Why you should learn German!
Here are several reasons why you should consider learning this language!
- It's the most common first language in the European Union! You can't go wrong with that!
- Germans are the largest ancestry in the US. Many don't speak German, but that country has a lot of heritage from Germany.
- Great business! With a huge economy and an innovative society, German will open up many high-paying careers!
- The internet is full of German! Did you know that after .com, .de is the most common domain extension?
- The literature. German has rich literature and 10% of books are published in this language!
- It's flexible. One of the reasons German literature is so legendary, the sentence structure can be altered in many ways, this makes for great poetry as well.
- It's fun! Speaking German is really pleasant. The grammar is really rigid but you can have lots of fun with all the cases.
- Cool words. German is famous for it's incredibly long compound words. Haus (house) and Schuh (shoe) combine to make Hausschuh (slipper), this is one of thousands of examples.
- A significant portion of English vocabulary is derived from German. You'll find that lots of your common vocabulary is related to German.
- It's not as hard as you think. It has three genders. Don't let this scare you. In most Duolingo languages, gender is present. They're sort of like 'prefixes' before words, and this is just an extra kind of prefix that doesn't really increase difficulty. I think we should start saying, 'Deutsche Sprache, Leichte Sprache'!
- Cases. German has four cases, this is why sentences can be manipulated so nicely. The difficulty is often exaggerated here; once you get used to it, it comes naturally. "Ich esse den Apfel" and "Den Apfel esse ich" both translate to "I eat the apple" because the case (which is shown in the article) tells us that 'Apfel' is the object. This may happen when one wants to emphasize the apple, in English we would say "I eat the apple" by stressing 'apple'.
- It's phonetic. This is a wonderful part of the German language, the words you see are spelt just the way they sound, there are a few rules and regional dialects but in general, it's all simple.
- Some of the greatest musicians in history are German! Bach, Beethoven, Wagner, Handel. You name it!
- A delectable cuisine! Germany and the other German-speaking countries bring us delicious breads like pumpernickel. They bring us pretzels. They bring us tasty Black Forest Cake. Not to mention sauerkraut and schnitzels! Last of these but certainly not least the world-renowned sausages including Bratwurst.
- German-speaking Europe is beautiful. I'll post some pictures below!
It's beautiful, isn't it? Ah, schönes Deutschland...
I hope I have inspired you to learn this wonderful language!
I have been trying my absolute best
and even perhaps finish the German tree
always spoke some German whilst there
even during working at Circus in Stuttgart
This post has been written
To bring folks to German;
You will not be bitten,
I'm sure you'll determine.
Edit: I brought this up to the original post.
Langsam, aber sicher, schön ist es
Dass wir jetzt alle es tut,
Die Sache würde in deutsch Schreiben
auf Deustch wollte ich immer
ein Gedicht schreiben
aber ich hab' kein Zimmer
um Reime aufzutreiben
so muss ich denn finden
Mut um mich zu winden
und ruhig zu bleiben
(Okay, ich gebe auf!)
Langhaariger Hippie im bunten Ringelpulli
Mit bunten Ringelsocken im Schwabenland
Bunte Schilder malend mit ein paar deutschen Brocken
Arm - aber glücklich wie Schmetterlinge
Noch so jung alle Träume geträumt
One of the main reasons I am learning German is because I consider it to be one of the best sounding languages in the world. It's probably the main reason why I chose it over French.
I'm glad you think that. Many people think German is an ugly scary and loud language, but that's because they're hearing it yelled. Any language is ugly when yelled, "OÙ EST MON CHAAATTTT?".
There is something about the expression done in german, that it is a little bit of shouting, but in the other hand sometimes it's really amusing to hear ;)
Lets not forget how friendly Germans are, I lived in Germany for some time and they are the most genuine people I have ever encounter. It is not a easy language to learn, three years later and I am still learning but it is definitely worth learning and Germany is definitely worth visiting. Plus, if you're a history geek like me this is the icing to the cake.
Haha, we have a lot of history sloshing around, thats for sure ^^ Both good and bad at extremes.
Very true! But that is what makes it very fascinating. Even now I'm part of a team researching post Holocaust survivors and the experience I had in Germany has made this research more meaningful to me.
This makes me want to move there even more than I already wanted to. If not Germany, it'll be Romania (not too bad either)
I would add that Germany seems to have some new legislation about free university, even for foreigners, provided they speak enough German to get by in daily life (not to take classes in German).
This is a great post! :D
It makes me want to go there even more! :D Not only is it a beautiful country with a fascinating language, but I have friends I would like to visit there. :-)
What a wonderful post! Es ist schön, meine Sprache und mein Land so dargestellt zu sehen! Leute, lernt Deutsch! Ihr seid willkommen ;)
Gah. Now, I'm interested in learning German. This wasn't included in my life plan. Look what you've done!
"Some of the greatest musicians in history are German! Bach, Beethoven, Wagner, Handel. You name it!"
This is exactly why I am learning German. As a violinist and pianist planning to go on in music, knowing German will be quite useful. Thanks for such a great post! This got me exciting again about learning German. :D
Thank you for commenting that! The goal was encouragement and inspiration in this post!
In Germany there are a lot of nice stages to present your music too ;)
Acchh, so schön. Ich will da gehen.
I wish I could retain German vocabulary better. I took it for a year, und ich habe alles vergessen. I would absolutely love to be able to read Brothers Grimm and Neverending Story in the original one day, but I don't know. My brain kind of snarls at anything that isn't Latin based these days.
I love the Grimm stories, where would Disney be without them? I can't wait until I can read the tales in their original language. I'm trying to read/translate Rotkäppchen online now, but one day it would be nice to have the stories in one of those ornate bound books or one with illustrations.
I wish you good luck if you choose to pursue German in the future. I hope I have inspired you a little bit!
Your missing sauerkraut and schnitzel which are very popular back home also a bratwurst is just a type of one of the many sausages. Also German bread is sorely missed
I would love to but I find I find it very difficult. It is usually the word order that gets me and noun declension... Saying that, Germans seem nice and I would like to have a holiday there. I wonder what their ski resorts are like...
You get used to it. I got used to it around halfway through the tree. It really isn't bad once you get to know it, it's just unfamiliar at first.
It's not that difficult. People cough Mark Twain cough make the declensions sound really bad but it's not actually hard, it's just more time-consuming to learn them. It's also all the more rewarding, and that will speed up your progress!
Twain was a humorist. His essay on German should be understood accordingly.
I heard lately of a worn and sorely tried American student who used to fly to a certain German word for relief when he could bear up under his aggravations no longer,—the only word in the whole language whose sound was sweet and precious to his ear and healing to his lacerated spirit. This was the word Damit. It was only the sound that helped him, not the meaning; and so, at last, when he learned that the emphasis was not on the first syllable, his only stay and support was gone, and he faded away and died.
Before I went to Germany, I memorized basic words/phrases.. I loved Germany! The food was fantastic and hearty, their English was near perfect, and the history is rich and interesting! Once i'm done with Spanish, my next adventure is German :)
this make sound stupid but is the 2nd picture from Vandans, Austria? (they do speak german)
They're not all from Germany, other German-speaking countries are included, too. I couldn't tell you which country that's in though. I have one in Switzerland of Lucerne as well.
I have to smile because I told my grandchildren I might tackle German next. "Why?" asked my grandson. "Because it is there!" I replied. I should have read your post first!
What did you mean by "Because it is there!"? Do you mean because it's available on Duolingo?
Actually I was just joking. Someone asked (Sir Edmund Hillary I think), why climb Mount Everest? And the reply was, "Because it is there!" But yes, the ready availability of the language on Duo is a good reason to give it a try.
Thanks for this post. I'm starting German soon but I've always struggle with the "liking German" thing, I know it also has to do with the fact that I have not had any real approach to the language, culture or people, but your post certainly makes it as a nice introduction for me!
I get some of my passion for German from German friends I know. I'm trying to spark an interest in German for those who aren't interested. If you don't like German, though, I wouldn't learn it. Do what you love to do!
The thing is that I would "LOVE" to speak German, I just don't find the motivation in anything specific like the other languages I'm studying but I'm sure that I'll find it. Because of my career, it is perhaps the most useful language to learn and I really want to study it so I'll try to get an approach =)
Your post convinced me to learn German. I had my hesitations, considering that with all the Holocaust study in Israel you only see German as a frightening language, especially in Hitler's speeches and in sentences that a lot of people in Israel know like "Juden raus". But when I started to delve into the language, I was proven wrong. Israel and Germany are good friends now, and the language is beautiful once you get to know it. I'll visit Berlin in 4 months, can't wait :D
I can assure you, no one is speaking like Hitler in his speeches. In fact his rrrrrrrrrraus rolling r's are made fun of. Of course there are Hitler fans here, everyone has idiots. In Berlin you shouldn't have problems with Neonazis though.
Yeah, I can assure you that, too. I'm a native German speaker and when hearing Hitler speeches I barely understand anything. Part of the reason might be the quality of the records but some of it is definitely the way he speaks (or shouts).
I wish you a nice stay in Germany!
Exactly. We shouldn't assume the whole German language is spoken as if through Hitler himself. That was nearly a century ago and Germany is a modern country that has put all of this behind itself. Have a great trip to Berlin, I wish you success in your German endeavors. Lingots to you.
I have lived in France, a country that likes to pretend everyone was in the Resistance and forget about a government that collaborated with the Nazis, and Spain, where the government refuses to help people find out where their relatives assassinated by Francoists might be buried with the argument that it's best to forget about the unpleasant events of the past.
Germany has done far more to acknowledge its role in the atrocities of the 1930s-40s. If you visit a concentration camp in Germany on a weekday you will likely find it full of secondary school students; it's part of the school curriculum there to make sure subsequent generations know about the Holocaust.
Indeed Germany was the only country to take responsibility for the Nazi atrocities, even though a lot of other countries were involved as well. It would be obvious to say that in Israel it's part of the school curriculum as well to learn about World War II, the Nazification of Germany, the conquering of Poland, the invasion to the USSR and the downfall of Hitler, this of course with emphasis on Jewish lives during these events, such as lives in Ghettos, Jews in the occupied territories, Kristallnacht, etc. Young Israelis visit "Yad Vashem" museum to learn more about the Holocaust. Unfortunately, from my understating, because of the Nazi regime, Germans are hesitant in feeling proud of their country, well they shouldn't be. They should be proud of the rich and cultural country they had before the world wars, and the thriving country of Germany today, which is one of the world's biggest economies. People today view Germans as hard-working people, and they should feel proud of that.
Do note that German in Switzerland is considerably different than most of Germany and Austria. I'm glad you think it's so!
Yes it is. English vocabulary is mainly a mix of French and German. The grammar, however, is a lot more influenced by German than by French. French is similar to Spanish so there are some similarities, still.
Ich werde sie hinzufügen :)
Ich bin froh, dass ich habe dich inspiriert!
Hmm didn't know a lot of these. I'm just trying to get used to the basics of the language at the moment, but your post makes me want to be serious about the study one day (sooner). :}
> It's the most common first language in Europe! You can't go wrong with that! I take it by 'Europe' you mean the European Union. Otherwise it would be Russian with over 140 million first speakers.
Thanks for this great post! You almost motivated me to learn German - before I remembered I'm a native speaker. ;-)
All the best to everybody on Duolingo who is currently learning German. Thank you for showing so much interest in the language and the culture I'm part of!
I don't want to be negativistic or something but, referring to the word order. Cases are nothing, but add some preposition, get into some subordinate sentence and from there, all goes to Hell. My two cents.
It's just something you eventually get accustomed to. I personally like the cases and the use of prepositions being different than that of English; I think it stems a lot from liking German so much that lets me see past difficulties. Of course, you have your opinion. In German people say "auf der Welt" which means "on the world", in English we say "in the world" which makes far less sense as we're not actually in the world.
You certainly did inspire me! I was planning to start German someday. I've just started the Italian tree, and was afraid that second language will be too much for me. Now I have to try to learn them both... By the way, how do you guys manage several languages? Try to remember them all? Or maybe just studing whenever you feel like it? I'm really curious, especially when I see people with three languages or more, it's scary!
Thank you for trying out German! For me, I can only learn one at a time; I'm sure it's possible to learn multiple at once as many have done so, the main concern is time. Good luck with Italiano and Deutsch!
Anastasia, I know basic German and am now trying to attain fluency. I am also studying French and Spanish. It's been my experience that once you learn one foreign language it's easier to learn others. One of my best friends is Dutch and speaks 5 languages fluently. Learning another language is basically a new way of expressing thoughts and ideas. There are some languages which express things better than our native English. We use foreign phrases all the time. For example "idee fixe" or words like "rendezvous". Knowledge of a foreign language is basically an expansion of one's vocabulary. It might be challenging but not at all scary.
True, once you one foreign language it's easier to learn others... I already have 2 foreign languages besides my native Russian (English and Hebrew), but this is the first time I'm trying to learn 2 new languages at once. It's a little confusing, but I'm getting there :) I was surprised to discover that German is way more simple for me than Italian. My plans are to learn German and Italian and then, maybe, French.
I would recommend to separate them a little bit. Get strong bases in one before starting the other and with that I mean at least pronouns, articles, gender, basic conjugation in present and a little bit of structures. I feel I've managed to be consistent in 3 at the same time (not counting English since is not my first language but I've studied for much longer). Good luck with your trees!
I feel the same way, I don't understand how people study multiple languages at once. Kudos to them. It is all about pacing yourself in my opinion.
"It's fun! Speaking German is really pleasant. The grammar is really rigid but you can have lots of fun with all the cases."
The very thought of my having fun with cases is hilarious! :)
But you still pursue German! I love the cases, I love every aspect of German grammar and I even wish I could use them in English sometimes.
Yes, I have pursued German for a long time! I look forward to the day I enjoy playing with the cases as you do. :)
Thanks, but I'll stick with Dutch. Like German, but easier (so they told me....). I love Germany though, it seems like a just and dynamic society and the Germans I've met have all been fantastic people, very fun and very respectful.
I'm working towards finishing my Italian tree at the moment (still a way to go) but have been thinking about what language I'd like to take on next. Now, since my Father has studied German in school for a couple of years plus the fact that he's actually kind of fond of the language has got me thinking about pursuing the German course next but the fact that I come from a Latin-based language background (Portuguese) and that so far I've only tried my hand at other Latin-based languages lets me guess that it might be a real challenge to try and wrap my head around German phrasal structure. For those of you who already study it and might come from a similar background, how did you break through the differences and how long did it take to get used to a different way of speaking?
Hi psilva00, just seen your post from 3 years ago and was interested in the same question, as a native English speaker who finds it easier to learn Latin-based languages than others. It doesn't look as if you received any answers, but I see you have a streak longer than 3 years so I guess you are still here on Duo. You are clearly good at English so I can suggest you make use of the similarities between English and German, (though you may already have done this by now). I started German a couple of years ago and at first found it quite easy, because the words and the structure seemed similar to English. But then I got stuck! Trying to be accurate with the grammar became just too difficult, and I gave up. I still intend to try again one day!
My main motivation is that the German people I know are so nice, and they speak English so well that I want to make an effort too. Also, just because it IS different from Latin-based languages, and is part of a north-European language group that it would be good to have some ability in. Looks like you finished your Italian tree, and you've got top level on French and Spanish too, congratulations!
Speaking German is learning how to do rap as well, you forgot to highlight that. Schöner Deutsch!
I don't understand. Is there a connection between German and rap that I haven't heard of?
Did you know that after .com, .de is the most common domain extension?
I confess that this was a real surprise to me -- I would have expected at least .org to rank higher. When I went looking for some figures, I found that .de actually dropped to third last year, behind .tk of all things! It seems that this is not because Tokelau (population: 1411) has a booming Internet industry, but because they recently decided to make .tk registrations free of charge :-).
There is a nice German proverb:
Traue keiner Statistik, die Du nicht selbst gefälscht hast.
(Trust no statistics, which you did not falsify by yourself.)
And never trust an answer where you dont know the question. Should be proverb, too.
The fourth picture with its red marquees shows a delicatessen shop on Konviktstraße 21, 79098 Freiburg im Breisgau. It is located in the South-Western part of Germany, near the French border.
You can simply put these pictures into Google Image Search and you will find out, after doing some research using Google Maps or https://www.openstreetmap.org
I wish I could tell you but I don't know. I looked around for images on Germany, Switzerland, Austria and just collected what I found.
Hey, thank you so much! that is really inspiring... I think I'll go back to my German tree :D.
I'm currently putting a lot of effort to finish my German-English course and at the same time practising English. In general I love to learn languages.
Your post was nice, I'll add German to my "to learn" list. Besides the composers you mentioned I wanted to learn german because I like some German heavy metal bands.
Thanks for commenting. I love every stage in learning German, and I miss old ones, enjoy new ones, and look forward to future ones. That's the great thing about German for me.
Congratulations!! Personally, I don't like German language, but currently I study English. Any day, I would like to get a high level in that language and I am working for that! I'll do it!
Whenever I thought of the German language, I thought "Big angry words" and "Hitler language" but I have been proven very wrong in my shallow thinking of the language. In fact, I took a quiz on what language I should learn and I got German! I think I'll actually dedicate to German after I get the hang of Esperanto & Spanish. Thank you for this post!
I'm planning on moving to Baden-Württemberg from the US next year. I know the native dialect (alemannisch) differs a lot from Hochdeutsch and is a lot closer to Swiss-German. If I'm in a city like Freiburg im Breisgau or Heidelberg, I should be fine, right? How widely spoken is Hochdeutsch in areas like this?
I love all the pictures! You have definitely motivated me to start my German tree again. I started it a few months ago when I had time off work and I stopped it when then Danish tree came out so I could focus on Danish, which was my preferred choice. I like both languages and cultures, and I was a little worried of trying them both together in case I got confused. Maybe once Danish is a bit more solidified in my mind, I'll pick German up again.
I'm hoping to go to the German speaking part of Switzerland in the near future, so I'm hoping to have more German under my belt for that. I hear Swiss German is very different, but surely Duolingo's German will still help me out, right?
I know a Swiss German speaker. She says that "the [formal] written language is the same, but it is quite different when spoken". You will probably have some trouble with understanding and being understood at first, but with practice you'll get used to the dialect. Du bist -> Du bisch; er ist -> er isch. German on DL will still be a huge help of course.
the German in this Comment section is too strong for me (just started learning 2 days ago. enjoying it though, so much fun. My country (South Africa) has a very Dutch version of German so it comes relatively easy
Greetings from Canada! You'll get to the stage where you can understand German chat soon enough :)
Syntax can be a bit tough, but with enough practice it comes naturally. Keep on learnin'
You sure inspired me, thanks for those wonderful pics!!!! You see, I started one and a half course at School (that was before my mother died and I had to quit. Could not concentrate at all) then I didn't continue. Really want to pick it up again as I have this Nice penpal from Germany, Regensburg. We have been pals since 2004 and have met in Iceland, where I live (well, lived, because i live in Norway now )
I love Iceland! I hope you have a good time with German! I have a German penpal as well, it's a lot of fun to practice with a friend.
uhm,and of course,i really really really love classical music in germany,amazing
Thanks for commenting; every language opens up so much potential, more than one could fit in a lifetime.
I am going to to be visiting my cousins in Austria for a few days, so I am practicing my German! Danke! I liked this post (:
One thing I want to add. I consider Duolingo a 10/10 app and I try to use it everyday, but for a language like German, a lot of people will be better off using Babbel because of German's nature.