Denglisch! You all know about the Germans’ love to Germanise English word!

Over the last few months I have collected sentences with Denglisch words in German health podcasts and magazines, but instead of just posting them here for you, I have turned them into a grammar exercise. (I hope, you’re shouting YAY!)

So, get pen and paper ready or download the ‘Denglisch questions’ PDF  with the questions and test your German:

The following sentences were said in German podcasts

1. Ich hab’ ihn gepuscht.
What’s that verb in the infinitive and how would you conjugate it in the present tense?
Bonus question: is this verb regular or irregular?

2. Ich habe eine Message bekommen.
Is Message masculine, feminine or neuter? How do you know?

3. Gefinisht!
This is the past participle of a verb. What is it in the infinitive and how would you conjugate it in the present tense?

4. Das ist ein Eye-Catcher.
Is Eye-Catcher masculine, feminine or neuter? How do you know?

5. Die Radfahrerin konnte nicht switchen.
What’s that verb in the infinitive and how would you conjugate it in the present tense?

The following were headlines from German newspaper articles

6. Gesundes Happy Meal
Is Happy Meal masculine, feminine or neuter and how do you know?

7. … neue Beachwear
I left out the article. What should it be and why?

8. Lust auf ein echtes Bootcamp?
What gender is Bootcamp and how do you know?

9. Endlich schlank & sexy mit den besten Tanzworkouts
What can you say about Tanzworkouts?

10. Lieber Body, …
What gender is Body and how do you know?

11. Los, wir killen Kilos!
How do you conjugate ‘killen’ in the present and how do you form the past tenses?

 

Before I give you the answers and for a bit of fun, here’s a video of  my favourite German acapella band, the Wise Guys, with their song “Denglisch”

Did you enjoy the song?

How did you do with the test?

Here are the answers.

You can download the ‘Denglisch answers’ PDF or scroll down a bit more.

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Answers:

 1. Ich hab’ ihn gepuscht.
The verb is puschen (can also be spelled pushen).
Ich pusche
Du puschst
Er/ sie/ es puscht
Wir puschen
Ihr puscht
Sie/sie puschen
It’s a regular verb with the past participle formed with a ‘ge’ at the front and a ‘t’ at the end: gepuscht.

2. Ich habe eine Message bekommen.
Feminine, the indefinite article ‘eine’ gives it away. Also, Message is a replacement word for ‘Nachricht’, which is also feminine

3. Gefinisht!
The verb is finishen
ich finishe
Du finishst
Er/ sie/ es finish
Wir finishen
Ihr finisht
Sie/ sie finishen

4. Das ist ein Eye-Catcher.
This one is a little tricky. ‘Ein’ tells you that it can’t be feminine, so it’s masculine or neuter.
Eye-Cather ends in ‘er’ and is also a replacement word for ‘der Blickfang’. So it’s der Eye-Catcher (can also be written as Eyecatcher).

5. Die Radfahrerin konnte nicht switchen.
The verb is switchen.
Ich switche
Du switchst
Er/ sie/ es switch
Wir switchen
Ihr switcht
Sie/ sie switchen
Sie hat nicht geswitcht.

6. Gesundes Happy Meal
It’s neuter. The adjective ending ‘es’ (gesundes) gives it away. If it was masculine it should have read ‘gesunder’ or feminine ‘gesunde’.

7. … neue Beachwear
Another tricky one, as the adjective ending doesn’t tell you this time. Beachwear is a replacement word for ‘die Strandbekleidung’, which makes it feminine. Die Beachwear.

8. Lust auf ein echtes Bootcamp?
‘Ein’ makes it masculine or neuter, but the ‘es’ from ‘echtes’ means it has to be neuter.

9. Endlich schlank & sexy mit den besten Tanzworkouts
‘mit DEN’ means it has to be plural, and the ‘s’ at the end of the noun confirms it.

10. Lieber Body, …
The ‘lieber’ tells you it’s masculine. If it was feminine, you would have read ‘liebe’ and if neuter ‘liebes’.

11. Los, wir killen Kilos!
Ich kille
Du killst
Er/ sie/ es killt
Wir killen
Ihr killt
Sie/ sie killen
Ich habe … gekillt.
Ich killte …

 

Was it easy, oder war es tricky?

If you found it easy, then well done. If you found it a bit tricky and would like to learn more, my Udemy courses might help.

German grammar – gender #1 – Is it der, die or das?
German grammar – gender #2 – the plurals
German grammar – the tenses #1 – the present tense
German grammar – the tenses #2 – the past tenses
German grammar – the four cases

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4 Responses to Test your German grammar with some Denglisch words

  1. Gina says:

    To my surprise I could work out all of those, except that I put an unnecessary ‘c’ in the middle of finishen (‘finischen’).

    That was an interesting exercise. Thank you!

    • Glad you liked it!
      Considering that ‘to push’ can be pushen or puschen, it would make sense to use finischen as well. But accrording to Duden, it doesn’t. (I wonder how many Germans would spell it wrong?)

  2. Tommy says:

    That was a lot of fun. And I learned something new (I think)… that for “Denglisch” words, the article is assumed to be the same as the article for the “echtes deutsches Wort” that it replaces. Stimmt das? I was looking for the usual clues, “-chen” , “-lein”, “-ung”, -keit” and so on, but those were not to be found here. Tricky. Nice quiz.

    • Yes and no. You won’t find clues like chen, heit, keit etc… as foreign words don’t end with them. So it’s a mixture of things. One way is, like you found out, to use the gender of the original German word. Another is a possible ending, not chen, lein etc… but ‘er’ or ‘en’ for example. Helikopter is masculine, because it a) replaces der Hubschrauber and b) it ends in ‘er’.
      And then, the third way is peer pressure. An example, Blog. It should be das Blog, because it replaces the cumbersome word Internettagebuch (and we know that Buch is neuter). When the word came about I didn’t like saying ‘Ich schreibe ein Blog’. It didn’t sound right. I wanted to say ‘Ich schreibe einen Blog’. Later I found out that I wasn’t the only one, and according to ‘Duden’ you can say either, der Blog or das Blog.

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