What you need to know about the German prepositions

To Learn German is easy! I help you to figure out the German prepositions. These are words that help us to determine the connection between the object and the rest of the sentence, mainly in terms of time and place. We have created an awesome German prepositions list for you!

You can also divide the German prepositions by the cases that they take. Some German prepositions take the accusative, dative, or genitive case. Some can even take multiple cases, but you have to decide based on the context of the sentence.

Akkusativ Präpositionen

I like to think about prepositions like computer viruses. You have your structure with the direct and indirect object but suddenly there is a preposition and everything changes. After the accusative prepositions, you always use the accusative case.

fürforIch arbeite für das Unternehmen.I work for the company.
gegenagainstDer Mann spielt gegen die Frau.The man plays against the woman.
durchthrough, acrossIch schwimme durch das Wasser.I swim through the water.
ohnewithoutDer Hund spaziert ohne den Besitzer.The dog is walking without the owner.
umat, aroundDie Katze geht um den Tisch.The cat goes around the table.

Übung – Exercise

In this podcast episode, I am teaching you the German prepositions. Listen to it during your next workout or walk in the park.

dativ präpositionen

Always use the dative case after these prepositions. Try the exercise as well.

ausout of, fromIch gehe aus dem Haus.I go out of the house.
beinear, atDu bist bei deiner Schwester.You are at your sister’s.
mitwithDer Hund spielt mit der Katze.The dog is playing with the cat.
nachafter, toNach dem Unterricht werde ich schlafen.After class, I’ll sleep.
seitsince, forSeit den Ferien habe ich zugenommen.I’ve gained weight since the holidays.
vonfrom, ofWir möchten uns von dem Training erholen.We want to recover from the training.
zutoEr hat die Tomaten zum Kochen gekauft.He bought the tomatoes to cook.

Learn the dative verbs with this song.

Übung – Exercise

Genitiv Präpositionen

aufgrund/auf Grund, wegendue to, because ofAufgrund der Ferien gibt es keinen Unterricht.There are no classes due to the holidays.
trotz, ungeachtetdespite, notwithstandingTrotz des Regens gehe ich spazieren.Despite the rain, I go for a walk.
anstelle, an Stelle, stattinstead ofAnstelle eines Hundes hat sie eine Katze gekauft.Instead of a dog, she bought a cat.
nördlichnorth ofNördlich der Stadt gibt es einen See.There is a lake north of the city.
oberhalbabove Ich habe starke Schmerzen oberhalb des Knies.I have severe pain above the knee.
währendduringWährend der Mathestunde hatte ich eine Idee.I had an idea during the math lesson.


Learning the German language and the prepositions can be difficult because some prepositions can take either the accusative or the dative case. Here is an easy guide for the two-way prepositions. The accusative prepositions are about change of state and the dative prepositions are about location.

You can also ask:

  • “wohin/where to” for accusative and
  • “wo/where” for the dative.
Imagine all the possible ways where you can place an apple near a table. This is how I remember the German two-way prepositions best.

Translation – Übersetzung

anon, to
aufon, upon
inin, into
nebennext to
vorbefore, in front of

There are more things to learn about prepositions but these lists should provide you an easy guide for the prepositions in the German language. If you like this explanation and would like to learn more, then please leave your email below to receive more helpful information.

Exercise: German Two-Way Prepositions

Success! You're on the list.

2 thoughts on “What you need to know about the German prepositions

Leave a Reply