Case: ‘Es gibt eine semantische Beziehung zwischen den Worten »Katze« und »Tier«.’

I would like talk about the sentence above, but I’m confused if I should use the actual noun or not?

Das Erste ist ein untergeordnetes Semem des Zweiten.

Is it possible to rewrite this sentence like below?

Das Erste ist untergeordnete des Zweiten

1 Answer 1


The first possibility is an ellipsis (probably what you tried to do):

Das erste [Semem] ist ein untergeordnetes des zweiten.

A slightly better version is:

Das erste [Semem] ist dem zweiten untergeordnet.

To construct this, you need to know the grammatical case implied by the participle and, if needed, the corresponding preposition. As for untergeordnet, you need a dative object without a preposition.

For the sake of completeness: You could also substantiate the participle:

Das erste [Semem] ist (ein) Untergeordnetes des zweiten.

This sounds rather scholary; a literal translation would be "The first sememe is a subordinate element of the second" rather than "The first sememe is subordinate to the second". In a very abstract and/or mathematical context, this might be acceptable, but otherwise you should avoid such expressions.

  • @CEIrim, i was trying imply with das erste to the first one, with des zweiten to of the second one i.e. the first one is the subordinate of the second one. Dec 8, 2015 at 7:22

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