Teach Yourself German (1938) by John Adams - PDF ebook

Teach Yourself German

Teach Yourself German

To know a language properly implies the power of using it freely for three different purposes: reading, writing, and speaking. Those who learn a foreign language may desire to learn it for all three purposes, or for one or two of them only.

This work has been designed to enable the student to develop his powers as quickly and as easily as possible in all three. A language is a vast field, which can never be fully explored, and learning a language means hard work, careful thought, and constant practice. If the student thinks he is going to speak or write or read German in a few months by means of a lesson or two done now and then, he had better give up the idea completely, for he is wasting his time.

 But this work, if followed conscientiously, will enable the average student not only to read German but also to write and speak it in a fairly simple way.

The student without exceptional facilities must get into the habit of reading aloud, asking himself questions aloud and answering them himself — always, or as often as possible, aloud. The learning of words is important. 

To a large extent, the vocabulary has been carefully kept up-to-date and thoroughly modem, with an eye to those who wish to read modem literature, to listen in to German broadcasts, or to travel on the Continent. These words should be mastered somehow, even if it means learning them off in lists. You must always have the subject in your mind. When you cast your eye on a thing, if you have known the German for it and forgotten, do not fail to look it up again at the first opportunity.

Conversational power is what you make it yourself. Not much has been given in actual conversations in this book, but all the exercises given are conversational in tone and subject matter. Make up your own conversations by rearranging the sentences given here, A Key to the Exercises is given. 

This should be used sensibly. Do your exercise before consulting the Key, and then correct your own. Afterwards, do the exercises the other way round, testing your translation of the Key with the original exercises. The student should revise constantly. 

In the scope of this little work, it is impossible to give a thorough revision, but the student should, after every three lessons, go back and quickly refresh his mind on grammar and vocabulary. As all the Exercises have their counterpart in the Key, no Vocabulary is given. But as many as possible of the words as they occur should be thoroughly committed to memory in order to render easier the task of translating subsequent exercises.

The section on Pronunciation is full and if the student follows it carefully he should have no difficulty in acquiring a fair pronunciation, if not a good one. If he can get native help so much better. One word of warning: we have kept all the exercises in this book within certain limits. We have attempted nothing very clever, and you must also school yourselves to this. As soon as you start trying difficult constructions you will find yourselves in deep water. 
Keep your sentences fairly short and make sure of the matter given you here before attempting anything else.

the book details :
  • Author: John Adams
  • Publication date (1938)
  • For beginners

  • Download Teach Yourself German - 9.7 MB 

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