All Questions

6
votes
2answers
100 views

Using “wollen” in passive

I came across this sentence Auch 25 Jahre nach dem Fall der Berliner Mauer gibt es noch viele Barrieren, die überwunden werden wollen. My question is: Can things, like barriers, "want to be ...
3
votes
1answer
160 views

“Have to” and “haben zu”

There is a construction which exists in both English and German and has about the same meaning: You have to do your homework Du hast Deine Hausaufgaben zu machen. I think there is a slight ...
7
votes
3answers
199 views

Verbs that are both separable and inseparable [duplicate]

Some verbs have both a separable and an inseparable form, like durchlaufen. In case of "durchlaufen", the separable form is mainly intransitive, while the inseparable form is mainly transitive ...
4
votes
4answers
110 views

'hilfsbereit' vs. 'hilfreich'

Die netten Menschen am Zoll sind immer sehr _____. a) hilfsbereit b) hilfreich I think "hilfsbereit" should work, and the sentence would mean that the nice people at customs are always ready ...
0
votes
2answers
147 views

Where to rent/watch German movies with German subtitles

I'm an intermediate German learner and I would love to learn the language better by watching original German movies with German subs, because then I can see what is being said and understand it more ...
3
votes
2answers
133 views

Konditional passiv

I have problems constructing conditional mood from these German sentences. When I want to say, forexample, "The letter would have been written if ..." I would translate it as Der Brief wäre von ...
4
votes
3answers
69 views

Adjective endings after a noun of measurement

I was looking through my grammar book and I came across this sentence: Mit einer Tasse heißem Tee I don't understand why heiß has an m at the end. I would have thought it would be: Mit einer ...
8
votes
3answers
110 views

Bach und Ache, sind sie verwandt?

Sowohl bei der Ache (bspw. enthalten im Ortsnamen Eisenach) als auch beim Bach handelt es sich um Wasserläufe. Weiß jemand, ob der Bach auf das Wort Ache zurückzuführen ist oder eine anderweitige ...
2
votes
3answers
94 views

Sentence ordering with “doch”

Die genaue Höhe der Zahlen ist umstritten, doch gilt es als sicher, dass Entführungen zu einer nicht unwichtigen Einnahmequelle von Terroristen geworden ist. Is it also possible to say doch ...
6
votes
3answers
47 views

Preposition in “kassieren Millionen an Lösegeld”

Waffen und Bomben für Anschläge kosten viel Geld. Terroristen entführen daher Ausländer und kassieren Millionen an Lösegeld. What is the meaning of the preposition "an" here? Is it used with the ...
5
votes
3answers
98 views

Grammatical case in “Brief an Ministerpräsident”

From the Frankfurter Allgemeine: Elitesoldaten verweigern Einsätze gegen Palästinenser "Wir wollen kein Werkzeug sein" / Brief an Ministerpräsident Benjamin Netanjahu Why is it that they ...
1
vote
1answer
62 views

Meaning of “… die deutschen Schweden-Freunde mit ihren Elch-Aufklebern an den Autos …”

From the Frankfurter Allgemeine: Selbst wenn es die deutschen Schweden-Freunde mit ihren Elch-Aufklebern an den Autos kaum glauben mögen: Als Elch hat man es auch in Schweden nicht immer leicht. ...
10
votes
6answers
167 views

sich schwer tun

"Er tut sich schwer." - das ist eindeutig. Aber: "Du tust dich schwer." - "Ich tue mich schwer." Oder doch lieber: "Du tust dir schwer." - "Ich tue mir schwer." Mein Sprachgefühl sagt mir, dass ...
0
votes
4answers
116 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 ...
3
votes
4answers
115 views

Trying to parse the phrase “Der Hamburger Hafen”

In learning the word for harbour "der Hafen", Google search threw up the phrase "Der Hamburger Hafen". An example website is here. This has me stumped for two reasons: Hamburg seems to be used as ...
2
votes
1answer
73 views

Meaning of “Wir waren uns all die Jahre näher”

Dirk untersucht, inwiefern die Bundesrepublik durch die Wiedervereinigung verändert worden ist. Nicht nur der Osten wurde westlicher, auch der Westen wurde östlicher. "Wir waren uns all die Jahre ...
3
votes
3answers
77 views

“Möchte” as real Konjunktiv II in “Man möchte meinen”?

The recent question about möchten reminded me of something I stumbled across: Man möchte meinen, sie sei schwanger. The following are results from COSMAS II (Corpus Database): man möchte meinen ...
2
votes
2answers
68 views

Kann man »folgende|r|s« mit Artikel schreiben?

Bitte beachten Sie folgende Regeln. Bitte beachten Sie die folgenden Regeln. Bitte beachten Sie alle Punkte der folgenden Regeln. Bitte beachten Sie alle Punkte folgender Regeln. Welche ...
4
votes
1answer
670 views

how to say “It does not make any difference”?

I want to know what is the correct(most common) way to say It doesn't make any difference" Is it something like es macht keinen Unterschied or is there a better way to say this.
0
votes
2answers
57 views

How to recognise *when* to use a passive construction?

While I was reading articles about nature, I noticed that a lot of the descriptions are in the passive voice, i.e, they use werden instead of sein. If I were the author writing in English, I would ...
0
votes
1answer
67 views

What's the correct American translation for the family name “Würker”?

I'm interested to know the correct American English form of Würker. Any general background information on this name's roots would also probably prove insightful as well. Thanks! :)
3
votes
3answers
68 views

Prepositions and 'which' - how does it work?

In English, you can get phrases, such as 'the house in which he lost his bag', but how would you do this in German? I have made some attempts at a few, but I am unsure if this is how to do it, and if ...
2
votes
3answers
94 views

When does “war” change to “wäre gewesen” rather than just “wäre” in the conditional?

I'm currently doing an exercise where you have to join two sentences together and turn them into conditional sentences using "wenn". An example: Sie war gesund. Sie brauchte die Ärztin nicht. I ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

Is “es gibt” not used as often as the English “there is”?

Do Germans use other verbs like befinden or existieren or totally different constructions to avoid using es gibt regularly?
5
votes
2answers
91 views

How does one use “gehört” in the context of “Wenn es sich gehört”

I recognise the usage of "gehört" in the context of the verb "gehören" (to belong to someone/something) and the context of the past participle of "hören", however I have only now come across the usage ...
3
votes
2answers
108 views

Meaning of “Beitrag zum Büfett”

I came across the sentence Über einen kleinen Beitrag zum Büfett würde ich mich freuen! What does this sentence mean? What is a "contribution to the buffet"? Is it saying like "I would be ...
2
votes
2answers
62 views

Lemma, Grundform-Lexikon deutscher Sprache

Gibt es irgendwo eine Quelle, die mir ein Lexikon aller deutschen Lemmata (Grundformen) - am besten frei - zur Verfügung stellt? Und am besten auch, ohne vorher eine Lizenz einzureichen wie bspw. bei ...
2
votes
3answers
133 views

Was bedeutet “angezeckt”?

Ich habe die Bedeutung dieses Wortes nicht herausgefunden. Kann jemand mir helfen? Ein Beispiel auf Englisch wäre super. Die Nacht ist vorbei, die bösen Geister sind weg Ich kipp’ dich aus’m Bett ...
4
votes
4answers
130 views

Difference between “umgezogen” and “verzogen”

What is the difference between "umgezogen" and "verzogen"? Or is it just the same? Especially "umgezogen nach" and "verzogen nach" seem to be exactly the same. Just the combination with "unbekannt" ...
5
votes
1answer
127 views

Translation of “Und ob”

Die wahre Landlust So früh aufstehen, so hart malochen, sich täglich die Finger schmutzig machen - will man das wirklich? Und ob, sagen vier Jungbauern, die sich ganz bewusst für diesen Beruf ...
3
votes
3answers
64 views

When article can be left out for countable nouns

In German, it is quite common to see the article left out for countable nouns, e.g., So gilt die Mietpreisbremse nicht überall, sondern nur in Gebieten mit "angespanntem Wohnungsmarkt". Es ist ...
8
votes
6answers
3k views

How to say “I have no past” in German?

I want to say “I have no past” to express the following thought: I don’t have a past, I only have the future, and I am to start anew". Is “Ich habe keine Vergangenheit” correct?
9
votes
1answer
100 views

Suffix “-halber” in “sicherheitshalber”

What is the meaning behind the suffix "-halber" in the word sicherheitshalber? Is it like "to be on the safe side/half"? Still, if so, why does it come with the "-er"?
5
votes
2answers
398 views

How to express that something was done not by me, but for/to me?

a. I have Windows installed b. I have my hair cut The only solution I found was the verb lassen. Still remains unclear how to use it, how to translate in an appropriate way. And also very ...
5
votes
2answers
73 views

Drinks as countable nouns?

I've seen the following sentence: Wenn du heute Abend nach Hause kommst, trinken wir einen Sekt auf deine Beförderung. Why is it that Sekt has an article einen even though we cannot really count ...
3
votes
3answers
202 views

Meaning of “BesucherInnen”

On a Viennese park sign, I saw the word “BesucherInnen”. Is this a short form for Besucherinnen und Besucher? Can this contraction be used generally, i.e., -----Innen covers both genders? It ...
2
votes
4answers
108 views

Difference between “treffen” and “treffen auf”

Is there a difference between treffen and treffen auf in the meaning of to meet sb/sth? The dictionary simply translates both as to meet in this meaning.
-2
votes
1answer
107 views

If “Mensch” is masculine, why is it “ein ehrlicher Mensch”?

Mensch is masculine, but I saw ein ehrlicher Mensch today. I have seen similar cases, but don’t understand why one must use ein.
1
vote
2answers
45 views

Meaning/structure of “so als”

Gleich mehrere Kernaussagen hatte das Kanzleramt zuvor in der Bevölkerung testen lassen, so als handelte es sich um eine neue Margarine-Reklame - und nicht um die Begründung eines zentralen ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Looking for comprehensive English-German dictionar(y/ies) in a database format

I'm currently researching per-word language translation (as opposed to the per-sentence/in-context translation provided by eg Google Translate), and as a part of this I'm looking for a comprehensive ...
1
vote
3answers
134 views

Meaning of “anschneiden” as “fasten (seat belt)”?

I've heard a German friend use "anschneiden" to mean "fasten a seat belt". But according to the dictionary, to fasten a seat belt is "zumachen" or "sich anschnallen", while anschneiden means "to ...
2
votes
2answers
132 views

Accurate translation of “bildungsfern”

I have the feeling that all dictionary entries are not really cutting to the core of bildungsfern, because it is a more neutral, descriptive term to show that someone did have the privilege to receive ...
3
votes
2answers
71 views

Definition of Passiversatzform

Wenn man Informationen zu Passiversatzformen sucht, findet man verschiedene Definitionen, bzw. Auflistungen, was denn nun alles darunter zu zählen sei. Konsens scheint jedoch einerseits zu sein, dass: ...
3
votes
3answers
77 views

Meaning/Structure of “Es mag so paradox anmuten”

Das Führen von Kriegen ist keinesfalls ein unverbrüchliches Naturgesetz, sondern ein Kulturprodukt, sozusagen ein Kollateralschaden des zivilisatorischen Prozesses. Und so paradox es angesichts ...
4
votes
5answers
99 views

Where do personal pronouns in subsequent sentences refer to?

Consider the sentences Der Mann jagt den Hund. Er fällt in ein Loch. Who drops into the hole, the man or the dog? The personal pronoun "er" in the second sentence matches both the flexion of ...
2
votes
3answers
107 views

Structure of “Er bekommt die Frage gestellt”

From Spiegel Online: US-Präsident Barack Obama befürwortet dagegen ein vereinigtes Königreich - und bekommt dafür die Frage gestellt, wann denn die USA wieder ins UK eintreten würden. What is ...
9
votes
3answers
103 views

Meaning of “Klatsche”

A headline on Bild Sport read: Böse Klatsche für die Wölfe! Bei Everton gibt's in der Europa League eine herbe 1:4-Klatsche. What does "Klatsche" mean in this context? According to the ...
4
votes
4answers
113 views

What does “inf” mean in German dictionaries?

The dictionary listing for versieben has: versieben ver•sie•ben ( versiebt ptp) vt inf (=vergessen) to forget (=verlieren) to lose (=verpfuschen) to make ...
1
vote
4answers
532 views

What does “bitte sehen” mean?

When leaving a small shop in Germany, the storekeeper said “bitte sehen” to me as I was leaving. What does this mean? What would an appropriate response be? Could I reply by repeating “bitte sehen”? ...
5
votes
3answers
811 views

How to ask German student to homecoming?

I want to ask one of the foreign German guys to homecoming. I found different quotes but I don't know which one is correct. So how should I write the note to ask him? "Will you go to homecoming with ...

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