kiss"


This one forced "I may you kiss"

Forced? How?

How did it prevent you from answering "May I kiss you?" ?

Do you have a screenshot showing what you mean?


who would just walk up to somebody and say "hey can i kiss you" like what the HECK(by the way do the talking in a Patrick stars voice)


Ja, du kannst 😇


What is "darf" ? Is that verb ? Simple derfen ?


What is "darf" ? Is that verb ?

Yes. It's a form of the verb dürfen.


why is it "dich" instead of dir?


Dich is in accusative form, and dir is in dativ form. And the verb küssen needs accusative.


Why isn't it "Darf ich küssen dich?" or something in that order?


the verb has to go at the end


Could you explain why in this context the verb has to go to the end? Is it because of "Darf"?


Is it correct "Darf ich Kussen euch"


Setting aside the word order, "Darf ich euch küssen?" means you are asking two or more people at the same time!


Would "may we kiss" be correct?


I'm Still confused on the CH sound Ich and dich makes. One book told me it sounds like I h ? So the ch is silent or what?


There are two ways to pronounce "ch" in Germany. For one of them, say "shh" while grinning like a maniac. For the other, try growling like a bear or/while gargling water, or use a rolled "k" (difficult to achieve, but an effective way of making the noise. I learned the German "KKKK" sound when I was nine, and pretending to be a bear).


it is not a "H" sound. The way the Scots say "Loch Lomomd" is the right way but if you don't have access to a Scot that doesn't help much. outside Scothland, English doesent't have this sound. go to Leo http://dict.leo.org/#/search=ich and click on the pronunciation button next to the word "ich" to hear how it should be pronounced. You can do this with any word you want to her.


Dich is not pronounced with the same sound as in loch. The ch in loch corresponds to the ch in words like machen or Tochter. The closest sound we have in English to the ch in dich is the h in huge; just make sure you pronounce it in the way that the middle part of the tongue is against the palate (leaving just a little room to let air pass through) - I expand on that because it can alternatively be pronounced with a regular h as in hot (which will result in poor pronunciation of the soft ch).


When I was in Germany, I was told that it depended where in Germany you were. Northern Germany Ich is pronounced "ish" but closer to France it is pronounced "ick". As do all other words with the -ch. Soft in north, hard in south.


Shouldn't "küssen" be "küßen"?

Maybe I don't understand "ß" too well.


No, it shouldn't. I think the eszett is used after long vowels (Maße vs Masse) and diphthongs (heißen). You sometimes need to know the plural to know if the singular will take an eszett, for example: Strauß and Maus have the same sound at the ending, but in the plural, Strauß becomes Sträuße (at least when Strauß means a bunch of flowers), which is pronounced like Shtroy-suh, while the plural of Maus, Mäuse is pronounced Moy-zuh. Notice the s sound in Sträuße and the z sound in Mäuse. The reason why Maus has an unvoiced final vowel is because of some devoicing rule of which I can't remember the name, but it's the same reason Zug is pronounced like Zuk, and the plural pronounced as spelled: Züge.

That's all the knowledge I've got. You can probably find more on about.com or Wikipedia.


Can anyone properly translate "No, you may not." ?


"Nein, das darfst du nicht" is how I would say it.


can I say "du" instead of "dich" ?


Not in this context/case.

It is accusative and need to be declined. = only "Dich" is correct.


"Nein, Danke" is the correct answer for, -"No, thanks."

"Ja, Bitte" is the correct answer for, -"Yes, please."


So we cannot say "No, please" ?


No you can't.

"Ja, bitte!": means you are happy with the proposal and you want that the other person goes ahead. Often used when you order something. With a kiss it is a bit strange, but it would possibly work.

"Nein, Danke!" means, that you are not interested but you thank for the offer.


is it wrong to say " darf ich dich kusse ?" as we say ich kusse du kusst and etc ...because i want to say may I KISS ... so ich kusse


Yes, it's wrong.

For the same reason that you would say, "May he kiss me?" and not "May he kisses me?" -- the conjugated verb is the modal verb, Darf?; the other verb is in the base form (infinitive).


I want to point out that the hints said "Can I You Kiss?"


That should not happen. Can you provide a screenshot showing that the hints give the entire sentence "Can I You Kiss" as a single phrase, with that capitalisation?

As far as I can tell, there are only single-word hints in this sentence. The work of rearranging the words from German word order to English word order is not in the hints, and is up to the learner.


How can I use "küss" in that form in a sentence? Google translation gave me Kiss for both forms!


küss is the imperative (command form) for when you are speaking to one person whom you know well.

Küss mich! = Kiss me!

English has very little inflection, so it's not surprising that many German forms will map onto one and the same English form. "kiss" could be the infinitive or the present tense or the command form or even a noun.


Can you say "Darf ich küssen du"


No, for two reasons --

  • The infinitive küssen has to come at the end of the sentence
  • du is in the nominative case, which you would use for a subject; a direct object here needs to be in the accusative case, so you have to use dich. (Using du here would be like saying "I kissed he" or "He kissed I" instead of "I kissed him / he kissed me" with the appropriate form for a direct object.)


Great now i can use that xd. Danke. Also how do you say bend over?


Ahh when I click on the little hints it says 'may I you kiss'.. Is that an error or is it just how the German language was written? Tysm :)


I would be surprised if you can see "may I you kiss" all at once in the hints, but if you click on the words one by one, then yes: darf is "may", ich is "I", etc.

And yes, Darf ich dich küssen? with the infinitive küssen "kiss" at the end is correct German -- the word order is different from English here.


are all question structured like this? may i you kiss?


With the word "Darf" it kicks the verb to the end, therefore the sentence is structured with the verb at the end.


When we use Du and when we use Dich ?!


The short answer: du when it's the subject, dich when it's the object.

Try to replace it with "he" or "him" -- if "he" makes sense, then use du; if "him" makes sense, then use dich.

For example, "I see you -- I see him" thus Ich sehe dich ("I see he" is not possible and neither is Ich sehe du).


Alright. This sentence used "dich" for "you" instead of "du". Is there any difference between these two German counterparts that I will have to be aware of? Thanks.


This sentence used "dich" for "you" instead of "du". Is there any difference between these two German counterparts that I will have to be aware of?

Yes, very much so.

du is the nominative case form -- you would use it when it's the subject of a sentence, for example.

dich is the accusative case form -- you would use it when it is the direct object of a verb, for example, as here.

A bit like you can't say "I kissed she" in English: it has to be "I kissed her" with the object form "her" instead of the subject form "she".


It's easier than you might think:

I - me

Ich - mich

Du - dich

Also, if you know older English, the difference is like 'thou' and 'thee'


How would you say: Do not talk about it, just do it. ? "Rede über dass nicht aber mach das... Something, something :)


Red nicht darüber; tu's einfach!


How is 'küssen' pronounced?


How is 'küssen' pronounced?

In careful pronunciation, [ˈkʏsɛn].

More casually, [ˈkʏsn̩] with a syllabic [n] sound.


who deletes comments here? the original owners or the duolingo team


Can someone when and how to use "Dich" and not "Ihr" or "Du"?


how would you say would you kiss me for a sec ?


Why not can ?


Can I say Darf ich küssen dich ?


Can I say Darf ich küssen dich ?

No. The infinitive küssen has to come at the end.


You wouldnt ask to kiss a gurl just do it plus this is comin from a gurl

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