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Zu, zur, zum and in, ins, im

can somebody explain these please?

from what I understand, zu + der = Zur and zu + dem = zum

not too sure about in, ins and im though. I'm guessing it works the same way.

when you see a sentence such as " ich gehe zu dem Zahnarzt"

it would change to "ich gehe zum Zahnarzt"

what I don't understand is why "Zahnarzt" is in dative? Is "zu" a two-way preposition ?

and also why is " I am going to the dentist" - "ich gehe zum Zahnarzt"

yet "I am going to the cinema" - "ich gehe ins Kino"

could it not just be "ich gehe zum Kino"?


September 26, 2017



If you are going "zum Kino" you will end up standing in front of it (maybe to meet someone as a starting point to go out for a drink) while others are "ins Kino" which means inside the building to watch a movie.

On the other hand, you will go "zum Zahnarzt" for you have to be near him/her to have a treatment. You will never end up IN the dentist unless he is a canibal or you are a virus or bacteria.


Zu is a dative preposition.

zu + dem = zum

zu + der = zur

zum (dative) = towards (directional)

ins (in das - accusative) = into (outside to inside)

They seem pretty interchangeable but I'm not too sure to be honest.

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