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I would like to say in German, "I want to read Brothers Grimm eventually". The best I came up with is: Ich will Brüder Grimm lesen schließlich.

I found the adverb schließlich when I searched Google Translate for "eventually". Google Translate gave two other options: letztendlich and endlich. Is schließlich the best word to use here?

Lastly, is my syntax correct? My placement of the adverb and the object (Brüder Grimm)?

  • Gelegentlich, mit der Zeit könnte passende Übersetzungen sein – Beta Aug 28 '17 at 19:53
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First of all, "Ich will Brüder Grimm lesen schließlich" is completely wrong grammatically. Grammatically correct would be: "Ich will schließlich Brüder Grimm lesen". Sadly, that still makes no sense.

If I understand you correctly, you're trying to say that at some point in the near or distant future you're going to read Gebrüder Grimm. In this case, "eventually" is best translated with "irgendwann (einmal)". Possible ways to say this are: "Ich will irgendwann einmal Gebrüder Grimm (better: Grimms Märchen) lesen", "irgendwann will ich mal Grimms Märchen lesen", or "Grimms Märchen will ich irgendwann mal lesen".

The point is: "schließlich" usually means "after all". If you're referring to something that may or may not happen in an unspecified future, I think in most cases it's best to use "irgendwann ((ein)mal)".

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    Well, it's not completely wrong grammatically. It looks like the one mistake was the placement of the adverb. If I had placed the adverb correctly, the rest of the sentence would be syntactically correct, if not semantically. – ktm5124 Aug 28 '17 at 19:46
  • Thanks very much for your response, though. I will have to look into irgendwann ((ein)mal). Any remarks you might have about this word/phrase are appreciated. – ktm5124 Aug 28 '17 at 19:47
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Ich will Brüder Grimm lesen schließlich.

The word order is wrong. In all examples that I can imagine right now if there is a verb (here: "wollen" or "will") that requires an infinitive and there is no subordinate clause the infinitive is at the end of the sentence.

Another thing is that "Brüder Grimm" is typically used with an article ("die") and that you typically use the word "Gebrüder" (which is actually the old variant of "Brüder") when talking about these people.

So some correct sentence would be:

Ich will die Gebrüder Grimm schließlich lesen.

The word "schließlich" is used when you are saying that you do some thing after having done some other thing.

Note that there is a difference in the meaning of the following two sentences:

Ich will die Gebrüder Grimm schließlich lesen.

Ich will schließlich die Gebrüder Grimm lesen.

In the first sentence the word "schließlich" refers to the verb "lesen". So you say that you already did something else with the Grimm brothers (e.g. you saw their storys in movies) and now you want to read them.

In the second sentence the word either refers to the wohle sentence or to the Grimm brothers. It says that you either did some activities before or you read other authors and now you wish to read the Grimm brothers.

schließlich, letztendlich and endlich

schließlich:

You did something else before and want to say that you are doing something after having done the other things. Maybe you can translate it with "finally" but depending on the context also with "after that" or simply "then".

You might use three times "schließlich" in the following example (however this would be bad style):

I was shopping. After that I was cleaning. Then I went home. Finally I had lunch.

letztendlich:

This word is used for "in the end" when it is unclear what will happen for a long time:

Me and my friends had a lot of ideas what to do: Should we go to the theatre or to the cinema? In the end we went to the theatre.

The engineers had doubts if the machine would really work. But in the end it was really working!

endlich:

This word is used for "finally" when people wait for some (positive) event and now the event happens:

After watching all the annoying advertisements in the cinema the movie finally began.

After learning German for many years I finally want to read the Grimm brothers (right now).

tatsächlich:

I think this word is also translated "eventually": It can be translated with "really"; you are saying that something is a fact and not only fiction nor a lie.

You only say that you want to read the Grimm brothers but the truth is: You don't really want to.

This is not true. I really want to read them.

irgendwann (einmal):

This could best be translated with "sometime".

Today I have no time for reading books. But sometime I want to read the Grimm brothers.

  • Thanks! One question about this answer. Why are two words often used to signify "eventually"? Why isn't irgendwann enough? – ktm5124 Aug 28 '17 at 20:19
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    @ktm5124 You speak about the term "irgendwann einmal"? This has the same meaning as "irgendwann" (without "einmal"). However I think that "irgendwann" is often use to express that it is a fact that something will happen in the near future while "irgendwann einmal" is often used to express that there is the possibility that something happens in the far future. – Martin Rosenau Aug 30 '17 at 5:12
  • Yes, I was talking about the phrase "irgendwann einmal". Thanks for your opinion about this phrase, regarding the implication of "einmal". That helps. – ktm5124 Aug 30 '17 at 5:18

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