In the sentence,

Ich hab heute für euch ein Tutorial gebastelt, das wurde sich gewünscht.

we seem to be dealing with a passive form of a reflexive verb. Guessing from the context, my translation would be:

Today, I made for you a tutorial that was requested. (litterally, that was wished)

I'd like to know more about this stucture. Is it colloquial? Can you use other reflexive verbs in a similar way? Can you give examples?

I also found here that:

Reflexive Verben können kein Passiv bilden.

An exception is orders:

Jetzt wird sich sofort hingelegt!
Hier wird sich täglich gewaschen!

  • It's not only for orders... also general descriptions... google.de/… or holidaycheck.de/…
    – Emanuel
    Feb 11, 2014 at 18:43
  • @Emanuel Does "Hier wird sich ausgekotzt" mean "Someone puked here" ? The structure seems strange to me that's why I'm trying to pin down the meaning.
    – stillenat
    Feb 11, 2014 at 18:47
  • 1
    It means "This is where people get it all out" as in bitching about something. It can either refer to a discussion board or a guestbook but also to, say, a theater critique about a play in which the director treats all the things he hates.
    – Emanuel
    Feb 11, 2014 at 18:50
  • Same for the second link "This is the place where people complain"... that is a funny way to say "this is the reception" As a matter of fact, this general description thing is the actual use. The order is just a result of that as it is implied by context. "Hier wird geschlafen" can also simply mean "This is where people sleep".. a stiff tour guide through a castle could say that
    – Emanuel
    Feb 11, 2014 at 18:52

1 Answer 1


First of all, your German sample text does not end in a relative clause (as your translation does) but is a sequence of to main clauses. To make it a relative clause, it should read

Ich habe für euch ein Tutorial gebastelt, das sich gewünscht wurde.

But still, it sounds weird (and does so because the "no passive" rule applies). The only way to make it smooth is to not start with "Ihr wünschtet euch ein Tutorial" (reflexive), but rather with "Ihr wünschtet ein Tutorial" (transitive). Then the passive reads

Ich habe für euch ein Tutorial gebastelt, das gewünscht wurde.

Finally, I personally would prefer to say

Ich habe für euch ein Tutorial gebastelt, wie es gewünscht wurde.

or even shorter

Ich habe für euch wie gewünscht ein Tutorial gebastelt.

  • 1
    Do you mean it's bad German to say "Das wurde sich gewünscht"? Because Google finds a lot of examples of different variations of the phrase "sich gewünscht werden". For example here. I realize some of them are "gewünscht haben" which is different, but still
    – stillenat
    Feb 11, 2014 at 19:11
  • 2
    "sich gewünscht werden" is incorrect. It's either "sich etwas wünschen / sich etwas gewünscht haben" or "wie gewünscht". Can you give examples where you found that? Feb 11, 2014 at 19:16
  • @MichaelHärtl I provided the link above. If you follow it, you can see sentences like: "Ein Sechssitzer wird sich gewünscht.", "Acer Laptop in rot wird sich gewünscht =)", "Deshalb wird sich gewünscht, dass dieses Recht aufgeteilt wird." etc.
    – stillenat
    Feb 11, 2014 at 19:20
  • I see now. Indeed it's correct to say "Alle Dinge, die sich gewünscht werden.", but it will sound clumsy to most native speakers. I think, that's also the intention in the examples you brought up: The unusual (but still correct) use of this phrase adds a smidgen of very subtle humor to each example. Feb 11, 2014 at 22:58
  • 1
    Indeed it's correct to say "Alle Dinge, die sich gewünscht werden." Citation needed. No, in my book this is wrong. The subject are 'Dinge' but the 'sich' refers to the wisher, so the sentence is misformed.
    – TaW
    Mar 21, 2015 at 9:07

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.