Why the word order in this sentence is not the usual order? is "begeistert" here the perfect for the verb haben or it is an adjective?

  • Sounds like a snippet from conversation, where word order is sometimes modified creatively. In writing the begeistert would be at the end of a sentence.
    – guidot
    Oct 14, 2017 at 22:44
  • yes it is from a conversation!
    – Millen
    Oct 15, 2017 at 9:57

2 Answers 2


Although this sentence is well-formed German, you are right in supposing that there is something special with the word order. More usual (or non-specific) word order would be:

Mich persönlich hat Wien am meisten begeistert.

Wien hat mich persönlich am meisten begeistert.

Am meisten hat mich persönlich Wien begeistert.

However, also

Am meisten begeistert hat mich persönlich Wien.

is a totally acceptable, good sentence. Using this word order you put special emphasis on "Wien", as for example in a context such as

Wir waren in Paris, Florenz, Wien und Buxtehude. Am meisten begeistert hat mich persönlich Wien.

But you would hardly meet this in written communication. It seems somehow restricted to oral utterances.

You may take the entire series of four sentences as a series with increasing emphasis on "Wien".

  • MInor quibble: English does not allow a "double negative." Hardly, and not are both negatives. Put another way, "hardly" contains the connotation of "not."
    – Tom Au
    Oct 15, 2017 at 6:44
  • @Tom Thanks a lot! Comment and editing much appreciated. Oct 15, 2017 at 9:28
  • I would say, that whatever comes first is the thing you want to "focus on". With "Mich persönlich" you emphasize your selve, with "Wien" the city and with "Am meisten" the best.
    – ortusolis
    Oct 15, 2017 at 18:44

This is an unusual (but acceptable) word order in German.

Here, you are putting the conjugated verb, "begeistert" in the first slot by "merging" it with "Am meisten," the adverbial phrase.

The purpose is to free up the last place for emphasis. Which is now on the word, Wien.

This is much more common in spoken, than written German. So the phrase

Am meisten begeistert hat mich persönlich Wien," means: "Was most inspired personally (by) Wien" (as opposed to some other city).

  • This explanation is not correct. The finite verb ("hat") is in second place as required in such a sentence. The infinite verb + modifier ("Am meisten begeistert") is at first position. Normally it would belong to the end of the sentence (sentence bracket), but it is possible to put it in the first positon. The finite verb, however, must stay at the second position. Compare the sentence "Gestern begeistert hat mich die Opernaufführung" - this would not be correct as "Gestern" and "begeistert" do not constitute a single unit. "Am meisten" and "begeistert" do.
    – RHa
    Oct 15, 2017 at 8:47
  • @RHa: Changed the second sentence to: Here, you are putting the conjugated verb, "begeistert" in the first slot by "merging" it with "Am meisten." Is the post OK now? Thanks for your help.
    – Tom Au
    Oct 15, 2017 at 15:30
  • It's correct now, thanks for correcting it.
    – RHa
    Oct 16, 2017 at 6:22

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