The pronoun man
Understanding grammar is key to understanding a language.
German grammar tips with Wunderbla, online German lessons.
The pronoun man
We use man (one, they, "you" in a general sense):
- for general statements or to refer to one or more unspecified persons:
Man darf hier nicht rauchen.
You are not allowed to smoke here.
In Österreich spricht man Deutsch.
They speak German in Austria.
Wo kann man hier gut essen?
Where can one get a decent meal around here?
- passively to mean jemand (someone):
Man hat meine Tasche gestohlen.
Someone has stolen my bag.
Man hat mir gesagt, dass das Essen hier gut sei.
I was told that the food is good here.
The verb always appears in the singular (the same as for er, sie, es):
Man sieht nur mit dem Herzen gut. sehen, Präsens
One only sees clearly with the heart.
Wie bekommt man ein Stipendium? bekommen, Präsens
How does one get a scholarship?
- we use einen or einem (one, to one) rather than man in the accusative and dative:
Die Weltpolitik kann einen wirklich frustrieren.
One can become very frustrated by world politics.
Schlechtes Wetter sollte einem egal sein!
One shouldn't be bothered by bad weather!
- The word man (one, they, you) and (der) Mann (the man) are not the same! We can use man to refer to a woman or a group of women.
Taking your learning further
Still facing difficulties with 'The pronoun man'? Improve your German with Wunderbla - try our German lessons for free now and receive a free level assessment!
Do you know any tips to avoid making mistakes with 'The pronoun man'? Share it with us!
Improve your German further and test Wunderbla, online German lessons.