The Days of the Week in German

The days of the Week in German

“Entschuldigen Sie, können Sie mir sagen, welchen Tag wir heute haben?”

Well, I hope you are not afraid when you here this question. By the way, its translation is “Excus me, could you tell me what day of the week it is today?” Would you exactly know what to anwer?

So, you’re that you have found this article in! We will have a more detailed look on these seven words you will use almost every day. Furthermore, let’s talk about the name of the months in German as well.

Well, are you ready to get into days of the week in German? “Heute ist der Tag, an dem wir beginnen werden!” (Today is the day we will beginn!)

German Days of the Week

German Days of the Week

The Translation of the days in German

The first chapter of our article today goes straight to the topic: The direct translation of the days of the week in German. Without loosing too much time in talking, let’s see the table.

German English
Montag Monday
Dienstag Tuesday
Mittwoch  Wednesday
Donnerstag Thursday
Freitag Friday
Samstag Saturday
Sonntag Sunday

Now that you know the translation of the days of the weeks in German, everything is alright? Unfortunately, you entered the world of the German language. Here, nothing is easy. Well, here are some important rules you should follow in order to use the words for the days o the week in German in the right way.

Rules for using the days of the week in German

Let’s start right ahead with the most important rules for using the days of the week in German. You will see that it is much easier as you might think.

  1. Sometimes, the names for the days of the week in German are capitalized. This means that the first letter of the word is a capital. Of course, the day of the week are German nouns and they also behave like that. Nevertheless, you do not capitalize them when you put and “s” behind the word – this means this day in general.
  2. When using a day the week in German, you should use the word “am”. This word could be translated with the English verb “at”. If you don’t use this word when expressing a day, your German will certainly loose some for its perfectness.
  3. Every single one of the days of the week in German have a masculine article. So, the German articles you have to use is “der” as a definite article and “ein” as indefinite article.
  4. There are short forms for expressing the day of the week, especially used in written German. They are quite similar to the ones we use in English, although there are slight differences. Here you have a list.
    German English
    Montag, Mo. Monday, Mon.
    Dienstag, Di. Tuesday, Tues.
    Mittwoch, Mi. Wednesday, Wed.
    Donnerstag, Do. Thursday, Thurs.
    Freitag, Fr. Friday, Fri.
    Samstag, Sa. Saturday, Sat.
    Sonntag, So. Sunday, Sun.

Some Background information about Days of the Week in German

Although Germany comes from the same general European culture as many factions of the United States, there are still differences between the German and American approaches to work and family tradition.

One main arena where that manifests itself is in the German approach to Sundays. Almost all stores are forbidden from opening on Sundays in Germany, making the day a sacrosanct time for family.

Many German families spend Sundays eating cake and coffee in cafes, taking strolls if the weather cooperates, and decidedly not shopping or working.

Some last advice at the End

Last but no least I want to thank you for your attention. Well, I know that languages, especially German, can be pretty hard – and, of course, slightly boring, sometimes. So, well done! You should know how to apply the days of the week in German in a proper way.

At last, it is of crucial importance that you keep on practicing – No matter if you do that by making appointments at some German speaking offices in order to test you. Or if you simply write practice sentences. Or if you just learn German children songs by heart and sing them. The only important thing is: Keep on practicing. Have a look at this website, where you can find some good exercises to master the German language!

Colours in French

Colours in French : names, nuances, and grammar

Learning French colours is an easy and useful step to take for any learner of the language. Let’s learn how to express colours in French and their nuances, in a lot of meaningful ways. We’ll deepen our study a little bit further than the usual list of main colours that’s all over the web ; and we’ll take a few grammar considerations too. Let’s go !

The main colours in French

We’ll start by the most basic question, the one that might have actually brought you to this page anyways : How do you say the colours in French ? After all, learning a new language is also about memorizing vocabulary, and we might as well start with our exploration of French colours with a little list.


Colour in French Colour in English
Rouge Red
Vert Green
Bleu Blue
Jaune Yellow
Orange / Orangé Orange
Violet Violet
Rose Rose
Marron Maroon
Gris Gray
Noir Black
Beige Beige
Blanc White
Ocre Ocre
Indigo Indigo
Pourpre Purple
Cyan Cyan
Magenta Magenta
Turquoise Turquoise
Or / Doré Golden
Argent  / Argenté Silver

Examples :

  • Cette voiture est rouge. (this car is red.)
  • Les ours ont généralement le poil marron. (Bears generally have brown fur.)

A few possible variations

Sometimes, the colour isn’t marked very much, or it’s almost not that colour. You can express this in French by adding a special ending in -âtre (only for these ones) :

Colour in French Colour in English
Rougeâtre Reddish
Jaunâtre Yellowish
Verdâtre Greenish
Bleuâtre Blueish
Noirâtre Blackish
Blanchâtre Whitish

Example :

  • Les algues donnent au rochers une couleur verdâtre. (The algaes gave thse rocks a greenish colour.)

Also, if you want to want to describe a colour that’s between two other colours, or if you’re not really sure if it’s one or the others, you can make a new word by joining the two of them with a hyphenrouge-orangé, bleu-gris, marron-jaune, bleu-argenté, jaune-doré, vert-rougeâtre

  • Je ne sais pas top si cette couleur est plutôt vert-bleu ou bleu-vert. (I don’t know if this colour is blue-green or green-blue.)

A lot of colours in French have a special name derived from something of this colour :

Colour in French Colour in English
Bleu marine Navy blue
Bleu ciel Sky blue
Vert pomme Apple green
Vert feuille Leaf green
Rouge sang Blood red

Example :

  • J’ai fait repeindre ma voiture en vert anis. (I had my car painted anis green.)

Grammatically, this is an elision : what you describe is something bleu [comme le] ciel (blue as the sky) or un bleu [de la couleur du] ciel (a blue of the colour of the sky). Some expressions, like the ones above, are widely used and have a standard name, but if you have your own poetic mind and you want to transmit the impression of a colour in your own way, there is no limitation but the pertinence of your comparison (well, if you‘re saying vert-soleil, you’ll be looked at a bit weirdly, won’t you?).

Be imaginative !

  • jaune marguerite (marygold yellow)
  • rouge ketchup
  • jaune pipi (piss yellow)
  • jaune “fromage fondu” (melted-cheese yellow)

Note that an expression like this may transmit a little more than just the colour. Consider for example that it would make little sense (or maybe only with the intention of derision or dramatization) to use rouge sang instead of rouge pizza (and vice-versa) in these two sentences, although it is the same colour :

  • Après la bataille, la colline était rouge sang. (After the battle, the hill was blood red.)
  • Jean avait renversé son assiette, le sol était rouge pizza. (Jean had dropped his plate, the ground was pizza red.)

Sometimes, you’ll find bigger elisions as the name of the colour itself is also omitted.

  • une fleur soleil = une fleur [jaune comme le] soleil (a flower yellow like the sun)
  • Passe moi le crayon aubergine, s’il te plait. (Pass me the aubergine crayon, please.)

Although generally you would express this with the word couleur :

  • une fleur couleur soleil
  • une fleur de la couleur du soleil

One last construction that you’ll most probably will hear from times to times : with the preposition de followed by a the name of something that has this characteristic colour :

  • des cheveux d’un noir de jais et des yeux d’un vert d’émeraude.
  • or simply : des cheveux de jais et des yeux d’émeraude.
  • un vert d’herbe naissante (a green of newly grown herb)

How to express nuances of colours in French

shadows of grays

When we express colours in French, like we would do in English, we often express nuances by adding a qualitative. Here is a list of the main ones :


In French In English
Clair Light
Foncé, sombre Dark
Délavé Washed
Pastel Pastel
Vif Bright
Saturé Saturated
Terne Tern
Pâle Pale
Doux soft
Fort Strong
Mat Mate
Brillant Shiny
Satiné Satined
Metalisé Metalized
Chromé Chrome
Irisé Irised
Fluorescent (fluo) Fluorescent
Phosphorescent Phosphorescent

Examples :

  • Sa voiture est gris métalisé. (His car was metalized gray.)
  • Le plumage irisé du colibri est magnifique. (The irised robe of the hummingbird is beautiful.)
  • Elle a les cheveux d’un noir mat et la peau brun clair. (She has a mate black hair and light brown skin.)

Wait, seriously, about the hummingbird : it’s incredibly beautiful. You need to see this.

Relations between colours

There are also a lot of words that express relations between colours in French.

In French In English
La couleur dominante, ou principale The main / dominant colour
Une touche de vert / Une pointe de vert A touch of green
La couleur de fond The backgroud colour
Le contraste entre deux couleurs
des couleurs contrastées
The contrast between two colours
contrasting colours
Des couleurs proches ou éloignées Close or different colours
Des couleurs complémentaires Complementary colours
Un dégradé entre deux couleurs A gradient between two colours
Un mélange entre deux couleurs A mixture of two colours

Examples :

  • Un dégradé du vert pomme au bleu ciel. (a gradient from apple green to sky blue.)
  • Le vert de la feuille contraste beaucoup avec le rouge du fruit. (The green of the leaf contrasts a lot with the red of the fruit.)
  • Le peintre mélange le bleu et le jaune pour faire du vert. (The painter mixes blue and yellow to make green.)

A little bit of grammar

You may know that in French, adjectives must agree with the noun they accompany : in gender (masculine or feminine) as well as in number (singular or plural). Well, Same goes for the adjectives describing colours, that we discovered at the beginning of this article :

rouge, vert, bleu, jaune, violet, rose, noir, blanc, gris, pourpre, argenté, doré…

  • Un chat noir (a black cat, male)
  • Une chatte noire (female)
  • Des chats noirs (males)
  • Des chattes noires (females)

So far so good. But when the colour is named after a mineral, a vegetal, etc… Then it’s invariable. This is due to the fact that it is actually an elision :

orange, marron, champagne, cerise, prune, émeraude, rubis,

  • des pulls orange = des pulls [de la couleur de l’] orange
    (pullovers [the colour of an] orange)

In the case of rose, écarlate, vermeil, violet and a few more, they have ascquired the status of a simple adjective over time, which explains that they behave differently although they are names of vegetals.

And when a colour is expressed by two or more words, all the words are invariable :

  • une voiture grise, but ; des voitures gris métalisé
  • des orchidées jaune foncé
  • des chaussures bleu marine

Did you know ?

In the region of France where I live, La Bretagne, the culture and language from before the unification of France by Napoléon is still very present. Out of personal curiosity, I took one year of lessons to learn Breton. An interesting fact I learnt : in Breton, the word glaz means both blue… and green. It’s the colour of the sea, of what’s alive. Of the leaves, of algaes. There is another word for green, gwar, that is used for all other types of inanimate greens : paintings, glass bottles…

How interesting is it that the way a nation sees the world is reflected in its language ?

C’est tout, les amis !

There is so much to say about colours, and I’ll make another post to talk a little bit about colorimetry. Stay tuned, and until then, if you have any question about the colours in French, I’ll answer in the comments !

German Greetings and Goodbyes

In Germany, as well as in all the other german speaking countries, german greetings are an essential part of any social interaction. They show the good manners and education you possess and, most important, the respect you have for other people you interact with. So, using german greetings in nearly every day-to-day situations is quite common – whether in business-meetings, comunication with authorities or when just meeting your friends. Appropriate german greeting is always a good way to get started!
You will see that it is quite easy learning, remembering and using german greetings, as you will need and apply them every day! And once you‘re into it, „Guten Tag“ will not get out of your head anymore…

Saying „Hello“

Here you can see the most comon greetings used in german-speaking countries. We will differ between formal german greetings you use in business-situations or with authorities and german greetings you use among friends and family.

Informal German Greetings

  • Hallo [ˈhalo] – Hello
  • Hi [haɪ̯] – Hi

„Hallo“ and „Hi“ are the most comon informal german greetings. You can use them with gestures like giving the hand to the person or giving a short hug. Other informal greetings are:

  • Servus! [sẹrvus] – Hello!
  • Wie geht’s? [viːˈge:ts] – How are you?
  • Alles klar? [ˈaləs kla:ɐ] – Are you all right?

„Servus“ is a greeting mainly used in the southern part of Germany, Austria and North Tirol, Italy. You can use it in these regions as a simple „Hello“.
Phrases as „Wie gehts’s?“ and „Alles klar?“ are another comon form of german greetings among friends and family. As an answer, a simple „Gut, danke!“ (Yes, thank you!) or „Ja, danke!“ (Yes, thank you!) can be the answer.

Written informal German Greetings

Well, letters as a normal form of day-to-day comuncation between friends and family became a little bit outdated. But, of course, informal german greetings still ocure in written form in Emails and other text-messages.

  • Lieber [ˈli:bɐ] – Dear

„Lieber“ might be the most important form of beginning and informal letter or text-message.

Formal German Greetings

So, formal german greetings, as already mentioned, are mainly used when talking to authorites, older people, unknown people and in business. A handshake and eye-contact are mandatory, hugs are a no-go when you want to greet someone in a formal way. Kisses are no comon gesture, although it can ocure in formal and informal greetings. There are no rules how many kisses on which side you have to give.
Here are the most important formal german greetings:

  • Guten Morgen! [gu:ten ˈmɔrgən] – Good Morning!
  • Guten Tag! [gu:ten ta:k] – Good Day!
  • Guten Abend! [gu:ten ˈa:bənd] – Good Evening!

Whereas „Guten Morgen!“ is a phrase normally used when getting up but also when greeting people in the morning, „Guten Tag!“ and „Guten Abend!“ can be seen a more formal german greetings to use – „Guten Tag“ as one of the most comon phrase and „Guten Abend“ as a rather old-fashioned german greeting being used when greeting people who are much older than yourself.

  • Grüß Gott! [grü:s gɔt] – God greets you!
  • Grüß dich! [grü:s dɪç] – God greets you!
  • Grüß Sie! [grü:s zi:] – God greets you!
  • Grüezi! [ˈgry:ɛtsi]God greets you!

German greetings like „Grüß Gott!“ and related phrases are used in the southern parts of Germany, especially in Bavaria. You will not hear them in other parts of Germany. Also Austria and Switzerland use these german greetings, whereas only in Switzerland „Grüezi“ is comon.
This way to greet is seen as an old-fashioned way, also in these german speaking parts of the world – nevertheless you will hear them quite often. Remeber that there is a diference between „Grüß Sie!“ (formal) and „Grüß dich!“ (informal).

Written formal German Greetings

When writing a formal letter or email, you should always use the right greeting, as formal aspects are seen as quite important in german-speaking countries. The way you write oficial letters or emails reflects the respect you demonstrate towads the person or authority you talk to.

You can distinguish between two forms:

  • Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren – To whom it may concern
  • Sehr geehrter Herr / Sehr geehrte Frau – Dear Sir / Dear Madam

As you know, the adjective „geehrte“ / „geehrter“ adapts to the Noun, in this case to the female noun „Frau“ (Madam) or the male noun „Herr“ (Sir).

German Greetings

Greeting is quite important in German culture


Saying Goodbye

Saying Goodbye in German can have many diferent forms, too! We will now see informal and formal phrases and words, aswell as vocabulary you mainly use in phone-conversations and written messages.

Informal German Goodbyes

Well, no further explanation needed – here are the most comon informal ways to say goodbye to each other among friends and family.

  • Tschüss! [tʃʏs] – Bye!
  • Bis später! [bɪs ˈʃpɛ:tɐ] – See you later!
  • Bis bald! [bɪs balt] – See you soon!
  • Machs Gut! [maxs gu:t] – Take care!
  • Viel Glück! [fi:l glʏk] – Good luck!
  • Servus! [ˈsɛrvʊs] – Good Bye!
  • Pfiade! [bfdde] – Good Bye!

„Servus!“ is a way to say hello, but it can also be used as a way to say goodbye! It simply depends on the context of the conversation, whether you want to start or end it. „Pfiade!“ is used in southern Germany, especially Bavaria, and also in Austria and parts of Switzerland. Only people from these regions acutally understand and use it – so, be carful when aplying it in northern Germany.. People there won’t understand you! By the way, its official translation would be „May god lead you!“.

In order to end an informal written text you can use many diferent kinds of phrases and words. But there is one phrase that is used 99% of the time:

  • Viele Grüße! [fi:lə ˈgry:sə] – Best regards!
  • Liebe Grüße! [ˈli:bə ˈgry:sə] – Love, … !

Formal German Goodbyes

For saying goodbye to someone in a formal way, you can use the widly known phrase:

  • Auf Wiedersehen! – Good bye!
  • Auf Wiedehören! – Good bye!

German speakers often mention the frase „Ich wünsche Ihnen noch einen schönen Tag“ – I wish you’ll have a good day! „Auf Wiederhören“ is directly translated as „It would be nice to hear from you again“ – as you can see, it is used as a formal way to say goodbye to someone you talk by phone in a formal way.

Written Formal German Goodbyes

You can end an email or a letter in a formal way by mainly two expressions:

  • Hochachtungsvoll – Yours faithfully
  • Mit freundlichen Grüßen – Yours sincerely

Well, Hopefully all these ways of greeting and saying goodbye have been usefull to you and will help you doing your first steps into conversations in german. Here I leave you this link to even more German greetings, just in case you are interested in more:

So, once you begin speaking this language more actively, you will notice that all these words and phrases are of day-to-day use and will enter your mind faster than you think. Check out our other grammar topics on for a broad overview of german grammar!