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False friends with hören

Last week, we looked at the various verbs that mean "to listen" and "to hear." But there are also several words that contain hören and have nothing to do with its meaning. The most important of these for daily conversation are likely the verbs gehören and aufhören

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The verb gehören essentially means "to belong" and is used to express ownership. Note the use of the dative case in these two examples:  

 

Die Uhr gehört der Lehrerin.

The watch belongs to the teacher.

Caption 60, Deutschkurs in Tübingen - Verben der 3. Kategorie

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Wem gehört jetzt dieses Kunstwerk?

Who owns this work of art now?

Caption 47, Das Urban-Art-Projekt - Polnischer Militärhubschrauber

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The related verb zugehören or dazugehören means "to be counted among” or “to be a component part of something," while the verb angehören can even be used more officially to talk about membership in a group. 

 

Die Australierin gehört zu den Hauptdarstellerinnen in dem Thriller.

The Australian is among the leading female actors in the thriller.

Caption 18, Cate Blanchett - dreht auf Fehmarn

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You may already be thinking that gehört is indeed the past participle of the verb hören! This is true, so you will have to note the context and the prefixes and prepositions as well. 

 

The verb aufhören is also not related to listening or hearing. It means "to cease," "to stop," or "to quit."

 

Kannst du bitte aufhören zu telefonieren?

Can you please stop phoning?

Caption 51, Magie - Die Zaubershow

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Hör auf!“, schrie Frederick. „Du nervst mich!“

"Stop!" cried Frederick. "You are annoying me!"

Caption 11, Piggeldy und Frederick - Karton

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Further Learning
Because these verbs are so common, you will be able to find many examples on Yabla German. If you are interested in learning more verbs related to listening and hearing, take a look at this list.

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