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Re: Save of the dative, the genitive's is already dead!

From:Julia "Schnecki" Simon <helicula@...>
Date:Monday, June 13, 2005, 8:10

On 6/12/05, Christian Köttl <christian.koettl@...> wrote:

[snip snip]

> Note that the English contruction "the family's house" is still > possible in Standard German, but sounds strange to German ears: "Der > Familie Haus". It can be found in lyric context.
I remember writing a satirical poem called "Des Schülers Leid" (The Pupil's Suffering) once in high school. As you'll probably be able to guess, I chose the "exotic", "posh" genitive-before-head construction deliberately. I think I never used it before or since. ;-) The German genitive seems to be alive and kicking when it comes to names. Many people who will cheerfully use _das Auto von meinem Vater_ instead of _das Auto meines Vaters_ will still say _Martins Auto_ ("Martin's car") rather than _das Auto von/vom Martin_ ("the car of Martin"). (I, on the other hand, will of course use the calqued _(dem) Martin sein Auto_ construction most of the time. But at least I don't pretend that this is Standard German, and I *will* use _Martins Auto_ when explaining German grammar to foreigners. ;)
> On "weil": Being Austrian, I am not aware of a widespread shift of > SOV => SVO for clauses starting with "weil". Nevertheless I believe I > hear this use sometimes in TV programs from (Northern) Germany. Could > be a regional thing. What is widespread is to change the word order > if you use a subordinated clause without main clause, but in > colloquial language only.
A subordinate clause without a main clause? You mean, when someone says something like "because I wanted to" (as opposed to "I did this because I wanted to")? That would be interesting -- I've heard _weil_ with main clause construction (oh the pain!) often enough, but so far, I haven't discovered any usage patterns beyond "this person uses it more often than that person" (and, of course, "it is used more often in colloquial speech than in formal speech"). Then again, I don't know all that much about the dialects spoken in Austria. But I've heard something similar to that "_weil_ + SVO" construction used with _obwohl_ ("although"). Like _weil_, _obwohl_ should technically start a subordinate clause with SOV word order, but sometimes people use it with SVO instead. I don't know whether or not this means that the syntax of _obwohl_ is changing, though; _obwohl_ is quite a rare word, at least when compared to _weil_. ;-) On a related note, I remember being surprised when I started reading Viktor Klemperer's autobiography a few years ago and found him using _trotzdem_ ("even so" or "in spite of") to start subordinate (SOV) clauses. Is this a regional thing too, or is this just an older usage of _trotzdem_ that has fallen out of use? Until then, I had thought that _trotzdem_ was an adverb rather than a conjunction, but he seems to use it like I (and Mr. Duden) use _obwohl_, i.e. starting its own little subordinate clause. Regards, Julia -- Julia Simon (Schnecki) -- Sprachen-Freak vom Dienst _@" schnecki AT iki DOT fi / helicula AT gmail DOT com "@_ si hortum in bybliotheca habes, deerit nihil (M. Tullius Cicero)


Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>V2, not SVO (Was: Save of the dative, the genitive's is already dead!)