I saw some translators translate "in your absence from him" into "In deiner Abwesenheit von ihm" and some into "in deiner Abwesenheit zu ihm".
So which one is correct and do they have the same meaning in German?

  • 3
    I am not sure "absence from someone" is idiomatic in German or English. You are typically absent from some place, not some person. I'd rewrite from scratch.
    – RegDwight
    Commented Dec 28, 2013 at 13:48

2 Answers 2


Abwesenheit isn't really in that way. Firstly, the preposition to use if we want to use the absence as a measure of time would be während

Während deiner Abwesenheit...

It does work with the preposition von but not for people. It works for a meeting

Deine Abwesenheit vom/beim Meeting war unentschuldbar.

Your absence from the meeting was inexcusable.

But you cannot really be abwesend from someone. The main problem is that the person who is absent is also connected using von and that use is by far the more common one.

Die Abwesenheit von Peter...

Peter's absence...

So using it the way you suggested is quite confusing and to my ears it is on the edge of wrong. I'd suggest a different phrasing entirely

Während/als du nicht bei ihm warst

In der Zeit, in der du nicht bei ihm warst...

But that ultimately depends on context.


So both sound not really as somebody would say it and google also doesn't find this term very often. But "in deiner Abwesenheit von ihm" is at least using the right grammar, because it is "abwesend von etwas". "zu ihm" is wrong.

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