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From Old High German sizzen, originally *sitten, from Proto-Germanic *sitjaną, from Proto-Indo-European *sed-. Cognate with Low German sitten, Dutch zitten, English sit, Danish sidde.


  • IPA(key): /ˈzɪtsn̩/, /ˈzɪtsən/
  • (file)


sitzen (class 5 strong, third-person singular simple present sitzt, past tense saß, past participle gesessen, past subjunctive säße, auxiliary haben)

  1. (intransitive) to sit; to perch
  2. (intransitive) to stay (in one place); to remain; to be (in a particular place or state)
  3. (intransitive, of clothing) to fit
  4. (intransitive, colloquial) to do time; to spend time in jail
  5. (intransitive, colloquial, of a strike, a comment, etc.) to hit home; to have a significant effect


Usage notes[edit]

The standard auxiliary verb used with the past participle gesessen is haben. In Upper German dialects (High German dialects spoken primarily in Austria, Switzerland, southern Germany, and Northern Italy), the auxiliary verb sein is used instead.

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