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What is the difference?

Hey other Duolingo-ers!

I was strengthening my skills and came across the word "berühren". Duolingo told me that it meant "touch". How is this different from "fassen"?

Thanks for the answers and Happy Learning!

October 25, 2016



"Fassen" or "anfassen" always means to deliberately touch something with (the palm of) your hand. "Berühren" however is touching something with any part of your body, such as the back of your hand, your foot or your arm ('in sitting your back is touching the chair' would be translated using "berühren") or accidentally softly brushing up against it.

Hope this helps :)


So "anfassen" is to pet or stroke, whereas "berühren" is to bump.

  • 1847

I suppose "berühren" and "fassen" is like english "touch" and "take"/"hold"


Not a native speaker. I believe in this case it would rather be anfassen than fassen (it's separable so you'd say: "Fass mich nicht an"). From my experience I think the difference between berühren and anfassen is pretty subtle (hard to describe very briefly) and both words are usually used for specific contexts. You should read more about it from native speakers here or on other forums.


Fassen is to grab http://dict.leo.org/ende/index_en.html#/search=fassen

Berühren is to touch, also figuratively, e.g. The words touch my soul. http://dict.leo.org/ende/index_en.html#/search=berühren


Yes, it also connotes beibg touch emotionally.


Berühen - involuntary making contact..not bumping. Anfassen - consciously.

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