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  5. "Der Bezug fehlt ihm."

"Der Bezug fehlt ihm."

Translation:It has little bearing for him.

March 26, 2013

42 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nicomiro

I don't understand this sentence at all ! :-( Can someone explain?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DieYsbeer

I translated it as, "He misses the reference". I think an idiomatic translation might be something like, "The reference is lost on him", but I am not a native speaker, so take that with a grain of salt. Hope that helps!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dan_Barker

I am a native English speaker and translated is as "The reference is lost on him" which is idiomatic but it didn't accept it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JonKScott

Also native and interpretted it that way so I will report it because it isn't accepted as of 31 May 2016.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Konrad-Michal

What does The reference is lost on him mean? May you provide any context, please?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laruthell

He and some friends were talking together, and one of them said something that referred to, say, a funny line from a TV show he hadn't watched, or a movie he hadn't seen, etc. The other friends burst out laughing, but the reference was lost on him, so he just looked confused and wondered what they were all laughing at.

I have no idea if the German sentence has that meaning or not, but that is where the English sentence gets used.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Konrad-Michal

Thank you. Let me clarify it: does it mean: He didn't see the link between his words and their laughter? Or between his words and the TV show?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laruthell

He didn't see the link between their words and anything, because he had never seen the TV show, so although what they said made everyone else laugh, the joke went right over his head (to use another expression).

Maybe another way of putting it is that the reference was clear to everyone else, but not to him.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Konrad-Michal

Now I understand. Thanks!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erin491427

It's somewhat idiomatic, especially the English translation they offer (which personally I think is so strange it's wrong...). Fehlen=to be missing or absent; Bezug=reference, link (comes from Beziehung, relationship). It means he doesn't get the reference/see the link. Literally, the link is missing for him.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eplus17

"The reference eludes him." was not accepted; I've reported it thinking it should be correct, but welcome any insights to the contrary.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alex.tjn

I think this is the closest tranlation in both the meaning and sentence structure.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dperseo

I wrote: he misses the reference. accepted


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SimMoor

If you were to ask me a question about anything and I replied, "That would be an ecumenical matter" what would your reaction be? A. Stare at me quizzically, or B. Laugh If A, I would turn to my german friend and shrug, "Der bezug fehlt ihm."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/markbooth

C. Offer you a cup of tea.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pellucidon

D. Offer you the name of a good counsellor


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soglio

Is this translation accurate? Is the German sentence an idiom?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/karenskywalker

I tried "he lacks the cover" and it was accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erin491427

really? that doesn't really make any sense in English


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fuchfe97

You could read the sentence as: "He is missing a (pillow) cover." So it is correct, but probably not the intended meaning.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mfgbkk

it is more like "he can't refer to it"


[deactivated user]

    Surely: "It has no bearing ON him", meaning that it is not relevant to him?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CaveatEmptor

    Yeah, I'm not sure how this translates that way.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lgarratt2

    It has little bearing for him would need ihn, not ihm? A better English idiom would be the relevance escapes him. Am I wrong?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erin491427

    201 fires, nice! In "It has little bearing for him" him would be the indirect object and therefore the dative ihm. It's always difficult to translate "fehlen" because you don't use it exactly the same in german as you do to say something is "missing" in english. Here fehlen is an intransitive verb, and always takes a dative object. I don't like escape in this context because it makes the Bezug seem more active or willful, but yes, that is a correct interpretation of the sentence.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lgarratt2

    Thank you for that great explanation! I'm loving German and DL, it's hard not to think in an English way but discovering these differences is half the fun :D


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RoniH80

    From the hint I figured it would be: "It is not relevant for him", but was marked wrong. Duo's suggestions were nonsensical/weird. Report?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TJWphd

    I translated to "it has little bearing ON him," which I have heard more frequently than the suggested "it has little bearing FOR him."


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lastrick

    This is awkwardly worded. English speakers say "little bearing ON", not "bearing FOR".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/markbooth

    Searching Google for "Der Bezug fehlt ihm" brings up just 5 results and they are all Duolingo. Do Germans even use this phrase?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/caralarm

    Shouldn't "He lacks the salary" also be accepted?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cilia539936

    He is missing the point....


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlbertoMir955758

    It does not make any sense


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KazYam
    • 2089

    German word "der Bezug" has various meanings: Reference / relationship/ cover / salary etc. in English. "Der Bezug fehlt ihm = It has little bearing for him" may mean "It has little relationship for him.", I suppose now.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaulDower

    How can der Bezug mean both salary and relevance/reference? Those aren't even similar words!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soglio

    Language is cruel that way. English is also cruel: consider, for example, the words "suit" and "train." You might like to look up "homograph" and "heteronym."


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaulDower

    I usually am able to get idioms but this one really just flew over my head hahaha


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RonanSill

    How about it means nothing to him?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JorgLovoll

    He lacks the reference is accepted and seems quite adequate


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FatAlan

    I'm still struggling with the English translation here. Would 'the relevance failed him' work better or at least be acceptible?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/clintack

    Could this also mean that a book (for some kind of book that's masculine rather than neuter) is missing its cover, or that an employee is missing his salary?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JamesGBC

    He lacks respect would be a better translation.

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