https://www.duolingo.com/DanStrat1

wurde oder wurden?

Hallo alle,

Ich habe den folgenden Satz gefunden:

"Ihnen wurde zu ihrem Lottogewin gratuliert,"

der bedeutet:

"They were congratulated on their lottery win."

Aber soll es nicht "wurden" sein?

Danke!

December 14, 2017

8 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Kit845299
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"Ihnen wurde zum Lottogewinn gratuliert" is right. It might become clearer when you add the subject, which is kind of hidden in the verb:

"Es wurde ihnen zum Lottogewinn gratuliert". "ihnen" is the Dative-object. "Es" is the subject, therefore the verb has to be in the third person singular form. The literal translation into English would be something like this: "It has been congratulated to them on their lottery win"

December 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/DanStrat1

Thank you!

This is a strange construct to me... I'm trying to wrap my head around it.

1) Is this construct idiomatic to the verb "gratulieren", or can it happen elsewhere?

2) Is this construct also possible not in the passive voice? Would you write:

"Sie gratulierten ihnen es zum Lottogewinn"

?

December 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Kit845299
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I'm not entirely sure how to explain it, but I will try (maybe someone else can explain this better):

1) It's not idiomatic. I think the reason is, that "gratulieren" needs the Dative case. So you ask "Wem wird gratuliert?" = Ihnen. If you use, for example, "beglückwünschen" instead of "gratulieren", you would not need the Dativ-object: "Sie wurden zum Lottogewinn beglückwünscht" = They have been congratulated on their lottery win.

On the other hand the construction would be similar with other verbs that need the Dative object, for example "schenken" (Wem wird etwas geschenkt? = Ihnen): "Ihnen wurde ein Buch geschenkt" (or: "Es wurde ihnen ein Buch geschenkt") = They have been given a book.

2) No, you would just say "Sie gratulierten ihnen zum Lottogewinn".

December 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/stepintime
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1) I'm not a linguist either, but I support Kit845299's theory that it's a generally used construction for verbs in passive voice that have a dative object; and that there's that "hidden 'es'" in there that causes the verb to be in the singular.

Examples: mir wurde ein Buch geschenkt (I was given a book (as a gift)), ihm wurde verziehen (he was forgiven), uns wird nicht geantwortet ("we are not replied to" / we are not given an answer), hier wird Ihnen geholfen (here you are helped).

With the "hidden 'es'": es wurde mir ein Buch geschenkt, es wurde ihm verziehen, es wird uns nicht geantwortet, es wird Ihnen hier geholfen. Note that the "es" needs to be at the beginning of the sentence.

If the subject is known: mir wurde von ihm ein Buch geschenkt (I was given a book by him), ihm wurde von ihr verziehen (he was forgiven by her), hier wird Ihnen von Experten geholfen (here you are helped by experts).

2) You could say, "Man hat ihnen zum Lottogewinn gratuliert" = nicely translated: "they were congratulated", too literally translated: "one (meaning one or more unspecified person(s)) congratulated them".

Note that "man" ("one, somebody, people") is always treated like a single "person", just like "one" in English: "Man tut das nicht." ("One does not do that.")

Active voice (just to complete the options of these examples): if you know who congratulated, you would say, "Die Nachbarn (the neighbours) haben ihnen gratuliert" or "Der Nachbar (the neighbour) hat ihnen gratuliert".

December 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/DanStrat1

Ok, danke sehr

December 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/slamRN
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In the sentence Mir wurde ein Buch geschenkt, why isn't geschenkt capitalized. Is it because it is used as "gifted" and hence not a noun?

Maybe I am missing something?

December 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
Mod
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Mir wurde ein Buch geschenkt is passive - "a book was given to me as a present".

geschenkt is the past participle of schenken, so it's a verb form -- "given", not "(a) gift". (Which would be Geschenk without -t as well.)

December 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/slamRN
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Thanks mizinamo.

December 18, 2017
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