The German and English languages share a common origin like two cousins born to mutual grandparents. Many of the most common words of English are closely related to the Geman counterparts often with a clear and obvious spelling relationship.

English words such as finger, hand, arm, ring, warm, wolf, land, hammer etc. are identical in spelling to the German words and they are called full cognates.

A great many words that are English/German cognates are not so obvious to identify because their similarity has been obscured by historical sound shifts and spelling changes. They are called partial cognates.

It may be possible to decipher partial cognates by means of a phoneme or letter relationship key found in the following table.

Try to figure out the English meaning of the German words listed by making spelling changes according to the phoneme or letter relationship key table.

Some important considerations:

In German, words are capitalized to indicate that they are nouns. For this exercise, the capital letters may be considered identical to lower case letters.

Begin by changing letters from the consonant column first, then try adjusting letters according to the vowel column, lastly, try adding or deleting endings from the endinq column.

Be aware that a few of the words require spelling changes that are not found on the letter (or phoneme) relationship key.

Try to be flexible in your thinking about word endings and spelling.

Guessing is good.

Cognate Recognition Study

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