Grammatik - Questions on rules for composing clauses.

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Wann wird “Telegrammstil” heute noch benutzt?

"Telegrammstil" ist eine aus Platzgründen eingeführte grammatikalische Verknappung in Telegrammen. Heute gibt es aber keine Telegramme mehr; dennoch ist der Telegrammstil weit verbreitet. "Bin ...
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Word ordering in subclause “die Sache wäre entschieden gewesen”

From Der Spiegel: Andererseits bleibt das Spiel durch Prags Halbherzigkeit offen; hätten die Kommunisten etwa die Wasserversorgung der Vertretung mit Hinweis auf einen "technischen Defekt" ...
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Grammatik von “es” in “es auf etw/jmdn absehen”

"Es" kann in Deutsch viele Funktionen erfüllen - "echtes" Pronomen, Dummy-Pronomen, Grammatikvehikel (Expletivum). Nun bin ich in einem Buch auf einen Satz ähnlich dem folgenden gestoßen: ..., ...
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Meaning and grammatical category of “Luftnummer”?

Opposition wirft Friedrich "Luftnummer" vor. wirft ... vor is, I think, the verb vorwerfen, which means to accuse. But I don't know what Luftnummer means. Is it a noun in this context? I'm ...
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Contraction of prepositions and definite articles in German

I could not find a table of the contractions of prepositions and definite articles in German, so I made one by my own: Is this an exhausting table of all the contraction there are?
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Is the title of the “Vincent will Meer” grammatically correct?

I just watched the film Vincent will Meer and enjoyed it. The only thing bothering me is the title that does not seem to be grammatically correct in the absence of an article before meer. Is it some ...
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205 views

Deklination eines Adjektivs zwischen Zahlwort und Nomen

Wenn in einem Satz die Rede von sämtlichen Dingen (plural) ist und zwischen sämtliche und dem Nomen ein Adjektiv ist: Endet dieses auf -en oder auf -e? Beispiel: Heisst es XY erfüllt sämtliche ...
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Dativ von „jemand anderes“ – „jemandem anderen“ oder „jemand anderem“?

Wie wird am geläufigsten der Dativ und der Akkusativ von „jemand anderes“ gebildet? Gibt es ein Prinzip, nach welchem hier die Objektfälle gebildet werden, und wie lässt sich diese Frage ...
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Translating “He hurts her more than she does to him.”

I am German learner at an intermediate level. The superlative sentence should pose no problems to me. However, I can’t translate this following sentence well: He hurts her more than she does to ...
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Is “Ich bin gut” a valid reply for “How are you”?

I know you have to say Es geht mir gut. but Ich bin gut. sounds good to me. Can I say that?
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Der Nacht oder die Nacht?

Rammstein sings "Sie kommen zu euch in der Nacht" in "Mein herz brennt" song, but to my knowledge "Nacht" is of female gender and it's supposed to be "die Nacht". So what am I missing? And also ...
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Konjunktiv I in old texts

From the lyrics of the song Die Gedanken sind frei Ich denke was ich will und was mich beglücket doch alles in der Still', und wie es sich schicket Are "beglücket" and "schicket" in ...
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Use of the word “had” more than once in a statement in the German language

Even though the question contains the word had, I am referring to any forms of the word have. In English it's easy to think of a sentence which has two haves in it. For instance: I have had enough ...
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Difference between “euch” and “du”? And some insight into words like “Spiel”?

I've enrolled at the institute of language to learn German (my family is mostly German, but I've grown up in Australia). I lived in Germany for about 2 years when I was a kid and picked up enough to ...
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Why does “neu” become “Neues” after “etwas”?

I found this sentence in a German children's book: Jeden Tag entdeckt Katrin etwas Neues. Neues is a noun here? How can that be? I'd think that 'new' was an adjective. As a noun, I found Neue ...
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115 views

Is there any difference between “Vermögensteuer” and “Vermögenssteuer”?

In Reiche bereiten sich auf die Vermögensteuer vor, Vermögensteuer is spelt with a single -s-. But in the online dictionary that I use, the word is spelt with a double -ss-: Vermögenssteuer. Is this ...
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Use of “ja” in a sentence

In the following sentence: Na gut, dann kann ich ja ab sofort auf Deutsch schreiben. Why is ja used? What's its function?
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Is “Ich gehe nach Kartoffeln” correct?

Wenn ich z.B. zum Essen Kartoffeln machen will und die Kartoffeln sind im Keller, sage ich dann: Ich gehe in den Keller nach Kartoffeln. Kann man "nach" verwenden oder muss da ein anderes Wort ...
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456 views

German verbs vs English verbs

Why do all English verbs have to start with "to" and German verbs don't? In English we say "to play" but in German we would just say "spielen". why don't we say "zu spielen"? Why don't we do this in ...
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Can the German Nebensatz be put in the middle of the sentence?

I once asked a question if the sentence jeder muss dafür verantwortlich sein, was er gesagt hat is correct and was told that it is acceptable and that the verb must go at the end of its own ...
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Accusative vs. nominative case ambiguity?

First, let me say that I'm new to German. I see that the article of a feminine noun isn't inflected when the case is changed from nominative to accusative, i.e. in both cases the definite article is ...
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Grammatik in “bestaunt zu werden und befragt”

Aus Der Spiegel: Später hat mir einer der beiden Vettern erzählt, wie seltsam für sie diese erste Reise ins Grauland war, das mit ihrem Leben am Rhein so wenig zu tun hatte. Die Mauer war für sie ...
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When do we use “Hose” like a plurale tantum?

Unlike "trousers" in English we use "Hose" in both, singular and plural forms. This also includes situations where we use it like a plurale tantum (even though it is none in German). Sometimes we can ...
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Do all nouns from verbs nominalized by the suffix “-ung” have a female gender?

By suffixing verbs with "-ung" we can build nouns, e.g.: prüfen - Prüfung meinen - Meinung richten - Richtung All those nouns seem to have a female gender. Is that always true or do we have ...
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einem vs. einen

I'm a German native speaker and was asked to explain the difference between "einem" and "einen". I found it very hard to generalize the usage and formulate a rule of how to use those two. Examples: ...
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Using a clause as subject

When using a clause as a subject, does one need to use a comma to delimit the clause? And should the verb be conjugated in plural or singular? Or is it preferable to use another kind of construction? ...
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Need grammatical help on a German phrase (romantic literature) involving “ward” (old form of “wurde”)?

While reading Heinrich von Kleist´s Die Marquise von O (very easy to read thanks to Kleist´s extensive usage of commas...), I stumbled upon a phrase which I couldn´t quite explain, even if the ...
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Wo-Pronominaladverb und Satzbezug

Ich habe auf Cannoo.net folgenden Satz gelesen: Du hast gewonnen, worüber sich alle freuen. Ich denke, es soll ein Beispiel sein für ein wo-Wort, dass sich auf einen ganzen Satz bezieht. Hier ...
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“Schnapp' sie Dir alle!”--why the apostrophe?

Why is there an apostrophe after the word schnapp in this Pokemon slogan?
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Wie kann man optimal drei Tempora in einen Satz verschmelzen?

Wieder mit einem grammatischen Distributivgesetzproblem. Wie kann man optimal gleichzeitig die folgende drei Sätze in einen Satz umwandeln? Ich bin unterwegs gewesen. Ich bin unterwegs. Ich ...
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Why does 'geben' break the TeKaMoLo rule?

When learning German, you usually get the whole TeKaMoLo thing drilled into your subconsciousness. My German friend claims the following is a very natural word order: Warum gibt es hier immer so ...
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Where does “Gaußsche” and “Fresnel'sche” come from and which is correct?

In German physics literature, I often see adjectives like “Gaußsche” and “Fresnel'sche”. I know what they mean in the context, that Gauß (or Fresnel) invented something or that it is named after them. ...
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Genitive in “alle des Staates Überdrüssigen”

From Der Spiegel 1985 war Wonnerberger von Dresden nach Leipzig versetzt worden -- und schafft nun für alle des Staates Überdrüssigen in der Nikolaikirche einen zentralen Anlaufpunkt, ... What ...
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How do you say “like after 2 hours” in German? [closed]

So nach 2 Stunden standen meine Frau und meine Kinder auf, um das Frühstück zuzubereiten. Like after 2 hours my wife and my kids woke up to make breakfast. Based on my book "so" has many ...
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How to say “the start of my new life”?

My attempt: der Anfang meines neuen Lebens. I just want to make sure I’ve got the grammar perfect here. Also, is der Anfang the best-sounding word here, or do you think der Beginn is a better choice? ...
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Positions of verbs in clauses

e.g. when we use wenn the verb goes to end. If the sentence starts with wenn, the second clause starts with verb as follows: Wenn es morgen regnet, gehe ich ins Kino. I think it is similar for ...
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When to use bei, bei der, beim and in, im, in der?

Our lecturer split it into Institution: bei der, beim Firma: bei Stadt/Land: in Haus/Gebäude: im, in dem But I mix things up. How can "in Büro" be correct (is it a Stadt?)? Can anyone ...
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What's the grammatical difference between “trotz” und “trotzdem”?

"Trotz" is usually used as "despite", and "trotzdem" is "nevertheless", but: What is the grammatical difference? Where does the verb go for "trotz" and where does it go for "trotzdem"? Do Germans ...
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When to use the future tense?

One of the things I've been struggling with as a relative newcomer to German is when to use the future tense. It appears that, as in Russian, there isn't a lot of circumstances in which one would use ...
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Warum “das” in “ein Haus an das Ufer bauen”?

Aus der Süddeutschen Zeitung: Bevor wir zu der Hauptperson dieser Geschichte kommen, erst einmal kurz zu dem österreichischen Architekten Richard Neutra: Das Haus, das der sich 1932 in Los Angeles ...
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“doch” oder “aber”

Wie kann man wissen, ob man "doch" oder "aber" benutzen soll? Die beiden Begriffe drücken einen Gegensatz aus. Ich studiere in Münster, aber mein Bruder studiert in Berlin. Wir rennen auf den ...
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Sentence construction of “Süßer die Glocken nie klingen?”

This is about the construction of the title of the popular German Christmas song: "Süßer die Glocken nie klingen." My understanding is that the verb is supposed to go into the second position in most ...
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Article to go with plural accusative noun

I found this sentence in a magazine: Herr Minister, sind Sie mit den Ergebnissen des EU-Gipfels am 28. und 29. Juni in Brüssel zufrieden? I understand this as: Minister, are you happy with ...
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About an “unusual” sentence structure?

In German, most sentences have a simple structure: subject, verb, object. Ich liebe dich. But there are some verbs such as gefallen or gelingen, where this structure doesn't apply. Instead, the ...
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484 views

What Does the Use of “S” Mean In Certain Contexts?

Examples: Der Fall: The case. Fall(s): In case of. Das Mittel: The means. Mittels: By means of. As an English speaker, I think of an s as a "pluralizer." But in these instances, the meaning of the ...
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Position of “aber” after first element of sentence

The following two sentences are typical. Ich bin krank. Aber ich gehe heute zur Schule. Ich bin krank. Ich gehe aber heute zur Schule. But is the following also fine? Ich bin krank. Ich ...
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Trying to simplify complex sentences with modals

When I am writing a complex sentence using a modal verb, is it acceptable to move the second verb, so that less advanced readers don't have to wait until the end to find it? Example: (this is my ...
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Usage of halber / halben

It is common to use halber to indicate a cause, a reason or an end for something. Der Einfachheit halber hier ein einfacher Beispielsatz. Now 'Einfachheit' is feminine, so 'halber' is ...
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Literary passage: 'als zu + Infinitiv' construction

I am having a difficult time understanding the meaning of the following passage. Specifically, I do not understand the 'als zu + Infinitiv' construction at the end. Zum Schäkespears Tag [1771] von ...
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The conjunction “dass” and “wenn”

Ich weiß nicht genau, dass, wenn er in den Supermarkt ohne sie geht, sie sauer auf ihn wird. Can "dass" be with other conjunctions be in one sentence? My book says that " dass" should be followed ...