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0
votes
0answers
14 views

Use of praeteritum in everyday speech

I'd like to know if there is a rule of sorts regarding the use praeteritum in everyday spoken German, particularly in the use of 'sah' and 'schaute' in place of 'habe gesehen/geschaut', or if it is ...
0
votes
4answers
124 views

Zu machen vs. gemacht

Google translate provided the following: Did you make the granola? --> Haben Sie das Müsli zu machen? Why is it not presented as Haben Sie das Müsli gemacht? What's the best way to ask ...
0
votes
1answer
111 views

Past-tense Translations - figuring rules [closed]

I'm trying to figure out a couple of grammatical rules, and the easiest way for me to do that would be if I had translations of the following sentences. He had wanted a cat. I think "er hatte ...
5
votes
1answer
166 views

Perfekt eines Modalverbs in Infinitivsatz

Es ist möglich, wenn auch nicht schön, zu sagen: Ich behaupte, meine Hausaufgaben gemacht haben zu müssen. Das heißt, dass ich sage, dass ich dazu verpflichtet bin meine Hausaufgaben gemacht zu ...
3
votes
2answers
177 views

Expressing processes in the past with “als”

I've been told by a native speaker that the following sentence is not correct: als ich 15 Jahre alt war, lernte ich Französisch (to mean that I studied french for some time when I was 15) and ...
3
votes
2answers
91 views

Can “als” be used to refer to extended periods of time?

I understand the general concept of "als" = "when in the past" (pardon the oversimplification), however all the examples I can find always refer to very specific moments in time, and to events that ...
2
votes
3answers
335 views

Why do German speakers often use 'did' in the past when speaking English?

I don't understand what tense they are trying to convey in German when they say this e.g. I did see it instead of I have seen it - Ich habe es gesehen I saw it - Ich sah es Where are they ...
4
votes
2answers
231 views

Warum Perfekt anstelle von Präteritum und seit wann?

Seit welcher Zeit und warum wird im ge­spro­chenen Deutsch lieber Per­fekt anstatt Präteritum benutzt, z.B. lieber Ich habe gesehen als Ich sah? Warum hat sich die kompliziertere Form eingebürgert?
2
votes
3answers
381 views

“I was working” in German

How can I say "I was working." in German? I was thinking: Ich war arbeiten. But I feel that is totally wrong.
8
votes
2answers
542 views

Wie sage ich “used to do” auf Deutsch?

Wie übersetzt man "used to do s.th." ins Deutsche? Ich habe früher etwas regelmäßig getan, was ich jetzt nicht mehr tue. Gibt es eine bestimmte Verbform im Deutschen, die das ausdrückt?
-2
votes
1answer
139 views

Past participle in German with “ge-”?

Why does we have rented this villa. translate to wir haben dieses Ferienhaus gemietet? why user past participle if it the tense is still present?