Remember the Luxembourgish Dative Prepositions

In this lesson you will learn the prepositions which always take the dative case. To see in Luxembourgish if you need to use the accusative or the dative case, you can look at 2 things: Verbs & Prepositions

What are prepositions?

Prepositions are words that link a noun to the rest of the sentence. Examples of English prepositions include on, out, for, without, about and until, but there are many more. They are those little words that you don’t even notice you’re using, but which completely change the meaning of the sentence.

Using Luxembourgish prepositions is quite complicated because of the case system. The thing about Luxembourgish prepositions is that they affect the case of the noun that follows them.

There are two kinds of dative prepositions:

  • Those that are always dative and never anything else.
  • Certain two-way prepositions which are either accusative or dative, depending on how they are used.

Let’s learn in this lesson the 6 prepositions which ALWAYS take the dative case in example sentences:

Prepositions with the Dative

mat (with)

Beispiller (examples)

Mir ginn dräimol den Dag mam* (mat dem) Mupp spadséieren. – We go for a walk with the dog three times a day.

Ech feieren ëmmer Chrëschtdag mat menger Famill. – I always celebrate Christmas with my family.

*Some prepositions such as mat – vun – no – virun can contract in the dative case: combined with the definite articles masculine and neuter – dem – they form a contracted short form:

  • mam ⇒ is the contracted short form of mat dem which means with the
  • nom ⇒ is the contracted short form of no dem which means after the

Learn more about the preposition mat in this lesson.

aus (from)

Beispiller (examples)

Ech kommen aus der Belsch. – I come from Belgium.

Ech ginn um 8 Auer moies aus dem Haus. I leave the house at 8.00am.

ausser (apart from / in addition to)

Beispiller (examples)

Jiddwereen schwätzt Lëtzebuergesch ausser mir. – Everyone speaks Luxembourgish apart from me.

Mäin Noper huet ausser enger Kaz och nach zwou Mais. My neighbour has in addition to one cat as well two mice.

no (after)

Beispiller (examples)

No dem (Nom*) Cours fueren ech direkt heem.After the course I drive (go) immediately home.

No der Aarbecht ginn ech an de Fitness. – After work I will go to the fitness.

vun (from / by / of )

Beispiller (examples)

Dëse Bus fiert vun der Gare op de Fluchhafen. – This bus goes from the station to the airport.

Meng Fra ass gëschter vun der Police ugehale ginn. – My wife has been stopped by the police yesterday.

Dat ass ganz léif vun iech. That’s very nice on the part of you.

säit / zanter (for / since )

Beispiller (examples)

Ech wunnen  zanter engem Joer zu Lëtzebuerg. – I’ve been living in Luxembourg for one year.

Säit  leschter Woch hunn ech Congé. – I am on leave since last week.

The other prepositions which always take the dative case are:

wéinst (because of) – zu (to, at, for …) – trotz (despite of) – während (during) – géintiwwer / vis-à-vis vun (opposite / towards)

Learning tip:

I know—this sounds like a nightmare: How on earth are you meant to remember those prepositions? Well, I’m not going to lie. It’s hard. But, learning phrases with dative prepositions in them is an excellent way to learn which case they take. You always have a phrase to refer to if you can’t remember off the top of your head. So for example, you might learn the phrase: “Ech gi mat menger Famill an d’Vakanz.” (I go with my family on holidays). From the menger , you will always know that mat takes the dative (if it were accusative you would read meng).

Übung (exercise)

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