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Das geht dich nichts an.

What does it mean here? It sounds redundant and useless. Please explain it to me.

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  • Related question in German: Die Konstruktion von “Das geht dich nichts (nicht?) an” May 10, 2021 at 23:10
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    Could you elaborate a bit on your interpretation of the remaining phrase and what astonishes you about nichts? E.g., would you expect nicht instead? What do you think would it mean without nichts? May 10, 2021 at 23:16
  • Regardless of whether the nichts is redundant, the use of nichts instead of nicht does seem odd and I don't think it's completely explained by the link given in comment above. If angehen is transitive and not ditransitive, then there should only be two pronouns, not three (das, dich & nichts). My feeling is that it's similar to the English idiom "to do with" which allows "nothing", "something", "a lot", etc. as an additional object.
    – RDBury
    May 11, 2021 at 4:14
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    Translation: "This is none of your business" -- do you consider none redundant in this sentence? I honestly have no idea what you mean by saying it sounds redundant and useless.
    – HalvarF
    May 11, 2021 at 10:53
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    "Redundant" might have been the wrong term by OP: the problem is not that something is expressed twice, but that etwas/nichts do not refer to anything. (In professional parlance: they are syntactic complements without being semantic arguments.)
    – David Vogt
    May 11, 2021 at 11:52

2 Answers 2

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It roughly translates into "this is none of your concern". "Nichts" is the negation. Without it, it would " this is your concern", "Das geht dich etwas an" or just "Das geht dich an"

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Think of the opposite:

Das geht dich etwas an

the opposite of etwas is nichts, so that's the whole reason of the nichts. I can't see any redundancy here.

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