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Thread: A question about certain phrases in the dative case

  1. #1
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    A question about certain phrases in the dative case

    Hello, I am new to this site and I think it is very informative. I am of course trying to learn German in addition to Russian and am a bit confused.

    I have recently been trying to understand the dative case and I do understand it for the most part but I am confused with how it is used in certain phrases. For example:

    Wie geht es Ihnen? (How are you?)

    Das ist mir egal. (I don't care.)

    Mir f
    jetzt, teraz, сейчас, зараз is the time to learn, but I never will. (I have skype)

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    Technically speaking neither of these verbs (gehen, sein, einfallen) is transitive, i.e. they cannot have an accusative object anyway.
    Generally dative shows an indirect relation of an action to the object (not necessarily in the sense of "giving"). It is very common in German to use dative in situations similar to those you mentioned.
    Sei mir nicht b

  3. #3
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    is there a pattern that I am not seeing?
    Well, let's see.

    Actually, nearly all of these things are effects or conditions caused by the environment. It's not you who are causing them directly, you just feel the consequences.

    It probably helps if you try to understand the literal meaning. Also try to check what is the actual subject of the sentence.

    - Wie geht es Ihnen? (How are you?) Well, it means "How are you?" but more literally it says "How is it going?". Not how YOU ARE, but how the things are around you, your business, your family, everything. The subject of the sentence is not "you" but "it".

    - Das ist mir egal. (es ist mir gleich). "It is equal to me", "It doesn't affect me". Again, you aren't the subject, it is something else.

    - Mir f

  4. #4
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    Thank you both for the help in understanding those phrases. I never looked at them as you both explained until now. One of the most difficult barriers in learning another language is thinking in another language, and I guess that I am still thinking in English in terms of word order in a sentence. My next objective is the genitive case which seems to be even more complicated.
    jetzt, teraz, сейчас, зараз is the time to learn, but I never will. (I have skype)

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    Hmm, the genetive mostly marks posession. There are some other constructions that require it but I don't think there are many of them.

    By the way, it's not "Ди Ферайнигтэ Штаатэн" but "Ди Ферайнигтэн Штатэн" (..Vereinigten...). You don't pronounce the "a" twice, it's simply a long "a".

    And even though most Germans would think of the USA if they hear "Die Vereinigten Staaten" or "Amerika" you shouldn't forget that there are also "The United States of Mexico" and that there were "The United States of Brasil" until the 1960s.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by kt_81
    it's not "Ди Ферайнигтэ Штаатэн" but "Ди Ферайнигтэн Штатэн" (..Vereinigten...). You don't pronounce the "a" twice, it's simply a long "a".
    I’d say, this transcription is unnecessary, because the translation exists.)
    Those who can German will be able to read "Die Vereinigten Staaten (von Amerika)", those who don't... who cares?))) There are some signatures here in languages I don't know. And some people on this forum can neither German nor Russian, others can only Russian. "Ди Ферайнигтэ Штаатэн" will make no sense for the latter group either.

    Es ist
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  7. #7
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    Thank you for the explanation of the genitive case.

    I put the Cyrillic version of Die Vereinigten Staaten as a joke, I thought that some would look at it as funny. Thank you for the corrections of my spelling by the way .

    I see your point about Mexico and Brazil but that leaves the question of what to call the group of states between Mexico and Canada that also is to the west of Canada and in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

    I have made the corrections to the location based on your suggestions.

    Zaya, your English is very good and after a quick look over, I only noticed one mistake. In English, you speak a language instead of can like in German. If that is confusing, you can speak a language instead of just speaking it.
    jetzt, teraz, сейчас, зараз is the time to learn, but I never will. (I have skype)

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Comedy_Watcher
    Zaya, your English is very good and after a quick look over, I only noticed one mistake. In English, you speak a language instead of can like in German. If that is confusing, you can speak a language instead of just speaking it.
    Thanks. I like being corrected almost as much as I like compliments.
    German isn't my mother tongue, but it definitely influences my English.

    P.S. Please correct my mistakes.
    If you have problems with both posting new messages and sending PMs, you can send an e-mail to the Forum Administrator here:
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