The Alternative Low German Dictionary: gahn

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Entry definition

gahn etymology From osx gān, from Proto-Germanic *gāną, from Proto-Indo-European *ǵʰeh₁- 〈*ǵʰeh₁-〉. Cognate with Dutch gaan, German gehen, English go, Western Frisian gean, Danish . pronunciation
  • /ɡɔːn/, ɡɒːn/
verb: {{head}} (past singular güng, past participle gahn or gangen, auxiliary verb wesen)
  1. (intransitive) to go
  2. (intransitive) to walk
  3. (transitive) to walk (some distance); to go (usually) by foot
  4. (intransitive) to leave Ik gah nu. – I'm leaving now.
  5. (intransitive) To lead (in a direction). Dehierste Weg geiht richt na Bassum. — This road goes all the way to Bassum.
  6. (intransitive) To proceed (well or poorly). Dat is goot gahn. — That went well.
  7. (impersonal, intransitive) to be going; to be alright; indicates how the oblique object fares Woans geiht dat di? — “How are you doing?” Mi geiht dat goot. — “I’m doing well.” (Literally, “It goes well for me.”) Dat geiht. — “It’s alright.”
  8. (auxiliary) Used to form the future tense of a verb, together with an infinitive. Dat geiht doch nich warken. — It will not work anyway. Note: schölen and wüllen are used more often for the future tense, instead of gahn.
  9. (auxiliary) To start to, begin to, to be going to De Sünn geiht wedder schienen. — The sun is starting to shine again. Ik gah slapen. — I'm going to sleep. Dat geiht so regen. — It's going to start raining soon.
  10. (colloquial, intransitive) to be possible Dat mag villicht gahn. – That might be possible.
  11. (colloquial, intransitive) to work, to function (the verb warken is also used in that context) De Koffeeautomaat geiht nich. – The coffee dispenser doesn't work.
  12. (colloquial, intransitive) to be in progress; to last De Sitten geiht bet Klock een. – The session is scheduled until one o'clock.
  13. (impersonal, intransitive, with “op” followed by a time) to approach; to be going (on some one) Dat geiht op Klock 8. — “It’s going on 8 o’clock.”
Unlike English to go, Low German gahn does not mean "to travel somewhere" in general. A distinction must be made between gahn (walk), fohren (go by bike, car, train, or ship), and flegen (go by plane). If used with a place one cannot or would not commonly walk to, gahn often imples that one intends to stay there for a long time, e.g.: Ik gah na New York. – I'm going to live in New York.

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