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From Middle High German ūzsehen. Analysable as aus- (out) +‎ sehen (to see).


  • IPA(key): /ˈaʊ̯sˌzeː.ən/, [ˈʔaʊ̯sˌzeːən], [ˈʔaʊ̯sˌzeːn̩] (standard)
  • IPA(key): /ˈaʊ̯ˌseːn/ (common speech)
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aussehen (class 5 strong, third-person singular simple present sieht aus, past tense sah aus, past participle ausgesehen, past subjunctive sähe aus, auxiliary haben)

  1. (intransitive) to look, seem (wie/nach like)
    Du siehst müde aus.You look tired.
    • 2017, Simone Meier, Fleisch, Kein & Aber, p. 7:
      Der Mann sah aus wie eine geschälte Kellerassel, und sie fragte sich: Wieso sind Schönheitschirurgen nie schön?
      The man looked like a peeled woodlouse, and she wondered: How come cosmetic surgeons are never good looking?
  2. (intransitive, colloquial) to look good or bad; depending on intonation
    Das sieht aus! — Ich find schon, dass das aussieht.
    That looks terrible! — I actually think it looks nice.
  3. (intransitive, with nach) to look for; to watch out for
    Er saß am Ufer und sah nach den Booten aus.
    He sat at the shore and watched out for the boats.
  4. (transitive, usually with reflexive dative, possibly dated) to look for and find; to pick; to select
    Sieh dir den Besten aus!
    Find yourself the best!


Usage notesEdit

  • In the sense of “to look like something”, aussehen is construed with the conjunction wie or the preposition nach. For a possible slight distinction between both ways, compare the latter lemma.


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