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German: The Language
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Although North America, Australia, and New Zealand had a significant amount of German immigration, there may be resistance to using German records for genealogical research. The certain reason would seem to pertain to language. Simply put, English speakers are not as comfortable, or interested in, searching through records in a language other than English. This, of course, is not surprising. Add to the language barrier the fact that many German records are written in handwriting unfamiliar to most English-speakers, and the lack of popularity for German research is evident. However, the language does not have to be a barrier. English and German are closely related languages. One does not need to become fluent in the German language to be a good genealogist in German records. This course introduces the key information needed about the German language so researchers can be successful in reading German. Pronunciation of and writing in German is not generally necessary for genealogical research. The focus of this course will be in understanding written German from an English perspective. Another course will focus on understanding the various handwriting and printing styles used in German records.


Course Content

Module 1
German Language from an English Perspective
Note about Web Addresses
Introduction
Interchangeable Letters
Classes of Words
Identical to English
Vowel shift from English
Consonant shift from English
Root is similar to English
Similar to related English word
Related to similar German words
No apparent relationship to English

Module 2
German Word Lists & Dictionaries
Websites
Introduction
Commercial German-English Dictionaries
Thode's German-English Genealogical Dictionary
German Word List

Module 3
German Grammar
Nouns
Compound Words
Articles & Gender
Pronouns
Conjunctions

Module 4
German Grammar...Continued
Prepositions
Adjectives
Verbs
Adverbs

Module 5
Reading German Church Registers
Literal Translations
Multi-Stage Translation
Marriage Entry Examples

Module 6
Reading German Published Sources
Websites
Introduction
About automated translation
New Technology Introduced Google Translate
Example of a Computer Translation
Other Translation Resources
 
 

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