Practice Texts

Here is a short list of annotated texts at various levels of difficulty.

  • Der Panther (poem) [Deutsch 231]
  • Chor der Geretteten (poem) [Deutsch 231]
  • Der Erlkönig (poem) [Deutsch 231] Unfortunately, this page looks odd in some browsers. The formatting is meant to distinguish the speakers: the narrator and the father get the same font; the child gets a bolder font, and the Erlkönig's text is in italics.
  • An die Freude (poem) [Deutsch 231] This is the text of the "Ode to Joy" from Beethoven's 9th Symphony. Only the first stanza is annotated.
  • 66 Fragen [Deutsch 231]
  • Der Stern der Weisen und die Wissenschaft (speculative text offering an interesting (though incorrect) theory as to what astronomical event may have given rise to the biblical Star of Bethlehem [Deutsch 232])

Practice Texts On Other Websites

Relativ leicht [=easy]

Relativ schwer [=difficult]

  • Die Todesfuge Ein Gedicht von Paul Celan über den Holocaust. Auf der Webseite finden Sie den Text, eine Übersetzung [=translation] und viele Materialien zum Text.

Sites Where You Can Practice On Your Own

  • Antosch & Lin Flashcards and Text Analyser The link takes you directly to the German site, but you can use the site to study many other languages via the "Languages" pulldown menu on the bottom left. Create a free account and try it out (all features are currently free). The flashcards include audio and example sentences, and an option to make your own notes (e.g. mnemonics for the word). They use a spaced repetition format that allows you to control when you see a card again. The "Text Analyzer" (see the link further down on the left) allows you to enter a German text and then hover over any word in the text that is included in the site's database, in order to see a translation and access the flashcard for that word if you wish. You can also create a set of flashcards to study based on the text.
  • 19th century German Stories Wonderfully done multimedia editions from Virginia Commonwealth University. Includes Struwwelpeter, Max und Moritz, and a selection of the Grimm fairy tales, as well as a great selection of other texts.  For most texts you can find a "story menu" that allows you to read a dual-language version, or to read the text side-by-side with a convenient dictionary window.
  • Litgloss (University of Buffalo) Collection of extensively glossed texts in various languages.  The German selections include texts by the Grimm Brothers, Goethe, Kafka, and Kant.
  • doppeltext.com This site offers a selection of dual-language texts in electronic form. Prices are low, and the site offers a number of free excerpts for you to try first, including the complete text of Kafkas Die Verwandlung.

Simplified News Sites [News = die Nachrichten]

News organizations sometimes publish articles in simplified language for children, language learners etc. Here are a few: