The irregular verb "lassen" in German

"Leben und leben lassen"
(Live and let live)

Meaning of "lassen" in German

The verb "lassen" means:

1.-to leave (in the sense of leaving something / someone at some place)

Lassen Sie den Wagen hier
Leave the car here

Warum hast du mich allein gelassen?
Why did you leave me alone?

2.-to let, to permit (in the sense of giving permission [affirmative] or prohibiting [negative])

Ich lasse dich nicht gehen
I'm not letting you go

3.-to leave (leaving options, doubts, etc.)

Er hat keinen Zweifel gelassen
He left me with no doubt

delegating some task

Ich will den Arzt holen lassen
I’ll have the doctor called

Wo kann man einen Laptop reparieren lassen?
Where can you have a laptop repaired?

Structure: lassen + [accusative] (what is left)


Lass mich in Ruhe!
Leave me alone!

Grammar of "lassen"

"lassen" is an irregular verb.

Verb3rd PersonPräteritumPartizip IIMeaning
lassenlässtließgelassento leave, to permit

Alternative imperative form ("lass uns" / "lasst uns")

With the structure:

lass uns / lasst uns + [infinitive]

The first person plural is used for the construction:

1st person plural
lass uns gehenlet’s go
2nd person plurallasst uns gehenlet’s go

When to use "lass uns" or "lasst uns"

In both cases, it deals with the first person plural but "lass uns" is for me and a single interlocutor (For example: My mom):

lass uns essen
let’s eat

In comparison, if I have several interlocutors (Ex: My mom and my dad):

lasst uns essen
let’s eat (you are saying “let’s eat” to more than one person, thus the –t ending)

Main article: The imperative

Conjugation of "lassen"

Present simple (Präsens Indikativ)

ich lasseI let
du lässtyou let
er lässthe lets
wir lassenwe let
ihr lasstyou let
sie lassenthey let

Perfect (Perfekt)

ich habe gelassen / lassenI have left/let
du hast gelassen / lassenyou have left/let
er hat gelassen / lassenhe has left/let
wir haben gelassen / lassenwe have left/let
ihr habt gelassen / lassenyou have left/let
sie haben gelassen / lassenthey have left/let

Aus Schreck habe ich die Teller fallen lassen
I let the plates fall because I was scared

Simple past (Präteritum)

ich ließI left
du ließtyou left
er ließhe left
wir ließenwe left
ihr ließtyou left
sie ließenthey left

Subjunctive II (Konjunktiv II)

ich ließe
du ließest
er ließe
wir ließen
ihr ließet
sie ließen

Participle (Partizip)

Partizip IPartizip II

Imperative (Imperativ)

2nd person singularlassleave/let's
2nd person plurallasstleave/let's
Polite formlassen Sieleave/let's

Verbs with the stem "lassen"

There are hundreds of verbs with the stem "lassen". We’ll show you the main ones:

anlassento start (motor)
(separable verb)
entlassento fire, to dismiss
(inseparable verb)
erlassento excuse
(inseparable verb)
nachlassento decrease
(separable verb)
überlassento leave, to surrender
(inseparable verb)
zerlassento melt
(inseparable verb)