1

um... zu should have same subjects in both main clause and subordinate clause. Here, how come "Noten" is not considered as different subject?

Ich lerne viel, um gute Noten zu bekommen.

I study a lot in order to get good grades.

3
  • I'm afraid you confuse 'um zu' with 'damit'. The requirement of same subjects in both main and subordinate clause is true with 'damit' - not with 'um zu'. Ich lerne viel, damit ich gute Noten bekomme.
    – Ben A.
    Commented Dec 23, 2020 at 14:06
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    My previous comment is partly misleading. Sorry. It's not that 'um zu' doesn't have to follow the same-subject-rule. This rule is rather observed automatically as such a clause is an infinitive clause which has the same subject as the main clause.
    – Ben A.
    Commented Dec 23, 2020 at 14:28
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    @Ben A: DeepL translates "I make him study a lot so that he will get good grades." as Ich lasse ihn viel lernen, damit er gute Noten bekommt. As far as I can tell, damit is an ordinary conjunction which allows different subjects. In contrast, um ... zu has to use the infinitive where the subject is taken to be the subject of the main clause. The situation is similar in English with "so that" (conjunction) and "in order to" (infinitive).
    – RDBury
    Commented Dec 23, 2020 at 17:02

1 Answer 1

8

"Noten" is the object of the subordinate clause, the subject is still "ich". You could make that explicit using "damit":

Ich lerne viel, damit ich gute Noten bekomme.

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  • 1
    um Noten zu bekommen neither has a Prädikat nor a subject, I would say. It is a "Finalsatz" (learngerman.dw.com/de/finals%C3%A4tze-um-zu-1/l-40606838/…) So, I find your answer a bit misleading. But maybe I am just confused?
    – Jonathan Herrera
    Commented Dec 23, 2020 at 22:22
  • @jonathan.scholbach No, you're right, calling it "subject" isn't 100% correct technically, I suppose. The Finalsatz and the main clause share the same ...? Actor? Agent?
    – DonHolgo
    Commented Dec 24, 2020 at 14:14
  • I guess, it's Agent, actually.
    – Jonathan Herrera
    Commented Dec 24, 2020 at 21:48

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