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Prepositions and Their Cases
How to Use Prepositions
Word Order - The Verb
Word Order - Everything Else
The Key Points
German Language Building Blocks

Co-ordinating Conjunctions | Sub-ordinating Conjunctions | Adverbial Conjunctions | Correlative Conjunctions | English Equivalents | As | That | Then | Therefore | When

We all probably know the song "Conjunction Junction" so I don't think that I need to go indepth on conjunctions. Just remember that they are indeclinable words that connect to words(black and white, clauses (he knocked at the door and ran away), and sentences (The war ended, and a new age began.). In the examples and was the conjunction. Here we will learn two different kinds of conjunctions that German has.
Co-ordinating Conjunctions: in this case each clause could exist on its own and isn't dependent on the other:
The main co-ordinating conjunctions are:
aber (but), denn (for), oder (or), und (and), sondern (but; only used when the preceding clause contains nicht and is contradicted by the next clause):
Er is fleißig aber dumm. - He is hard-working but stupid.
Ich konnte nicht gehen, denn ich war krank. - I couldn't go, as I was ill.
Kommst du mit, oder bleibst du zu Hause? - Are you coming with us or staying at home?
Er setzte sich hin und fing an zu lesen. - He sat down and began to read.
Er wartete nicht, sondern ging sofort aus dem Haus. - He did not wait, but left the house immediately.
Sub-ordinating Conjunctions: these are used when one of the clauses depends on the other.
The main sub-ordinating conjunctions are:
als (when), bevor (before), bis (until), da (as, since), damit (in order that), daß (that), indem (while), nachdem (after), ob (whether), obgleich, obwohl (although), seitdem (since; time, not cause), während (while), weil (because), wenn (if, whenever), wie (how), wo (where):
The clause that contains the subordinating conjunction sends the verb to the last position of the clause:
Ich habe sie gesehen, als ich in Hamburg war. - I saw her when I was in Hamburg.
Da er es schon wußte, sagte er nichts. - Since he knew that already, he said nothing.
Er trat hervor, damit alle ihn sehen könnten. - He stepped forward, so that they could all see him.
Ich hatte keine Ahnung, daß sie schwanger war. - I had no idea that she was pregnant.
Ich bin hier, weil man mich eingeladen hat. - I am here because I was invited.
Ich weiß, wo der verrückte Mann ist. - I know where the crazy man is.
Adverbial Conjunctions: these are adverbs which are used to connect clauses:
The main adverbial conjunctions are:
also (so, therefore), auch (also, in addition), außerdem (besides), daher, darum (therefore), dann (then), dennoch (nevertheless, yet), deshalb, deswegen (for that reason), inzwischen (meanwhile), jedoch (however), kaum (scarcely), so (so), sonst (otherwise), troztdem (nevertheless), überings (after all, by the way):
The clause that uses this conjuntion switches the order of the verb and the subject:
Ich denke, also bin ich. - I think, therefore I am.
Er wollte das Geld, darum hat er's gemacht. - He wanted the money, that's why he did it.
Es ist unglaublich, dennoch ist es wahr. - It is incredible, nevertheless it is true.
Wir plauderten, inzwischen war die Sonne untergegangen. - We were chatting, meanwhile the sun had gone down.
Kaum war ich im Haus, als das Gewitter losbrach. - I was hardly in the house when the storm broke.
­Überingens wäre ich froh, wenn sie es möglichst bald machen könnten. - Moreover I should be pleased if they could do it as soon as possible.
Correlative Conjunctions: these conjunctions come in pairs and work together; one for each clause:
The main correlative conjunctions are:
entweder...oder (either...or), so (the more...the more), nicht nur...sondern auch (not only...but also), (, weder...noch (neither...nor), zwar...aber/doch (indeed...but):
The order of the verb is much to subtle to even deal with, it is much easier to just use how it is listed below:
Entweder du bleibst hier, oder du kommst mit. - Either you stay here or come with us.
Je mehr er hat, je mehr er will. - The more he has the more he wants.
Je länger ich bleibe, desto schwieriger wird es, auf zubrechen. - The longer I stay the harder it becomes to leave.
Nich nur, will sie es haben, sondern sie will mich auch zwingen, den Preis zu bezahlen. - Not only does she want it, she wants to force me to pay the price.
So steinreich er ist, so geizig ist er auch. - He is as stingy as he is loaded.
Weder wollte er länger bleiben, noch konnte er weggehen. - He neither wanted to stay any longer, nor was he able to get away.
Zwar hat er nicht viel Geld, aber er ist immerhin großzügig. - It's true he hasn't a lot of money, but he's generous all the same.
Zwar kam er, doch war es zu spät. - He did indeed come, but it was too late.
Many English speaking people have problems finding an equivalent in German for as, that, then, therefore, and when:
time (As I was walking down the street) - als or während
manner (As I see) - wie
reason (As she is the only one who can do it) - da or weil
as an adverb - so or ebenso
with comparisons of equality (as tall as I) - so groß wie ich
Note: as a teacher - als Lehrer, as an Englishman - als Engländer
in order that - damit
with the result that - so daß
otherwise it is left as daß
may be adjective - dieser or jener
or pronoun - das
as a conjunction - dann
as an adjective - der damalige Ministerpräsident - the then prime minister
or adverb - Ich war damals in London. - I was then in London.
the most objective and one meaning with the result that explaining the effect of the cause - daher
the less objective meaning that is why - darum
and the vague meaning that being so or on that account - deshalb or deswegen
when used as a conjunction it has to do with indirect questions - wann
when used to relate to a single event or state of mind in the past - als
when referring to the present or future or to a repeated occurance in the past - wenn
Lesson Twenty-Three - Word Order - The Verb -->