** NEWS **: You can now find your dictionary favorites under the members menu (for premium members).
artificial, artificially
Opposite: natürlich
Show / Hide Examples

My Articles

False Friends Explained - "art vs Art"

A fun look at the meaning of the German words "die Art" and "die Kunst" and why only the second one actually means art.


die Art, die Tonart, die Tierart, artgerecht, artig, eigenartig, die Kunst, künstlich, der Künstler

Word Family

Root: *gno-

The core idea of this root was


It’s the origin of can and to know and a big branch of Latin and Greek words that are all about knowledge in some way.
Here’s a little (incomplete) overview:

  • can, could (“knowledge, skill”)
  • to know, knowledge, acknowledge (“to know”)
  • cognition (“get to know”)
  • agnostic (“not knowing”)
  • ignore, ignorant (“not knowing”)
  • incognito (“unknown”)
  • connoisseur (“the knower”)
  • diagnose (“know about someone else”)
  • recognize (“know again”)
  • physiognomy (“knowledge of the physique”)
  • notice, notify
  • noble (“the known ones”)
0 0 votes
Article Rating

Questions and Comments

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

7 months ago

So I’ve been thinking about the word contrived and how to translate this into german, particularly with reference to artforms and its rather negative tone.

I have a feeling if you described a novel or a artwork as künstlich people might think you refering to its aesthetics rather than the thinking behind its production (?)

I’ve looked a bit at Linguee and DeepL and Duden.

I’m looking for something that expresses the “tried too hard” negativity of “contrived”
It seems to me that konstruiert might be the best, but there is also gekünstelt and gestellt.
I’m guessing these more or less give the same vibe?

Die Handlung des Romans ist sehr künstlich/konstruiert/genkünstelt/ gestellt

Do you have any thoughts on this topic?

7 months ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Ah cool, thanks. And yet another prefix version of ziehen to add to my list… got to be one of the verbs with the most prefixes…. : )

7 months ago
Reply to  Emanuel

good old haben deservedly gets the number one position…

Never miss out!

Join over 20.000 German learners and get my epic newsletter whenever I post a new article :)

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.