30.10 Prepositions with dates

When giving a date in German the preposition am is used. Depending on the form used there are two possibilities for an equivalent in English.
a) The form is month + day + year (e.g. June 21[st]; 2002), there is no preposition in English.
b) The form is on + day + month + year (e.g. on 21st of June 2002).

Ich habe am 21. Juni Geburtstag.
= I was born on 21st of June / June 21st.
Am 23. Oktober bekomme ich das Geld.
= On 23rd of October / October 23rd I get the money.
Er ist am 12. November 1999 gestorben.
= He died on 12th of November 1999 / November 12tth, 1999.
Den Brief hat er am 10. August geschrieben.
= He wrote the letter on 10th of August / August 10th.

When the date is the subject of a phrase the definite article is used instead of a preposition.
Der 1. Mai ist ein Feiertag.
= The first of May is a public holiday.
Der 30. August 1749 ist der Geburtstag Goethes.
= August 30th 1749 is the birthday of Goethe.

The other prepositions are the same as in English.

Since there is no chance to get away from the declination we have to remind you that with prepositions there are declinations. In the chapter some prepositions we described that certain prepositions require certain cases. In connection with a date there are only four prepositions possible, all four of them require the Dativ.

Prepositions with a date  
ab dem
= from
nach dem
= after
vor dem
= before
bis zum (zu dem)
= until

Some examples  
Vor dem 25. August können wir das Projekt nicht abschließen.
= We cannot finish the project before August 25.
Er muss es bis zum 18. April gemacht haben.
= He has to have done it until April 18.
Nach dem 17. September hab ich Zeit, vorher nicht.
= After September 17 I do have time, before that I do not.

contact privacy statement imprint