I have serious problems about infinitive phrases

„Ich hoffe, meine Schwester wiederzusehen“
„Ich hoffe, dass meine Schwester wiedersehen“

Is it correct? Can I use dass-phrases and zu whenever I want? This is my top 2 of my biggest doubts (the words are the first one).

  • We do not do proofreading. We do help you if you have a specific issue that you can narrow down into a clear question. I’m not entirely sure what you are asking here, there seem to be several possibilities. Could you edit your post to clarify?
    – Jan
    Commented Feb 13, 2017 at 23:54
  • "Ich hoffe, dass ich meine Schwester wiedersehe" geht, oder "... dass ich m. S. wiedersehen werde". Commented Feb 14, 2017 at 1:44

5 Answers 5


No, you can use phrases with dass and zu only if the main clause verb permits this. Different verbs differ in which constructions are used with them, and there is an element of arbitrariness to this, so in general you have to memorise them in order to speak idiomatically.

Also, zu signals an infinitival construction which shares the surface subject with the main clause. On the other hand, dass signals a complete clause which requires its own subject; it can be the same as the matrix clause subject but doesn't have to be.


Your first example is correct.

Ich hoffe, meine Schwester wiederzusehen.

Your second isn't. The alternatives are

Ich hoffe, dass ich meine Schwester wiedersehe.

Ich hoffe, dass ich meine Schwester wiedersehen werde.

These are common too but sound a bit less eloquent.


Correct sentences:

Ich hoffe meine Schwester wiederzusehen.
Ich hoffe, dass ich meine Schwester wiedersehe.

You can use both variations if dass as conjunction is possible and if the subjects of main and subordinate clause are the same.

Ich glaube, dass ich die Aufgabe lösen kann.
Ich glaube die Aufgabe lösen zu können.

Er behauptet, dass er Susi nicht kennt.
Er behauptet Susi nicht zu kennen.

Talking about your plans for the future, you would use only the infinite clause.

Ich habe vor, morgen zum Zahnarzt zu gehen.
Ich denke daran, nach Australien auszuwandern.


The first sentence, „Ich hoffe, meine Schwester wiederzusehen“ means, "I hope to see my sister again."

The second sentence (as corrected by Janka) is Ich hoffe, dass ich meine Schwester wiedersehe, means "I hope that I see my sister again."

Those are two different, correct, and interchangeable ways of saying the same thing.

  • The second part of the sentence is missing a possessive pronoun. It means: "I hope to see sister again." which isn't correct in German or English.
    – clst
    Commented Oct 12, 2017 at 10:59
  • @clst: I think I fixed it by adding an "ich."
    – Tom Au
    Commented Oct 13, 2017 at 0:41

i reckon you're trying to say : I hope to see my sister again. so The 1st sentence is correct the 2nd isn't Alternative : Ich hoffe, dass ich meine Schwester wiedersehe.

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