Why the lingq is limited to 9 words?

I try to do a lingq for some long sentences but It doesn’t work for more than 9 words, although there are many sentences that contains more than 9 words … for example in German language some verbs have prefix and when the verb is used in a sentence the prefix will go at the end of the sentence and if a modal verb is used in a sentence the main verb will go to the end of sentence… and there many cases that a sentence will be longer than the 9 words limit … I am currently learning Dutch using lingqs and I have the same problem, because when I try to create a lingq or even translate a sentence in the lingq app … I can’t select more than the 9 words … so I have to use google translate and type the whole sentence there … why you put a words limit for the lingq at all ?


Yes, we do have that limit for years and it’s unlikely that anything will change there. You can use the sentence mode to see the full sentence translation, but we believe it makes no sense to save phrases longer than 9 words as LingQs.

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@numairshalhoub You can use my Free extension which can create LingQs up to 18 words/128 characters.


I tend to agree. Perhaps the only exception would be for character-based languages like Chinese that tend to be rich in non-intuitive proverbs or sayings as well.

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The problem between an opinion and what it is technically possible are different things.

In these past years I have read many times users complaining about the limitation of 9 words. Especially for German, like again in this post. This is a continuous request.

Who knows why 9 words? Was that emotional? Who believes in that? Based on what?

A simple research (for the people that bother searching) is showing that an average sentence is containing between 15-20 words.
Just one amongst plenty of examples: What You Need To Know About The Average Sentence Length

The same thing, if you bother searching, is for German language for normal use, with a bigger average (25-29 words) for science, legal, etc.

You are not even allowing the minimum average number of 15. If you can do 15, you can maybe do 20, and you at least cover the AVERAGE everyday sentences.

In German, if you don’t save the entire sentence with a separable verb it is POINTLESS. Because the last particle CAN CHANGE the entire meaning of the sentence. Which basically limit a lot the people that are studying this language.

As a positive note, at least now we have the possibility to use Google Translation after the sentence selection to have a possible meaning (only in the webapp), but we can’t save it.

@Vardan_Yervadian It’s not a matter of “I tend to agree” and diminishing others’ people requests on a support forum, but knowledge.

@zoran is there a technical reason why you can’t go beyond 9 and allowing premium users to save at least until 20 words? Thanks.


I disagree (my personal opinion). (not disagreeing with the notion…but below providing I think better alternatives to lingq’ing long phrases)

I used to agree and want to link more than 9 words, and I do think it would be nice if you could at least highlight and get a translation of as many words as you want to select. That’s why I simply use sentence mode and get the full sentence translation, but it would sometimes be nice to read in full mode (although here other extensions can help with these bigger translations).

Anyway, to get more to the point. If you highlight something that is more than a few words, you will never see that LingQ again in context most likely. There are generally going to be too many variations beyond the few words. Now, maybe if you use the SRS system in LingQ (or export out), yes you may see it again. So those who use SRS I can maybe see some benefit potentially.

For German, the autotagging feature works pretty good. So if you come across a verb in the sentence and click on it. You’ll see tags for likely the base infinitive form of the verb, but also tags for all or most of the various prefixed variations. If you click on these they take you right to Reverso Verb Conjugation so you can get that meaning of the verb related to the given separated prefix you see in the sentence.

Also, I find it to be more beneficial, if I want to keep the LingQ and the special meaning, is to simply create a definition that also includes the prefix.

For example, if I had the sentence “Sie gibt viel Geld für Kleidung aus.” I could highlight the whole thing and save it as a Lingq (it fits in the 9 word limit)…but I’m not likely to see this LingQ in context anywhere else, so to me it’s not useful.

Instead I could check the autotagging. If I click on the word “gibt” there is likely an autotag of “ausgeben” that I could check very easily. I could also create an entry for gibt: to give; to exist; (aus)geben - to spend. Or something like that. Now, when I find another sentence with gibt and aus seperated, I can see this particular definition again in all kinds of contexts. More useful imo than lingqing a large unique phrase. Also, if you check the full list of definitions you’ll often find that others have already done something like this, so you can often choose someone else’s definition.


yes, but if you want to review a specific verb in its form, like in this case “gibt”, you can go to your own vocabulary page on LingQ and search for “gibt” + phrases. You will have all the phrases that you have saved with gibt + aus and those phrases will have more associations with your own memories as they come from material that you have studied with LingQ.

It’s true that now I use chatGPT to ask for phrases creations but inside LingQ, the database we have is a place where we can “memorise” everything we need. I often use my vocabulary database when I need to search for things and I would be happier if I could memorise more phrases when needed.

If you can select 20 words, you can do your 9 as well if you don’t like it. Nobody is forcing people to highlight long phrases but now everyone is forced to highlight short phrases because of the limit (based on opinions).

The point is: can this be easily done? or is it a technical problem?


As an aside, you can also search “source text’s” for a word. i.e. every lingq is saved with the source text from which it came. If you do a general search for “gibt” with “source text” it will provide dozens of examples (from Lingq’s for other words). It doesn’t solve your expressed desire, but I found it interesting that one could get more examples that way.

I frankly prefer to use chatgpt for the example sentences. When I go look at the source text for any of these Lingq’s. I don’t remember them at all–I mean, I haven’t formed a lasting association with that sentence like you describe. With chatgpt, I can tailor the sentences…“Give me simple example sentences that clearly show the meaning of the word in the sentence”. A lot of sentences that have the word I linq’ed are often not very clear from context so I usually don’t find them all that useful. (my opinion of course). If I could understand the word from context, I just mark it known right off the bat.