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  5. Ich bin...vs Mir ist...


Ich bin...vs Mir ist...


I am working on the "Feelings" lesson about half way down the tree, and I wondered about the difference between saying "Ich bin ..." or saying "Mir ist...".

For example:

Ich bin stolz. Mir ist langweilig.

I believe that "Ich bin langweilig" in ENG is "I am boring", so the "Mir ist..." describes a emotionally transitive state.

But couldn't being "Stolz", as in "Ich bin stolz", be transitive as well?

Please help thanks!

June 27, 2018



Hello, actually you have one of the best exemples here :)

"Ich bin langweilig": you're right, means "I'm boring"

"Mir ist langweilig": "I'm bored" (litteraly: "it's boring to me")

In some cases, though, there is no choice. "Mir ist kalt, mir ist warm, mir ist heiz": "I'm cold, I'm warm, I'm hot (as in "it's too hot in here", not as in "I'm sexy")". "Mir ist schlecht, mir ist übel": "I feel bad, I'm sick". "Mir ist gut": "I feel fine".

Does it help?


Good examples and also the reason why you have to be very careful using "mir ist" and/or "ich bin". It can get really confusing and you might say something completely different then you expected. Example: "Mir ist schlecht" = "I feel sick/bad/ill" is very different from "Ich bin schlecht" = "I am (!) bad" with something ;) Tricky!


Ha! Indeed thank you.


Another way to think of it is with the subject being the unexpressed personal "es".

Mir ist kalt. -> Mir ist es kalt. -> "To me it is cold." (which in English we would express just as "I am cold".)

So the difference between the form of "mir ist" and "ich bin" is what/who is the subject. Is something boring, or are you boring. Of course I can see you already knew that, but I'm just posting that for others than may come across this thread.

TLDR: When trying to decide if you can use "mir ist", think if it sounds right to think "It is ____ to me." For example, it would be weird if it was "It is proud to me." That doesn't seem to make sense, in my opinion.


Very cool, makes sense. I will think of it this way like you said here: "It is ____ to me."


Question: So when I see "Mir ist ?" without the "es", could I add the "es" to make more sense to me?

Or are there situations where there is no "es"?


  • 280

You can add the "es" in your thoughts, but in most sentences it would be unidiomatic or even ungrammatical if you would write it.


It's not really a feelings thing I suppose, but it kind of is I guess??

You use Mir in this sense mostly to express a state only you can claim I guess (I'm not an expert)

I recommend just learning the phrases mir is used instead of the grammar, since I'm not sure there really is a rule. Hope I helped


Well, basically and mostly: "ich bin something">"I am was"; "mir ist etwas">"something happens to me", "is felt by me"


Perhaps you could say that 'Mir ist...' is (generally) used to denote your reaction to external factors, while 'Ich bin...' is more about internal feelings and states.

Could be a bit off, but otherwise it's just to google it!


Well said :)


I think this might be the case.


Check out Klastiron's post, I think it shines some light for me on this, and is similar to what you said. Thanks!


To your last question: Mir ist stolz. is no correct German.

You could say Mir ist stolz zumute. = Ich fühle mich stolz.


Understood thank you.


It wasn't my question, but it helped me! Thanks.


pride is not acted upon you. It is something you outwardly feel. Cold is something acted upon you. That is the difference with mir ist vs ich bin for anything.


Excellent thank you.

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