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Standard German is spoken by approximately 95 million people worldwide. This book provides an introduction to the linguistic structure of standard German that is rich in descriptive detail and grounded in modern linguistic theory. It describes the main linguistic features: the sounds, structure and formation of words, structure of sentences, and meaning of words and sentences. It surveys the history of the language, the major dialects, German in Austria and Switzerland, as well as sociolinguistic issues such as style, language and gender, youth language, and English influence on German. Prior knowledge of German is not required, as glosses and translations of the German examples are provided. Each chapter includes exercises designed to give the reader practical experience in analyzing the language. It is an essential learning tool for undergraduate and graduate students in German and linguistics.