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  5. "Er hört auf, Zeitungen zu le…

"Er hört auf, Zeitungen zu lesen."

Translation:He stops reading newspapers.

December 28, 2016



Can this sentence also be Er hört Zeitungen zu lesen auf or is it unnatural or just wrong?

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It’s definitely extremely unnatural to put the prefix after the infinitive clause, and I would go so far as to say it’s wrong.


How would you say "he stops to read newspapers"?


If he was moving (walking, driving), etc.: Er hält an, um Zeitungen zu lesen.

If he was doing something else and stops doing that: Er hört auf, um Zeitungen zu lesen.


So that "um" is the difference between "to read" and "reading"?


It's the difference between "he stopped the act of reading" and "he stopped in order to read", yes -- um zu is pretty much "in order to".



-Er hört auf, Zeitungen zu lesen = he stops reading newspapers. -Er hört auf, um Zeitungen zu lesen = he stops to read newspapers.

Thanks! :)


So since "zu" doesn't mean "to" in the sense of "to read newspapers", how should I read the "to"? It's not some separable prefix that goes to some other word, is it?


It is kind of the "to" in "to read newspaper", and kind of not.

Zeitungen zu lesen ist sein Hobby = To read newspapers is his hobby.

It sort of turns the verb into a noun. What he is stopping is this action "to read newspapers".

You could also read it as a gerund, since that acts like a noun as well: Reading newspapers is his hobby; he stops reading newspapers.

Sometimes this "verb as noun" uses zu in German and sometimes not -- I'm not sure of the rules surrounding this I'm afraid. But when it's present, it's a bit similar to the "to" which is sometimes used in similar circumstances in English.


Can anyone explain why hört is used here? Isn't it the verb for to hear?


hören is to hear, but aufhören means to stop.

It is er hört auf here, not just er hört.

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