28 Comments This discussion is locked.
If you were to say "Ich mag nicht dich" you would have to follow it by a subclause starting with "but."
For instance, "Ich mag nicht dich, aber deine Schwester" (I don't like you, but your sister) would be perfectly fine. The emphasis in the main clause would be on "dich." "I don't like YOU, but your sister."
You could still say "Ich mag dich nicht, aber deine Schwester", but this sounds unnatural. You would rather say "Ich mag dich nicht, sondern deine Schwester."
Yes, in the example I gave, the word order is definitely for emphasis, so without a contextual subclause the sentence "Ich mag nicht dich" is clearly incorrect, because of an incorrect word order. I don't know if word order is more flexible in German than in other languages. Though, in English, the only other language I know well enough, I don't think there is much leeway either. You can't mess much with the word order in the English sentence "I don't like you." "I like you not" already sounds unnatural.
None of the ch's in this sentence are pronounced like the ch in Achmed.
The german phonemes represented by "ch", be it in "Buch" or "Ich" (which are different) doesn't exist in any English word, as far as I know. Like the sound of "th" in English "think" or "this" in Portuguese, my language. "ch" can have a palatal hissing sound as in Ich or a uvular friction sound as in Buch. I would wait for time to let the correct pronounce to sink in, hearing native speakers. But if you want to insist in a perfect pronunciation, get familiar with the International phonetical alphabet (IPA). It's a tool created exactly for this purpose
'Du' is the informal version of 'you', while 'Sie' is formal. If you were talking to a friend or someone the same age as you, you'd use 'du'. You'd use 'Sie' while talking to someone superior, like a teacher or elder.
Example: "Verzeihung! Wissen Sie, wo der Bahnhof ist?" (translation: Excuse me! Do you know where the train station is?) You'd use 'Sie' while asking a stranger for directions, since it shows respect.
"Guten Morgen! Weisst du, wo Mama ist?" (translation: Good morning! Do you know where Mom is?" You'd use 'du' when asking a sibling or housemate a simple question.
'Dich' is the accusative form of 'du'. When 'du' is the indirect object of a sentence, it's no longer in the nominative form and gets changed.
Example: "Du bist stark." (translation: You are strong.) You'd say 'du' because 'you' is the subject of the sentence.
"Ich kenne dich." (translation: I know you.) Since "you" is the indirect object ('I' is the subject) you'd use the accusative form. It's like how in English, we say 'me' rather than 'I'.
Ich- mich (me) Du- dich (you) Er/Sie/Es- sich (him/her/it) Wir- uns (us) Ihr- euch (you plural) Sie- sich