1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. semantic of "aber" per positi…


semantic of "aber" per position

Hi, is there a difference in the meaning between these two sentences. "Oh, das ist aber schön!" vs "aber das ist schön"

Thanks with a lingot in advance:-)

March 17, 2018



I think we have two different kinds of aber here.

Aber das ist schön = But that is beautiful.

So we have the usual "but" here.

In "Oh, das ist aber schön!" aber works as a modal particle.

Here is a video about modal particles: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Awhco_VHWE&index=1&list=LLob07Usy2joPfqJBgWWYmXA&t=302s


"Aber das ist schoen" implies a comparison, whereas " Das ist aber schoen" is merely an emphasis.


Thanks for the awesome video but "but" was not mentioned.


Kinda.. in my understanding it means: "Oh, that is but pretty" and the other "but that is pretty" if you think you can see that the 1st would be admiring something and the other saying to a person that it's pretty. example

situation 1

A: 'Ah, es ist eine Blume' B: 'Oh, das ist aber schön'

situation 2

A: 'Das Blume ist hässlich!' B: 'Aber es ist schön!'

you get the idea even though I changed the words a bit ;^w^


So it is similar to the definition in the english dictionary. - used to indicate the impossibility of anything other than what is being stated. "one cannot but sympathize"

Thanks, with a lingot.


Mhh, I don't know it's not really used as an impossibility in German as it is in English, when learning English I was first confused about the use of it as an exclusion.

Sheitgodown is not wrong with the situations it's used it, but I'd say, the "aber" in "das ist aber schön" is more used like "really" would be. In a way using the "aber" with one self and you're surprised how pretty it is (well in reality it's not always a surprise, but it's my guess of why we say "aber" in sentences like these).


'that is but pretty' could also be perceived as 'that is only pretty in my sight', 'that is nothing but pretty', and tiramisues example 'that flower is really pretty' English has a million expressions so it confuses a lot of people but yeah either ones work :)


Like I said it worked with your examples, I just wanted to clarify, that you can't use "aber" as an impossibility of other things like in English, it might work with some handwaving in cases like these, but it's not something done in German. Even if it helps to understand the difference at first that should be remembered.

Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.