-1

I looked for translation for this sentence and it was

I had my car repaired

and I don't understand why it means had sth. repaired as there is no werden in the sentence to make it passive voice.

  • 1
    Are you sure you get the proper meaning of the English sentence? – tofro May 13 '18 at 22:30
  • "I let my car repair in the garage". It is future tense. Don't trust on-line translators. – Thomas May 13 '18 at 22:32
  • 4
    @Thomas: indeed, don't. It should be something like I'm having my car repaired in the garage. And Ich lasse reparieren is not future tense. – Rudy Velthuis May 13 '18 at 23:02
  • @RudyVelthuis You are right, should not have commented this late yesterday. – Thomas May 14 '18 at 7:06
5

A simple translation would be

I'm having my car repaired in the garage.

That is not passive voice, not in German either. The main part is

Ich lasse ... reparieren.

That is active voice. Passive would be

Mein Auto wird ... repariert.

which is something like

My car is being repaired ...

You could of course rewrite the sentence and then a subordinate clause can be passive:

Ich sorge daf├╝r, dass mein Auto repariert wird.

And then you get the wird you asked about. But the sentence in your question is not passive, and therefore there is no form of werden in it.

| improve this answer | |
0

The construction

jemanden/etwas etwas tun lassen

can have either active or passive meaning (from the point of view of jemanden/etwas) in German. For instance,

Ich lasse mein Kind spielen.

is active (my child plays), whereas

Ich lasse mein Kind impfen.

is passive (my child is vaccinated).

You have to look at the context to tell which translation is correct.

| improve this answer | |
  • 2
    How is it passive? I am having my child vaccinated, IOW, I is the subject, not the child, so it is active alright. Passive would be: Mein kind wird geimpft (My child is being vaccinated). – Rudy Velthuis May 14 '18 at 10:58
  • It's active or passive, respectively, as soon as you translate "lassen" into a subordinate clause: "Ich erlaube meinem Kind, dass es spielt" (active) vs. "Ich sorge dafür, dass mein Kind geimpft wird" (passive). Syntactically, it's always active voice, but semantically, the two cases differ. – Uwe May 14 '18 at 12:19
  • @RudyVelthuis Note that the OP expected something like "Ich lasse mein Auto in der Werkstatt repariert werden" (with an explicit passive infinitive following "lassen"). – Uwe May 14 '18 at 12:29
  • I know what the OP expected. Doesn't mean that "ich lasse reparieren" is passive voice, though. It simply isn't. You could surely formulate this in passive voice too (like many things), but that was not the question. Ich lasse mein Kind impfen is not passive voice either. It is that simple. Mein Kind wird (durch mein Zutun) geimpft is the passive equivalent. – Rudy Velthuis May 14 '18 at 16:52
  • The German phrase "Ich lasse <noun> <verb>" can mean (A) "I let/make <noun> <verb>" or (B) "I let/make somebody else <verb> <noun>", depending on the context. These are two different scenarios: In the first case, <noun> is the agent of the action <verb>, in the second case, <noun> is the object of the action <verb>. – Uwe May 14 '18 at 19:01

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