1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "I do not remember my father."

"I do not remember my father."

Translation:Ich erinnere mich nicht an meinen Vater.

April 19, 2018



What's the "nicht" doing before "an"? This is a simple negation, so I placed "nicht" at the end of the sentence, but Duo decided it was wrong.


I have the same question...


Same question here.



Nicht goes at the end of the sentence, unless there's a preposition in which case it goes before the proposition?


what purposes does the "an" serve here?


to remember s.o. = sich erinnern an

The German verb is reflexive and, in addition, uses the preposition an followed by an accusative object.

(There exists also a variant using the genitive and omitting the preposition, but it has become pretty rare to use that construction: Ich erinnere mich nicht meines Vaters.)


If you say "Ich erinnere meinen Vater nicht" (acc.), this would mean "I don't remember my father (to do something)". With a genitive the meaning doesn't change, but it sounds more than starchy, could be said by the son of Graf von und zu .... in some elite college....


Unsure about the word order here - why is it not:

Ich erinnere mich nicht meinen Vater an

Otherwise, should it not be the following as an would take the dative as it's non-movement?

Ich erinnere mich nicht an meinem Vater


The first would be the case for a separable verb, for example Ich rufe meinen Vater an.

It is an accusative, an is neither a position nor a movement or direction here, so the entire construction has to be remembered like a phrasal verb i.e. "sich an jmn. (acc.) erinnern". There are others like "sich an etwas erfreuen" that take the dativ.


The reflexiv part "mich" being accusative is rather confusing as it is natural for me to thing "Vater" is the direct object! Is there a simple rule - even if it is only for "erinneren"...


Given that meinen Vater is the direct object, why is it not mir? I thought you could not have two direct objects with reflexive verbs?


The verb is not "sich waschen", sondern sich erinnern an (to remember or recall) which is always followed by the accusative case 'soweit ich mich erinnere'...


Why ''nicht'' is not at the end of the sentence? When I firstly learned about the German Negation, the grammar in this section was saying that if nicht goes at the end of a sentence, then the entire of it is being negated. If someone puts nicht before the very end, i.g. before a noun etc., then this certain part of the sentence is being negated. So, why is nicht before a noun here? I just don't get it. Correct me if I am wrong, and please if anyone has time, it would be perfect to give me an explaination.


I'm not really sure how to explain it. I'm not a native German speaker. But it definitely doesn't sound right at the end of the sentence, though for all I know, it could be. Perhaps, you could think of it as two separate parts.

[I don't remember] [my father]

[Ich erinnere mich nicht] [an meinen Vater]


I don't get the grammar


Why is Vater in the Accusative case?

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