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Telling time in German: Full hours with the phrase “Es ist … Uhr.” Posted by on Aug 13, 2012 in Language

Telling the time in German can be a challenge when it comes to using the 24-hour-system, especially for those learners who are not familiar with that system. In the following video I explain how to use the 24-hour-system and I cite all possible full hours of the clock, so that you can also hear how to pronounce these phrases correctly in German.



Es ist ein Uhr. – It is one a.m. / It is one o’clock

Es ist zwei Uhr. – It is two a.m. / It is two o’clock.

Es ist drei Uhr. – It is three a.m. / It is three o’clock.

Es ist vier Uhr. – It is four a.m. / It is four o’clock.

Es ist fünf Uhr. – It is five a.m. / It is five o’clock.

Es ist sechs Uhr. – It is six a.m. / It is six o’clock.

Es ist sieben Uhr. – It is seven a.m. / It is seven o’clock.

Es ist acht Uhr. – It is eight a.m. / It is eight o’clock.

Es ist neun Uhr. – It is nine a.m. / It is nine o’clock.

Es ist zehn Uhr. – It is ten a.m. / It is ten o’clock.

Es ist elf Uhr. – It is eleven a.m. / It is eleven o’clock.

Es ist zwölf Uhr. – It is twelve (at noon).

Es ist dreizehn Uhr. – It is one p.m.

Es ist vierzehn  Uhr. – It is two p.m.

Es ist fünfzehn Uhr. – It is three p.m.

Es ist sechzehn Uhr. – It is four p.m.

Es ist siebzehn Uhr. – It is five p.m.

Es ist achtzehn Uhr. – It is six p.m.

Es ist neunzehn Uhr. – It is seven p.m.

Es ist zwanzig. – It is eight p.m.

Es ist einundzwanzig Uhr. – It is nine p.m.

Es ist zweiundzwanzig Uhr. – It is ten p.m.

Es ist dreiundzwanzig Uhr. – It is eleven p.m.

Es ist vierundzwanzig Uhr. / Es ist null Uhr. – It is twelve midnight.


Note: As you may have recognized I pronounced the -g of the word zwanzig (20) as a soft ch-sound. Mind to do this as well. If this is too difficult for you, you can also pronounce it as a “g” or “k” and will still be understood perfectly.

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About the Author:Sandra Rösner

Hello everybody! I studied English and American Studies, Communication Science, and Political Science at the University of Greifswald. Since I have been learning English as a second language myself for almost 20 years now I know how difficult it is to learn a language other than your native one. Thus, I am always willing to keep my explanations about German grammar comprehensible and short. Further, I am inclined to encourage you to speak German in every situation. Regards, Sandra


  1. Michael Hipe:

    Do Germans use the phrases, “half past” or “quarter of” in telling the time

    • Sandra:

      @Michael Hipe Hello Michael,

      I will discuss this in my upcoming video. 😉


  2. Allesa:

    Thanks for the video, Sandra. Very helpful!

  3. Robert Barron:

    Thank You Sandra. Nice to see you and hear you. Very helpful.

  4. efrutik:

    Thanks for posting this video and intorducing the clock/hour system. I started to study it in my class this week. Was wondering when do you think you will post the second part (as in the fist comment)? It would be very appreciated and helpful.

    Also, can I make a suggestion for the captions on the video? I think it would be helpful to write the hours themselves in the translation part of the video (ex. It is 18 o’clock, etc.).


  5. Gerri Cappuccio:

    Thank you for putting the difference between the 24-hour clock and the 12-hour clock. I have just begun to study German and I love learning the language. I am pursuing my dream of learning how to speak German. For my retirement, learning German is a gift I purchased for me.

    Again, let me say Danke… Gerri