Today I am going to talk about common mistakes Luxembourgish learners make when speaking Luxembourgish and that I have heard in my experience as a Luxemburgish teacher. I have compiled a list of what are the most common mistakes I keep hearing again and again. So today I am going to present to you 8 common mistakes and I will give you some hints how you can avoid them. Let’s start!
To ask someone in an informal situation “How are you ?” say:
How are you (informal)? → Wéi geet et dir?
Fine and you? → Gutt, an dir?
And to ask someone in a formal situation that same question say:
How are you (formal)? → Wéi geet et Iech?
Fine and you? → Gutt, an Iech.
Dir vs Si
Don’t mix up Dir and Si when speaking in a formal situation to a woman
Dir is formal way of saying you in Luxembourgish when ADDRESSING one or more people who
- you do not know very well,
- are in a position of authority, or
- are older than yourself.
Si is only used when talking ABOUT a woman
- you respect
- you do not know very well,
- who is older than you , or
- who has a position of power
Do you (formal) live as well in Luxembourg? → Wunnt Dir och zu Lëtzebuerg?
Does she (formal) live as well in Luxembourg? → Wunnt Si och zu Lëtzebuerg?
doheem vs heem
At what time do you go home? → Um wéi vill Auer gees du heem?
I am at home at 6 o’clock. → Ech sinn um 6 Auer doheem.
Although it is okay to say “I’m hot/cold” in English, this is not the case in Luxembourgish. A Luxembourger says “to me it is hot” rather than “I am hot“ using the Dative Pronoun: mir
I am cold / warm. → Mir ass et kal / waarm.
The misuse of gär.
Gär is used to express that one likes something or likes doing something. And I often hear my students starting a sentence with “Ech gär …” That’s not possible.
Gär is NOT a verb but an adverb. This means you have to use it in connection with a verb. Use these easy thumb rule:
Verb + gär
I like eating cheesecake. → Ech iesse gär Kéistaart.
moies vs de Moien
Use moies to express that you do something regularly or every morning. de Moien simply means this morning
I drink two cups of coffee in the mornings. → Ech drénke moies zwou Tase Kaffi.
I drank two cups of coffee this morning. → Ech hunn de Moien zwou Tase Kaffi gedronk.
vill vs ganz
A common mistake among people learning Luxembourgish is to mix up the words ganz and vill. But these words are far from interchangeable.
Anne: Haut ass schéint Wieder, gell! It’s nice weather today, isn’t it?
Student: Jo, et ass
vill schéin. Yes, it is much nice.
As you can see vill is not the correct word. The correct word is ganz:
Jo et ass ganz schéin. Yes it is very nice.
ganz – very
vill – a lot / much
“vill” is used to express the quantity and it cannot be placed before an adjective.
We have a lot of work. → Mir hu vill Aarbecht.
And you can use ganz before vill to empahsize vill:
I have a lot to do today. → Ech hunn haut ganz vill ze dinn.
Auer vs Stonn
Stonn – hour
I’ve been waiting one hour for the train. → Ech hunn eng Stonn op den Zuch gewaart.
Auer – o’clock (time)
The train departs at 8 o’clock? → Den Zuch fiert um 8 Auer?
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