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I was reading an article on dw.com today (link) and came across the following sentence:

Ryanair als einer der Pioniere der Billigfluglinien hat die Vorlage geliefert für Dutzende anderer Airlines.

From what I know of German grammar, the sentence "should" be the following:

Ryanair als einer der Pioniere der Billigfluglinien hat die Vorlage für Dutzende anderer Airlines geliefert.

I'm pretty sure I've come across other examples like this before, where a past participle or verb that should come in final position is followed by a prepositional phrase. In rather long sentences, this actually seems reasonable to me as a non-native German speaker, since it makes the sentence a bit easier to construct and understand.

My question is whether this is (technically) correct grammar and whether there is a grammatical rule governing when this can or cannot be done.

My apologies in advance if this has been asked before. I did a quick search and found some similar looking questions that actually deal with different kinds of issues.

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    It may seem reasonable to you, but it isn't. The Satzklammer (Verbklammer) is the most important structure of German sentences. – Janka Jul 27 '18 at 0:01
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    The Verbklammer is a general rule, but the rule is broken millions of time per day - and people are particularly likely to break it the longer the Klammer would have to be. It's also more common in spoken than in written spech, in informal than in formal speech, etc., as usual. – Kilian Foth Jul 27 '18 at 6:27
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It is correct grammar, as you can see e.g. by the article on canoo.

As the article says, it's more common for complex and long prepositional phrases (to make it easier to understand for the listener or reader). It's uncommon for short phrases, and when done, it's a stylistic instrument which puts emphasis on the prepositional phrase (because it stands out from the usual word order, which would be verb last).

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Just a native German speaker, not a linguist here, but:

You are correct, the second version would be absolutely correct and is actually more pleasing to my ear/eye.

However, the original version is also perfectly fine. As long as "geliefert" comes after "hat" plus some object, the final position rule is satisfied. It is advised to break up long sentences by putting the participle early and afterwards adding more info, but in this specific case it would not have been necessary as the remainder is just three words.

For example, you could say "hat die Vorlage geliefert, die in den darauffolgenden Monaten von Dutzenden anderer Airlines im In- und Ausland übernommen und weiterentwickelt wurde". In that case, the prepositional part is quite long and it is better to close the first clause before elaborating.

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Ryanair als einer der Pioniere der Billigfluglinien hat die Vorlage geliefert für Dutzende anderer Airlines.

Something like this can happen in speech if someone wants to add additional information after she is "through" with the predicate. The listener will notice that quirk. In writing, it's plain incorrect.

Ryanair als einer der Pioniere der Billigfluglinien hat die Vorlage für Dutzende anderer Airlines geliefert.

Correct.

  • Could you please link a grammar site to support the plain incorrect statement? As you can see from the other answer, this isn't known among all native speaker. – Arsak Jul 27 '18 at 6:06
  • Ich vermute, dass ich einfach zu alt bin, und Präpositionalgruppen im Nachfeld inzwischen für grammatisch erklärt wurden. Ich empfinde es immer noch als eine nachträgliche Ergänzung, die in der Schriftsprache nichts zu suchen hat. – Janka Jul 27 '18 at 12:11
  • Falls es Dich tröstet, ich empfinde das auch als falsch, bzw. aus dem mündlichen übernommen. Aber mit Quelle wär's halt fundierter :) – Arsak Jul 27 '18 at 12:16
  • Vielleicht einer von diesen: Satzklammer bzw. Feldermodell des deutschen Satzes? – Arsak Jul 27 '18 at 12:19
  • Hier auch noch mal schematisch aus einem DaF-Kurs der Uni München – Arsak Jul 27 '18 at 12:22

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