What’s a predicate

Hello everyone,

and welcome back to our Grammay special, this time as a normal post again, instead of a dictionary entry.. yeah, I know, I keep switching back and forth, but I just realized that you can’t mark the dictionary entries as “read”.
Anyway, today we’ll take a quick look at one of the most useless grammar terms ever… in teaching, anyway.

the prediCATe

So are you ready to jump in?
Then let’s go.

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What are nouns

Hello everyone,

and welcome to the second episode of our Grammay special. In this special, we go over the common grammar terms and look at what they actually stand for, where that comes from and we’ll also ask ourselves the question if we really need the stuff the particular term stands for. Like… do we really need grammatical gender, for instance? I’m sure most of you are thinking the same thing. And you might be right. But we won’t find out today, because before we look at gender, we’ll look at the thing that actually has the gender. So today, we’ll take a quick look at

the noun

The term noun comes from the Latin word nomen, and I’m sure many of you can guess which other word comes from that root … it is the word name.
In Latin, nomen meant both things, name and noun, and we can actually find noun in the more general sense of “naming things” in a few English verbs like to announce or to pronounce. And even though the term noun itself slowly shifted toward being a fancy grammar term, it didn’t change in its essence, because all that nouns are is basically just names people gave to objects and concepts within their reality.

“Yo fellow cavemen, what are are you drinking?”
“Don’t know… but everyone asks that, so I’ll call it what are.”
“Ahhhhh… nice. I’ll have some what are, too. “

And so the noun water was born.

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What is a verb

Hello everyone,

and welcome back to your favorite German learning website on the whole world.
And today, we actually have the start of the epic special “Grammar in May” – or Grammay for short.
To give you a little bit of background… I’m working a lot on my dictionary at the moment (you might know it as “search” :), and one part of that is grammar terminology. There are lots of grammar terms out there, some well known, some obscure and some invented by me, and I want to include all of those in my dictionary, so you can get up to speed with the jargon.

I’ve entered quite a few already (I’ll leave a link to the archive below), but it’s very brief and I figured it’d be cool to have actual explanations for the terms. More than just a couple of lines. And so I’ve decided to dedicate May to grammar and go over the most important grammar terms, add them to the dictionary, but also tell you about it, so come June you’ll be the absolute grammar jargon master, and all this stuff won’t be Latin to you any more. Well, it’ll still be Latin most of the time, but you’ll be like “Latin… I got you figured out. You don’t scare me no more!”

So yeah, throughout May I’ll be posting more than usual, and most of the posts will be rather short, because for many things there isn’t much to say.
But no so today, because today we’ll start with what’s to me the most important word type of them all

The Verb

And this one got so long interesting, that I decided to make it into a proper post.
So we’ll explore what verbs are, if we need them (spoiler: yes and no), and how German feels about them. And just so you know… I’m having wine and it’ll get philosophical.
So are you ready to jump in?
Then let’s go!

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Word of the Day – “streiten”

Hello everyone,

and welcome to our German word of the Day. And today, we’ll take a look at the meaning of


Just by the looks of it, we could think that streiten is the German counterpart for the English word to stride, which is about making long energetic steps. And indeed, the two verbs are closely related.
But looking at the following example, it doesn’t appear likely that they also mean the same.

  • Maria und Thomas streiten in der Küche.

Although, on second thought… I guess it could be their morning routine. Striding through the kitchen, saying affirmations… “I am very well rested. My spirit is high. My stride is long and determined. I will own this day, achieve my goals and be better than all those non-spiritual loosers. Namaste!”
Maria has some new ideas ever since she got back from that Yoga retreat in Bali.
But okay, of course the example is NOT about striding around in the kitchen. It’s about a different kind of morning routine, one that Thomas and Maria have been doing daily, ever since home-office season started…. arguing.

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