Definition - A sentence is a group of words
that includes a finite verb.
Sentences are made up of phrases and clauses: phrases are groups of words
that are used together to express a certain idea; clauses are phrases
that contain a verb. In a sentence composed of more than one clause, the
main clause is the clause that makes sense on its own; subordinate clauses
are other clauses that give additional information, but cannot stand alone.
Examples of German sentences:
Ich bin Olga.
[I am Olga.]
Wenn wir mehr Geld
haben, kaufen wir ein großes Auto.
[When we have
more money, we will buy a big car.]
Renate hat eine
weiße Katze, aber sie möchte einen schwarzen Hund.
a white cat, but she would like a black dog.]
Types - This is a short list of different
kinds of sentences:
Declarative sentences are statements. These sentences are sometimes referred
to as 'positive' sentences to distinguish them from negative sentences.
Das Buch ist billig.
[The book is inexpensive.]
Ihr geht in den
Supermarkt. [You go into the supermarket.]
Der Wein ist sehr
trocken. [The wine is very dry.]
Negative sentences express a negation:
Das ist kein
teures Buch. [This is not an expensive book.]
Ihr geht nicht
in das Hotel. [You do not go into the hotel.]
Der Wein ist nicht
süß. [The wine is not sweet.]
Interrogative sentences are questions:
Kostet das Buch
zehn Euro? [Does the book cost ten Euros?]
Wohin geht ihr?
[Where do you go?]
ist das? [What wine is this?]