When do you say ech hunn vs ech hu?

In your beginners course you have learnt that  I have is ech hunn and that

  • I have a(n) is ech hunn en/eng – depending on the gender of the noun that follows;


  • I have not is ech hunn net

But later on, during your learning journey you came across ech hu for saying that you don’t have someone or something:

  • I have no children is ech hu keng Kanner

But why do I hear many of my students automatically say ech hu for I have. 

For example  ech hu Zäit. Is this correct? Well, no ….

Here are 2 easy rules for you to remember:

Rule 1: ech hunn …

+ en, eng / + net

  • ech hunn en Hond I have a dog
  • ech hunn eng Duechter – I have a daughter
  • ech hunn net vill Zäit I have not much time


Rule 2: ech hu …

+ keen / keng …

  • ech hu keen Honger I have no hunger
  • ech hu keng Zäit I have no time
  • ech hu kee Kand – I have no child



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What is different between rule 1 & rule 2? 

Well, this is all about the n-rule. It has nothing to do with a contraction like in English I have contracts to I’ve or in German  they say Ich hab instead of Ich habe. That’s not the case in Luxembourgish. 

The n-rule concerns dropping or not dropping the final n or nn of a word depending on the word that follows. We like to make the language flow which means we only write and pronounce sounds they can hear. 

The most important is to get familiar with the n-rule. It is really easy to remember but it takes practice!

So you can’t just drop the double “n” of hunn whenever you want.

The most important is to get familiar with the n-rule. It is really easy to remember but it takes practice!

In a conversation it will sound very odd to native speakers if you drop the n systematically!

Now of course hunn can be followed by any word (noun, adjective, article, pronoun, adverb etc) and depending with which letter this word will start you will have to apply the n-rule.

To get the grip of this I suggest that you practice straight  away with me!

Let’s practice:

Complete the following sentences with hunn or hu!

    1. Ech ________ net vill Zäit.
    2. Mir _________ dräi Kanner
    3. Meng Elteren _________ e grousst Haus.

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

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I hope you liked it and found it useful. And …. why not sharing this lesson with your friends:-)


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