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Dictionary > prepositions

    Here's a quick overview with translations. For family, examples and more check the details.
  • ab
    (preposition)
    1.
    off, separation
    (In the sense of separation.)
    How useful:
    2.
    starting (from)
    (In sense of location and time. More common for time in daily life when talking about a process starting in the future.)
    How useful:
    3.
    downward
    How useful:
    see details >
  • abseits
    (preposition)
    1.
    off, offside, secluded from
    (Goes with Genitive!)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • an
    (preposition)
    1.
    on
    (As in "activated", for devices of all kinds.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: aus
    2.
    toward, to
    (In the sense of addressing something to someone. Main use is for mail and other messages. This one goes with Accusative, because it's a direction. )
    How useful:
    3.
    at, on
    (Putting something on the "side" of another object. Think picture on the wall. Can go with Accusative or Dative, depending whether you talk about "where to" or "where".)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • angesichts
    (preposition)
    1.
    in the face of, in the light of, considering
    (Goes with Genitive. Sounds formal.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • anhand (von)
    (preposition)
    1.
    with the aid of, by using
    (when you use it without "von", you need Genitive after it)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • anlässlich
    (preposition)
    1.
    on the occasion of
    ("anlässlich + Genitiv" - The thing is the reason for something, like an event or celebration. Sounds formal.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • auf
    (preposition)
    1.
    open
    (In context of open stores or doors it's by far more common that "offen" in daily life, but it doesn't work well for figurative things like an open mind.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: zu
    2.
    on, on top of
    (It's a two way preposition, so it takes Accusative or Dative. The translation can vary based on the context but the core theme is "on, onto")
    How useful:
    3.
    "a sense of targeting"
    (In many fixed combinations with a verb, that's the idea it expresses.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • aus
    (preposition)
    1.
    off
    (inactive)
    How useful:
    Opposite: an
    2.
    out of, from, out of
    (For locations you can enter, including geographical things like cities, countries or regions. Goes with Dative.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: in
    3.
    out of, from, of
    (Same idea of "origin" but for material something is made of. And also in a figurative sense for the "origin" of a deed ("aus Langeweile", "aus Ärger",...))
    How useful:
    see details >
  • bei
    (preposition)
    1.
    at, with
    ("be at a location". In German, it is directly combined with names to express that you're at someone's home. More often than not, "bei" does NOT translate to "by")
    How useful:
    2.
    while, at, "-ing"
    (In the sense of currently doing an activity. A good option to translate the English progressive tense.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • binnen
    (preposition)
    1.
    within
    (ONLY used for time periods. Fairly common in written German.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • bis
    (preposition)
    1.
    until
    (Temporal sense.)
    How useful:
    2.
    to, until
    (Local sense.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: von
    see details >
  • bis auf
    (preposition)
    1.
    except X
    (synonymous to "ausser" for the most part)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • diesseits
    (preposition)
    1.
    on this side of
    (Goes with Genitiv. Sounds rather high brow. Also used as a noun for "this world" as opposed to the realm of the dead.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: jenseits
    see details >
  • durch
    (preposition)
    1.
    through
    (For locations. Always takes Accusative. As a prefix, it can be both, separable and inseparable.)
    How useful:
    2.
    through, by means of, due to
    (The general idea of "cause" or "by means of")
    How useful:
    see details >
  • einschließlich
    (preposition)
    1.
    including
    (Only as a preposition and you need to use it with Genitive.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • entgegen
    (preposition)
    1.
    contrary to
    ("entgegen+Dative" - sounds pretty formal and you don't hear it much in daily life)
    How useful:
    2.
    toward
    (This is used as an adverb or prefix, and comes AFTER the location, for example: "der Sonne (Dative) entgegen")
    How useful:
    see details >
  • entlang
    (preposition)
    1.
    along
    ("entlang" can be used before AND after the noun. After the noun is more common. The noun then gets Dative. With "entlang" in the front, it'd be Genitive)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • für
    (preposition)
    1.
    for, pro
    (The sense of being pro something)
    How useful:
    Opposite: gegen
    2.
    for
    (In the sense of someone being the receipient.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: von
    see details >
  • gegen
    (preposition)
    1.
    against
    (take Accusative)
    How useful:
    Opposite: für
    2.
    around
    (ONLY in context of time of day.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • gemäß
    (preposition)
    1.
    in compliance with, according to
    (Sounds formal. Can be before and after the noun. After the noun it's less common and ALWAYS with Dative. Before it, it's usually with Dative, but sometimes you can also find it with Genitive. )
    How useful:
    see details >
  • hinsichtlich
    (preposition)
    1.
    regarding
    (Goes with Genitive, sounds a bit stiff.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • hinter
    (preposition)
    1.
    behind
    (As a preposition)
    How useful:
    Opposite: vor
    2.
    to the rear/back
    How useful:
    see details >
  • in
    (preposition)
    1.
    in
    (For locations. Take Accusative or Dative depending on whether it is destination or fixed location (to where vs where). Also )
    How useful:
    Opposite: aus
    2.
    in
    (In the temporal sense. This one goes with Dative.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: vor
    3.
    in
    (Direct import from Engish "in", in the sense of fashionable.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • mangels
    (preposition)
    1.
    due to a lack of, for lack of
    ("mangels +Genitive" - sounds a bit technical.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • mit
    (preposition)
    1.
    with
    How useful:
    Opposite: ohne
    see details >
  • mithilfe
    (preposition)
    1.
    by means of, with the aid of
    (Genitive preposition, so "mithilfe des/der XYZ". Sounds a bit formal/technical.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • mitsamt
    (preposition)
    1.
    along with, together with, including
    ("mitsamt+Dat" - sounds fairly high register. Also used with Genitive sometimes.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • mittels
    (preposition)
    1.
    by means of, through
    (Goes with Genitive and it's not too common.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • nach
    (preposition)
    1.
    to, toward
    (for most geographical names as well as cardinal directions)
    How useful:
    2.
    after
    (preposition)
    How useful:
    Opposite: vor
    3.
    like, "reminischent of"
    (for comparisons of taste, smell annd sound)
    How useful:
    4.
    according to
    (as a post-position, so it comes AFTER the object which is in Dative)
    How useful:
    5.
    for
    (In many combinations with verbs where "nach" connects the "target". This ties in with "to, toward".)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • neben
    (preposition)
    1.
    next to, besides
    (Two way preposition, so it can go with Dative and Accusative. Originally, it was a combination of "in" and "eben" and meant "in the same layer, from where it became "next to".)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • oberhalb (von)
    (preposition)
    1.
    in the upper side (of), above
    How useful:
    Opposite: unterhalb
    see details >
  • ohne
    (preposition)
    1.
    without
    (Goes with Accusative.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: mit
    see details >
  • seit
    (preposition)
    1.
    since
    (German doesn't distinguish between "since" and "for")
    How useful:
    2.
    for
    (time span)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • seitens
    (preposition)
    1.
    on the part of, by, on the side of
    ("seitens+Gen" - sounds fairly formal. Used in the context of parties, not sides in the sense of location.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • trotz
    (preposition)
    1.
    despite
    (Followed by genitive, though colloquialy, you might find Dative from time to time)
    How useful:
    Opposite: wegen
    see details >
  • über
    (preposition)
    1.
    over, above
    (NOT "over" in the sense of "ended")
    How useful:
    Opposite: unter
    see details >
  • um
    (preposition)
    1.
    around
    (As a preposition, so in phrasings like "going around the [x]".)
    How useful:
    2.
    "over, down"
    (As a separable prefix - the core idea is that you're somehow turning an entity.)
    How useful:
    3.
    "around, avoiding"
    (As a non-separable prefix - the core idea is that you place or move an entity around another one.)
    How useful:
    4.
    o'clock
    (for the full hour in "street speak")
    How useful:
    5.
    roughly
    (Pretty much only used in the phrasing "um die + [Plural number]".)
    How useful:
    6.
    by
    (Specifically for giving the amount of a rotation, but also used for a few other changes of quantity.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • ungeachtet
    (preposition)
    1.
    irrespective, despite
    (Sounds very formal. Goes with Genitive and the special thing is that the object can come before AND after the word. So "dessen ungeachtet" and "ungeachtet dessen" both work. Mostly used in combination with a relative pronoun or "Tatsache".)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • unter
    (preposition)
    1.
    under
    (below)
    How useful:
    Opposite: über
    2.
    among, in between
    (For groups of items)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • unweit
    (preposition)
    1.
    not far from
    ("unweit+Gen" or "unweit von+Dat" - only for actual locations.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • von
    (preposition)
    1.
    from
    (For people, activities and personalized locations (brand names).)
    How useful:
    Opposite: zu
    2.
    of
    (The general theme of origin and possession.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: für
    3.
    from, starting
    (Temporal sense. For giving a range like "Monday through Friday")
    How useful:
    Opposite: bis
    see details >
  • vor
    (preposition)
    1.
    in front of, forward
    (for locations. Two-Way preposition so for a destination it's Accusative and for a fixed location it is Dative)
    How useful:
    Opposite: hinter
    2.
    before
    (ONLY as a preposition, so if it is followed up with a point in time. The other translations are "bevor" and "vorher" or "davor")
    How useful:
    Opposite: nach
    3.
    ago
    (IMPORTANT: "vor" comes BEFORE the time, not after it. IT translates the message of "ago", but it's not the same, functionally speaking. )
    How useful:
    Opposite: in
    see details >
  • wegen
    (preposition)
    1.
    because of
    (Goes with Dative and Genitive, no matter what the books say. It is what it is.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: trotz
    see details >
  • wider
    (preposition)
    1.
    against
    ("wider+Dat" - super rare in daily life as a stand alone)
    How useful:
    2.
    against, contra, reverting
    (As a verb prefix.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • zu
    (preposition)
    1.
    to, toward
    (For most destinations that you DON'T enter. The main groups are people and brand names. Note that you can well use it for places that you can enter, but then the focus is that you don't really go inside.)
    How useful:
    Opposite: von
    2.
    closed
    (By FAR the standard and way more common than "geschlossen")
    How useful:
    Opposite: auf
    3.
    for
    (In the sense of something serving a purpose)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • zugunsten
    (preposition)
    1.
    in favor of
    ("zugunsten+Gen" - sounds fairly formal. Quite common in context of judges and referrees. )
    How useful:
    see details >
  • zulasten
    (preposition)
    1.
    at the expense of, to the disadvantage of
    ("zulasten+Gen" - Goes with Genitive. The idea is who or what has to carry the negative consequences of something. Not very common and mainly used in context of legal issues.)
    How useful:
    see details >
  • zuliebe
    (preposition)
    1.
    for the sake of
    ("Dative+zuliebe" - The Dative comes first and then "zuiebe". The core idea is that you do something out of liking or loving for someone or something, so "sake" is a bit misleading. "dir zuliebe" is roughly "I'll do it, but just for YOU.")
    How useful:
    see details >
  • zuzüglich
    (preposition)
    1.
    plus
    ((zzgl.))
    How useful:
    Opposite: abzüglich
    see details >
  • zwecks
    (preposition)
    1.
    for the purpose of
    (Goes with Genitive so yeah... not very common. )
    How useful:
    see details >


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