Dictionary adjective *(s)ker- gerade


(as in "not bent")
How useful:
Opposite (closest): ungerade
at the moment, a few minutes ago, just
(Can refer to now as well as the immediate future. Often combined with "eben" without a particular change in meaning. Quite common option for translating the English progressive "am doing".)
How useful:
Opposite (closest): gleich
(A bit too high register for daily life, but fairly common in books. Often in the beginning of a sentence.)
How useful:
(For numbers. The opposite is "ungerade")
How useful:
Opposite (closest): ungerade


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My Articles

Time 4.2 - Words for the past

We'll go over the most important German time adverbs that refer to the various points in the past. Also: what you think "früher" is and what it actually is :)


gerade, vorhin, kürzlich, vor kurzem, früher,ebe

The meanings of "eben" and "gerade"
The Meanings of "eben and gerade" (Part 2)

We'll explore how "eben" and "gerade" are used in context of time and as these weird particles that seem to appear anywhere. Featuring: a really scary cat.


eben, gerade, eben gerade, gerade eben

Word Family

Root: *(s)ker-

This is one of multiple Indo-European roots that were about the idea of:

turning, bending, moving in circles

The connections between the family members and this core idea are somewhat murky, though.
The original sense of Schrank was probably an enclosure. Think of a round fence. Then, it slowly shifted toward the idea of storage (Schrank) and also blocking the way (Schranke).

The word schräg (at an angle, not vertical or horizontal) is the closest to the original sense; with “closest” in quotes :).

In English, it’s even wilder.
The most obvious family members are words like curve, curb, circle, circus and crown and corona (named because it threw society for a loop).
Another, less obvious branch are words like  ring, range, ranch and rank, which all come from the core theme of forming a circle, standing in line.
The most surprising members are probably search and research, which are related to the Latin version cercare and which originate from the idea of walking around in circles – which kind of is what you do when you search something :)

Here’s an (incomplete) list of English family members:

  • curve, curb, curvature (“curve shaped”)
  • circle, circus, circadian, circular… (“being a cirlce”)
  • circumvent, circumstance, … (“verb+idea of surrounding”)
  • crown, corona (“bent twig you wear”)
  • ring (“being a circle”)
  • range, derange, arrange (originally “row of people”, then broadened to “area covered”)
  • rank (see “range”)
  • ridge (“bent shape”)
  • crisp, crepe (“curled up”)
  • search, research, recherche (“walking around in circles”)
  • shrink (“getting curly, crumbly”)
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