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Deutsch 101

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by scherbchen, Nov 15, 2009.

  1. Leoreth

    Leoreth Friend Next Door Moderator

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    My intuition tells me that an der Schule implies school as an institution while in der Schule implies "in the school (building)". Pars pro toto / totum pro parte makes that effective the same meaning, though.
     
  2. Grisu

    Grisu Draghetto Retired Moderator

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    we always used "in der Schule" for both, but then messed up the language anyway ;)
     
  3. Leoreth

    Leoreth Friend Next Door Moderator

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    As did I, but if you want to be picky that's the difference I'd make. And we want to be picky :D
     
  4. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    For creeds or abstract commands, is it more appropriate to use single or plural imperative? e.g.:

    "Gebt alles für die Ehre"
    or
    "Gib alles für die Ehre"
     
  5. metatron

    metatron unperson

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    I guess you can really use either one in allmost every circumstance.
    The singular would be a bit stronger but more prone to rejection if the demand is not entirely reasonable. I'd probably stick with the plural in your example.
     
  6. Lord Emsworth

    Lord Emsworth Emperor

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    It depends on who you are appealing to. Is it more the group, or the individual?
     
  7. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    It's a creed, so I dunno. Both I guess.

    How would one say, "the best I ever had"? My guess is: "Die Besten, die ich immer hatte."
     
  8. Gigaz

    Gigaz civoholic

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    "immer" means "always", "ever" is a bit harder to translate. ;)
    In German, you'd say "Die Besten, die ich je/jemals hatte"
     
  9. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    When can one use the perfect tense without including "haben" or "sein"? I thought that you always needed to, but I'm seeing things like "Ihr Team gewinnt" and "... wenn wir an die Frau gedachten." Are those exceptions or what?
     
  10. oagersnap

    oagersnap Emperor

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    As a side note to LightSpectra: It also depends on what you're referring to when you say "the best" in English, since this has to fit a specific gender and singular/plural form when translated to German. If you are talking about several things, the subject needs to be in plural, so the above form is correct. If you are referring to a single thing, the subject takes the gender of that particular thing, so it would be "Der/Die/Das Beste".

    I understand your question, but your examples don't really demonstrate what you're trying to say.

    When you're saying "Ihr team gewinnt", you're not using perfect. Gewinnt is a present tense conjugation of the verb "gewinnen", the perfect form of this is "gewonnen".

    "Gedachten" isn't a word at all. It seems like a crossing between the correct perfect form "gedacht" and the plural past tense form "dachten". In that way, the sentence isn't really in perfect tense either.

    However, you do actually sometimes see a word in perfect tense without an auxillary verb. I could find an example, but I don't really have time for it right now. It is mostly found in old literature (Goethe and such), so it would probably be considered quite archaic. I guess it could be used today as well, but pretty much only in poetry - not in colloquial or formal language.
     
  11. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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  12. chegel

    chegel Warlord

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    This is the past tense of gedenken, so not a perfect form either. It is normally used with a genitive object and without preposition so the example you use sounds wrong. It would rather be Als wir der Frau gedachten.
     
  13. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    Those verbs that have ge- in the present tense always confuse me. Thanks.
     
  14. oagersnap

    oagersnap Emperor

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    Whoops, sorry, never mind this.
     
  15. Camikaze

    Camikaze Administrator Administrator

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    I'm trying to say, 'yesterday I went to Uni because I had to go and read in the library'. I've come up with two possibilities (that may not be at all correct, but hopefully both kinda work).

    'Gestern bin ich zur Uni gegangen, weil ich in der Bibliothek gehen musste und lesen.'
    'Gestern bin ich zur Uni gegangen, weil ich gehen musste, in der Bibliothek lesen.'

    Not sure if I've got the word order correct in either...

    Whichever that is, it goes before 'Mein Zimmer ist sehr klein, also kann ich nicht zu Hause studieren. Meine Hausaufgaben sind immer langweilig und mein Computer lenkt mich ab, weil er spaß ist! Vorgestern hat er mich für zwei Stunden abgelenkt, wenn ich studiert haben sollte. Ich habe nach Mitternacht studiert, also ich sehr müde war.'

    Is that correct?
     
  16. metatron

    metatron unperson

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    The first one is almost correct:
    Gestern bin ich zur Uni gegangen, weil ich in die Bibliothek gehen und lesen musste.
    Wrong case. :)
    alternatively:
    "in die Bibliothek gehen musste, um zu lesen."

    The second one can't really work that way. But if you want to have a sentence where Bibliothek is in the dative case, you could use a different construction:
    Gestern bin ich zur Uni gegangen, weil ich in der Bibliothek lesen gehen musste.
    I'd say the infinitve clause (#2) sounds better though.

    The paragraph thingy is almost flawless. 'I'm quite impressed. :)
    Mein Zimmer ist sehr klein, also kann ich nicht zu Hause studieren. Meine Hausaufgaben sind immer langweilig und mein Computer lenkt mich ab (, weil er Spaß macht)! Vorgestern hat er mich für zwei Stunden abgelenkt, als ich studiert haben sollte. Ich habe nach Mitternacht studiert, also war ich sehr müde.

    Lot's of questionable style though:
    "weil er Spaß macht" is horrible. Either go for "weil mir das Spielen/Surfen Spaß macht" or just drop the clause (people get how a PC can cause entertainment anyway). (If you want to have "fun" as an adjective that would be "spaßig". But that's rarely used and most of the time bad style, too. I'd just drop the clause).
    "zwei Stunden lang" would be better than "für zwei Stunden".
    "als ich studiert haben sollte" is very stuffy and high brow. "als ich studieren sollte" would be better.
    The "also" feels very weird. More natural would be something simple like "und war dann sehr müde."

    wenn/als/falls is somewhat irritating to natural speakers of English, i guess.

    Disclaimer:
    I hope i didn't misspell or mess up something. I'm very tired. Haven't really slept tonight and was out all day shopping for a second hand car. A confused tourist backed into my old one yesterday.
     
  17. Camikaze

    Camikaze Administrator Administrator

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    Thanks! Why is it accusative? Doesn't the dative case have to go with 'in'?

    I wrote something more (I have an exam on Tuesday :(), that I think is fairly decent, but probably has some mistakes:

    'Letzte Woche sind meine Kusinen von Großbritannien angekommen. Sie habe zu Australien geflogen und es war vierundzwanzig Stunden lange! Wir haben die Gästezimmern vorbereitet, also sie übernachten konnte. Sie sind am Montag angekommen und am Dienstag sind wir in der Stadt gegangen. Am Mittwoch sind wir zurückgegangen und habe den Museen gesehen. Wir sind am Donnerstag in der Stadt nicht gegangen, aber zum Zoo. Am Donnerstag Abends haben sie im Restaurant gegessen, aber ich bin zu Hause geblieben, weil ich studieren musste. Am Freitag sind wir alle müde gewesen, also haben wir im Park gefaulenzt. Am Samstag sind sie zu Hause geflogen, also ich war traurig.'

    I had to look up 'gefaulenzt'. Does that word work in the context?
     
  18. metatron

    metatron unperson

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    Erm... good question.
    There is no definitive guide i guess. The two dominating factors in determining dative vs. accusative are:
    1) Indirect (dative) vs. direct objects (accusative)
    2) Location (dative) vs. direction (accusative)

    In this case it followes rule #2.
    Ich gehe in die Bibliothek, um zu lernen.
    Ich bin in der Bibliothek, um zu lernen.

    In both clauses B. is the primary object, the first one is directional the second locative.
    Don't worry about that too much. It's something you can only learn so well from theory. You'll get a feeling for it from practise.

    ("Direction" is much more a grammatical thing here than a common sense thing:
    "Ich gab ihm das Buch." - Here rule #1 dominates.
    "Ich schickte ihn zur Schule vs. "Ich schickte ihn in die Schule - Here zu/in each being in bed with their favorite case dominates.)
    Letzte Woche sind meine Kusinen aus Großbritannien angekommen. Sie sind nach Australien geflogen und es dauerte vierundzwanzig Stunden (lang)! Wir haben die Gästezimmern vorbereitet, damit sie übernachten konnten. Sie sind am Montag angekommen und am Dienstag sind wir in die* Stadt gegangen. Am Mittwoch sind wir zurückgekommen und haben die Museen gesehen**. Wir sind am Donnerstag nicht in die* Stadt gegangen, aber zum*** Zoo. Am Donnerstag Abends haben sie im Restaurant gegessen, aber ich bin zu Hause geblieben, weil ich studieren musste. Am Freitag sind wir alle müde gewesen, also haben wir im Park gefaulenzt. Am Samstag sind sie nach Hause geflogen, also**** ich war traurig.

    *Direction vs. Location (vergleiche: "...waren wir in der Stadt einkaufen.")
    **Technically correct but not recommended. Go with angesehen or besucht.
    ***I'd write "in den Zoo", but technically it's correct.
    ****Technically correct but rather awkward. It's not a rule set in stone but generally "also" used that way indicates some sort of choice or decision:
    "Meine Zigaretten waren leer, also ging ich zum Kiosk."
    "Sie musste die Arbeit
    (-> paper) am Freitag abgeben, also fuhr sie schon am Sonntag wieder nach Hause."
    In your sentence i would either say "deshalb" instead of "also" or just drop the indication of causation (it's clear anyway) and just say "und ich war traurig".
    It fits wonderfully. :)

    On second thought: I'd always say lernen instead of studieren, when it's about reading at home. When you were not reading but preparing something for a paper i'd say "weil ich an meiner Hausarbeit schreiben musste." or something like that.
    We really only use "studieren" in a rather broad and abstract sense, when refering to the process of attending a university as a whole.
    "Ich habe ein Jahr in Canada gelebt und dort studiert."
    "Zum Glück muß ich im Sommer nicht studieren."
    The latter is like the smallest thing that works.
    "Diese Woche muß ich nicht studieren." allready sounds strange. One would say "Diese Woche muß ich nichts für die Uni tun."
    Good luck!
    (Besser: Viel Erfolg! 'Glück' klingt so, als bräuchtest du es.)

    Does the test have a set topic (like specific grammatical rules your course has studied recently)?

    Btw:
    I allready told that to Spectra, but let me empasize it once more: You should really find something German you like and enjoy in its own right (like a blog, movies, a tv dramady on youtube, German news, whatever). Germans don't learn English in school (understand this to have an are-you-nuts inflection). We learn English from Bob Dylan or Jon Stewart or because we wanted to get that freakin hammer in Zelda II when we were ten.
    I could help you look for something, depending on what you'd like to try.
     
  19. Lord Emsworth

    Lord Emsworth Emperor

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    Should that not be "Wir hatten die Gästezimmer vorbereitet"? :p
     
  20. Godwynn

    Godwynn March to the Sea

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    This has more to do with our incorrect English. When we are supposed to use the words into and onto, it is the accusative case.

    Ich gehe ins Zimmer. I go into the room.
    Ich stehe in dem Zimmer. I stand in the room.

    Ich lege den Stift auf den Tisch. I lay the pen onto the table.
    Der Stift liegt auf dem Tisch. The pen lies on the table.

    Hope that helps.
     

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