My sentence:

There are new devices only for reading Ebooks.
Es gibt neue Geräte nur für E-Books zu lesen.


Es gibt neue Geräte zum E-Book-Lesen nur für.

Is my sentence wrong ? Can the sentence end with "für" at end?

My sentence:

..., that some or all the data can be lost.
..., dass einige oder alle Dateien verloren werden.


..., dass einige oder alle Dateien verloren gehen.

Why the "gehen" verb is used here, is it wrong to use "werden"? Is "verloren gehen" phrase for: "to be lost"?

  • It probably would have been better to split this into two question, since there are different issues with the two sentences.
    – RDBury
    Aug 2, 2021 at 17:45

2 Answers 2


Translation of your first sentence:

Both translations (yours and that from the translator) are wrong. These are correct translations:

There are new devices only for reading ebooks.

  1. Es gibt neue Geräte nur für das Lesen von E-Books.
  2. Es gibt neue Geräte nur zum Lesen von E-Books.
  3. Es gibt neue Geräte nur zum E-Books-Lesen.
  4. Es gibt neue Geräte, mit denen man nur E-Books lesen kann.

#1 is the grammatically closest translation, the others are alternative ways to express the same idea.

Can a sentence end with "für"?

No, in correct standard German this is not allowed. But some dialects in northern regions of Germany use this construction:

Standard German: Wofür ist das gut?
In some northern Dialects: Wo ist das gut für?
Englisch: What is it good for?

verloren gehen

The phrase "etwas geht verloren" means: "something becomes lost". So, we are talking here about the moment when something that wasn't lost before, suddenly turns into the state of being lost. "Etwas geht verloren" describes a transition, not a state.

In English, "something is lost" means a state. In German you express this this way:

etwas ist verloren gegangen
something has become lost

The German verb "gehen" not only means to walk. Is sometimes also means "to turn" in the sense of a state transmission:

etwas geht kaputt
something becomes broken

Seine Firma ging bankrott.
His company went bankrupt.

Die Tasse fiel hinunter und ging entzwei.
The cup fell down and broke in two.

  • 1
    Just to add: "Es gibt neue Geräte nur für E-Books zu lesen." is something you would hear in Nordrhein-Westfalen. The first album of Cologne rock band BAP was called "BAP ... für usszeschnigge!" ("zum Ausschneiden"). It's certainly not high German though.
    – HalvarF
    Aug 2, 2021 at 14:30
  • @Hubert Thank you for the detailed answer. Aug 2, 2021 at 15:59

There are new devices only for reading Ebooks.

Suggested translations:

"Es gibt neue Geräte nur um E-Books zu lesen."

"Es gibt neue Geräte nur zum Lesen von E-Books."

Note that it can mean that the "Geräte" can only read ebooks and nothing else, or only ebooks need the "Geräte" to read them, which may serve other purposes as well. More context would be needed to make that clear in writing.

The translator version is wrong in sentence forming and anyway.

"für" oder "für zu" instead of "um zu" is, as has been stated in the other answer and comments, sometimes used colloquially and locally, but strictly spoken and depending on sentence forming (where it stands) it may be seen as somewhat awkward and people may chuckle when they hear that version. Better avoid it as a learner.

As to the question "why gehen". Trivial answer is because German "verloren gehen" (or "verlorengehen") means "to go missing" in English. It refers to things that went physically missing, including deleted or broken files.


  • Yes, it means the device is used only for reading purpose like Kindle device. Thank you for the complete answer :) Aug 2, 2021 at 15:58

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