Appendix:German Swadesh list

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This is a Swadesh list of words in German, compared with that of English.

Presentation[edit]

For further information, including the full final version of the list, read the Wikipedia article: Swadesh list.

American linguist Morris Swadesh believed that languages changed at measurable rates and that these could be determined even for languages without written precursors. Using vocabulary lists, he sought to understand not only change over time but also the relationships of extant languages. To be able to compare languages from different cultures, he based his lists on meanings he presumed would be available in as many cultures as possible. He then used the fraction of agreeing cognates between any two related languages to compute their divergence time by some (still debated) algorithms. Starting in 1950 with 165 meanings, his list grew to 215 in 1952, which was so expansive that many languages lacked native vocabulary for some terms. Subsequently, it was reduced to 207, and reduced much further to 100 meanings in 1955. A reformulated list was published posthumously in 1971.

List[edit]

No. English German
Deutsch
IPA
pronunciation
1 I ich ɪç
2 you (singular) du, Sie (polite) duː, ziː
3 he er eːɐ̯
4 we wir viːɐ̯
5 you (plural) ihr, Sie (polite) iːɐ̯, ziː
6 they sie ziː
7 this dies(es) diːs, ˈdiːzəs
8 that das, jenes (formal) das ,ˈjeːnəs
9 here hier hiːɐ̯
10 there da, dort (formal) daː, dɔʁt
11 who wer veːɐ̯
12 what was vas
13 where wo voː
14 when wann van
15 how wie viː
16 not nicht nɪçt
17 all alle ˈalə
18 many viele ˈfiːlə
19 some einige ˈaɪ̯nɪɡə
20 few wenig ˈveːnɪç
21 other andere ˈandəʁə
22 one eins aɪ̯ns
23 two zwei tsvaɪ̯
24 three drei dʁaɪ̯
25 four vier fiːɐ̯
26 five fünf fʏnf
27 big groß ɡʁoːs
28 long lang laŋ
29 wide breit, weit bʁaɪ̯t, vaɪ̯t
30 thick dick dɪk
31 heavy schwer ʃveːɐ̯
32 small klein klaɪ̯n
33 short kurz kʊʁts
34 narrow eng ɛŋ
35 thin dünn dʏn
36 woman Frau fʁaʊ̯
37 man (male) Mann man
38 man (human) Mensch mɛnʃ
39 child Kind kɪnt
40 wife Frau, Ehefrau fʁaʊ̯, ˈeːəfʁaʊ̯
41 husband Mann, Ehemann man, ˈeːəman
42 mother Mutter ˈmʊtɐ
43 father Vater ˈfaːtɐ
44 animal Tier tiːɐ̯
45 fish Fisch fɪʃ
46 bird Vogel ˈfoːgəl
47 dog Hund hʊnt
48 louse Laus laʊ̯s
49 snake Schlange ˈʃlaŋə
50 worm Wurm vʊʁm
51 tree Baum baʊ̯m
52 forest Wald valt
53 stick Stock ʃtɔk
54 fruit Frucht fʁʊxt
55 seed Samen ˈzaːmən
56 leaf Blatt blat
57 root Wurzel ˈvʊʁtsəl
58 bark (of a tree) Rinde ˈʁɪndə
59 flower Blume ˈbluːmə
60 grass Gras ɡʁaːs
61 rope Seil zaɪ̯l
62 skin Haut haʊ̯t
63 meat Fleisch flaɪ̯ʃ
64 blood Blut bluːt
65 bone Knochen ˈknɔxən
66 fat (noun) Fett fɛt
67 egg Ei aɪ̯
68 horn Horn hɔʁn
69 tail Schwanz ʃvants
70 feather Feder ˈfeːdɐ
71 hair Haar haːɐ̯
72 head Kopf kɔpf
73 ear Ohr oːɐ̯
74 eye Auge ˈaʊ̯gə
75 nose Nase ˈnaːzə
76 mouth Mund mʊnt
77 tooth Zahn tsaːn
78 tongue Zunge ˈtsʊŋə
79 fingernail Fingernagel ˈfɪŋɐnaːɡəl
80 foot Fuß fuːs
81 leg Bein baɪ̯n
82 knee Knie kniː
83 hand Hand hant
84 wing Flügel ˈflyːɡəl
85 belly Bauch baʊ̯x
86 guts Eingeweide ˈaɪ̯nɡəvaɪ̯də
87 neck Hals, Nacken hals, ˈnakən
88 back Rücken ˈʁʏkən
89 breast Brust bʁʊst
90 heart Herz hɛʁts
91 liver Leber ˈleːbɐ
92 to drink trinken ˈtʁɪŋkən
93 to eat essen ˈɛsən
94 to bite beißen ˈbaɪ̯sən
95 to suck saugen ˈzaʊ̯gən
96 to spit spucken ˈʃpʊkən
97 to vomit erbrechen ɛɐ̯ˈbʁɛçən
98 to blow blasen ˈblaːzən
99 to breathe atmen ˈaːtmən
100 to laugh lachen ˈlaxən
101 to see sehen ˈzeːən
102 to hear hören ˈhøːʁən
103 to know wissen, kennen ˈvɪsən, ˈkɛnən
104 to think denken ˈdɛŋkən
105 to smell riechen ˈʁiːçən
106 to fear fürchten ˈfʏʁçtən
107 to sleep schlafen ˈʃlaːfən
108 to live leben ˈleːbən
109 to die sterben ˈʃtɛʁbən
110 to kill töten ˈtøːtən
111 to fight kämpfen ˈkɛmpfən
112 to hunt jagen ˈjaːɡən
113 to hit schlagen ˈʃlaːɡən
114 to cut schneiden ˈʃnaɪ̯dən
115 to split spalten ˈʃpaltən
116 to stab stechen ˈʃtɛçən
117 to scratch kratzen ˈkʁatsən
118 to dig graben ˈgʁaːbən
119 to swim schwimmen ˈʃvɪmən
120 to fly fliegen ˈfliːɡən
121 to walk gehen ˈgeːən
122 to come kommen ˈkɔmən
123 to lie (as in a bed) liegen (state) ˈliːɡən
124 to sit sitzen (state) ˈzɪtsən
125 to stand stehen (state) ˈʃteːən
126 to turn (intransitive) drehen ˈdʁeːən
127 to fall fallen ˈfalən
128 to give geben ˈɡeːbən
129 to hold halten ˈhaltən
130 to squeeze quetschen ˈkvɛtʃən
131 to rub reiben ˈʁaɪ̯bən
132 to wash waschen ˈvaʃən
133 to wipe wischen ˈvɪʃən
134 to pull ziehen ˈtsiːən
135 to push drücken ˈdʁʏkən
136 to throw werfen ˈvɛʁfən
137 to tie binden ˈbɪndən
138 to sew nähen ˈnɛːən
139 to count zählen ˈtsɛːlən
140 to say sagen ˈzaːgən
141 to sing singen ˈzɪŋən
142 to play spielen ˈʃpiːlən
143 to float schweben ˈʃveːbən
144 to flow fließen ˈfliːsən
145 to freeze frieren ˈfʁiːrən
146 to swell schwellen ˈʃvɛlən
147 sun Sonne ˈzɔnə
148 moon Mond moːnt
149 star Stern ʃtɛʁn
150 water Wasser ˈvasɐ
151 rain Regen ˈʁeːgən
152 river Fluss flʊs
153 lake See zeː
154 sea Meer meːɐ̯
155 salt Salz zalts
156 stone Stein ʃtaɪ̯n
157 sand Sand zant
158 dust Staub ʃtaʊ̯p
159 earth Erde ˈeːɐ̯də
160 cloud Wolke ˈvɔlkə
161 fog Nebel ˈneːbəl
162 sky Himmel ˈhɪməl
163 wind Wind vɪnt
164 snow Schnee ʃneː
165 ice Eis aɪ̯s
166 smoke Rauch ʁaʊ̯x
167 fire Feuer ˈfɔʏɐ
168 ash Asche ˈaʃə
169 to burn brennen ˈbʁɛnən
170 road Straße ˈʃtʁaːsə
171 mountain Berg bɛʁk
172 red rot ʁoːt
173 green grün gʁyːn
174 yellow gelb gɛlp
175 white weiß vaɪ̯s
176 black schwarz ʃvaʁts
177 night Nacht naxt
178 day Tag taːk
179 year Jahr jaːɐ̯
180 warm warm vaʁm
181 cold kalt kalt
182 full voll fɔl
183 new neu nɔʏ̯
184 old alt alt
185 good gut guːt
186 bad schlecht ʃlɛçt
187 rotten faul, verrottet faʊ̯l, fɛɐ̯ˈʁɔtət
188 dirty schmutzig, dreckig ˈʃmʊtsɪç, ˈdʁɛkɪç
189 straight gerade ɡ(ə)ˈʁaːdə
190 round rund ʁʊnt
191 sharp (as a knife) scharf ʃaʁf
192 dull (as a knife) stumpf ʃtʊmpf
193 smooth glatt ɡlat
194 wet nass, feucht nas, fɔʏ̯çt
195 dry trocken ˈtʁɔkən
196 correct richtig ˈʁɪçtɪç
197 near nah ˈnaː
198 far weit, fern vaɪ̯t, fɛʁn
199 right rechts ʁɛçts
200 left links lɪŋks
201 at bei, an baɪ̯, an
202 in in ɪn
203 with mit mɪt
204 and und ʊnt
205 if wenn, ob vɛn, ɔp
206 because weil vaɪ̯l
207 name Name ˈnaːmə
  • Spelling:

When the words have various forms (verbs conjugation, gender and number agreement, declensions), the form given is the following :

  • verbs : infinitive
  • other words : masculine or neutral, singular, nominative (subject)

For specific cases (no infinitive, feminine name, plural name for instance), the simplest form is used.

  • Pronunciation :

Depending on the speakers and the area, the actual pronunciation may differ, more or less significantly, from the given pronunciation.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Dictionnaire de poche français-allemand / allemand-français, Hachette & Langenscheidt, Paris 2003 - ISBN 2-01-280547-7
  • Les langages de l'humanité (Michel Malherbe), Robert Laffont, Paris 1995 - ISBN 2-221-05947-6

External links[edit]

Swadesh lists
Individual languages

Afrikaans – Albanian – Antillean Creole – Arabic (standard) (p), Egyptian Arabic (p), Palestinian Arabic (p), Tunisian Arabic (t) Cypriot Maronite Arabic – Armenian (t,p) – Aromanian – Bangala – Bashkir – Basque – Belarusian – Breton – Bulgarian (t) – Burmese (t,p) – Catalan – Chechen – Chinese: Cantonese, Gan (p), Mandarin (t,p), Min Nan (Amoy) (p), Old Chinese (p) – Czech – Danish – Dutch (p) – Egyptian (Middle)  – Esperanto (p) – Estonian – Finnish – Fiji Hindi – Fijian – French (p) – French (old) – Frisian (West) – Friulian – Georgian (t,p) – German (p) – Greek (modern) (p), Greek (ancient) – Guaraní – Haida – Haitian Creole – Hausa – Hawaiian – Hindi (t) – Hittite – Hmong (White) (p) – Hungarian – Icelandic – Indonesian – Interlingue – Irish (p) – Istro-Romanian – Italian (p) – Japanese (t) – Kashubian – Khmer (p) – Korean (t) – Kurdish – Latin – Latvian – Lingala – Lingua Franca Nova – Lithuanian – Luwian – Macedonian (t) – Malagasy – Malay – Maltese – Megleno-Romanian – Mongolian (t) – Old Portuguese (p) – Ossetian (p) – Polish (p) – Portuguese (p) – Proto-Indo-European – Proto-Slavic – Purepecha – Quechua – Romani – Romanian – Russian (p) – Sanskrit (t) – Scottish Gaelic – Serbo-Croatian – Sinhalese – Slovenian – Spanish (p) – Sranan – Sundanese – Swahili – Swedish – Tagalog – Tajik (t) – Tahitian – Thai (t) – Tocharian B – Tok Pisin – Turkish – Ukrainian – Vietnamese – Walloon – Zulu

Language families and family branches

Afro-Asiatic – Algonquian – Altaic – Araucanian – Austro-Asiatic – Australian – Austronesian – Baltic – Baltic-Finnic – Bantu – Celtic – Dené–Yeniseian – Dravidian – Formosan – Frisian – Germanic – Hmong-Mien – Hokan – Iberian – Indo-Aryan – Indo-Iranian – Indo-Iranian (extended) – Italian – Mayan – Muskogean – Niger–Congo – Oto-Manguean – Paleosiberian – Penutian – Romance – Sino-Tibetan – Slavic – Siouan – Tai–Kadai – Tibeto-Burman – Tupi–Guarani – Turkic – Uralic – Uto-Aztecan

The list may also include: (t) the transcription in Latin characters; (p) the phonetic transcription