Also, “wenn” is a conjunction, and therefore it connects to sentences with each other. Als and wenn We use als and wenn in dependent clauses. Learn German > German lessons and exercises > German test #4376 > Other German exercises on the same topic: Subordinate clauses [ Change theme ] > Similar tests: - Wann/Wenn/Als - Denn/weil - Subjunctive II (word order) - Links between 2 sentences - Conjunctions ; dass, weil, ob, wenn - Als or wenn - Conjunctions : nachdem, während, bevor - Conjunctions : dass / weil – Question: When is your birthday?). If you have any suggestions for topics that you would like me to cover, feel warmly invited to comment or drop me a message. English "when" can be expressed in German by three different words: als , wann, and wenn. ), Wenn ich nach Berlin fahren werde, will ich das Brandenburger Tor ansehen. Consequently the main clause and the subordinary clause need to have a relation in the sense of “If A then B”. Und wenn du etwas im Haushalt erledigen musst, hast du plötzlich viel zu tun!“, Peter: „OK, wann soll ich mit dem Kochen anfangen?“, Wann is a question word. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. Another possibility to meet the word “als” is in a German comparison. (When I go to Berlin, I want to see the Brandenburg Gate.). When English speakers want to say “when” in German, it’s hard to know which word to choose. In German grammar, this typically means that something happens with the position of the verb in the sentence. – When is the meeting? With its help, it is possible to express sentences like: I start a job as … – Ich beginne eine Stelle als …. We can use the German word “als” in several ways: The German “als” as is doing the same job the English “as” does. While working as an online German teacher, it caught my attention that many students get confused when it comes to the usage of “als”, “wenn” and “wann”. Also, in some other language, “wann” is used as a synonym in a sentence that expresses conditions. In the case of “als”, we need to move the verb to the end of the sentence. (Whenever I come home, I make myself a tea.) ), Ich habe vergessen, wann dein Geburtstag ist. Therefore, it might not surprise you to hear that we usually use “wenn” when we want to express a condition. If you use the website further, we assume your consent. – When is your birthday? Wenn ich nach Berlin fahren werde, will ich das Brandenburger Tor ansehen. When Peter’s mother was sick, Peter (always) cooked for her. Most likely, it is the easiest way to remember it by keeping in mind the sentence beginning “Als ich ein Kind war …” (When I was a child…). Below, we show you when to use which word. In the case of “wenn” the verb also goes to the end, the same way, as we have discussed it for “als” in the previous paragraph. Immer wenn ich nach Hause komme, mache ich mir einen Tee. To use them correclty, we have to observe when and how often the act in the dependent clause happens. Does your sentence express a condition? When you were little, you always used to help me. In the past tense, "when" is usually als: "Als er gestern ankam," or "When he arrived yesterday." It's the "when" translation that stumps most German learners. But here we will concentrate on the two German "w" words for "when." The words wann, wenn and als often cause difficulty for learners of German. The meaning of “als” in German as a conjunction is very similar to the English “when”. By doing so, the verb of the sentence introduce by “wann” needs to be at the end. For instance: Ich weiß nicht, wann das Treffen ist. Though I provide all blog content for free, your support will be very much appreciated. – Question: Wann ist das Treffen? Als is used to refer to a single event or block of time when referring to the past. If you neet to decide between “wenn” or “wann” the problem is that the English translation for both is “when”. This means its job is to connect two sentences. Mutter: „Peter, kannst du mir später mit dem Abendessen helfen? Als means as, when or then, depending on its context. As I already explained, in German, only “wenn” can do so. Wenn ich krank bin, bleibe ich zu Hause. Hi there! One way to remember it: als refers to "when" in the past, whereas wenn (more on that below) refers to "when" in the future or hypothetically. You were young for a long time, but you were only young once. Does your sentence contain a question? Peter’s mother was sick more than once and Peter cooked for every time. Does your sentence happen in the past and focus on a specific moment? Examples for “wenn”: Immer wenn ich nach Hause komme, mache ich mir einen Tee. Dieses Auto ist billiger als das blaue. (I forgot when your birthday is. Peters Mutter krank war, kochte Peter (immer) für sie. Und wenn du das gemacht hast, räum bitte dein Zimmer auf.“, Peter: „Hmm, ich weiß noch nicht, wann ich mit meinen vielen Hausaufgaben fertig werde.“, Mutter: „Als ich dich vorhin gefragt habe, hast du gesagt, dass du keine Hausaufgaben aufhast. For instance: Wann gehen wir ins Theater? In contrast to “als” we can use “wenn” in all German times. It is also possible to use “wann” as a conjugation. Don’t despair! When you are finished with the dinner, you can tidy up. Wann hast du Geburtstag? When to use “als”, “wenn” and “wann” in German, When to use "vermissen" and "verpassen" - Study German Online. – This car is cheaper than the blue one. (I do not know when the meeting is. Peter’s mother was sick once and Peter cooked for her then. The reason why many students get confused with these three words is most likely, that in English and many other languages they are used differently and sometimes even represent a synonym. Consequently the main clause and the subordinary clause need to have a relation in the sense of “If A then B”. (Whenever I come home, I make myself a tea. Besides, “wenn” functions as the equivalent for the English “if”. . [or:] If I … After reading this article, you will be a pro and know when you should use each of them. This website uses cookies. – If so, use “als”. To bring some light into the darkness, we will discuss the meaning and usage in the following. a lasting state in the past that doesn’t repeat itself. When you consider using “wann” to connect to sentences, you should always ask yourself if the sentence which you introduce with “wann” can be easily transformed into a question. By the help of the German word “wenn” we can express a condition in a sentence. – Question: Wann ist dein Geburtstag? We also use the German word “als” as a conjunction. To use them correclty, we have to observe when and how often the act in the dependent clause happens. One of these sentences is the main clause, and the sentence that we introduce with “als” is always a subordinate clause. We use it to ask about time (in indirect questions as well.). When (ever) I am sick, I stay at home. – If so, use “wenn”. – When do we go to the theatre? events that repeat themselves in the past (often with. – If so, use “wann”. Actually, in German, we use the word “wann” as a question word when we would like to ask when something happens. When Peter’s mother was sick, Peter cooked for her. I don’t know when I will be finished with my homework. So whenever you talk in the past tense about a specific moment, you can use “als”. We use als and wenn in dependent clauses. To be precise, we use it in “Komperativ” which – as you might already be able to guess – is when we compare two things with each other: Ich bin größer als sie. The reason why people confuse “wenn” and “als” is that both of them can have the meaning of “when” in English. 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