Knowing in German — wissen vs. kennen

One of the things that has made English such a powerful language is it’s simplicity. Many words carry numerous meanings, which allows English speakers to convey numerous ideas with very few words. German on the other hand goes for precision and a broader vocabulary is demanded. If we look at the English verb “to know” we see a great example of this.

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4 comments

  1. I know that Zurich is not the capital of Switzerland.
    Ich weiss/kenne, dass Zürich nicht die Hauptstadt der Schweiz.

    ‘ist’ is missing

    Ich weiss/kenne, dass Zürich nicht die Hauptstadt der Schweiz ist.

    1. in that case “kenne” would not make sense, everything else is correct.

  2. Awesome explanation! Danke!

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