Test Your German Language Knowledge



9 Questions

What is the most spoken native language within the European Union?

Which countries have German as a co-official language?

What is the area in central Europe where the majority of the population speaks German as a first language and has German as a (co-)official language called?

Which of the following is NOT a standardized variant of the German language?

Which period saw the rise of several important cross-regional forms of chancery German?

Which of the following countries were colonies of the German Empire?

Which of the following is a characteristic of German word order?

What is the de facto official dictionary of the Standard High German language?

What is unique about the capitalization of nouns in the German language?


German is a West Germanic language spoken in Western and Central Europe, and it is the most widely spoken and official language in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, and the Italian province of South Tyrol. It is also a co-official language of Luxembourg and Belgium, as well as a recognized national language in Namibia. German is similar to other languages within the West Germanic language branch, including Afrikaans, Dutch, English, the Frisian languages, Low German, Luxembourgish, Scots, and Yiddish. It is the most spoken native language within the European Union and the second-most widely spoken Germanic language after English. German is an inflected language, with four cases for nouns, pronouns, and adjectives, three genders, and two numbers. The majority of its vocabulary derives from the ancient Germanic branch of the Indo-European language family. German is a pluricentric language with three standardized variants, and it has a broad spectrum of dialects. The German-speaking countries are ranked fifth in terms of annual publication of new books, with one-tenth of all books in the world being published in German. The history of the German language begins with the High German consonant shift during the Migration Period. The written works of the Old High German period stem mainly from the Alamanni, Bavarian, and Thuringian groups. The Middle High German period saw a number of Germanic tribes expanding beyond the eastern boundary into Slavic territory. The Early New High German period saw the rise of several important cross-regional forms of chancery German, and the invention of the printing press led to the development of a number of printers' languages aimed at making printed material readable and understandable across as many diverse dialects of German as possible. One of the central events in the development of Early New High German was the publication of Luther's translation of the Bible into High German.The Global Distribution and Standardization of the German Language

  • German was used as a legitimate language for courtly, literary, and ecclesiastical subject-matter, with Luther's Bible being ubiquitous in the German states.

  • German was the language of commerce and government in the Habsburg Empire, which encompassed a large area of Central and Eastern Europe, and was the language of townspeople throughout most of the Empire.

  • Standard High German was standardized in its written form in 1901, and the Duden Handbook was declared its standard definition.

  • German is spoken by approximately 90-95 million people as a first language, 10-25 million as a second language, and 75-100 million as a foreign language, with an estimated 175-220 million German speakers worldwide.

  • German is the second-most widely spoken language in the European Union, with approximately 90 million people speaking it as their mother tongue.

  • The area in central Europe where the majority of the population speaks German as a first language and has German as a (co-)official language is called the "German Sprachraum".

  • German is recognized as a minority language in several countries, including France, Italy, and Poland.

  • Cameroon and Namibia were colonies of the German Empire, with German now yielding to French and English in both countries, but still enjoying popularity as a foreign language subject.

  • In the United States, German is the fifth most spoken language in terms of native and second language speakers, and German geographical names can be found throughout the Midwest region.

  • German is also spoken in South America, especially in Brazil, where German dialects are recognized languages in some municipalities.

  • The German consonant system has an average number of consonants, while the vowel system is unusually large.

  • The German dialect continuum is traditionally divided most broadly into High German and Low German, with many dialects not mutually intelligible with standard German.Overview of German Dialects

  • The German language consists of a dialect continuum of High German and Low Saxon, with considerable variation among the dialects.

  • Low Saxon/Low German was historically the predominant language in Northern Germany until the 16th century, but has since been politically viewed as a mere dialect spoken by the uneducated.

  • Low Franconian dialects are spoken in the northwest of North Rhine-Westphalia, along the Lower Rhine, and are transitional dialects between Low Saxon and Dutch.

  • High German dialects consist of the Central German, High Franconian and Upper German dialects, and are the most widely spoken in Germany.

  • Alemannic and Swabian dialects are spoken in Switzerland, Baden-Württemberg, Bavarian Swabia, Vorarlberg, Alsace, and Liechtenstein.

  • Bavarian dialects are spoken in Austria, Bavaria, South Tyrol, Saxony, and Switzerland.

  • German is a fusional language with a moderate degree of inflection, with three grammatical genders and inflection by case, gender, and number.

  • German nouns inflect by case, gender, and number, with weak masculine nouns sharing a common case ending for genitive, dative, and accusative in the singular and feminine nouns not declined in the singular.

  • The inflection of standard German verbs includes verb prefixes, with some having a specific meaning and others having only the vaguest meaning in themselves.

  • German word order is generally with the V2 word order restriction and also with the SOV word order restriction for main clauses, with the verb preceded by the topic of the sentence and the element in focus appearing at the end of the sentence.

  • When an auxiliary verb is present, it appears in the second position and the main verb appears at the end, as in the creation of the perfect tense.

  • Sentences using modal verbs place the infinitive at the end.Facts about the German Language

  • German subordinate clauses have all verbs clustered at the end.

  • German vocabulary is derived from the Germanic branch of the Indo-European language family, but it has significant loanwords from other languages such as Latin, Greek, Italian, French, and English.

  • The German language has a significant number of loanwords from Latin and Latinized Greek.

  • The Duden is the de facto official dictionary of the Standard High German language.

  • German is the only major language that capitalizes all nouns.

  • Umlaut vowels (ä, ö, ü) are commonly transcribed with ae, oe, and ue if the umlauts are not available.

  • Until the early 20th century, German was printed in blackletter typefaces and written in corresponding handwriting.

  • German does not have any dental fricatives (as English th).

  • The German language is used in German literature and can be traced back to the Middle Ages.

  • Martin Luther, who translated the Bible into High German, is widely credited for having set the basis for the modern Standard High German language.

  • Fourteen German-speaking people have won the Nobel Prize in literature.

  • The German language has a rich history and culture, and continues to be an important language in Europe and around the world.


How well do you know the German language? Test your knowledge with this quiz that covers the history, standardization, dialects, grammar, vocabulary, and fun facts about German. From the High German consonant shift to Martin Luther's translation of the Bible, from the German Sprachraum to the use of blackletter typefaces, this quiz explores the many facets of the German language. Whether you're a native speaker, a student, or just interested in languages, this quiz will challenge and

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