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Ich Liebe Dich (In Other Words)

Perhaps you are interested in German because you fell in love, or maybe there is that "special someone" in German class you have a bit of a crush on. We all know the basic Ich liebe dich — the Beatles even did a version of “She Loves You” in German (“Sie liebt dich”) — but how about some other ways to express your attraction for somebody?

It might not be a great idea to say you love somebody too soon, so to play it safe, let’s just say you like him or her, in which case the verb mögen is perfect:

Oh nein, niemand mag mich!
Oh no, no one likes me!
Caption 44, Märchen, Sagenhaft: Das hässliche Entlein

Another way of expressing that you like someone is to say you “have them gladly” (gern haben) or care for them (lieb haben):

Wenn man jemanden richtig gern und lieb hat…     
If you really love and care for someone…
Caption 42, Valentinstag: In Karlsruhe

Another possibility is du gefällst mir, or if you want to make it even stronger, du gefällst mir sehr. Then the next step is falling in love, sich verlieben:

Der Prinz hatte sich verliebt.
The Prince had fallen in love.
Caption 69, Sagenhaft, Märchen: Aschenputtel

When you are ready to make the leap, however, there is always the classic standby:

John, ich liebe dich. Adrianne, ich liebe dich!
John, I love you. Adrianne, I love you!
Captions 13–14, Alexander Hauff: Showreel

Followed ideally by the grand finale:

Ich möchte dich heiraten.
I want to marry you.
Caption 86, Märchen, Sagenhaft: Der Froschkönig

Further Learning:

How do I love thee? Rather than getting into counting the ways and all the mathematics involved, why not try getting a taste of German love poems from the 16th to the 20th centuries, including an exclusive set from German women poets? Make a vocabulary list of words you are unfamiliar with, and then search on Yabla to find the ways the words are used in other contexts.

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