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From Old High German abageban, from Proto-Germanic *abagebaną; equivalent to ab- (from) +‎ geben (give).


  • IPA(key): [ˈapɡeːbn]
  • Hyphenation: ab‧ge‧ben
  • (file)


abgeben (class 5 strong, third-person singular present gibt ab, past tense gab ab, past participle abgegeben, past subjunctive gäbe ab, auxiliary haben)

  1. (transitive) to give up, relinquish, let go, concede, hand over, etc. (power, money, valuable objects, etc.)
    Der Diktator gibt die Macht nicht freiwillig ab, obwohl er die Unterstützung des Volkes verloren hat.
    The dictator is not voluntarily relinquishing power despite losing the support of the people.
  2. (transitive) to give away, give out (samples, promotional goods, bags, etc., also items for charity)
    Die Bank gibt mit jedem neuen Konto einen kostenlosen Kalender ab.
    The bank issues a free calendar with every new account.
  3. (transitive, with bei (to))) to hand in, to turn in, to drop off, to deliver, to return (something to its owner or a responsible party)
    Ich muss nach dem Auszug aus der Wohnung den Schlüssel abgeben.
    I must turn the key in after moving out of the apartment.
  4. (transitive, with bei (to))) to turn in (schoolwork, an application, anything that requires evaluation.)
    Ich habe meine Hausaufgaben bei der Lehrerin abgegeben.
    I turned in my homework to the teacher.
  5. (transitive) to sell (cheaply or at a reduced price)
    Der Laden gibt Lampen billig ab.
    The store sells lamps cheaply.
  6. (transitive) to deposit (for storage or similar purpose, something in a designated storage area or receptacle)
    Wo kann ich mein Gepäck abgeben? Dort bei der Gepäckaufbewahrung.
    Where can I deposit my luggage? There in the luggage storage.
  7. to lose (value or according to some numerical measure, especially gains made in the recent past)
    Das Unternehmen hat viel von dem im letzten Jahr gewonnenen Marktanteil abgegeben.
    The company lost much of the market share gained over the past year.
  8. (transitive, ditransitive) to give (a part of), to share (with)
    Ich gebe dir die Hälfte meines Desserts ab.
    I'm giving you half of my dessert.
  9. (transitive, sports) to give up (a point, round, goal, etc. to an opponent)
    Das Team hat in der Saison nur 10 Punkte abgegeben.
    The team allowed only 10 points in the season.
  10. (transitive) to emit, to give off, to release, to radiate, etc.
    Altmodische Glühbirnen geben viel Wärme ab.
    Old-fashioned lightbulbs give off a lot of heat.
  11. (transitive) to pass on (a responsibility or duty)
    Die Ermittler haben das Verfahren an ihre Bundeskollegen abgegeben.
    The investigators handed the case over to their federal colleagues.
  12. (reflexive) to bother oneself with somebody/something, to associate with somebody/something, to mess around with somebody.
    Damit gibt er sich nicht ab.
    He doesn't bother himself with it.
  13. (sports, transitive) to pass (a ball)
  14. (transitive) to make (constitute, develop into, prove to be)
    Du würdest einen guten Clown abgeben.
    You'd make a good clown.
  15. (transitive) to submit (a report)
  16. (transitive) to give (an opinion, statement, explanation),
  17. (transitive) to fire (a shot)
  18. (transitive) to cast (a vote)
  19. (transitive) to provide (plot, background, exposition, etc. in a work of fiction)


Derived terms[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • abgeben” in Digitales Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache
  • abgeben” in Uni Leipzig: Wortschatz-Lexikon
  • abgeben” in Duden online
  • abgeben” in OpenThesaurus.de