“Classroom courses and textbooks are fine but self study is really where it’s at these days.. and the German is Easy course really nails it.”

Elly, the magical unicorn on language learning, 3-2016

No matter if you want to learn German by yourself, or just freshen up what you learned a while ago or you’re looking for some reading along the course… you’re at the perfect spot.
We’ll go over all the grammar and step by step and we’ll discover how this weird yet fascinating language works, one “Wow, now I get it”-moment at a time :)

And I promise you… you’ll find a lot of stuff here that is NOT part of any textbook.

What order should I read this in?

Complete beginner? Then you ABSOLUTELY have to start with The Essentials. Without those, none of the rest will make much sense. But if you know the essentials, you’ll actually be already ready to go out and talk to people.

If you’re not a beginner anymore…  well, you learn best when you learn something you’re interested in.
So the course is divided into subjects and you can just pick whatever you want. If you’re used to textbooks this might be weird at first, but I think it makes the most sense this way. Just trust yourself :)

Here are the modules:

Learn the basis German personal pronouns like I, you, we and so on…

German conjugation is not as simple as in English, but much much easier than in French or Spanish or Russian. In this part we’ll learn how to conjugate about 98% of all verbs in present and learn important verbs along the way.

Here, we’ll learn how to use the other few verbs… verbs like to be, to have, can, must and more.

Now that we’ve mastered the present, we’ll move on right to using the past tense. First of, because without that you can’t effectively converse, but also because with past tense we’ll really get used to the whole “put stuff last” thing.
In the first part, we’ll do a general overview of how past tense is used in German and how that compares to English.

We’ll learn everything about the spoken past. How to build a ge-form, where to put it and of course which helper to use – haben or sein. And we’ll also take a look at rhythm, because that’s a big deal with language.

Now, we’ll learn how to form the written past (also known as preterit) and we’ll see how surprisingly similar German and English are.

Here, we’ll learn for which verbs we need the written past also for idiomatic spoken German. And just so you know… it’s more than just the modals :)

In this work out you can train when to use Written Past correctly for all those common verbs where it really matters. It’s epic and it’s got audio.

Of course, we also need to know how to ask  questions. In this part, we’ll learn all the question words and how to use them in a sentence.

Not all questions have question words. In this part we’ll learn how to ask the so called “open question” or yes-no-questions.

Part 3 will be on indirect questions… coming (sort of) soon

Not super important but we’ll have to learn it at some point :)
First, we’ll take a look at the two kinds of comparisons there are (yes, in any language) and then we’ll see how it’s done in German.

e’ll take a look at what cases are, why they exist, how they are in other languages and what cases and prepositions have in common (except that they suck).

Time to clear up cases. And we’ll start with the bland nominative and the shunned Genitive and we’ll find out if they’re really that boring.

And now for the two cases that people actually care about.
Mich, mir… Accusative, Dative… let’s find out what they mean once and for all.

Adjective endings – nobody likes them but everyone has to learn them at some point, if only for a test. But getting them right is actually easier than you might think – once you completely forget about all the tables and the textbook approach.  
In part 1 we’ll learn a simple way to get about 40% correct … WITHOUT even having to bother about gender or case.

The second step to mastery of the German adjective declension will get you another 40% of the way. And with not so much of an effort. Still 100% table free :)

This part now will fix the few uncertainties that are still there… in theory. Because this is a bit nerdy. If you’re a beginner, maybe you should just go with the 80% we have an come back later.
But if you don’t shy away from somewhat more complicated stuff, then this is an interesting read.


A broad  look at what a sentence consists of leads us to the Box Model (©me). And the Box Model is awesome. Seriously, it is REALLY HELPFUL at understanding and breaking down even the most difficult German sentences. It will be theory and a lot of English but it is definitely worth the read.

In this part, we’ll look at the structure of main sentences, particularly at how the stuff with the verb works. And we’ll tackle some textboook myths that cloud the view on how German REALLY works along the way.

In the first part, we take a look at the commonly taught rules like TeKaMoLo and find out why they suck- And then we’ll learn a fundamental principle about German that REALLY cracks word order wide open.

We use what we learned in part 1 and see how word order really works. What goes where, why and what happens if you change the order. All that with loads and loads of examples.

With lots more of examples we fill in all the gaps that are still there and wrap up the whole word order thing with a surprising parallel.

Most explanations make it seem like a complicated topic with side rules but it’s actually really really really simple… if you’re ready to accept something really crazy :).

Part two is way overdue… I started working on it but I got stuck and had to leave it alone for a while. It’ll come though :)

IN this article we’ll find out a couple of ways to tell when to use which and look at plenty of examples.

damit, davor, davon, daran… what are they, what do they do, how do we use then and… whyyyyyyy. All this we’ll talk about in this article. And we’ll find out why the da-words are actually kind of awesome.

The wo-words are the brothers of the da-words and there are some common principles. But the wo-words are a bit more difficult to handle. In this post we’ll find out what they do and when to use them… and it’s gonna get nerdy :)

 Scary sounding, not the most useful in daily conversation and yet all over in German. You can be fluent without knowing about this. But it gives you a great inside into the Lego-like character of German and helps you understand German sentence structure a bit better… because actually, you don’t have to move that much :)

Conditional /Subjunctive


We learn what Conditional is at its core and why I don’t call it by its official name subjunctive. Then, we’ll learn how it works in the present tense AND we’ll learn how to build the würde-conditional :). Sounds more than it is… but it’s the foundation.

We’ll learn how to build and when and for which verbs to actually use the Real Conditional. Nothing more, nothing less.

Here, we’ll learn how to use the other few verbs… verbs like to be, to have, can, must and more.

Now things get real :). We’ll learn how to say “would have done” and stuff like this. Almost every learning is making mistakes there, but I have a very simple 2 step system to get it right… ALL THE TIME.

And now it gets super real. We’ll learn how to say stuff like “would have been able to” or “would have wanted to”. We can use the system we already learned BUT… we need to let go of what we thought was the most basic German grammar.

Conjugation is one of the things you are confronted with in almost any language class… for languages that conjugate, that is.
The idea of conjugation is pretty simple and the term might sound familiar to you but maybe you can’t quite put your finger on what exactly it means. So if you need an update on that… here it is.

The term is thrown around a lot in language courses and you need them everyday in German and English… and they cause a lot of trouble for language learners. Misuse of prepositions is one of the biggest sources of error in German and it is by far more confusing than getting a case wrong.
This article won’t solve any of these problems … uh… yeay. It will explain, what prepositions do, how to recognize them, compare German and English ones and answers the question whether prepositions are necessary at all :).

This opinionated post… well.. rant takes a look at the terms transitive and intransitive. We’ll see what it means and if it is really necessary to use these terms.

 Textbooks, teachers, politicians… everyone uses the term without even asking whether people actually understand what it is. Here’s a thorough analysis of adverbs in general as well as a look at what’s special about them in German.

This intense post tries to figure out just what are conjunctions. And we’ll go much deeper than the usual book definition. Because conjunctions have a lot in common with another bunch of words. And we’ll see what’s up with these things in German, which is kind of really interesting because it touches the secret why the verb moves.
(Spoiler: they stink)

An insightful (or so I hope) introduction about what ways there are to give time information

Learn how to say the time of day. It’s boring but it’s a must have :).

Learn all those “names” for time like today, tomorrow, last week and how to use them.

Learn all those vague words like soon, later, at some point and so on… part one looks into the future.

And more time adverbs. This time for the past. We’ll learn words like just now, recently, a while ago, earlier and so on.

Learn all the useful time preposition and how to use them: since, for, after, before and so on.

Time 5.2 – the rest of the prepositions… shame on me, but this is still pending

Learn how to coordinate actions in time… we’ll look at words like before, after, while and others… it is long but I swear it is worth it

Last but not least ones I haven’t categorized yet:

  • Reflections on reflexive
    This post takes a look at what “reflexive” actually means. Then we’ll take a look at English and compare that to how it works on German and do away with some myths they teach in language class sometimes. After reading this, you see German reflexive verbs in a different light… they aren’t that hard actually.


  1. Im looking forward to The Box Model :-)

  2. I can not wait for the Box Model, I know you can solve the mysterious “sentence structure” problem many of us have.

    • Oh damn the box model :)…. yeah to me this is really a big big big thing about German. I don’t know why I keep procrastinating it but it just needs to “ripen” :)… by the way, thanks for your other comments :). I actually did start this blog because I had this dream of having my own textbook… still a looooong way to go but it is great to see that people like the approach.

  3. When will the box model be released? Your lessons are fantastic and if this is a general application for word order it would be fantastic. :)

    • The box model will probably be the next article to come… it will lay a foundation to talk about sentence structure and it will contain some notes about word order but there will be more detailed discussion of that later on… :)

  4. Can’t wait for the box model either! :)

  5. Don’t forget about German Adjective Endings part 2 though……part 1 was really useful ! :)

  6. You should probably add the new addition “The Box Model” to this index. I’ve just started it, it looks v.good. Thanks for all your work.

  7. I think your blog is brilliant — probably the best thing I’ve read to help me learn; combining many examples + making the boring stuff interesting. A cheeky request would be an additional forum part of this website, where people can ask questions about correct grammar usage, through their example(s), and other forum people reply with an answer?

    Anyway, good luck if you ever do write a book. It’ll definitely be a success if you do!

  8. This blog is great :) I’m a 6th Form Student, doing my A levels, and it’s really helping with the grammar stuff I didn’t understand because we hadn’t been taught it yet. I originally came here for the ‘darum, damit… daholyshitwhat’ article, and it’s nice to finally be able to understand what’s going on.

    I hope you continue doing this because it really helps.

  9. This is an awesome resource. Very happy you’ve created it. I finally have something productive to do during the workday. :)

  10. Hello, I have a doubt and I think you can answer it. For example die katze can be written der cat?. This can sound strange, but in spanish is prefectly logical (“el gato” is the cat masculine, and “la gata” is the cat femenine). I hope you can help me because I can’t found it anywhere. Regards, Juan Macias

    • Hi Juan,

      so the general word for the animal in German is die Katze (feminine). So when you see one and you do not know or care whether it is male or female… say die Katze.
      A male cat is called “der Kater”. What doesn’t work is der Katze (except if it is in Dative case :)… so either die Katze or der Kater. Hope that helps :)

  11. Please tell me german present and future tense . Its so hard and I think that your website can make me learn this please help me in this………………. :( :'(

  12. Hi Emmanuel!

    Found you from a link on Yabla (in their piece on “doch”)! Glad I clicked it :) Everything here has been extremely helpful – thanks to you! Your two pieces on Adjectives, especially, are klasse. How about some help now with Possessive Adjectives – seiner, seinem, ihrer, ihrem,… (the works)? All my gratitude in advance :)

  13. Super! Vielen Dank! I’m so a fan now :) :) :)

  14. Good day, sir. My name is Paul. I’m from the Philippines where we have two official languages, Filipino (which is based on the regional dialect, the “Tagalog”) and English, which we use mostly for academic and official purposes. I never had any inclination to learn another language but my interest in German was piqued when I played Duolingo 3 weeks ago. Duolingo is cool, but to really get a good grasp of German, I realized I needed to learn its grammar. I came across your excellent website while exploring the net and found your explanations really understandable.

    The difficulty that I’ve so far encountered is the use of articles and their variations depending on a noun’s case. In Filipino, the equivalent of Der, Das and Die is “Ang” and if we would want to refer to a plural noun, we only add “mga” (pronounced ma-nga) to “Ang” to have “Ang mga”. The bird is “Ang ibon” and the birds, “Ang mga ibon”. In German, the use of articles depend upon the gender and the case, and they’re driving me nuts. I also find German sentence structure complex; the usual subject-verb-object order in English that I’ve been accustomed to doesn’t always apply, especially in clauses following a conjunction.

    Bookstores here don’t offer that much material on German. Germany (and for that matter, much of the non-English speaking countries in Europe) doesn’t figure much in our universe. So material on the German language here is hard to come by, the bookstores here being limited only to dictionaries and books promising good German in five days.

    I am grateful that there are people like you who share their expertise to put this kind of website out there for learners like me to enjoy and study.

    • Thanks for that nice comment and thanks for taking the time to talk a bit about your own language. It is always fascinating to see how other languages do things. There are just soooo many different way to communicate an idea :). I have deep respect for all the people who come from a completely different language background like from Asia, Afrika or from the Middle East. Because for them the European languages must look like Chinese does look to Germans or Brits or Sweds… different and scary :D… Tell someone you’re learning Chinese or Japanese or Arabic here and you’ll get all kinds of “Wow… so hard, I could never do that”. I have given Japanese a try a year ago but I basically stopped when I had the feeling that I in fact “could” learn it…. but with super effort. So… I have learned French and Italian and English but in the end they are all kind of similar. But I would love to be able to speak a completely different language… it just makes you more aware of how relative everything in language is. Viel Erfolg beim Lernen auf jeden Fall und wenn du mal wieder einen Kommentar schreibst, dann versuch’ ruhig auf Deutsch :)

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  16. Hi! Thank you so so much for all the effort you put into your posts. I LOVE your site. I can’t believe you have me giggling whilst learning about separable verb prefixs! Thank-you for making learning german so interesting, fun and informative at the same time. I now visit your site daily. :)

  17. Alexandru Bejenaru

    Heißen vs bedeuten?
    Thank you.

    • So in a nutshell… “heißen” is ” to be called” and in an ancient way also “to call”

      – Ich heiße Emanuel.
      – I am called Emanuel.

      – Ich heiße Thomas einen Lügner. (old)
      – I call Thomas a liar.

      “Bedeuten” means “to signify” and the noun is way more common “die Bedeutung”
      Both words, “heißen” and “bedeuten” have little to do with one another except for this one super common phrasing

      – Das heißt…
      – Das bedeutet…
      – That means…

      The difference here is small and in a lot of occasions both versions are interchangeable but “heißen” is more broad. “Bedeuten” is often used when you talk about the consequences of something.

      – DIe Oper ist zu? Das bedeutet ja, dass wir nicht gehen können?!
      – The opera is closed? Oh that means that we can’t go?!

      “Heißen” can do that too but “heißen” can also just talk about simple names… like…

      – Was heißt “Tisch” auf Englisch?
      – What does Tisch mean in English? (don’t know if this is correct)

      You can’t ask

      – Was bedeutet “Tisch”…

      and you can’t ask

      – Was bedeutet das?

      if all you want is to understand the fact… like… a scientist tells you some things in science jargon.

      – Was heißt das?

      is you want it translated into normal language.

      – Was bedeutet das?

      is asking for what the consequences are of what he just said.
      So… not so “nutshelly” after all but I hope it helps :)

  18. I like this website! I’ll bookmark it and come back to practice my German. Viel dank!

  19. can you explain about genitive?
    your blog is awesome, btw ;D

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  21. A teeny tiny flaw in this awesome site: The color icons aren’t helping much, as I am a colorblind.

  22. I’m not.sure what i need to do. i mean i know what to say what i want to in German but dont really know how to say it. i am half German and hakf Irish so i know more Galen than German could use a little help

    • Well, if there is one thing you MUST know then it’s verbs… learn verbs. Along the way learn how to conjugate them and then how the structure of sentences is. And then you can start refining with cases and all that… but I’d start with learning verbs…. think of the ones you use every day and try to find translations for them.

  23. I love to learn German language by hook ur crook,help me to learn it pls.

  24. a Chinese studying in Germany loves your webpage soooooooooooooooooooooooooo much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Thousands of thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! €€€

  25. I am 4 weeks into a German class and I just discovered your site! It looks like so much fun and should really help. Danke, danke, Danke

  26. I hope this message isn’t a duplicate. I just left a comment but Word Press didn’t recognize me. Just wanted to say I found your site after Google-ing “German word ‘los’ ” and read your excellent and witty explanation of why I keep hearing it in so may contexts. I came back today to see what else you’d posted on “German” and I’ll be back. It’s excellent and yes, please write a textbook. You know your stuff, but more importantly, you know how to convey it with humor and in an accessible way! Many thanks.

  27. Just one friendly suggestion, if I may…. I read your comment about people being “lazy” and not making a small donation to the site. Most people are happy to do so, but you should make it clear that it can be easy to do… I am the same way, but when I saw “Maestro” and other credit cards, I thought “what a pain”… “PayPal would be so much easier…” So, after feeling guilty, I got out my credit card and clicked on “donate” — and then I saw that PayPal is in fact an option… So, as you know, most Americans use PayPal for online transactions — so, we are happy to pay a bit for the wonderful service you provide, but you should add the PayPal Badge to show that it is in fact an option — that makes it so much easier than getting a credit card out of the wallet. Just my 2 cents, buddy! I think many more of us “gringos” would donate if we saw up front that you accepted PayPal… Again, thanks for the fantastic information you’re providing us. I’ve learned a ton! Vielen Dank… dK.

    • Man… you are totally right!!! I totally feel the same way. When I see credit card anywhere I’m like “Mehhhh… don’t wanne”. I just didn’t realize that it actually doesn’t even say Paypal although the button is supplied by Paypal. Such a good advice. ‘ll definitely change that. TAUSEND DANK :D!!!

  28. This is the first time I´m really understanding German. I´m Brazilian, so teaching me German in English is really a great acomplishment. Thanks for the blog!

  29. Hello Emmanuel,

    I discovered German is Easy a few days ago and have been stuffing my head full of the many enjoyable facts available on it about the German language. I also sent a donation to the site, which I hope was received. Und jetzt..habe Ich eine Frage. Or would it be “Jetzt hätte Ich eine Frage,” In any case, I’m wondering if you talk about the subjunctive on your site. I googled German is Easy and Subjunctive, but came up empty.

    Could you direct me to the appropriate page on you site, if you do indeed talk about the subjunctive? Vielen Dank!



    • Hey man, glad you like my site.
      The “Subjunctive” has been on my long term to do list and people keep asking so… I think I’ll do it to sort of kick of the new semester in September. Boooh sooo long :)
      Good news is that I have written about it in a nutshell in my “forum” (which I sort of shutdown) so here’s the link:

      It doesn’t get into usage too much but maybe it helps :)
      Oh… I did get a couple of donations recently but I’m not sure if yours made it through as there’s no Taylor in the list and I didn’t check the mail-addresses. In either case, auf jeden Fall vielen Dank!

  30. Hi!
    Thanks so much for your blog, it is so great. Do you have anywhere a lesson on all of the prepositions… auf, in, fur, etc?! V confused about these little words!

  31. Would you consider doing a post on how to make compound words and adjectives? When to put an S, when not to, etc.

  32. Just wanted to say I’m having a wonderfull time at your blog and lerning a lot as well. Keep it up (seriously)!

  33. Hi,
    I am already fluent in 4 languages (but being bilingual two were for free :D), and since my profession brought me to Germany I am willing to learn this challenging language even though it is not my working language.
    Your witty explanations make it fun to study German, and I am understanding and retaining much more Information since I started reading your blog!
    Thank you

    • Ha… damn bilinguals and their skill :)… people say that the more languages you know, the easier it gets to learn a new one, so I’m pretty sure you’ll be up to the challenge. Danke für das liebe Feedback und viel Erfolg

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  35. This is great and really helpful. Thank you very much.

  36. Is there any rough outline on how to proceed with the lessons? I don’t like that ‘freedom’ , preferring a structure. I’ve the Collins grammar book, but that’s as dense as teak, whilst learning vocabulary isn’t as fulfilling when you can’t put them into sentences.

    • Definitely all the essential in the order… and then maybe the cases, but not “adjective endings 3” (that’s a bit academical) . Then the time-series and then the structure stuff… the thing is that there’s a lot missing still so apart from “the essentials” it’s hard to put an order to things. Hope that helps.

  37. Grey PaperArkadi

    Thank you, I’ll follow that outline!

  38. Shanise Burgess

    I want to learn german language

  39. love your blog sooo much <3
    updates about future tense please :D

  40. Hi :)
    I just wanted to thank you for this blog and for how much it made my journey easier , you have a very unique and interesting way in teaching something as boring as grammar, I hope to one day be able to thank you in person, but for now…
    Du bist wunderschön , danke viel mals :)

    • Danke für die lieben Worte !! Eine kleine Korrektur… “wunderschön” ist fast komplett über das Aussehen. So wie “gorgeous” . Und du hast mich ja nicht gesehen :)

      • Ach so! Danke für die Korrektur , ich bin noch ein Anfänger bei deutsch ,ich lerne nur seit 6 monte :) aber dein blog hilft mir so viel .
        Yep….hope that wasn’t too bad :)
        Happy new year to you sir ^^

        • Dir auch ein schönes neues Jahr :). Und noch mal zwei (kleine) Korrekturen:

          – Ich lerne erst seit 6 Monaten.
          – Dein Blog hilft mir sehr.

          Man kann “helfen” auch mit “viel” benutzen, aber eher, wenn man oft bei jemandem vorbei geht und mit den Händen hilft.

          • Oh Mann, du bust sehr hilfreich und toll, ich hoffe dich eines tages zu treffen (something tells me Im gonna get corrected for that lol)
            Du hast eine tolle methode, wenn du ein Buch schreiben, werde ich das fröhlich kaufen.
            Also viel Glück dabei :)

            Danke für alles , du bist wirklich großartig :)

          • Actually no need for correction. Der Satz mit “treffen” war perfekt richtig (ausser das “Tages” groß geschrieben wird). Aber eine andere Korrektur:

            – Wenn du ein Buch schreibst… (nicht: schreiben)

  41. Hiya! I think this would be random but I would like to compliment what I read on your blog with some sort of workbooks. I’ve been looking around but I really don’t know which one I should buy. I currently live in Germany and I’d really like to learn the language but I have no money. I can learn a lot from this blog if I get more practise! Thank you for the blog!

    • Tough question. I’d really love to give you some suggestions but I’m actually completely at a loss because I don’t use any German study material.
      From my own language learning experience though I’d say just get a book and start reading. Look up EVERY word and be conscious about the structures you see. And read aloud to yourself. That’ll train your muscles and it will fixate correct patterns in your brain.
      And if you really want to produce text then write some sort of diary in German.
      And I’m sure you can always find some exercise online… that’s what I did when I was learning French pronouns. Just search for the topic and add “exercise”.
      Hope that helps a little :)

  42. This site is the single most valuable grammar resource I have ever found ! Your way of explaining things appeals exactly to the way I learn languages (I tend to get super-interested in the grammar, and enjoy really understanding the mechanics of it. Then I realise that if I want to use any of that I’d better go and learn some actual words ! )

    If only an equivalent blog existed when I was learning French, it would have taken me a lot less time and effort !

    Keep up the excellent work,

  43. Hi There!!! Your blog is Fantabulous ( Fantastic and Fabulous!!!)
    I am new to german language,, and german is very new to me,,, i wish to learn it more,,,i have learnt a little bit(May be a very very very little)!!
    But looking forward to learn more from your blog!!
    Please let me know as to where do i start (in your blog) ….

    • Hey Swetha, willkommen hier :)
      Glad you like the blog. There’s no particular order for the course but I’d say read everything that is listed under “essentials” . And the first post on adjective endings (only the first one). You can find that under “cases and such”.
      That should give you a good start. Next up would be “The box model” if you want to take a peek into sentence structure or the posts on cases if you’re more interested in that. Or just read up on some words. Basically read what interests you. That’s the best way to learn. And if you stop half way because it’sboring or too difficult.. that’s fine. You’re the boss of your learning :)
      Viel Spaß

  44. Thanks for your post and for everything you are doing, I have been studying 2 months german and your page is clearing a lot of my doubts. I wish you the best for doing this for free. [thumbs up]

  45. Hi Emmanuel. First of all I want to say a big big THANKS for your Blog, Your sense of humor and deep on the explanations are highly appreciated. I am a native spanish speaker, so from the spanish perspective some things are easier to understand. I have a couple of questions and comments I would like to discuss with you, I would appreciate if you can email me to (address removed for privacy reasons)

    Thanks and best regards!!

    • Hey Manuel, thanks for the nice feedback :). Es freut mich wirklich, dass dir der Blog gefällt.
      AS for the questions… unless it’s something business-related or private I don’t like to answer questions via e-mail simply because only one person can read it. When it comes to languages, you’re NEVER the only person to have a certain question and if it’s on the site here, at least some people can find it. If you still think an e-mail is the better fit, then that’s


      otherwise just go right ahead and ask in the comments :)
      Oh by the way… I edited out your e-mail address so you don’t get automatic spam.

  46. I find your approach to be very useful, especially the box model.
    Have you considered more conversational learning tools ?
    I’ve taken college level courses aand also listened to pimsleur but I feel I learned more from your website then either of them.
    A paid web site w/ more in depth learning tools should be developed by teachers like yourself.

  47. Iam having such a hard with conjugating verbs with spelling changes and under standing haben and sein for some reason my brain wont grasp it :( Does anyone have a simple way of putting it or is it complex and im just gona have to searching tell I get it.

    • What exactly are you having trouble with? The changes like

      – Ich schlafe, du schläfst?

      And what’s the issue with “haben” and “sein”? I’d like to help but I need to understand the problem first.

  48. I LOVE the Humor. It makes me want to read more. Thank you for that.

  49. Fantastic Blog!!! :) Love everything about!

    I’m still having problems with this preposition:
    like Ich gehe zu Haus!
    where the right its Nach! damm German Hahaha… I wish I could learn as easy as I can drink german’s beer!

    • Oh who doesn’t :)… these prepositions of place are really confusing for pretty much every one… even natives at times. I will do a mini series at some point but that’ll be a while still. However, I have a special surprise… a little fact sheet I made years ago back when I started teaching. It doesn’t have much explanations and it’s not comprehensive but I hope it helps a bit anyway… let me know if you have questions about that:

  50. Just wanted to say that YOU. ARE. UTTERLY. AMAZING! I did German in High school for a few years and I really loved the language but all these grammar rules and such just made me feel like no matter how hard I tried, I’d never be able to ‘get it’ and my dreams of being fluent in German just went out the window and I lost a bit of motivation. But 3 years later, I’m prepared to give it another go (as I’m going on exchange to Vienna for half a year next year and would love so much to be able to pick up my German again and this time take it to the next level!). So I’m taking an intermediate German language paper next semester and reading your posts have helped an awful lot, as they are very entertaining to read (which is refreshing after reading monotonous textbooks) and the way you explain things just ‘clicks’ with me (and everyone else that reads your post I’m sure!). However, I was wondering if you have any tips for improving German speaking skills? How would/did you go about picking up fluency and the rhythm of the language? Is it more important to get the grammar right before attempting to speak? or better to talk as much as you can, while innocently butchering their language, be corrected and remember it? I’m not sure if you have a post about this, but please let me know if you do! :)


    • So sorry for the late reply!!!
      I was thinking about doing a post on that question and then I totally forgot.
      So … I think the answer is (as always) balance.
      If you just speak all the time you do run a risk to fix certain mistakes and then you’ll get to the point where you can communicate fine, which is where many people just stay because it’s hard to motivate yourself to improve if it already works. They can chat with friends and so on but every sentence contains mistakes.
      On the other hand, if you don’t speak for too long and have extensive theoretical knowledge and you can read the papers then you will be extremely frustrated with yourself when you do start to speak because you will … suck. It doesn’t matter how well you read and how many words you know. The first 10 20 minutes will be awful.
      It’s a bit like running. Starting a run is never fun but once you’re warm and rolling it’s enjoyable. Same for starting to speak. At first you’re gonna want to stop right away but after a while you’ll get more comfy.
      So the whole of this is… you need to balance grammar with speaking.
      I think for me it would be totally fine to not speak to anyone for 4 months while just learning vocabulary, reading and listening to audio. And then start speaking. This is how I went about Italian and it worked nicely. Pretty much the first conversation I had was on the phone with an Italian bus company. I had two questions and the lady didn’t speak English and didn’t make much effort to speak slow or anything but I got by just fine.

      I think the biggest hurdle in speaking is a lack of vocabulary. You need to have a lot of words ready to just shoot out without thinking. Then you can talk. Never mind the finer points of grammar. Get the verb and the tenses correct and that’s fine. It doesn’t matter if you mix up a gender or a case.
      When you start speaking as a very beginner or too early, then you simply do not have the vocab. You can do grammar at school all you want. It won’T help because you don’t have the words to convey your message.
      So ultimately my tip for improving speaking skill is this (and I’m really convinced of that):
      get a book and read it aloud to yourself. Write down every word you don’t know and learn the ones you deem useful. Read fast but properly. If you stumble with a sentence, read it again until you get it out smoothly. Don’t think of it as reading. It’s a gym for your mouth, you utter correct grammar, the brain gets filled with muscle memory and you find new, potentially useful words, some of which will just stick because the sentence was funny or something. The story of the book shouldn’t bore oyu to death but it’s not the focus. If you only do half a page, it’s fine. Do that once a day for an hour or twice for half an hour and I’m sure you’ll feel much more comfortable speaking within a month even if you don’t speak to anyone.

      • That is great advice! Thank you, I totally agree with all your points by the way because I can speak rather fluent canto but I can’t read or write it and my vocab reserve is actually rather shocking but I find that I managed to pick it up quite easily purely because I hear my dad speak it and I try to repeat what he says in my head and retain my knowledge that way. Although it would definitely be easier if I knew more vocab and grammar! Anyway, I’ll take on your advice about reading out loud and let you know how I get on after a month! :) Cheers mate!

  51. I agree! Great advice there! :)

  52. thank you thank you thank you!!!

  53. Hey, your “German Participle Cosntructions” article has “Constrictions” in the title on this page.

    Great blog by the way

  54. Hello ,
    Thanks because your website is really useful in learning . but I have a request, if you can provide something on Konjuktive 2 ; Futur 1.

  55. Wow… this blog is just too good to be true!

  56. This is such a great blog! My first language is Portuguese and trying to learn German (which is “far away” from Portuguese) as a self-taught makes it even harder. Finding your blog is a damn good help! Haha
    My only suggestion is to post more exercises, ’cause all the rest is perfect (man, you got the best sense of humour in your texts! I just love them). Congrats for your job! :)

  57. Sentence structure confuses me but before I get to that it is best to review the basics again

  58. Hey Emanuel

    Wann genau wirst du in einer Folge von Easy German auftauchen?

    Ich war im September in Deutschland und dort habe ich das Folgendes gelesen: “Das Leben is voller Abenteuer”. (auf einem Werbungsschild).

    Bitte mir erklaeren warum “voller”? Ich bin mir nicht sicher, aber auf dem Werbungsschild koennte villeicht auch “einer Abenteuer” gestehen hat.

    Danke im Voraus,

  59. Hey Emanuel,

    Thank you so so much for this awesome blog. I fell in love with German because of you. I just keep asking myself, ‘why didn’t I find this blog sooner?’

    Could anyone please suggest me an app or a website for practicing grammar? With questions and all. Only reading is bit boring. I prefer an app or a website as I am traveling often and that is very convenient.

    Thank you and Ich wünsche alle ein frohes neues Jahr und Guten Rutschen! :-)

  60. Hello, Emanuel. My native tongue is Russian. Russian nouns are also divided into three genders, which rarely do coincide with genders in German. As a native German speaker, do you know some tips how one can distinguish the gender without necessity of memorizing each word and its article separately?

  61. Hallöchen.

    Eins nach dem anderen, ich lese sehr gerne deine Website. Was fällt mir auf, ist dass, es besser wäre, wenn Sie die Präposition ,,her” und dere Verwendung erwähnen würden, und sie mit der Präposition ,,vor” vergleichen würden.

    Übrigens, weiter so!

    • Ich will rgendwann eine Serie über “Ort” machen und da kommen dann diese Sachen alle rein.
      Über “her” hab’ ich aber schon geschrieben.

      Was genau ist denn dein Problem bei “vor” und “her”. Die beiden sind eigentlich nie synonym. Und “her” ist keine Präposition sondern ein Adverb, also ist die Funktion auch anders als bei “vor”

      Kleine Korrektur:

      – Was mir auffällt, ist, dass es besser wäre, wenn…

      (“Was mir …” ist ein Nebensatz, also Verb ans Ende; Komma kommt immer VOR “dass”)

      Dieser Satz ist nicht einfach und du hast ihn fast perfekt gehabt. Beeindruckend!

  62. Hallo, ich bin Guillem und ich studiere Übersetzung an der UAB (Autonomous University of Bellatera, Catalonia, Spain).
    I freakin’ LOVE your blog — there’s absolutely NOTHING as juicy and fun on the net, Deutsch-Lernen wise – and I want to translate it into Spanish (and maybe even Portuguese). There’s definitely a lack of genuinely entertaining online Deutsch courses out there, and I think we’d get a great deal of attention of the german-learning Spanish and Portuguese public, if we made this happen.

    So, Yup! Guess this is kind of a biznez proposal to you (?).

    What do you say? Are you interested in it? Or at least interested in brainstorming together about it?

    In all honesty, I haven’t thoroughly thought about this nor actually have any plans on how doing it in mind (yet). I was just reading one of your articles and *POP* — this idea.

    Please hit me up at if you are even slightly interested in the project.
    Cheers and thanks for your awesome Blog!

  63. German is the mother-tongue in more European countries than English, French, Spanish or Italian. After English, German is the second most important language worldwide for business, tourism and diplomacy. In central and Eastern Europe, German is the most important foreign can take your German Skype classes through … here’s our link. We’re spammers.

    • Hi there, spammer. The text of your comment can be found on hundreds of other pages. You just copy pasted it here to phone in a link to your product. The spam cat does not approve. Shame on you!!

  64. Hello,

    Just discovered your site, and finding your posts very useful!

    I’d like to ask if you could kindly make posts on relative pronouns and the passive voice when you have the time, as they are bugging the heck out of me at the moment. Your explanations definitely make things easier to understand.

    Thank you very much!! :)

    • It’s definitely on my to do list. They won’t come too soon, but they’ll come. Meanwhile, you could check out the article on “werden”. There’s at least a bit about passive in there, so maybe that helps.

  65. I’m looking forwards to reading through more of your blog posts! The ones I have read so far are very useful! I wondered if you have written anything regarding German slang, especially among teenagers? Thanks in advance! :)

    • German-is-easy

      I don’t have done anything on slang in particular but I have covered a few words that we could call slang. You can find an (incomplete) list in the category archive for “spoken German”

      Some of them are just words that you primarily need in authentic spoken German but others like “Hammer” or “Vogel” contain some slang.
      Viel Spaß auf jeden Fall

  66. Hallo kannst du uns darauf erklären, wie mann “der/die/dasselbe (oder selbst? weiß ich nicht…)” gebraucht? Es wäre wunderbar wenn du darum eine Blogpost schreiben würde! Vielen Dank!

    • German-is-easy

      Was genau soll ich denn da erklären? Wo bist du unsicher?
      Zwei kleine Korrekturen:

      – kannst du uns darüber erklären… das “darüber” ist falsch. Einfach ohne ist richtig (kannst du uns erklären, wie man…)

      – Es wäre wunderbar, wenn du darum einen Blogpost… hier brauchst du “darüber” statt “darum”

      • Danke für deine Korrekturen! So for example I want to say “he only has himself to blame” and “he himself is a liar (even tho he points out others or sth like that)”, will it be “Er gibt ihm selbst die Schuld” and “er ist derselbe ein Lügner”? I just dont know when to use “sich”, “selbst” and the series of “der/die/dasselbe”

        • German-is-easy

          Okay, so “der/die/dasselbe” is “THE same” and not himself or herself. When “the same” doesn’t fit, then d__selbe won’t fit either.
          As for “selbst” vs. “sich”…. “sich” is a reflexive in a grammatical sense, “selbst” is an adverb expressing a self reference. But the terms don’t tell you much. You can use “selbst” in addition to “sich” if you want to emphasize the self reference

          – Er gibt sich (selbst) die Schuld.
          – Er wäscht sich selbst.

          Both would be correct without the “selbst” but having it in there gives an extra emphasis for the fact that he does it himself. Like… maybe it’s teh first time he washes himself after having been washed by someone else for years.
          For more on that and “sich” you could check out this article

          It’s not necessarily for beginners but I think it leaves you with a good overview over what “sich” does.

  67. judegermy7461

    Hello I am new and would love some help navigating this website with my summer flirt account… Where do I start? What do I have access to as a member that I didn’t before?

    • Hey there, and welcome on board. As a member you don’t have access to anything you didn’t have access before (as mentioned in the FAQ).The only difference is that you can read as much as you want (as opposed to just 2 posts in seven days).
      Where to start depends on your level… as a complete beginner you should read all the essentials in the course section. If you’re not a beginner anymore, then let me know where you stand and I’ll give you a direction.

  68. Hello community, my name is Charles and I am new to this blog. I recently moved to America, where I have found the German education is lacking. Although my family is unable currently to fund my education, Emanuel was kind enough to allow me access to his blog and explained that certain members of the community had paid extra so that people like me could learn also. To you all I dedicate this comment, many thanks and know that your generosity is much appreciated!

  69. All i can say is a very BIG “thank you” to all those who have made this possible.

  70. your new blog design is prettier :)

  71. It looks really interesting but my problem is: I want to SPEAK German, I don’t need to write it and I think I’ll be able to read and understand what I read if I can speak it. But until now — Babbel, Duolingo — , what I’ve been learning doesn’t really help me to speak. Have you any idea how I could reach a speaking level for everyday life, including in this the ability to talk to others about the world, the culture, the weather and so on in a very ordinary way? Thank you so much!

    • Well, the obvious thing would be to … speak. Find a native speaker or someone who speaks the language well enough and talk to them. But I think you know that.
      The interesting question is how to get that if you DON’T have the opportunity to talk with someone.
      And I actually do have a recommendation:

      – Get a book (novel), preferably one that has dialogue, and read it out with a loud voice.

      I have done that for French and Italian and it worked tremendously well. Not only do you learn vocabulary and grammar while reading; the fact that you read it out loud means that you’re training your muscles to make movements they’re not used to. And you teach your brain new movement patterns. “ich hab'” would be such a pattern. Basic, common stuff like this is hard-wired and takes NO capacity whatsoever. By reading out loud you can build these synapses without talking to anyone. And keep in mind… the book contains PROPER German, so you’re actually not engraining your own weird structures but the structures as they should be.
      The only thing you need to pay attention to is to read what’s written. A very common mistake people make when doing this is to read something they assume is written but they don’t really pay attention. Like… the page says “den” and they read “die”. The page is your boss. You say what’s written and nothing else. If you mess up, you read it again. In the beginning, your jaw will likely hurt after 10 minutes. That’s normal. But keep at it and I can almost guarantee you that your German will improve loads.
      Of course, when you have your first live conversation, it’ll take you a while to warm up. But once your engine is running you’ll be surprised how well and fluent you can speak. And also at how much vocabulary you remember.

      I guess you can tell that I’m really passionate about this. It’s just … it has worked so well for me for 3 languages (I also did that in English).
      So… I hope I could help you with this. Maybe it isn’t for you. People are different. But you should at least try. And I mean really try… and not stop right away if it sucks at first (it will).
      Let me know if you have any more questions about this or need more motivation :)

  72. Hello, Thank you very much indeed. Marvelous.

    A piece of information. You wrote: “German random is different to Roman random.” But Roman random is also different fromuRoman randon! Two examples: the sea is male in Portuguese and female in French; milk is male in Portuguese and female in Spanish. And there are other exceptions. Even in English a ship is neutral, but is referred to as female even if its name is male…

    Thank you again,

    • Wow, this is unexpected. I never would have thought that the gender could vary for something as basic as milk.
      But when I think about it, even within Germany there are differences (die Cola vs das Cola). Grammatical gender really is nice example for how language and its rules is in the end nothing but a continuously forming and evolving consensus of a group of people who talk a lot to each other.

  73. New user here! I find your blog incredibly fun to read, and just as useful. I love the way you address the the topics. I’m really looking forward to reading all of them. Keep on doing what you do, bro!

  74. Is it freee

  75. Can you explain about when pronouns are used in sentences (sie, er, etc.) to mean ‘the’ or ‘it’ (instead of she or he)?
    Or if you have already written about this subject, can you point to which section this is under?

    Similarly, I am confused by sentences such as ‘Es lauft ein Wettbewerb’ -> there is a contest going on. Can you explain how ‘Es’ works.

    I hope that makes sense.

    Thank you for your site.

    • Hey Jane,
      the pronouns are used based on the gender the word has.
      So for “der Tisch” the pronoun will be “er”, even though “table” is an inanimate object. It really doesn’t matter what it is. It’s pure grammar.

      As for “es”… German does a few weird things with “es”. Your example sentence is one of them.
      I do have an article about “es” but it is a bit nerdy, so if you’re just a beginner, it might be a bit scary.

      In the example, the “es” is basically just a filler filling the first position of the sentence because the speaker decided to move everything to the right. It doesn’t mean anything and doesn’t have any function but fill the slot.
      Hope that helps :)

  76. is anyone still utilizing this blog? i am just about a month in on my German studies and this has been such a nice read; full of humour and you have such an enticing way of portrayal. liebe liebe liebe es!

  77. I guess I am the newest follower here…..I have been reading the comment since the first moment I subscribe and I am impressed ..Hope I will be able to learn some German, as I am demotivated this two last years of trying to learn and still it seems like impossible mission :(
    Thanks for this opportunity:)

    • Get this notion that you’re not able to do it out of your head :).
      That was how it’s been the last two years. Now, it’s different. Not because of my site but because you’re starting a new chapter. And you’re starting it because the old one (the not getting it done) got boring :). … okay… enough pep talk!

  78. You are an absolute amazing person! Putting so much time and effort into sharing so much information, so well formulated, for the good sake of education, available for everybody, is just so worthy of respect. I bow down to you.

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