The full sentence:

"Ausschließlich harten Alkohol müsst ihr selbst mitbringen, wenn euch danach ist."

  • How is "sein" conjugated in this sentence, and why would it be "ist" even though "euch" describes a group of people?

  • What is the "ist" referring to? Is the form of "sein" even dependant on "euch" in this case?

  • 5
    That is an idiomatic phrase which is really hard to catch if you don't know it. Actually, the verb is jemandem nach etwas (zumute) sein. Also see de.wiktionary.org/wiki/zumute
    – Jonathan Herrera
    Aug 21, 2019 at 7:56
  • 4
    the full sense will be obvious if you mind that "ist" is not related to "euch" but to "es": "Es ist mir nicht danach zumute" oder "Es macht mir nichts aus." e.g. another example in English: It doesn't matter. Aug 21, 2019 at 8:16
  • 3
    'ist' is referring to an ephemeral 'it', the same way as in 'it is raining' Aug 21, 2019 at 16:05
  • 1
    @jonathan.scholbach It doesn't have anything to do with idiomatic in that sense. Its a normal behaviour of third person impersonal sentences in spoken German. Die Redewendung "es ist jemandem danach" ist zwar idiomatisch, die Auslassung von "es" - worum es bei der Frage eher geht - nicht.
    – Dan
    Aug 22, 2019 at 20:53
  • 1
    @Dan Yes, you are right. I thought, the omitted zumute was the problem of the questioner, but actually, the real problem is the omitted expletive es
    – Jonathan Herrera
    Aug 22, 2019 at 20:57

2 Answers 2


The verb ist is 3rd person singular, which is the form that always occurs when the verb has no subject argument.

Ist Ihnen heiß, schwindelig, schlecht?
Are you hot, dizzy, sick?

In the above example, heiß, schwindelig, schlecht are adjectives that occur together with a dative, i.e. Ihnen. Verbs never agree with a dative, so even if Ihnen is plural, the verb is 3rd person singular as there is no subject present. Your assumption that the form ist is independent of euch is correct.

Another example of verbs missing a subject argument is impersonal passives, where the verb occurs in the 3rd person singular as well.

Wurde euch geholfen?
Ihnen wurde nicht geglaubt.

As far as meaning is concerned, you can treat

Mir ist (nicht) nach …

as an idiom meaning

I (don't) feel like …

The preposition nach can probably be explained by deriving the idiom from zumute sein nach.

Ihnen war nicht nach Feiern zumute.
They didn't feel like partying.

  • "which is the form that always occurs when there is no subject present" Here some counter examples: - Ja, mach das. - hallo wie gehts? bin heute so richtig gut gelaunt - na dann erst mal Rewe und dann Müggelsee In all of this examples there is no subject and no 3d person singular form. Please correct your wording as it's confusing.
    – Dan
    Aug 23, 2019 at 7:02
  • 1
    "Verbs never agree with a dative," true. However, there are German dialects where "uns/ons" hat die Bedeutung von "wir" und "euch" die Bedeutung von "ihr". But that's just as a fun fact.
    – Dan
    Aug 23, 2019 at 7:15
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    @Dan I changed it to something more technical.
    – David Vogt
    Aug 23, 2019 at 8:18
  • What did you change? With due respect, your answer is still somewhat missing the question, that being the subject omission in impersonal sentences, elaborating on the idiom "jemandem danach sein" instead.
    – Dan
    Aug 24, 2019 at 16:14
  • 1
    @Dan You can click on the "edited yesterday" link to see what changed. – I don't see this as a case of omission. The verb has no subject argument; it then occurs in the 3rd person singular. This is what happens with impersonal passives, so it's a useful rule to learn.
    – David Vogt
    Aug 24, 2019 at 17:02

What is the "ist" referring to? Is the form of "sein" even dependant on "euch" in this case?

ist is corresponding with es:

eg: Mir ist nicht danach! -> Es ist mir nicht danach!"

(means: Ich habe keine Lust.)

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