German Grammar Term

While teaching German as a Foreign Language I realized that one of the most difficult problems is termini – the words you use to describe grammar, somtimes just to describe a sentence.
So I prepared a list with the most important and basic grammatical terms of the German language, put in some examples and translated it into English and Japanese (with the help of a Grammar list for Japanese Grammatik). I uploaded the chart and also added a pdf-file at the end. Feel free to use it, to correct it and to extend it with further words or languages. I am looking forward to receive feedback, wishes and ideas how to broaden the list. I thought about adding French, Spain and Italian – but I would need help for this.

For Teachers & Learners alike – in accordance with my last post – enjoy & learn:

Deutsch English 日本語
Nomen, Substantiv (der Tisch, die Zeit, das Tier etc.) noun 名詞


Pronomen pronoun 代名詞 だいめいし
Verb (tanzen, machen, kochen etc.) verb 動詞


transitives Verb (zielend, ein Akkusativobjekt fordernd; z.B.: essen, kaufen, besitzen) transitive verb 他動詞


intransitives Verb (nicht zielend, kein Akkusativobjekt fordernd; z.B.: gehen, schlafen, kaufen) intransitive verb 自動詞


Hilfsverb (haben, sein, werden) auxiliary verb 助動詞


Adjektiv (schön, groß, neu etc.) adjective 形容詞


Adverb, Umstandswort, das (abends, drüben, leider, unglücklicherweise etc.) adverb 副詞


Präposition (in, auf, über etc.) preposition 前置詞


Konjunktion (und, oder, aber, sondern, denn) conjunction 接続詞


Interjektion (oh!, ah!, au! etc.) interjection 間投詞


Artikel article 冠詞 かんし
bestimmter Artikel (der, die das, dem, den, des) definite article 定冠詞


unbestimmter Artikel (ein, eine, einem, einen, eines, kein, keine etc.) indefinite article 不定冠詞


Fragewort (Wer, War, Welch-, Wann etc.) interrogative word 疑問詞


Singular, Einzahl singular 単数形 たんすうけい
Plural, Mehrzahl plural 複数形 ふぃくすうけい
Nominativ (Wer?/ Was?) nominative 主格 しゅかく
Genitiv (Wessen?) possessive case, genitive 所有格 しょゆかく
Akkusativ (Wen?/ Was?) objective case, accusative 目的格 もくてきかく
Dativ (Wem?/ Was?) dative 与格 よかく
Vergleich comparison 比較 ひかく
Positiv, Grundstufe (groß, klein, gut, gern etc.) positive degree 原級


Komparativ, Vergleichsstufe, erste Steigerungsstufe (größer, kleiner, besser, lieber etc.) comparative degree 比較級


Superlativ, zweite Steigerungsstufe (am größten, am kleinsten, am besten, am liebsten etc.) superlative degree 最上級


Komparative eines Adjektivs comparative of an adjective 形容詞の比較級


Verbstamm (wohn-, mach-, hab- etc.) verb root 動詞の原形


Infinitiv Infinitive 不定詞 ふていし
Präsenz, Gegenwart present tense 現在形 げんざいけい
Vergangenheitsform past tense 過去時制 かこじしょう

過去形 かこけい

Präteritum, einfache Vergangenheit (wohnte, war, hatte, ging etc.) simple past 単純過去


Vergangenheitsform – Perfekt (haben/sein + Partizip II) perfect tense, present perfect 過去形


Partizip Perfekt, Partizip II (gemacht, gegangen, studiert etc.) past participle 過去分詞


Plusquamperfekt, Vorvergangenheit (waren/hatten + Partizip II) past perfect, pluperfect 過去完了


Futur, Zukunftsform future tense 未来形 みらいけい
Futur I future progressive/ continuous tense 未来進行形


Futur II, vollendete Zukunft future perfect tense 未来完了形


Dritte Person (er, sie, es (Singl.); sie (Pl.)) third person 三人称


Dritte Person Singular (er, sie, es) third person singular 三人称単数現在


regelmäßiges/schwaches Verb (Konjugation) (lernen, sagen, setzen etc.) verb with regular conjugation 規則変化の動詞


unregelmäßiges/starkes Verb (Konjugation) (sein, gehen, wollen etc.) verb with irregular conjugation 不規則変化の動詞


Modalverb (können, wollen, sollen, müssen, dürfen, mögen, möchten) modal auxiliary verb 話法の助動詞




Satz sentence 文 ぶん
Subjekt subject 主語 しゅご
Objekt object 目的語


Satzmuster sentence pattern 文型 ぶんけい
Aktiv active voice 能動態 のうどうたい
Passiv passive voice 受動態 じゅどうたい
Satzstruktur, Satzbau sentence structure 構文 こうぶん


Aussagesatz affirmative/ positive sentence 肯定文


negativer Aussagesatz negative sentence 否定文 ひていぶん
Fragesatz interrogative sentence 疑問文 ぎもんぶん
Ausrufesatz exclamatory sentence 感嘆文 かんたんぶん
Imperativsatz, Befehl imperative sentence 命令文 めいれいぶん
Phrase, Nebensatz, Einschub phrase 句 く
Absatz clause 節 せつ
Relativpronomen relative pronoun 関係代名詞


Partizipialkonstruktion participial construction 分詞構文


Direkte Rede direct speech 直接話法


Indirekte Rede indirect speech 間接話法


Konditional conditional clause 条件節 じょうけんせつ
Konjunktiv subjunctive mood 仮定法 かていほう
Konjunktiv I, Konjunktiv Präsenz subjunctive mood 仮定法現在


Konjunktiv II, Konjunktiv Präteritum past subjunctive 仮定法過去


Zeichensetzung punctuation 句読点 くとうてん
Punkt . period . ピリオド 。
Komma , comma , カンマ 、
Fragezeichen ? question mark ? クエスチョンマーク ?
Ausrufezeichen ! exclamation mark ! 感嘆符 かんたんふ !
Doppelpunkt : colon : コロン :
Semikolon ; semicolon ; セミコロン ;
Apostroph ‘ apostrophe ‘ アプストロフィー ‘
Anführungszeichen „“ quotation mark “ 引用符 「」

Grammatikbegriffe Deutsch-Japanisch-Englisch


7 thoughts on “German Grammar Term

  1. daleenc

    Wow! Thanks! I’ve just started learning German and this looks really helpful! I will be back soon to looked at it further in depth. 🙂

    1. mariasora Post author

      good luck! my the best advice for learning German is to find something you really like – music, art, film… – and engage youself with it, surround yourself with German words to build vocabulary & have fun!

      1. daleenc

        Thank you!! And yes, I’m having a ton of fun learning it, although I haven’t been doing it quite long enough to write out this comment…at least not yet.

        I’ve been using Rosetta Stone but I’m getting sorta frustrated that they don’t give me any grammar rules. Oh well. As long as I can talk to people, right? 🙂

      2. mariasora Post author

        everybody has a different approach to a language working for her/him. Some prefer to build up vocabulary first and it is certainly helpful. Some would like to have it accompanied by grammar rules. if you would like to have a more grammatical approach try to complement Rosetta Stone with a book (like Begegnungen or Studio 21). If I understand the RS-system right, you are able to create your own learning material with grammar parts in it.

      3. daleenc

        Yes, you can do grammar (which I do) but it’s not the rules. You learn by doing, not by reading rules in English. Which I love most of the time, but I wish I had the rules to tell me when to use Ich or Mir or something like that. I’m the type of person who likes to know WHY I’m doing something, ya know? 🙂

      4. mariasora Post author

        I can understand – I prefer to know what I do as well 😉
        I would recommend “Begegnungen A1+” as an accompanying book. Or, if you prefer to have one just to train Grammar: “A-Grammatik” by Anne Buscha and Szilvia Szita. The grammar explanations are bilingual (Eng-Germ) & it has loads of exercises ^_^

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