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Questions about "Entschuldigen"!
Tags: German
December 9, 2011
22:35
theverve

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So , I learned to pronounce "Entschuldigen" by the Byki flashcard program and I thought I got it down pat.  Then I watched the German soap opera "Verbotene Liebe" and now I've gone nuts.

 

So, in Byki I hear "Entschuldighen Sie"  which they say means "Excuse me".  But on the show I hear "Entschuldigun". Never once does anyone sound like Byki--maybe my computer is screwing up Byki's sound.

Is the "gen" part pronounced more like "ghen" or "gun"?  

The other thing was in every situation on the show the character ONLY says "Entschuldigen" in every situation like when one answers the phone when they have a guest.  Always "Entschuldigen" never with the "Sie"!  Is it correct to just say "Excuse"?  Isn't that incomplete? It would be strange in English to go around saying "Excuse, excuse".  I thought German is like French where the "la" or "le" has to be included or it's incorrect. 

 

Do explain please. confused

December 9, 2011
23:58
Lingo

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theverve said:

So , I learned to pronounce "Entschuldigen" by the Byki flashcard program and I thought I got it down pat.  Then I watched the German soap opera "Verbotene Liebe" and now I've gone nuts.

So, in Byki I hear "Entschuldighen Sie"  which they say means "Excuse me".  But on the show I hear "Entschuldigun". Never once does anyone sound like Byki--maybe my computer is screwing up Byki's sound.

Is the "gen" part pronounced more like "ghen" or "gun"?  

"Entschuldigen Sie" and "Entschuldigung" both exist.

I think "Entschuldigung" is the most common form and it can be used regardless of the degree of formality. Grammatically speaking, you're just saying the noun excuse instead of an imperative form. (Translating it to English doesn't help, because both the imperative and noun are simply "excuse").

So, for a start, you can stick with "Entschuldigung".

 

If you want to fine-tune your excuse, here are some tips (you don't need to mind this at first!):

If you want to excuse for anything of minor importance/or obviously not demanding further explanation, a quick "Entschuldigung" is appropriate. I'd also use this after inadvertently running into a stranger (I mean, chances are... both are in a hurry - what else would you want to explain?).

If you want to show a bit more consideration (for instance, for interrupting someone who was busy doing something else), you can use "Entschuldigen Sie bitte {die Störung}" (formal/Sie) or "Entschuldige bitte {die Störung}" (informal/du). {die Störung} indicates your behaviour you're excusing for - in grammar terms, it's a noun taking the role of an accusative object.

In more serious cases or if you want to underline your sincerity, I advise you to start with "Entschuldigen Sie [mich] bitte..." (formal) or "Entschuldige [mich] bitte..." (informal), give your explanation and finally express your regret ("Es tut mir leid", just a bit informal).

I think there is no fixed rule, but there is a high correlation between using the [mich] and leaving/interrupting/ending a conversation. Keep in mind though, that "mich" cannot be used with an accusative object like {die Störung} above.

The other thing was in every situation on the show the character ONLY says "Entschuldigen" in every situation like when one answers the phone when they have a guest.  Always "Entschuldigen" never with the "Sie"!  Is it correct to just say "Excuse"?  Isn't that incomplete? It would be strange in English to go around saying "Excuse, excuse".  

I consider a mere "Entschuldigen" incorrect and inappropriate. Maybe the characters on the show are using "du" to adress one another, and he said "Entschuldige"?

I thought German is like French where the "la" or "le" has to be included or it's incorrect. 

I don't quite get what you're alluding to. I hope that my explanations were helpful, though.

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December 10, 2011
02:44
logie100
New Zealand

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The pronounciation I hear in speech is "schuldigung" , they dont even include the "ent" part.

Native: English (New Zealand English) Advanced: Spanish (Latin American Spanish) High Beginner: German                         Indonesian
December 10, 2011
02:48
theverve

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Thanks for responding.  I do get it a bit more but I do have some more questions if you don't mind.

 

So, there's two pronunciations for the same word or does the word "entschuldigung" actually exist?  Also, I forgot to ask if the "t" is ever pronounced?  Sometimes, I hear it and sometimes I hear TV characters leaving out the "t" perhaps because they are talking fast.  Which is correct: ent or ens?

When you say the imperative form and noun means "excuse"...what do you mean?  I'm terrible at English grammar.

What does die Storung mean?  Eeek, how do I easily put in the two dots on the "o" when I'm typing in Eng.?  And, why is it in brackets?  Why is the last "n" missing in "Entschuldige bitte"?

What does the "mich" mean? Is it a verb?

 

Hope I'm not killing you with my questions.

December 10, 2011
02:55
theverve

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logie100 said:

The pronounciation I hear in speech is "schuldigung" , they dont even include the "ent" part.

 

So, it's like us saying "...scuse me"?  Do you hear on the streets all the time?

December 10, 2011
02:58
theverve

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So, it's like us saying "...scuse me"?  Do you hear it on the streets all the time?

December 10, 2011
03:56
logie100
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I think so. I have heard "schuldigung" after a sneeze, but not so much for saying it to get past someone.

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December 10, 2011
12:03
a 1914
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theverve said:

Thanks for responding.  I do get it a bit more but I do have some more questions if you don't mind.

 

So, there's two pronunciations for the same word or does the word "entschuldigung" actually exist?  Also, I forgot to ask if the "t" is ever pronounced?  Sometimes, I hear it and sometimes I hear TV characters leaving out the "t" perhaps because they are talking fast.  Which is correct: ent or ens?

When you say the imperative form and noun means "excuse"...what do you mean?  I'm terrible at English grammar.

What does die Storung mean?  Eeek, how do I easily put in the two dots on the "o" when I'm typing in Eng.?  And, why is it in brackets?  Why is the last "n" missing in "Entschuldige bitte"?

What does the "mich" mean? Is it a verb?

 

Hope I'm not killing you with my questions.

It's Entschuldigung, not Entschuldigun. It's much more common than "Entschuldigen Sie" which sounds too polite for most situations. In the first case (die) Entschuldigung is a noun like the excuse or the house, while in the second case it's a verb ( to excuse, to give ) in imperative form like "Geben Sie ihm Geld!" Give him money!. That's why you need to use "Entschuldige" the singular/one person form when you are using "du" and the plural/more than one person form when your are using "Sie"

In practice that doesn't really matter and it's much simpler to just use "Entschuldigung" in every case. In the spoken language (but not very often on TV) you'll often hear just "tschuldigung" or "schuldigung". Or like you said, some don't pronounce the t "Enschuldigung" but don't ever write it like that!

Störung is a disruption. And "mich" is a pronoun which translates to "me".

December 10, 2011
12:33
Lingo

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Thank you so much for taking the time to respond, a 1914! I absolutely agree with you and couldn't have put it in a clearer and more concise way.

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December 11, 2011
18:58
Chrystal G.
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While traveling in Germany I heard MANY people use "schuldigung," and little else. Just as I heard, "tut Mir leid" more than "es tut Mir leid." Many things are shortened in speech, which can make it difficult, but not impossible, to understand. Plus, there were a lot of "grüß Gott"'s going around in Munich! :D I rarely heard, "Guten Tag," but frequently heard, "Tag" or, "morgen" or just, "hallo."

If you think about it, we do this all the time in English, too. We greet with, "hello" or "morning," we say, "s'cuse me," or just, "sorry" quite often; I'm pretty sure programs don't really teach this as its very conversational. Try to mimic what the locals say, and I doubt you will be misunderstood...even if some things are shortened, as long as they are similar. :)

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December 13, 2011
22:01
a 1914
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theverve said:

So , I learned to pronounce "Entschuldigen" by the Byki flashcard program and I thought I got it down pat.  Then I watched the German soap opera "Verbotene Liebe" and now I've gone nuts.

 

Oh, and if you're going to watch German soap operas, watch the best one: Alles was zählt

http://rtl-now.rtl.de/alles-was-zaehlt.php

Of the other free shows I can only recommend "Alarm für Cobra 11" (which is great if you like unnecessary explosions and car chases!) and "Wer wird Millionär" (German "who wants to be a millionaire", Günther Jauch is a great game show host)

Sorry that was Off-Topic :)

December 16, 2011
03:31
theverve

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Thank you all for helping.  A very sweet explanation a1914. Will you be my mentor?  I only watch VL cause some of the storylines are available on Youtube with subs.  What's the show about on that site?  It's all in German!  Where's the first ep. button?   Is anything subbed?

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