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  5. "Entschuldigung."



April 21, 2017



Could someone break the word apart that we might intuit its meaning more easily?


ent- is a prefix implying something like taking something apart or away.

Schuld is guilt.

So entschuldigen is a verb meaning to take the guilt away from someone: to forgive or pardon them.

And Entschuldigung is a noun derived from that verb: the act of forgiving or pardoning someone.

As an expression, Entschuldigung! is short for something like Ich bitte Sie um Entschuldigung! (I ask you for forgiveness; I beg your pardon).


Also good to know, all nouns ending in -ung are female, they have the article "die"


Ordnung is feminine? Das ist fantastisch )


So can that be used in a question? As in "Entschuldigung?"


As "your forgiveness?" ? I don't get it how would it work as a question..


can i use "bitte?" too?


@Anggita276033, if you mean use "bitte" instead of "entschuldigung", I don't think that'll work because by itself it means please. You could use "bitte" in a sentence such as "Bitte, entschuldigung" which would mean "please excuse me" though.


Well, another way of saying "sorry" is also "excuse me" or "pardon me" so like, as a question it could be "Excuse me?" or it could be phrased as a "Sorry?"- as in someone didn't quite hear you or understand you.


Thanks very helpful


Ent- = and- in answer, a prefix that has many different uses.

Schuld = shild; guilt, fault, blame.

-ig = -y, an adjective ending that shows the condition of something, like 'watery' (water) or 'sorry' (sore) etc.

-ung = -ing, creates abstract nouns from verbs.

Ultimately the word would be equivalent to English: ANSHILDYING, meaning something equivalent to 'guiltiness' or 'my fault.'


I was unaware of the fact that "intuit" was a word

Thanks for the expanded vocabulary, have a lingot!


Sorry, I wrote 'igung' without the 'D' before :(


Good Question, I sent you 1 lingot.


Ent = (similar to 'Ant')...Schul = (similar to 'School' in English and it is the word 'Schul' (School) in German)...Then end the word with 'igung' and it will be : Entschuligung


The second syllable is "schuld." That's "guilt," nothing to do with school. "Schuldig" is "guilty." In any case, you're missing a "d" in the spelling and pronunciation. (Oh, I see you fixed that below.)


I feel like the lesson right before this did not prepare me for this. These words are coming out of no where. Its like giving a third grader algebra


Meh. If you enter a beginner's German course in any German-speaking country, it will be all German, all the time from day one. Get it wrong. As many times as necessary. Who cares? We learn by exposure, not by keeping some imaginary points or hearts intact ;)


This one is specifically & in a rather detailed way explained in the notes of this lesson, so there's that. I usually give the notes a once over before starting a new lesson.


I don't see any lesson notes. The only notes I see tells you like three of the most basic phrases like "danke" and "bitte" and that's pretty much it.


What is the difference between "Entschuldigung" and "Es tut mir leid"?? Which situation should I use each of them?


Entschuldigung literally means "forgiveness" or "pardon"; it's short for *Ich bitte um Entschuldigung" "I ask [you] for forgiveness" or more idiomatically "I beg your pardon".

You can use it when you did something wrong, such as stepping on someone's foot. Or even if the "wrong thing" is just a cultural matter, such as interrupting someone -- "Excuse me, could you please tell me how to get to the post office?" Entschuldigung, könnten Sie mir bitte sagen, wie ich zur Post komme?. So it can also be a polite way to catch someone's attention.

So this is more or less "Excuse me" or "Pardon me".

Es tut mir leid, on the other hand, is "I'm sorry".

You can use it when you did something wrong, but also, for example, to express sympathy and commiseration. For example, if your friend tells you that their pet hamster died, you might say, Oh, das tut mir aber leid "Oh, I'm sorry (about that)" -- even though it's not a mistake that you made but it's a situation where you want to share your friend's sorrow so you say that you are sorry as well.

You wouldn't use it to interrupt someone or to begin a question.

And finally, Entschuldigung just asks for forgiveness but does not admit any fault or say that you feel bad about what you did, while Es tut mir leid says that you feel sorry. So a German child that did something wrong (say, took away their brother's toy) and is told to apologise might have a cleaner conscience with their mumbled 'Tschulligung than an English child that says "Sorry" when it isn't actually sorry about what they did.


Initially I learned that you typically always say "Es tut mir leid" in the same way you'd say "sorry" in English, and that Entschuldigung means "Excuse me." Having since learned the literal meaning of each part of the word Entschuldigung, it makes more sense. So now I'm wondering if it is commonly used to mean "excuse me," as in "you're in my way, please move" or when you make an impolite sound?

I lived with a German girl who would always say "sorry" instead, is that a colloquialism? Or is it pretty widely used by Germans?


In my experience, sorry is pretty common in casual conversation in German. But I wouldn't use with someone with whom I'm not on a du basis (duzen) or in formal professional settings (i.e. "we apologize for the delay" vs. the less formal/professional "sorry about the delay").

Actually, I would only use es tut mir leid for things that I'm really truly actually sorry for (we anglophones tend to throw the word around with much less concern about how genuine the apology is than they do in Germany, IMO). So only when you'd say a full "I'm sorry" instead of simply sorry ("I'm sorry to hear that", "I'm sorry about/that...", etc.) Entschuldigung is a more flexible apology, sort of "coming through", "sorry I accidentally bumped into you", etc. Verzeihung is another one that you hear sometimes.

Another common option is to use leider instead of apologizing: Leider schaffe ich das heute nicht (unfortunately).


it sound like it said "and chew the gun or gum" and i said it and it work haha


If you try to jump to the next level in "Phrases", you'll get bomarded with the same task (Sorry - Entschuldigung) 5 or 6 times in a row. Duolingo, please fix. P.S. I know that a lot of people already want it but I really feel like 4th and 5th levels of a skill should be much more difficult


I agree. The later levels are largely repetitions of the earlier ones. Obviously repetition is one of the most important features in learning a language, but there should be at least a few trickier phrases.


they're designed to be like that to teach you. you can't learn a word without having it repated multiple times in different sentences. if you feel like you have learnt it and you don't need practice then just move on to the next lessons nobody is asking you to get it level 5.


Yes, I have the same problem!


I got this word 3 times in a row. Does it know I'm canadian? :P


Really? A lot of people keep getting my last name wrong because it's pronounced in GERMAN!


Are u kidding me? The whole test was with ,,entschuldigung"... And duo told me i will be hard lol


I took the short cut but all the tasks for each level are with the Entschuldigung and there are just 4/5 of them...


Can I use "entschuldigung" to pass through people? Like "excuse me"?


It means pardon, but pardon isn't listed as an option..


Pardon is a loan word in English but is not generally used to express sorrow or to excuse oneself. It is typically used when you want someone to repeat something, "Pardon?", i.e. "Can you repeat that?". To use it in place of "Excuse me" you would need to say "Pardon ME"--versus simply saying "Pardon"--but--as with "I beg your pardon" as mentioned in other comments, it is not really common usage nowadays. I can't remember the last time someone stopped me in the street with a "Pardon me, can you...?"


It's also a loan word in English.


It's not the same as sorry in English. In English, you say sorry if you wrong someone, or if you just inconvenience them by bumping into them, for instance. Entschuldigung is more like,"oh my bad" and doesn't carry the same force as "es tut mir leíd" which is used if you have morally wronged someone.


Would 'Verzeihung' work as well?


Is it wrong to say "Ich bin Entsculdigung"? Is there any way to say, exactly, "I am sorry"?


yes it is wrong, the other way to say i'm sorry is " Es tut mir leid"


Well, I know for sure that I'll never apologize anyone.


I'm just curious, what would "I'm not sorry" be?


Es tut mir nicht leid.


I'd learnt from a book of basics a while ago that "verzeihung" also means "pardon me." Is this true? Are they interchangeable?


Yes, you can also use 'Verzeihung', but in my eyes/ears it is commonly used in Bavaria only, maybe even more in Austria. In Western Germany for example you hardly hear this expression.


Well this is a nightmare to pronounce. I keep giving everything that french r sound.


When would you use entschuldigung and not tut mir leid?


Google translate says Entschuldigung means excuse me


Aaaa that word is long and difficult to spell. Any tricks remembering the orthograph?



Ent denotes removal (Decke is a cover, Entdecken is to discover)

Schuld is guilt

ig is often the ending y in English (Schuldig is guilty)

ung forms feminine nouns from verbs. Here the verb is Entschuldigen to remove guilt, to forgive

I'd like removal of my guiltyness, please. I'd like forgiveness, please.


Wait wait, in german class this means "Pardon Me", like "excuse me", "es tut mir leid" means "Im sorry", right?


Why not list it as "I beg your pardon" then? Is there an overwhelming reason to not list it that way?


Quite possibly because in English, "I beg your pardon" is rarely used anymore in the sense of "please pardon me." In the USA, I've only ever heard it used in two ways. The first meaning "I didn't hear you, could you say that again?" and the second meaning... well pretty much the same thing except with extreme sarcasm. Sort of like "I heard what you said, but are you sure you want to have said it?" The second way is usually said by a parent to a child.


When do people use it?


You can use it to quickly apologize, say, if you bumped into someone on accident, or you can use it to get someone's attention, the way you'd use "excuse me" in English, like; excuse me– do you know what time it is?


I'm on my fifth question in a strengthening exercise, and this is the fourth time I've had Entschuldigung...twice German to English, once type what you hear and once English to German (in that order!). I guess it shows the question choice is truly random...

I got it right each time ;o)

[Edit] Ok, now I've had is another 4 times - 2 with "no" in front, and 2 Sorry to German...these two straight after one another. This is in the same exercise!!


Can you use this word in the context where you want someone to repeat themselves so you hear them correctly?


By itself, I'd say it's unusual.

You might use it as part of a longer phrase, e.g. Entschuldigung, das habe ich nicht verstanden. Könnten Sie das bitte wiederholen? "I'm sorry, I didn't understand that. Could you repeat that, please?".

But as a short phrase to signal incomprehension, Wie bitte? is probably the most common.


Can you not just say sorry?


I just had Entschuldigung 6x in a row...


Just to make sure I have this straight, Entschuldigung and es tut mir leid in real conversation mean something different. I'm pretty sure it's not for different genders.


Yes, they're a bit different - in some situations you can use either, but es tut mir leid "I'm sorry" can also be used for things that aren't your fault, unlike Entschuldigung "Pardon; Forgive me".

For example, if you bump into someone, you could use either, but if someone tells you their cat just died, you can say "I'm sorry" but not "Forgive me"... unless, of course, it was you who killed the cat!




Ent-'schul-di-gung Looks harder than it really is.


Or in casual conversation, just 'tschuldigung.


It sounds like we'll sure be gone


can it not take multiple English answers? i.e., pardon, sorry, excuse me


Yes and no.

There are multiple acceptable answers -- but you can only use one at a time.

So the exercise would be considered correct if you answered "Pardon".

It would also be considered correct if you answered "Sorry".

And also if you used "Excuse me".

But not if you wrote, "pardon, sorry, excuse me" -- because those are three phrases and the German doesn't say Entschuldigung, Entschuldigung, Entschuldigung but just has Entschuldigung once.


I used the word apology and it was listed as wrong, with the correct form being apologies, but... shouldn´t apologies be Entschuldigungen? Nothing point toward the word being unregular. Or is my understanding of the word apology wrong?


This is not just a word in isolation -- it's an entire utterance. (Hence the full stop at the end.)

So you have to translate the "sentence".

Entschuldigung! is a phrase used by German speakers to apologise for something.

One phrase used by English speakers to apologise for something is "Apologies!".

On the other hand, "Apology!" is not used as an expression of apology -- so it's not a good translation for Duo's "sentence".


Doesn't it also mean "Excuse me"


Yes it does, and that translation is also accepted.


I suppose "bitte?" could also be used as "excuse me?" Correct?


also it says good afternoon is guten tag. and guten tag is good day


Guten tag is also hello!


I was going to say that I wouldn't use it in the evening, but die Muttersprachler at the German forum at WordReference agree with you:



Sorry / Entschuldigung - this is the only word repeated for this entire exercise / practice session

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This app is so frustrating!! I have to repeat 'sorry' or 'entschuldigung' five exercises in a row. how am i suppose to lear german in this way?


Be repeating things it's being engraved into your brain. So the more you here it the better chance you will have of remembering it.


I'm having a lot of trouble with "Goodbye" I just can't remember it or spell it.


this word is way to hard to spell from memory wth..


Shouldn't "tut mir leid" be positioned as the way to say "im sorry"? I get it, you can say excuse me in a lot of the same situations but it technically means something different


How does this mean "sorry"?


Entschuldigung actually means Excuse me


What's the difference between Es tut mir leid and Entschuldigung? I'm confused.


Also you can say 'Entschuldigen Sie' - correct me, if i'm wrong!


Couldn't you just say 'es tut mir lied?' That is what my teacher taught me in the first week of school.


Couldn't you just say 'es tut mir lied?'

No, but es tut mir leid is possible for "I'm sorry".


Why is it capitalized?


Why is it capitalized?

Because it's a noun. All nouns are capitalised in German.

It literally means something like "forgiveness" or "pardon", but -- like English "pardon" -- it's often used by itself as a shorthand for something like ich bitte dich um Entschuldigung "I ask you for forgiveness / I beg your pardon".


why the voice is missing? anyone can help me with this problem?


Why is it not es tut mir leid?


it gave me "Thank , Exactly , Unfortunately , Sorry , I" i put "I sorry" because it was the only correct-ish answer, and it said i had a typo. I had no choice to do "im sorry"


I had no choice to do "im sorry"

"im" would not have been correct, either. (It's "I'm" with a capital I and an apostrophe.)

Just "Sorry." should have been enough, though.


What's the difference between es tut mir leid and entschuldigung


Although both mean "Sorry!" they don't have the same flavor.

Es tut mir Leid. I'm sorry to hear that you are ill. It makes me sad.

Entschuldigung. I'm sorry that I stepped on your foot. I didn't mean it.

My intentions have nothing to do with your illness, so "Entschuldigung" doesn't work to show your sympathy.

Stepping on your foot might make you cry, but not me. You hear "Es tut mir Leid" in this situation, but as a formula rather than an expression of sympathy.


What's the difference between Entschuligung und es tut mur leid??


Ee tut mir leid has the same meaning i am sorry and entschuldigung also has a meaning i am sorry... So which should i use?


Es tut mir leid has meaning i am sorry and entschuldigung also has the same meaning i am sorry .. So which one is correct in use?


Entchuldiging is more formal so if it were a stranger then use it.

Es tut mier lied is what you would use if speaking to family or close friend (sorry if bad spelling im in a hurry)


Now I know why its so hard for Germans to apologize.


I remeber in first grade, when you be late you had to say "entschuldigung für die verspätung". After 6 years i still remeber it perfectly.


Entschuldigung and "Es tut mir leid" mean I'm sorry! So EITHER answer should be correct. This lesson has enfuriating!!!


EITHER answer should be correct.

What kind of exercise did you have? Do you have a screenshot that you can share? Upload it to a website somewhere, please (e.g. imgur) and tell us the URL of the image.

If you came to this sentence discussion, then chances are that you either had a translation exercise (German to English) or a listening exercise (type what you hear).

If it was a translation exercise, then es tut mir leid is not a correct answer because that's not an English sentence.

If it was a listening exercise, then es tut mir leid is not a correct answer because that's not what the voice says.

Without seeing the exercise you had, I can't provide any more specific advice.


If this is a noun, is it feminine, masculine or neuter??


Feminine. All nouns ending in "ung" are.


All nouns ending in "ung" are.

Well, all nouns with the suffix -ung are.

There are nouns that happen to end in the letters ung where it is not a suffix but rather part of the word stem, and those need not be feminine: for example, der Sprung, der Schwung


I think the word Entschuldigung is used for: -Sorry -Pardon -excuse me


Es tut mir leid is i am sorry And now Entschuldigung is sorry Please explain the differnce among them i am new in this chapter


See's Philip's reply to Guilherme higher above in the thread. He gives a better explanation than I could give.


I wrote End- instead of Ent- and was marked incorrect. Does that change the meaning somehow so that it isn't seen as just a spelling error?


Endschuldigung is not a word you'd find in a dictionary, but it looks as if it could mean something like "adding final guilt (to you)".


so basically I am testing out of level 3 and all questions are for this phrase. hello contributours?


I think that Duo has enabled the interface for testing out of levels without first preparing comprehensive exercises suited to that purpose. Although we are warned "but we won't make it easy for you," they do make it easy, giving us ordinary exercises with a lot of repetition.


why is this test all about "entschuldigung" i get that's a hard word to spell but that's enough. at least now i can write entschuldigung better than my own name.


It's important to know how to be polite. You won't get to the equivalent of "What do you think you're looking at?" until the more advanced lessons.


Why is it only "Entschultigung" on ALL of the tests?


Because you have to learn it. You still made a typo.


I feel like "apology" ought to work, but it said "apologies" was correct. "Entschuldigungen" is the plural form. Also, there is no indication that this is being used as an interjection.


Also, there is no indication that this is being used as an interjection.

There was a full stop / period "." at the end, indicating that this is a complete utterance, not an isolated vocabulary word.

As an interjection, "Apologies!" is used in English but I haven't come across as "Apology!". Conversely, "Entschuldigung!" is common in German but I've never heard "Entschuldigungen!".

So translating the singular to the plural is an idiomatic decision, driven by how a given idea is expressed differently in the two languages, rather than by grammatical needs.


Excuse me? Worked?


this word is confusing


What's confusing about it?


It means excuse me right ?


The hell are you supposed to spell that?


Break it up into its components -- ent-Schuld-ig-ung


Why is this word so long and hard?


It's so long because it's a compound word, made up of smaller elements.

So, for the same reason that (say) "independent" is so long -- it's also four syllables, each of which has a meaning (-pend- was to hang, de- was down, so depend was literally to hang down; then -ent makes an adjective out of the verb and in- makes it opposite).

In German, you also have ent-Schuld-ig-ung which roughly translates into "removal of blame or guilt"; you're asking someone to pardon you, to free you from blame and guilt.

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