3

In the sentence

"Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, immer bis 10 Uhr Abend zu arbeiten?",

who is the subject of the verb "arbeiten"? That is, is it asking

  1. Is it ok with you when you work until 10 pm always? Or
  2. Is it ok with you when I (or we) work until 10 pm always?

And how about this sentence,

"Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, hier zu parken?"

Is it asking about

  1. Your parking or
  2. My parking ?

The first sentence sounds like asking about 'your working' but the second sentence sounds like asking about 'my parking'. Is it determined by the context? Or not?

  • 1
    If you're afraid your parking would bother, you'd ask "Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, wenn ich hier parke?" ( do you mind ME parking here). if you want to ask HIM to park there, you use "Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, hier zu parken" (do you mind parking there) – Tommylee2k Oct 19 '17 at 13:04
5

"Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, immer bis 10 Uhr Abend zu arbeiten?" is actually a different way of saying "Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, dass Sie immer bis 10 Uhr Abend arbeiten?".
If no additional personal pronoun is used, the sentence refers to last used personal pronoun "Ihnen". This specific grammatical form, the AcI (=Accusativum cum Infintivo), for constructing sentences is shared between German and Latin.

If you want to explicitly express your second sentence example, you have to construct a full sentence (Konsekutivsatz in German grammar) using 'dass':

"Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, dass ich immer bis 10 Uhr Abend arbeite?" or
"Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, dass wir immer bis 10 Uhr Abend arbeiten?"

"Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, hier zu parken?" means "Do you mind parking here?". "Parken" is a verb, therefore adding a possessive pronoun like your/mine would not make any sense. As in the example above the sentence refers back to the one mentioned before and could also be expressed as "Macht es Ihnen etwas aus, dass Sie hier parken?".

  • Oh I see. Actually it's the same in English. In "Does it make something (bother you) to verb ...", the semantic subject is you. If the subject is different we should specify it. Ex) Does it bother you 'for me' to ride bike here? – Chan Kim Oct 19 '17 at 14:51
  • 1
    Yes. Basically that is the same principle. – Alex2006 Oct 19 '17 at 16:13

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