Is it more natural (or easier) to say:

... , wenn zwei Menschen von unterschiedlichem Range sich einen Eheschwur leisten!?

rather than:

... , wenn sich zwei Menschen von unterschiedlichem Range einen Eheschwur leisten!?

I have already referred to some enlightening past posts, notably this one, but there still remains one point that I hope to clarify.

When a subordinate clause is relatively long and you place sich immediately after a conjunction, it does not seem easy to keep track of the relation between sich and the verb leisten placed at the end.

As a non-native speaker, I'm more inclined to put sich closer to leisten, but how do native speakers think about this?

  • Maybe this question already has an answer here.
    – c.p.
    Commented Apr 2, 2017 at 13:08

1 Answer 1


This is a question of style. Both variants are accepted. Due to my gut-feeling I'd say, that the second variant, with the "sich" at the earliest position, would sound more natural.

But these are stylistic nuances. The German philosopher Theodor W. Adorno, for instance, got some ambivalent fame for his mannerism to usually put the reflexive pronoun in the last position possible.

  • 1
    Even though you've rejected my edit, "stylistic" is still a -t- short in your text. Commented Apr 2, 2017 at 14:07

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.