Can someone break down the structure of the following sentence in English?

Ich lebe in Bayern, genauer gesagt in München.

Google Translate's answer makes sense: "I live in Bayern, specifically in Munich."

When can genauer gesagt be used? Does the following sentence makes sense?

Ich lebe genauer gesagt in München.


Genauer (literally: "more precisely"1) is a comparative, so you always need something to compare it to or, as it's typically used, a fact that can be specified - either in the same sentence or somewhere in the context.

Taking this into account, your first example makes sense, detailing a specific place in Bavaria:

Ich lebe in Bayern, genauer gesagt in München.

Your second sentence is not wrong grammar-wise, but from a logic point of view it can't stand alone. To make sense we must assume a preceding sentence like (random example):

Ich bin vor einigen Jahren nach Deutschland gezogen. Ich lebe genauer gesagt in München.

1 Other translations / typical phrases for genauer gesagt are for example:

  • to be precise
  • namely
  • specifically
  • to be exact
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  • What is the purpose of gesagt? Could one say: Ich lebe in Bayern, genauer in München. – Amaziah Jul 27 '15 at 19:08
  • @Amaziah, yes strictly speaking the "gesagt" is optional, but it's customary. Somewhat like a set phrase. I would even use it when it's absolutely clear that I'm not talking, e.g. in a letter. – Stephie Jul 27 '15 at 19:25
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    What is the purpose of “speaking” in “strictly speaking”? (Apologies if it was already intentional and my bluntness ruined it.) – Carsten S Jul 27 '15 at 20:07
  • You used the expression “strictly speaking” and I was amused by the parallel to the German expression under discussion. – Carsten S Jul 27 '15 at 20:39
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    @CarstenSchultz Aahhh! No pun intended, but good catch, thanks! (Would that now be called a "Freudian joke"?) – Stephie Jul 27 '15 at 20:41

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