sometimes I misspell möchten with mochten but vocabulary doesn't complain. I tried to find out what that word means, but I'm not sure if I get it right. Is the mochten past form of möchten?

Could you please provide me with example?

closed as off-topic by Björn Friedrich, peterh says reinstate Monica, problemofficer, Philipp, Alexander Kosubek Oct 10 '18 at 13:14

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No, both exist, but möchten is not the verb in present. Möchten is Konjunktiv II of mögen, and mochten its Präteritum (a past). For instance:

Niemand mochte den Mangel an Recherche. Möchtest du bitte nächstes Mal ein Wörterbuch nachschlagen?

  • 3
    It might be worth mentioning that even if as you rightly say "ich möchte" is Konjunktiv II of "mögen" technically, it has somewhat evolved into a verb of its own that most native speakers would assume to be the simple present of "möchten" (which doesn't exist) and use like that. (Next to no native speaker would realize when asking for a roll in the bakery with "ich möchte ein Brötchen, bitte" he just used Konjunktiv II) – tofro Oct 4 '18 at 8:12
  • In Sachsen sagt man auch: "Richte ihm bitte von mir aus, er möchte mal herkommen." Hier wird der Konjunktiv noch deutlicher. – jonathan.scholbach Oct 4 '18 at 8:48
  • Your sentence with "mochte" sounds wrong to me. – Carsten S Oct 4 '18 at 8:53
  • @CarstenS Ok. Could you say what precisely sounds or is wrong? – c.p. Oct 4 '18 at 9:09
  • It is past tense of "niemand mag diese Frage beantworten", and except for the Konjunktiv II case the construction "mögen + Infinitv" to me seems not to be fully standard. What works for me: "Niemand mochte den Kuchen. Magst Du ihn? Möchtest Du ein Stück?". Here the "mochte" has the same meaning as the "magst", which is different from "möchtest". But maybe I am too strict here. – Carsten S Oct 4 '18 at 9:33

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