Understanding Verb Valency in German

Key Takeaways Description
Importance of Verb Valency Essential for mastering German grammar; defines relationships between verbs and their arguments.
Historical Context Initiated by Lucien Tesnière in 1959; extensively studied with significant resources like the “Dependency and Valency” handbook.
Practical Application Critical for structuring sentences correctly in German.
Modern Research Plays a role in language instruction and understanding L2 language nuances.
Learning Resources Courses and materials available for deepening understanding of verb valency in German.


Understanding verb valency is crucial for mastering German grammar. It involves the relationship between verbs and their required complements—such as subjects, direct objects, and indirect objects. Knowing these relationships helps you form sentences correctly and fluently.

Historical Overview of Verb Valency in German

Valency theory was established by Lucien Tesnière in 1959 and has since become a cornerstone of German linguistics. This theory helps us see how verbs determine the structure of sentences. Significant works, including the Dependency and Valency: An International Handbook of Contemporary Research, have provided deep insights into this theory.

Historical Timeline of Verb Valency Developments

Practical Application of Valency Theory in German

Valency affects how sentences in German are formed, especially in how verbs dictate the necessities for other sentence components. For instance, the verb “geben” (to give) requires three components: a subject, a direct object, and an indirect object.

Learn more through our Mastering German Grammar Through Visual Insights.

Valency in Modern Research and Teaching

Modern studies have expanded valency theory into interlanguage research, particularly looking at how non-native speakers learn and use German. This research sheds light on the difficulties learners face and how they navigate the complexities of German grammar.

Comparison of Valency Complexity in Native and L2 Languages

Learning Resources and Tools

We have several resources designed to help you master German verb valency. Our German Grammar Easily Explained Freebie provides a comprehensive overview suitable for all learning levels.


Understanding verb valency is more than just a grammatical exercise; it’s a crucial part of acquiring and mastering the German language. We encourage all learners to explore the depth and breadth of this topic through our various courses and resources.

Embark on your journey to mastering German verb valency and grammar with us at Deutsch.WTF. Dive deep into our learning materials and discover the intricacies of German in a simple and engaging way.

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