The different meanings of the Luxembourgish word WÉI

In Luxembourgish the word wéi has several meanings and different usages. The first phrases you learn in your learning journey are: Wéi geet et? or Wéi heeschs du?

In these examples Wéi is a question word and translates into How. But this is only one meaning of this word.

Let’s get started with:

Wéi    a question word

  1. Wéi laang ….? 
  • Wéi laang gees du gewéinlech lafen? – How long do you usually go running?
  1. Wéi oft …?
  • Wéi oft gees du lafen? – How long do you go running?
  1. Wéi eng / Wéi een ……? 
  • Wéi eng Auer fënns du méi schéin? – Which watch do you think is more beautiful ? 
  • Wéi een Dessert wëlls du gär? – Which dessert would you like?
  1. Wéi vill ….? 
  • Wéi vill Auer ass et? – What time is it?
  • Wéi vill kascht dat?How much does this cost? 

Wéi – used to compare things / persons

I often hear my students use the word dann when comparing things / persons. But that’s not the correct word. In Luxembourgish we use the term wéi:

  • méi kleng wéismaller than
  • méi séier wéi  faster than
  • esou flott wéias beautiful as

Learn all about the comparative form in this lesson.

Beispiller (examples)

  • Mäin neie Brëll ass grad esou schéin wéi deen alen. – My new glasses are as beautiful as the old ones
  • Dëse Coiffer ass besser wéi deen a mengem Quartier. – This hairdresser is better than the one in my area
  • Den Zuch fir op Bréissel ass manner bequeem wéi dee fir op Paräis – The train to Brussel is less comfortable than the one to Paris. 

Wéi –  instead of “wann” when expressing something in the past 

  • Wéi ech jonk war, sinn ech oft bei meng Boma an d’Vakanz gaang. – When I was young, I often went on vacation to my grand-mother.
  • Wéi ech d’lescht Woch krank war, sinn ech doheem bliwwen.When I was sick last week,  I stayed at home.

Wéi –  to express that you have a pain 

  1. wéi  painful / sore
  • Ass dat Äre wéien Zant?- Is that your painful tooth? 
  1. wéi hunn – to have a pain 
  • Ech hunn oft de Kapp wéi. – I often have a headache.
  1. wéidoen – to hurt
  • Wou deet et dir wéi? – Where does it hurt you?
  • Mamma, de Pol huet mir wéigedoen . – Mum, Pol hurt me!

Wéi – other meanings

  • Wéi kanns du nëmmen dat iessen.How on earth can you eat this?
  • Wéi kanns du dat soen? – How on earth can you say that?
  • Du gleefs net, wéi gär ech Kéistaart iessen. – You can’t believe, how much (to what degree) I like to eat cheesecake.

Let’s practice:

Translate the following sentences into Luxembourgish:

    1. My mother has almost every day headache.
    2. When we were on vacation, we had breakfast at 10 am.
    3. How many hours a week do you (form) learn Luxembourgish?

Check the solution by downloading the PDF and practice  with MORE sentences to translate !

Get the PDF!

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