"I had to find myself again."
Translation:Ich musste wieder zu mir selbst finden.
This sentence tripped me up too. PONS gives this particular meaning of "to find oneself/to sort oneself out" as the fixed construction "zu sich selbst finden". It's just the way German expresses this particular thought. Trying to analyze why it doesn't have a one-to-one correspondence with English is more of an exercise of Comparative Linguistics as opposed to just learning the German expression--it's a lot of work for little reward. It's like asking why the word 'out' is needed in the expression--it's an interesting question, but tangential to learning the expression. I find it's best to just accept, memorize, and practice the entire of 'zu sich selbst finden' as a unit, and then move on. There are plenty more expressions like it needing to be learned! :^)
My answer "Ich musste wieder mich finden" was marked incorrect, saying I "missed" a word, and that the correct answer was "Ich musste mich wieder finden." I did not miss a word, but I have mich and wieder apparently in the wrong place, and I do not understand why. There is no "manner" or "place" in this sentence, just "time,"...unless "mich" is here considered a place, and if so, I'd have had it correct.
Can anyone tell me what is wrong with my word order? I am completely and utterly confused by it, over and over again, and am told it's a "simple" thing...but obviously, I'm too simpleminded to get it!
A key point of German word order is that you pretty much always put the most new/interesting/important parts of your sentence toward the end. Time-manner-place can often work as a decent guideline for this but often falls apart depending on what you want to emphasize.
So a sentence like "Ich bin am Freitag zu Hause gekommen" (time-place) is the most natural word order if you have no particular emphasis because the point of the sentence is that you came home ("zu Hause"), so home comes last (before "gekommen," of course). But if you're telling someone when you came home, or emphasizing that you came home specifically on Friday and not, say, Saturday, then you care more about "am Freitag," hence "Ich bin zu Hause am Freitag gekommen" (place-time).
Pronouns are inherently disinteresting because they refer to someone who's already been established. If I say something about "ihn," then you supposedly already know who "ihn" is, or else I would be using his name. "Ihn" is also probably not the main point of your sentence. This is especially true for reflexive pronouns (like "mich") because they're the same person as the subject.
So a pronoun will most likely come very soon after the verb, hence "Ich musste mich wieder finden." By the way, "mich" is most definitely not a place. Time-manner-place is for adverbs and adverbial phrases only. But don't use time-manner-place; just put the most important stuff toward the end of the sentence.
Personally I suspect that European-fixated grammarian constructs like "dative' and "accusative" are like lead anchors for real language uptake and also non-European languages. Time to move onward. Certainly they had some merit in their time, but after a certain era -- now -- their usefulness is past, and their reactances and limitations impede progress in language acquisition and understanding.
I suggest that the object and object relations oriented modeling of computer science would be a good place to re-zero the science and lingo of language.
It's certainly not the place to start with learning a language, but sometimes the only way to understand certain abstract constructions is to look into the machinery behind the words. With German at least, dative and accusative are real things that are used in a particular way. You'd be hard pressed to use mir and mich properly without a basic understanding of the difference between the two, especially when Duolingo does such a poor job of explaining the finer details of grammar. In this case, I would never have looked so closely at this subtle difference if not in response to a question specifically about it.
This is a fairly brief answer, and may not be entirely accurate since part of it's just a guess, but the only way I can think of explaining this is by saying that if "zu" is in the sentence, it always seems go towards the end. Aside from elements that would be required to go last, like "finden" in this case, "zu" and whatever is affects, from what I've seen, goes towards the end. The main and solider, more logical answer is that since the adverb is after the verb, it has to directly proceed it. It would be more correct to say, "Ich musste wieder zu mir selbst finden."
The first part was simply an observation and the second was based off rules I've seen. I hope neither were wrong and both were helpful! I spent a good amount of time trying to write this so as not to make it seem like a definite answer. I'm not always correct when it comes to adverbs, so I'm crossing my fingers that all this rambling and babbling wasn't for nothing. XD
müssen = "have to/must"
"Ich musste mich wieder finden" - "I had to find myself again"
"haben" is used in the literal sense of "to have", i.e, possession.
Your translation is - "I had myself again find", which doesn't make much sense.
Haben is also used in perfect tense:
"Ich hatte mich wieder gefunden" - "I had found myself again"
Since this sentence isn't in perfect tense or possessive, you can't use haben.
I remember hearing that they're essentially the same, but selber is a little more colloquial. If "Ich musste mich selbst nochmal finden" is a correct translation, I don't see why "Ich musste mich selber nochmal finden" would be marked wrong. Perhaps they just haven't added it yet. :)
I know...sometimes they seem not to add all the possible translations, so this might just be that. I believe you're correct for using "erneut," so I would say report it. If it's incorrect they just won't add it, but if it is you will have helped to improve the course. :) I love that you set your Facebook to Deutsch. I have all my stuff currently set to Nederlands, or Dutch.
I see this was posted 5 months ago so perhaps you may know this by now but for those who don't, there is a massive difference between the written language and spoken form in terms of vocabulary. They simply never say ''erneut'' in speech but only on paper, thus your Facebook is written in a formal way. You cannot trust any formal/newspaper German as to verify whether it is commonly spoken or not.
I have read all of the comments and the closest that I can get to an explanation for why "zu mir" is needed in this sentence is "that's the way Germans express this thought." Is that it? If it is the only explanation then there must be a hugh number of similar reflexive constructions out there waiting to bite us -- i.e., constructions of the form (nominative pronoun) ... (zu dative pronoun) selbst.
Why is "Ich musste wieder mich selbst finden" not acceptable? I would automatically assume it is the placement of "wieder", since "Ich musste mich selbst wieder finden" gets accepted. BUT then again, Duo suggests "Ich musste wieder zu mir selbst finden" as the correct translation, so is it not the placement of "wieder"? Or does the second sentence require a different word order? I am so confused.... @.@
What does this even mean? What a horrible sentence to teach someone new to a language.