"Das ist mein Bruder, dessen Freundin im Ausland studiert."

Translation:This is my brother whose girlfriend is studying abroad.

March 16, 2017

21 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/VanessaJ101

Is there any way to see if a relative clause is defining or non-defining in German?

April 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/roman2095

According to the Tips & Notes there is no such distinction in German, so it would have to be determined by the context when translating to English. They are referred to as "restrictive" and "non-restrictive" in the tips but I assume they mean the same thing.

May 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

That's correct.

The sentence intonation is different for restrictive and non-restrictive clauses but that's not reflected in the spelling or punctuation.

May 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/albel727

Can I ask what's different about sentence intonation in either case?

July 31, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

Hard to describe without drawing a picture, but roughly:

non-restrictive clause ("this is my brother -- whose girlfriend is studying abroad"): starts high, falls suddenly on "Bru", continues low to "der". In the second half, slowly starts to climb until a sharp fall in "Aus" and continuing on a low level.

restrictive clause ("this is my brother whose girlfriend is studying abroad"): starts medium level, brief dip on "Bru" before returning to mid level, then slow climb until a sharp fall in "Aus" and continuing on a low level.

So I suppose it's the high-to-low dip on "Bru" in the non-restrictive clause that shows that "Das ist mein Bruder" is an entire thought, and so the "dessen Freundin in Ausland studiert" is simply an ignorable addition -- while in the other case, the first part is not marked as a complete thought but the intonation suggests that the entire sentence is yet to be completed -- the high-to-low dip doesn't come until "Aus".

July 31, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/albel727

Clear explanation, thanks!

I wonder if you're speaking from experience, or there is some intonation research, that one could read? Don't mind if it's written in german either.

August 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

That’s just how I (as a native speaker) would say it myself.

I’m sure there are works on intonation in German sentences but I’m not personally aware of any, I’m afraid.

August 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/albel727

Alright then, thanks anyway.

August 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/VanessaJ101

Thanks, I didn't even notice the Tips & Notes. So, did you put in a comma? I thought it possible but weird without.

May 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/roman2095

The comma is required before the subordinate clause in German but is not normally put before the relative clause in English. However it can be used, for example, if it is introducing a non-defining clause e.g. My brother, whose girlfriend is studying abroad, is feeling lonely these days. However in this exercise I think it would look wrong with a comma before the "whose" - although I agree it does sound a bit strange, possibly because we are not clear on whether the "whose" is introducing a defining or non-defining clause and there is no context to help us.

May 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Huy_Ngo

So, how do we know if the speaker is saying "This is my brother whose girlfriend..." or "This is my brother, whose girlfriend..."? The first one means there may be many brothers while the second means there is only one.

May 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

In writing: context.

In speach: intonation.

Like how in English there's a difference between "This is my BROTHER (and not my sister)" versus "This is MY brother (and not yours)" versus "THIS is my brother (while THAT is somebody else)". They're all pronounced differently but (usually) spelled the same -- only context can tell what the emphasis is, if any.

May 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AntsLuuk

That is my brother whose friend learns abroad.

Why it is wrong?

August 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

She's studying (at university), not just learning.

August 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Yves558328

"He is my brother whose girlfriend studies abroad": why is the expression "He is..." incorrect ?

August 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

It's not incorrect in English, but it's not a good translation for the German Das ist ... ("This is ...").

August 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/hayjam627

Why is 'This is my brother whose girlfriend studied abroad.' marked incorrectly?

February 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

You used past tense "studied", but the German sentence has present tense studiert and not past tense studierte.

February 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Bedl0w

The Tips and Notes have disappeared from the new format Duolingo

May 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

They haven't disappeared; they're just hiding.

After you've clicked on a unit name, don't click on "Start" but instead on the lightbulb next to the Start button. That will take you to the Tips and Notes for that unit.

Once you've read them, you can start the unit by clicking on the Start button on the Tips and Notes page.

May 16, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Bedl0w

Thanks for your help!

May 16, 2018
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