6

I’ve noticed that in some occasions

Ich möchte bitte ein Glas Wasser.

is not enough if want I want to say something like

I’d like to drink a glass of water, please.

It is correct to also include trinken here or should I stick with the simple form, without trinken? And if yes, which of the following two forms is accepted?

Ich möchte trinken bitte ein Glas Wasser.
Ich möchte bitte ein Glas Wasser trinken.

  • This is wrong: Ich möchte trinken bitte ein Glas Wasser – Karl Mar 6 '15 at 13:09
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    How did you arrive at the conclusion that “Ich möchte bitte ein Glas Wasser.” was not enough? – Wrzlprmft Mar 6 '15 at 21:20
  • Wheter adding 'trinken' is correct depends on the context occasion which you didn't provide. – Toscho Mar 7 '15 at 13:17
6

If you want a glass of water, don't add "trinken". It sounds very unusual (like you want to drink the glass).

Ich möchte bitte ein Glas Wasser.

Is totally acceptable. Stick with that. One alternative, which sounds a bit more polite and also features the verb you seem to desire, is:

Könnte ich bitte ein Glas Wasser haben?

  • What about the case where I want to say "I would like to bring me a glass of water". Should I add bringen in one of the two forms I put in my question? – Memleak Mar 6 '15 at 8:21
  • Well, the sentence looks a bit wonky, but if you ask someone to bring you a glass of water, you add 'bringen'. Here is an example: "Können sie mir ein Glas Wasser bringen?". – 5pike Mar 6 '15 at 8:30
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    I have to disagree here. "Ich möchte ein Glas Wasser trinken." does not sound unusual at all to me (native speaker from Southern Germany), and no-one would have the idea that "ein Glas Wasser trinken", "eine Flasche Wasser trinken", etc., mean that you actually want to drink the container rather than its content. This becomes clear when you look at other sentences, where the action of drinking rather than the desire to do so is in the focus - "Ich trinke jetzt ein Glas Wasser.", "Wir haben eine Tasse Kaffee getrunken.", etc. What verb would you use there instead of trinken? – O. R. Mapper Mar 6 '15 at 12:02
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    In regards to asking someone if you could have a glass of water, I wouldn't use 'trinken' (or any other substitute) because it's superfluous in this sentence. In the other sentences you mentioned, 'trinken' describes the action you are/were doing. – 5pike Mar 6 '15 at 12:16
4

Without knowledge of the context, this is difficult to answer.

  1. Asking to have/get a glass of water (e.g. from a server): Don't add trinken as it is of no concern to the server what you're planning to do with the glas of water.

    Ich möchte bitte ein Glas Wasser (haben).

  2. Informing somebody else, that you are interrupting your work/a discussion in order to drink a glass of water: Add trinken as it would otherwise seem to be case 1.

    Ich möchte ein Glas Wasser trinken. [Danach bin ich wieder für Sie da.]

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