Translation:This woman can never replace my grandmother.
Without the word order is it possible to understand who is being replaced in this sentence?
In German you need intonation and / or context to understand who is replaced by whom; both meanings are possible.(Fn) (Although convention would suggest the first person to be subject of the clause, hence the woman replacing the grandmother.)
In English, in contrast, everything is clear due to word order.
Fn: Because nom. and acc. are the same for both diese Frau and meine Großmutter.
Thank you. That is what I had assumed but wanted to be clear. I had been told that the benefit of having strong cases would be that it is always clear what happens to whom. Clearly that isn't totally true.
A handy phrase for that awkward family dinner when gramps introduces his new 22 year old Thai bride.
Is "This woman will never be able to replace my grandmother" a valid possibility?
Is this acceptable? "Diese Frau kann nie meine Großmutter ersetzen." I mean, "nie" immediately after the verb.
I believe "...will never be able to replace..." would be better than "...will never replace..."
Can ersetzen also be used in the sense of replace (with something/someone else)?
For example: now that my grandmother has retired, her boss needs to find someone else to take her position, but she will never be able to truly replace my grandmother. Therefore, this woman can never replace my grandmother (with another worker).