15 Shapes in German: A Vocabulary in German for Beginners with Examples

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Imagine you’re visiting brand-new museum which features all kinds of different shapes. But you don’t know how you can name these shapes in German. Time to learn them now!

Learn German Original made an introductory video on how you can name geometrical shapes in German:

Effortless Answers

First of all, the word for ‘shape’ is: die Form.

Was ist die Form dieses Objekts? (What is the shape of this object?)
Lass uns die geometrischen Formen lernen. (Let’s learn the geometric shapes.)
Diese Figur hat eine unregelmäßige Form. (This figure has an irregular shape.)

This blog post will give you the guide for a vocabulary with the 15 most commonly used shapes in German.

And of course, all of this with examples!

1. Der Kreis (circle)

A circle is one of the most basic and recognizable shapes.

circle shapes in german

In German, it’s called “der Kreis”. It’s a closed shape where all points on its edge are equidistant from a central point.

An example sentence is:

  • “Die Sonne ist ein perfekter Kreis am Himmel.” (The sun is a perfect circle in the sky.)

This simple yet beautiful shape can be found all around us, from the Olympic rings to the wheels of a car.

2. Das Quadrat (square)

Another geometric shape is the square, or “das Quadrat” in German.

square shapes in german

A square is a polygon with four equal sides and four right angles.

In a sentence, you can use it like this:

  • “Das Taschentuch hat die Form eines perfekten Quadrats.” (The handkerchief is shaped like a perfect square.)

Squares can be found all around in our environment, from bathroom tiles to books and boxes.

3. Das Rechteck (rectangle)

Continuing with four-sided shapes, we have “das Rechteck” (the rectangle).

rectangle shapes in german

A rectangle is a parallelogram with four right angles. And what could be shaped like a rectangle? Maybe a dining table?

  • “Der Esstisch hat die Form eines länglichen Rechtecks.” (The dining table is shaped like an elongated rectangle.)

Rectangles are everywhere in our daily lives, from windows and doors to playing fields.

4. Das Dreieck (triangle)

“Das Dreieck” (the triangle) is another basic geometric shape in German.

triangle shapes in german

A triangle is a polygon with three sides and three angles. A roof of the house is a good example.

  • “Das Dach des Hauses hat die Form eines gleichschenkligen Dreiecks.” (The roof of the house is shaped like an isosceles triangle.)

Triangles can be found everywhere, from traffic signs to building structures.

5. Der Rhombus (rhombus)

Let’s move on to a slightly more complex shape: “der Rhombus” (the rhombus).

rhombus shapes in german

A rhombus is a parallelogram with four equal sides, but its angles are not right angles.

A sentence with a rhombus is:

  • “Das Fenster hat die Form eines länglichen Rhombus.” (The window is shaped like an elongated rhombus.)

Rhombuses can be found in architectural designs and decorative patterns.

6. Das Oval (oval)

“Das Oval” (the oval) is a curved shape similar to a circle but more elongated.

oval shapes in german

A mirror could be shaped liked this:

  • “Der Badezimmerspiegel hat die Form eines eleganten Ovals.” (The bathroom mirror is shaped like an elegant oval.)

Ovals can be found everywhere, from sports stadiums to serving plates.

7. Die Kugel (sphere)

Moving on to three-dimensional shapes, we have “die Kugel” (the sphere).

sphere shapes in german

A sphere is a geometric solid with a curved surface where all points are equidistant from the center.

Let’s use it in a sentence like this:

  • “Der Planet Erde hat die Form einer fast perfekten Kugel.” (The planet Earth is shaped like an almost perfect sphere.)

Spheres are found in nature: fruits and planets, and also in human-made objects like balls and globes.

8. Der Würfel (cube)

Another important three-dimensional shape is “der Würfel” (the cube).

cube shapes in german

A cube is a polyhedron with six equal square faces.

Cubes are common in nature:

  • “Der Spielwürfel hat die Form eines perfekten Würfels.” (The game die is shaped like a perfect cube.)

Cubes can be found in games, puzzles, and even architecture. It’s pretty common if you stop and think about it for a minute.

9. Der Zylinder (cylinder)

“Der Zylinder” (the cylinder) is another key three-dimensional shape in German.

cylinder shape in german

A cylinder is a geometric solid with two equal circular bases and a curved surface connecting them.

For example:

  • “Die Limonadendose hat die Form eines schlanken Zylinders.” (The soda can is shaped like a thin cylinder.)

Cylinders are used in a wide variety of objects, from pipes to pencils.

10. Der Kegel (cone)

Another important three-dimensional shape is “der Kegel” (the cone).

cone shapes in german

A cone is a geometric solid with a circular base and a curved surface that extends to a point called the vertex.

An example sentence with the cone is:

  • “Der Partyhut hat die Form eines lustigen Kegels.” (The party hat is shaped like a fun cone.)

Cones can be found in everyday objects like traffic cones and ice cream cones.

11. Die Pyramide (pyramid)

“Die Pyramide” (the pyramid) is an iconic three-dimensional shape in German.

a pyramid shape in german

A pyramid is a polyhedron with a polygonal base and triangular faces that meet at a common point at the top.

For example:

  • “Die Pyramiden von Ägypten sind einige der erkennbarsten Strukturen der Welt.” (The Pyramids of Egypt are some of the most recognizable structures in the world.)

Pyramids are found in ancient architecture and can also be found in modern objects like food packaging.

12. Das Prisma (prism)

Next, we have “das Prisma” (the prism), a three-dimensional shape with equal and parallel polygonal bases and rectangular lateral faces.

prism shapes in german
Abstract representation of a ray of light hitting a prism and dispersing into a spectrum of colors. 3d illustration.

Talking about a prism in German is possible with this sentence:

  • “Der Weihnachtsschmuck hat die Form eines dreieckigen Prismas.” (The Christmas ornament is shaped like a triangular prism.)

Prisms can be found in everyday objects like pencils, as well as in architectural structures and engineering components.

13. Das Sechseck (hexagon)

Going back to two-dimensional shapes, we have “das Sechseck” (the hexagon).

hexagon shapes in german
forms of honey sweet isolated icon vector illustration design

A hexagon is a polygon with six sides and six angles.

For example:

  • “Die Wabenplatten haben die Form perfekter Sechsecke.” (The honeycomb panels are shaped like perfect hexagons.)

Hexagons can be found in nature, in honeycombs, as well as in architectural designs and decorative patterns.

14. Das Fünfeck (pentagon)

Another important polygon is “das Fünfeck” (the pentagon).

pentagon shapes in german

A pentagon is a five-sided polygon with five angles.

  • “Das Stoppschild hat die Form eines roten Fünfecks.” (The stop sign is shaped like a red pentagon.)

Pentagons can be found in different contexts, from road signs to architectural designs and even military structures.

15. Die Ellipse (ellipse)

Finally, we have “die Ellipse” (the ellipse) in this blog post, a curved shape similar to an oval but with a more precise mathematical definition.

an elongated ellipse shapes in german

An example with an ellipse is:

  • “Die Umlaufbahn der Planeten um die Sonne hat die Form einer Ellipse.” (The orbit of planets around the sun is shaped like an ellipse.)

Ellipses can be found in astronomy to architecture and even in sports fields.

Practice geometrical shapes in German

We have dedicated practice worksheets for you: they are available for most of our blog posts. Here it is for shapes in German!

This is just a sneak peek behind the scenes. You can request the full practice worksheet right now!

Learn geometric shapes in German with Conversation Based Chunking

Conversation Based Chunking is a great and useful method for learning German vocabulary. Even if we’re just talking about simple vocabulary like geometric shapes in German.

It is all about learning words and phrases in “chunks” or groups, in the context of real conversations.

You can learn “der Kreis”, “das Quadrat” along with phrases such as “Der Ball hat die Form eines Kreises” or “Die Kiste ist ein perfektes Quadrat.”

These chunks connect the shapes in German to everyday situations, making them easier to remember. Sign up now, and learn more about this method on Effortless Conversations!

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