I was looking up the meaning of Eigenheit in Reverso Context when I noticed this example:

Hat zu häufig diese Geschichte, die traurig und turbulent gewesen wird, aber das ist genau, was diesem Land seine Eigenheit gibt. (Translated in the dictioary) Too often has that history been sad and turbulent, but that is exactly what gives this country its peculiarity.

However, I couldn't understand the construction of this example and I have two questions:

  1. Why did Hat come in first position? I didn't find the answer in these questions 1, 2, and 3.

  2. In what tense or mood is gewesen wird in? It looks to me as if it is in passive! Why not active present perfect?


1 Answer 1


There is nothing to explain other than that the German sentence is plainly agrammatical. No need to worry about your mastery of German :). A corrected version might be

Zu häufig ist diese Geschichte traurig und turbulent gewesen, aber das ist genau das, was diesem Land seine Eigenheit gibt.

  • Thank you. I thought it might be an old-fashioned, literary, colloquial or poetical since it is in a dictionary and supposed to be correct.
    – Abdullah
    Commented Oct 3, 2018 at 9:24
  • 2
    @User My understanding is that Reverso works like Linguee, i.e. it just gathers translated texts from the web and matches the German to the English sentence. In other words, it's all garbage in/garbage out. If the sentence was mistranslated in the first place, Reverso/Linguee would just repeat that mistake ... (When I use Linguee, I usually skip results from corporate/private sites and just look at translations of official EU documents/transcripts. At least in that case you can be rather confident there was a competent translator involved.)
    – johnl
    Commented Oct 3, 2018 at 9:33
  • 1
    @User "it is in a dictionary and supposed to be correct" I would not trust a dictionary that makes gross errors like: "Übersetzung für "Eigenheit" im Englisch"
    – Arsak
    Commented Oct 3, 2018 at 10:05
  • 3
    Aside from the fabulously wrong sentence in terms of grammar, the content is also idiotic: this is a thing that can be said about absolutely every country on Earth. It belongs to the prototypcial platitudes printed in tourist guides. Commented Oct 3, 2018 at 11:25

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