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Re: past tense imperative

From:Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>
Date:Wednesday, April 20, 2005, 0:08

René Uittenbogaard writes in response to me:
>... > > I'm often tempted in > > the same way to use constructions in Dutch that Dutch people find > > quite wrong for the most interesting reasons. :-) > > Hmmm :) examples? 8-)
Well, if I could only come up with good examples -- these situations have happened some time ago... I'll think about this... Another example in the *other* direction, maybe: understanding. The proverbs (I don't know whether they are called like this in Dutch and German), i.e., the prefixed morphemes to some verbs that split off in sentences, like 'doorgaan' (to continue) -> 'Ik ga door' (I continue). These thingies create very strange word order issues in both German and Dutch. And although Dutch and German word orders are fairly compatible when learning the other language, I was once unable to parse a sentence when an auxiliary came into play. The order of the verbal complex is the reversed in the two langs: ... dat ik moet werken. / ... daß ich arbeiten mußte. ... that I had-to work / ... that I work had-to. Now, with something like 'ophalen' (to fetch), literally 'to on-take/get' (~'take/get on') it took me quite a while to understand a clause like: ... dat ik hem op moest halen. ... that I him on had-to take. ... that I had to fetch him. The problem probably was that this is not only just reversed order compared to German -- it's totally strange to actually *split* the verb here. But due to the different word order, I assume it just cannot be split in German, so it it confusing for me in Dutch. It need not split in Dutch, but it can. The following is ok, I think, too, and then perfectly understandable from a German viewpoint: ... dat ik hem moest ophalen. ... that I him had-to fetch That's just reversal: ... daß ich ihn abholen mußte. ... that I him fetch had-to And I'm going to think about something that I misgenerated, too. BTW: My dialect of German can topicalize the proverb in spoken language. Sounds a bit strange in isolated sentences, but it is actually encoutered. It's grammatical to say: Auf eß ich das nicht. On/up eat I that not I won't eat that up / finish that. More precisely, the meaning is: 'Eating up is not really what I'm going to do with that food.' Is that possible in Dutch? ?Op eet ik dat niet. ?Op zal ik dat niet eten. Normal German can only topicalize the whole verb, with the help of an artificial auxiliary 'tun': Aufessen tu ich das nicht. up-eat do I that not **Henrik