Die fünf Sinne Teil 3 Hören – Hearing in German


Die fünf Sinne Teil 3 Hören – Hearing in German

Hearing is an important sense when it comes to learning any language. The best thing you can do to improve your listening comprehension is to listen to more German be it TV programs, people in cafés, or radio broadcasts. Check out our videos to help you with this. Unlike sehen, hören has fewer synonyms. 

Learn these verbs for talking about hearing and sounds in German:

hören = to hear / to listen

  • Ich höre gern Radio. (I like to listen to the radio.)

anhören = to listen to something/someone; to sound 

  • Man hört es Leuten an, wenn sie Raucher sind. (You can hear it when people are smokers)
  • Das hört sich gut an. (That sounds good.) 

hinhören = to listen carefully when you’re trying to recognize a noise

  • Hör mal genau hin, da ist so ein leises Geräusch. (Listen carefully, there’s a faint noise.)

lauschen = to eavesdrop

  • Wenn ihre Schwester telefoniert, lauscht Sonja immer an der Tür. (When her sister talks on the phone, Sonja eavesdrops at the door.)

abhören = to eavesdrop

  • Die NSA hat Bundeskanzlerin Merkel abgehört. (The NSA eavesdropped on Chencellor Merkel.)

zuhören = to listen keenly

  • Hören Sie bitte genau zu. (Please listen very carefully.)

lose = to listen (Swiss-German)

  • Lose mal! (Listen up!)

Conjugations of hören in German



Perfekt + haben




















German words commonly associated with the verb hören:

Common nouns:

hören nouns

Common adjectives:

hören nouns

As we often don’t talk about hearing, but rather what it is that we hear, here are some words you should learn:

das Geräusch = sound / noise

  • Das Geräusch im Auto stört. Woher kommt es? (The noise in the car is annoying. Where’s it coming from?)

der Lärm = noise / racket / noisiness

  • Der Lärm während des Stadtfests stört die Einwohner der Stadtmitte. (The noise during the city festival bothers the downtown inhabitants.)

die Musik = music

  • Was für Musik hören Sie gern? (What kind of music do you like to listen to?)

das Lied = song

  • Wie heisst Ihr Lieblingslied? (What’s your favourite song?)

die Stimme = voice

  • Die Frau, die seit Jahren raucht, hat eine krächzende Stimme. (The woman, who’s been smoking for years, has a scratchy voice.)

das Gequieke = squeaking

  • Das dauernde Gequieke macht mich wahnsinnig. (The constant squeaking is driving me nuts.)

der Klang = rattle / sound

  • Stravinskys Musikstücke enthalten einige ungewöhnlichen Klänge. (Stravinski’s music works contain some unusual sounds.)

das Geklapper = constant rattle

  • Beim Fahren höre ich so ein Geklapper und weiss nicht wovon es kommt. (When I’m driving I hear a constant rattle, and I don’t know where it’s coming from.)

das Geflüster =  constant whisper

  • Das Geflüster in den hinteren Reihen stört die Veranstaltung. (The constant whispering in the back rows is disrupting the performance.)

das Geschrei = shouting

  • Die Nachbarn beschwerten sich über das Geschrei der Kinder am Pausenhof der Grundschule. (The neighbours are complaining about the shouting on the school’s playground.)

das Gezeter = screaming

  • Aus der Küche kommt viel Gezeter. (There’s a lot of screaming coming from the kitchen.)

der Schrei = scream 

  • Als wir dem Gebäude näherten, hörten wir einen Schrei. (As we approached the building we heard a scream.)

der Ton = sound / tone

  • Der Ton seines Briefes ist arrogant. (The tone of his letter is arrogant.)

Expressions (Redewendungen)

  • der Ton macht die Musik (It’s not what you say, but how you say it.)
  • hier spielt die Musik (This is where it’s at!)
  • mit Sang und Klang (with drums drumming and pipes piping)
  • viel Geschrei und wenig Wolle (great boast and small roast)

Das Ohr

Here is some vocabulary that is important to learn and have when going to see the HNO-Arzt/Ärztin (Hal-Nasen-Ohren).

Ohrmuschel - Bildwörterbuch

Aufbau des Ohres - Bildwörterbuch

Listening is an important ability to have when learning a language. The more you hear a language being spoken the more you’ll get the rhythm of it and you’ll become more fluent. You should also start to notice common phrases like: “Wie geht’s dir?” and be able to reproduce them simply often without having learnt the exact translation, but from the context. The other thing to keep in mind of course is to listen to the tone in which something is said – happy voices have a similar sound in all languages as do angry ones. Der Ton macht die Musik.

Continue reading our series on the five senses in German by clicking on the links below.

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