Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#101  Postby Regina » Jun 04, 2012 12:43 pm

punter18 wrote:Entschuldigung Sie, bitte...

Today in my class we were asked to write a letter (ca. 30 wörter)

Schreiben Sie an die Touristeninformation in Dresden:

- Sie kommen im August nach Dresden.
-Bitte Sim un Informationen über Film, Theater, Museen usw(?) [Kulturprogramm]
- Bitten Sie um Hoteladdressen


I will reproduce what I wrote in the class:

Sehr geehrter Herr Müller,

Ich heiße Johnny punter. Ich komme mit meiner Familie im August nach Dresden. Ich hätte gerne Informationen über Kinos, Theater und Museen. Weiterhin benötige ich Hoteladressen für den angegebenen Zeitraum. Meine Handynummer ist xxx.
Bitte rufen Sie mich abends an.
Vielen Dank.
Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
Johnny punter

It took me 15 minutes to write it this way. But the teacher told me, that the letter could still do much better in grammatical construction, and that we took a little too long to write it. Overall, though, she was satisfied with everyone's performance. What do you think I am doing wrong there?

Danke!
Last edited by Regina on Jun 04, 2012 5:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#102  Postby punter18 » Jun 04, 2012 1:04 pm

Thank you for the correction. :)

But I have a few doubts to correct. I'll start with the most stupid one. In plural form, we write die Familie, right? Then if I were to write a reply in negative, I would say ... keine Famile. Therefore I wrote.... meine Familie. :crazy: [Except of course, I have not properly read the chapter on possessive verb form]

Ich hätte gerne Informationen


But was my use of the word 'brauche' in the context totally wrong?

Weiterhin benötige ich Hoteladressen für den angegbenen Zeitraum


Gotta memorize some of that. :o But my use of the word 'Termin' was totally wrong there.

Our teacher asked us especially to take care of the 'politeness' in the opening and closing address form in the letter. They will carry some weight in our written assessment test. I will memorize those phrases too. Viele danke. :cheers:
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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#103  Postby Regina » Jun 04, 2012 2:43 pm

I was working under the assumption that you write a letter, not an email, therefore the formal
Sehr geehrter Herr Müller
Ich benötige/ ich hätte gerne is more formal than brauche and a tad less demanding. But this is really about nuances.
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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#104  Postby Mazille » Jun 04, 2012 4:36 pm

punter18 wrote:
But I have a few doubts to correct. I'll start with the most stupid one. In plural form, we write die Familie, right? Then if I were to write a reply in negative, I would say ... keine Famile. Therefore I wrote.... meine Familie. :crazy: [Except of course, I have not properly read the chapter on possessive verb form]


"meine Familie" would have been correct had you written "Meine Familie und ich kommen... etc.". Since, however, you are coming with your family and they - therefore aren't the subject of the sentence you're gonna need another case. Hence "mit meiner Familie". :cheers:
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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#105  Postby Zwaarddijk » Jun 04, 2012 4:45 pm

Mazille wrote:
punter18 wrote:
But I have a few doubts to correct. I'll start with the most stupid one. In plural form, we write die Familie, right? Then if I were to write a reply in negative, I would say ... keine Famile. Therefore I wrote.... meine Familie. :crazy: [Except of course, I have not properly read the chapter on possessive verb form]


"meine Familie" would have been correct had you written "Meine Familie und ich kommen... etc.". Since, however, you are coming with your family and they - therefore aren't the subject of the sentence you're gonna need another case. Hence "mit meiner Familie". :cheers:

From a purely descriptive p.o.v., does singular subject mit [noun phrase] ever cause plural congruence on the verb in colloquial German? This seems crosslinguistically a rather common phenomenon.
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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#106  Postby Mazille » Jun 04, 2012 4:57 pm

I'm not sure if I understand correctly. Do you mean if having a sentence with a singular subject connected to another noun via "mit" (eg: ich mit meiner Familie) ever results in a plural form of the verb?
No, not that I know of.
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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#107  Postby punter18 » Jun 04, 2012 5:58 pm

Regina wrote:I was working under the assumption that you write a letter, not an email, therefore the formal
Sehr geehrter Herr Müller
Ich benötige/ ich hätte gerne is more formal than brauche and a tad less demanding. But this is really about nuances.


Yes, indeed this is supposed to be written in letter form. That's why we were suggested to use "Sehr geeherde Damen und Herren" in the opening line. Of course, now thanks to you, I know the variation. :) And since it's meant to be as polite as possible, if Ich hätte gerne is less demanding than brauche, I will obviously choose the former.
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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#108  Postby Zwaarddijk » Jun 04, 2012 7:52 pm

Mazille wrote:I'm not sure if I understand correctly. Do you mean if having a sentence with a singular subject connected to another noun via "mit" (eg: ich mit meiner Familie) ever results in a plural form of the verb?
No, not that I know of.

Yes, this happens in a lot of languages world wide - in some, even in the standard forms! It seems a rather natural kind of thing to do, have the verb express that it's kind of collectively done, but how the subject and the ~accompanying parties are split in different constituents maybe permit some kind of focus or topicalization of one specific subject. In Finnish this happens often in the colloquial form, but I've read of several other languages where it's usual.

Does German verb congruence ever do unexpected things - either in the standard language, in some dialects you know of, or just colloquial German? These kinds of things interest me.
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Re: Ich spreche ein wenig Deutsch

#109  Postby Mazille » Jun 04, 2012 8:11 pm

Could you give me an example, even if it's just translated from Finnish to English or something? I know what you mean, but I can't really think of an example where this would happen in German. Maybe a template would help me get my brain-juices going.

Does German verb congruence ever do unexpected things - either in the standard language, in some dialects you know of, or just colloquial German? These kinds of things interest me.


Probably. Language tends to do weird things and German is no exception. Can't think of anything like you suggest now, though.
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