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See also: Fähren



From Middle High German varn, varen, from Old High German faran, from Proto-West Germanic *faran. Cognate with Dutch varen, English fare, Danish fare.


  • IPA(key): /ˈfaːʁən/ (standard)
  • IPA(key): /faːn/ (colloquial, particularly northern and central Germany)
  • (file)
  • (file)
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -aːʁən


fahren (class 6 strong, third-person singular present fährt, past tense fuhr, past participle gefahren, past subjunctive führe, auxiliary haben or sein)

  1. (chiefly of a person or animal) to go at speed
    Der Fuchs fährt aus dem Bau.The fox dashes from his kennel.
    aus der Haut fahrento fly off the handle
    einen fahren lassento blow off, to break wind
    Die Sonne fährt über das Himmelszelt.The sun moves athwart the firmament.
  2. (intransitive, of a vehicle) to go; to run; to drive; to sail
    Autos können schneller fahren als Fahrräder.Cars can go faster than bikes.
    1. (intransitive, of a vehicle) to leave; to depart
      Beeil dich! Der Zug fährt jetzt gleich.Hurry up! The train is departing in a moment.
  3. (intransitive, of a person) to go by vehicle; to sail; to travel
    Er fährt wie ein Bekloppter.He drives like a maniac.
    Wir fahren diesen Sommer nach Holland.We’re going to Holland this summer. [Implying a trip by car, bike, train, or ship.]
    1. (intransitive, of a person) to leave and therefor use a vehicle
      Wir fahren jetzt.We’re leaving now. (Implying the use of a vehicle.)
    2. (transitive) to drive; to ride; to sail (a vehicle)
      Sie fährt einen roten Wagen.She drives a red car.
    3. (transitive) to take (someone somewhere by vehicle); to drive; to transport
      Ich fahre dich zum Bahnhof.I’ll take you to the train station.

Usage notes[edit]

  • In intransitive uses, the perfect auxiliary is always sein: Wir sind diesen Sommer nach Holland gefahren.
  • In transitive uses, the perfect auxiliary ought to be haben according to standard grammar: Sie hat einen roten Wagen gefahren. However, sein is also used, chiefly in (colloquial) speech: Sie ist einen roten Wagen gefahren.


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