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How would I build a German sentence with three verbs?
For example

I will begin speaking German today.

with the verbs werden, beginnen, and sprechen.

Is this translation sentence correct?

Ich werde beginnen den Deutsch heute sprechen.

  • I edited the question. One mistake was: 'to talk' is 'sprechen' not 'sprachen'. – Iris May 27 '16 at 16:04
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I would say

Ich werde heute beginnen Deutsch zu sprechen.

The "will [...] to" becomes "werde [...] zu" followed by the infinitive of what you're about to do (here talk/sprechen). Also the remaining start isn't conjugated.

Update

As @CarstenS mentioned the "to" belongs to "begin" and not to "will". The tense is simple future with will + infinitive. The will gets conjugated to "werde" and the "start [...] to talk" is the infinitive part thus being "beginnen [...] zu sprechen". Note that "German" comes behind talk in English but "Deutsch" comes in between the verbs.

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  • 1
    Das zu gehört zu beginnen, nicht zu werde. – Carsten S May 28 '16 at 9:55
  • This answer deals with the example sentence, but not at all with the actual and titular question. German.SX is not a translation service. – Crissov May 28 '16 at 15:42
  • so It will be as an English language,, I will begin to speak Deutsch ? and really Im thankful guys :) and tut mir leid wann ich missverstande weil Deutsch so schwer – Yousif Ahmed May 30 '16 at 11:43
  • @Crissov you are right it doesn't deal with the title but I don't think that's what the OP wanted to know as he asked whether his translation is correct. I agree this isn't a translation service hence I tried to explain how this sort of sentences in future tense is made. – Frozn May 30 '16 at 11:54
  • @YousifAhmed it is very similar in this case. Have a look at Jan's answer as he gives some good information about how to deal with the sentences. – Frozn May 30 '16 at 11:57
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You need to decide which verb carries the sentence’s central meaning and add the other verbs according to what you want to say. In your English sentence, the principle verb is to speak (German). You want to start to do this, and you have the entire sentence in future tense hence the will. This creates the following order:

I will{1} begin{2} speaking{3} German today.

This analogously carries over into German but you need to respect the special German word order with the finite verb ({1}) coming second and all other bits of verbs at the end of the sentence. This leaves you with:

Ich werde{1} heute Deutsch zu sprechen{3} anfangen{2}.

This works perfectly in simple examples such as:

Ich werde{1} heute kommen{3} können{2}.

But alas, it does not as well in your example with a more complex infinitive. A more idiomatic way to express this would be to separate the infinitive construction out of the sentence and place it at the end:

Ich werde{1} heute anfangen{2}, Deutsch zu sprechen{3}.

This type of infinitive may be separated from the remaining sentence by a comma.

Whether the first or the second construction is preferred in idiomatic speech depends on the complexity of the infinitive construction. If it is just a verb, the first one (order 1–Zwischenfeld–3–2) is often preferred, as soon as it is more complex, the comma separated second one (order 1–Zwischenfeld–2–,–3) is typically preferred.

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  • Wow so coool .. that's true I got it ,, so it's subject + (prädikat) + object so: 1. Nom. + helfen verb. 2. the main verb. 3. extras in between ... but the structure 1,,3,,2 right? – Yousif Ahmed May 30 '16 at 11:50
  • @YousifAhmed It doesn’t need to be an auxiliary verb (Hilfsverb), but a finite one (i.e. not in infinitive form), e.g. with separable verb in present tense: ich fange{1} heute an{2}, Deutsch zu sprechen{3} or with inseparable verb: ich beginne{1} heute ∅{2}, Deutsch zu sprechen{3}. Where {2} is empty (∅), the comma is more likely to be omitted. – Crissov May 30 '16 at 13:19

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