As a Germanic language it is sometimes considered a cousin of English. Much of the grammar for German is generally similar to English, but more complex, e.g. German still has a dative form. German speakers are often able to learn English well.
In German, all nouns are capitalised.
There are a number of cognates between English and German, mostly everyday words. Some particularly obvious true friends exist in family nouns and body parts:
NB: (German first, English translation in brackets):
- Family nouns. Bruder (brother), Vater (father), Großvater (grandfather), Großmutter (grandmother), Mutter (mother), Onkel (uncle), Sohn (son), Schwester (sister), Tante (aunt), Tochter (daughter),
- Body parts: Arm (arm), Brust (breast), Ellenbogen (elbow), Finger (finger), Fuß (foot), Hand (hand), Haar (hair), Knie (knee), Knöchel (ankle), Lippe (lip), Nase (nose), Ohr (ear), Schulter (shoulder)
- Days of the week: Montag (Monday), Dienstag (Tuesday), Mittwoch (Wednesday, literally “midweek”, which replaced earlier Wodenstag), Donnerstag (Thurdsay), Freitag (Friday), Samstag (Saturday), Sonntag (Sunday).
German Hund, English "hound", meaning dog.