zwei

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Alemannic German[edit]

Number[edit]

zwei

  1. (cardinal) two

German[edit]

German cardinal numbers
1 2 3
    Cardinal : zwei
    Ordinal : zweite

Etymology[edit]

From Old High German zwei, from Proto-Germanic *twai, from Proto-Indo-European *dwóh₁. Compare Dutch twee, English two, twain. In Old High German, and still today in some dialects, distinct forms are used for the three grammatical genders. Zwei is the originally neuter form, now used for all genders. The Old High German masculinum zwēne is found back in early modern German zween; the femininum zwō lives on in the variant zwo (but now without any gender distinction).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /t͡svaɪ̯/, [t͡sʋaɪ̯]
  • (file)

Numeral[edit]

zwei

  1. two

Declension[edit]

  • Nominative and accusative are always uninflected.
  • The genitive case takes the form zweier if no article or pronoun is preceding: Vater zweier Kinder – “a father of two children”. But: der Vater der zwei Kinder – “the father of the two children”. The form zweier is somewhat elevated; even in formal writing it is often more natural to avoid it (Vater von zwei Kindern).
  • The dative case is uninflected in adjectival use: Ich sprach mit zwei Zeugen. – “I spoke with two witnesses.” When used as a noun, it may take the form zweien: Ich sprach mit zweien. – “I spoke with two.” This rule is usually observed in formal standard German; but when a specification in the genitive case (or with von) is following, the bare form is more common: Ich sprach mit zwei der Zeugen. – “I spoke with two of the witnesses.” In colloquial German, zweien is never obligatory.

Synonyms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Coordinate terms[edit]

External links[edit]

  • zwei in Duden online