https://www.duolingo.com/ned_kelly

gern and gerne

What rule decides whether "gern" is written with or without an "-e"?

April 4, 2013

12 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/christian

You can use whichever you like. There's absolutely no difference in meaning or style.

April 4, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/ned_kelly

Thank you christian. I am quite amazed. It must be the only word in the German language that is not subject to a rule. I will relish the freedom to decide each time I use it. Ned.

April 6, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/lilygilder

You're right, christian. But some older speakers might disagree. When I was still in primary school my German teacher used to mark me "gern" as an error. For her "gerne" was the only correct one. (And that's only about 15 years ago. Wow. When I write it like that I feel really old.)

According to Zwiebelfisch (http://www.spiegel.de/kultur/zwiebelfisch/zwiebelfisch-abc-gerne-gern-a-323744.html) "gerne" is the older version, but nowadays both are used without any difference in meaning or style.

October 26, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/christian

It's older as in hundreds of years older. Dropping the "e" is not a recent development. Your primary school teacher was wrong to mark "gern" as a mistake.

Here's the Duden entry from 1980:

gern, (seltener:) gerne <Adverb>

http://goo.gl/VumhJt

October 26, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/lilygilder

So maybe her teacher taught it wrong to her too... =/

October 26, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/kristinemc

I'm going to move this to the German discussion where it'll be more appreciated :)

April 6, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/adeleeno

So is that similar to the difference between gut and gute? And lang and lange (eg Sie hat lang Haare vs. how long/Vie lange haben wir fahren?)

April 20, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/wataya

No, this is something completely different. 'lang Haare' is ungrammatical. 'lang' is an adjective. 'gern/gerne' is an adverb. Adjectives are declined according to case, gender, number and preceding article. Adverbs don't change. Usually, there is only one form of an adverb. 'Gern/gerne' is an exception in this regard.

April 20, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/adeleeno

On a similar vein, What is the difference in using "Es ist ganz nah" versus "sehr Nähe?

April 19, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/wataya

"Es ist sehr Nähe" is ungrammatical. You yould say "Es ist sehr nah" which would mean pretty much the same as 'Es ist ganz nah'.

April 19, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/siebolt

Adding to Wataya: es ist in der unmittelbaren Nähe = it is in the closest neighbourhood. I know that is not good English but the German shows you that " Nähe" is a noun which cannot be used as an adverb.

April 19, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/jrgunder

In my day, "gern" or "gerne" meant gladly. "Ich trinke gern" would be literally "I gladly drink" but that was marked wrong.

July 13, 2017
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