I told her to come

Discussion in 'Deutsch (German)' started by loureed4, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. loureed4 Senior Member

    Hello there!,

    I have this sentence in English. I have seen it in German as follows: "Ich habe ihr gesagt, sie zu kommen."

    I guess this is very long to explain but why it is not: "Ich habe ihr gesagt, dass sie kommen."

    Does this require a long explanation?, maybe I could find this in "relative clauses" in google?

    I am mixed up with that sentence.

    Thanks in advance!!
  2. dubitans Senior Member

    Vienna, Austria
    German - Austria
    Ich sagte ihr, dass sie kommen soll(e).
    Ich sagte ihr, dass sie kommen möge.

    Mit "sagen" gibt es keine Infinitivkonstruktion.
    Sehr harsch: Ich befahl ihr zu kommen.
    19.Jahrhundert: Ich hieß sie kommen.
  3. loureed4 Senior Member

    Hello and thanks dubitans!

    Why did you add "soll" or "möge" ? :)

    What do you mean by "Mit "sagen" gibt es keine Infinitivkonstruktion." = "There is no infinitve with the verb "sagen" ?

    Again: Thanks a lot.
  4. dubitans Senior Member

    Vienna, Austria
    German - Austria
    There's no infinitive with sagen: "Ich sagte ihr zu kommen" is not possible. This type of construction is possible with a large number of other verbs, e.g. befehlen, bitten, ersuchen.
    Without soll, the sentence doesn't make sense as it wouldn't be clear that she is to do something, i.e. come. Solle is first subjunctive because it's reported speech, this is for 55-year old teachers like myself. Möge makes the "order" for her to come more polite.
  5. loureed4 Senior Member

    Thanks a lot dubitans! . This is fair advanced for me, since I am a total beginner, but I will reread it to understand it better.

    Thanks again a lot !! :)
  6. Hutschi

    Hutschi Senior Member

    Dresden, Universum
    German, Germany
    Because it is simply incorrect.

    "Ich habe ihr gesagt, sie zu kommen.":cross:

    Possible is "Ich bat sie zu kommen." (With "zu" it is possible, but the meaning shifts to "I asked her to come."

    This is grammatically correct but has another meaning.
    It means "I told her that they will come." or "I told her that they are coming" - depending on context.

    The others gave correct translations and explanations how to translate the sentence, but I wanted to make this clear and answer your question directly.
  7. loureed4 Senior Member

    Thanks Hutschi! , really helpful your post. :) .

    Even thouhg it has been helpful, I am quite confused with this "zu" versus "dass" stuff, but that is for me to study deeper. :)
  8. Dornröschen

    Dornröschen Junior Member

    It's not that difficult: "Zu" is - in that context - like the English "to", it just cannot be used in all the same cases. And "dass" is like the English "that", or the Spanish "que".
    I think in Spanish most of the cases are formed with the subjunctive ("Le dije que viniera", "Le pedí que viniera", no?). In English, those can both be formed with "to" + infinitive: "I told her to come", "I asked her to come".
    In German, the "zu" + Infinitiv form works in fewer cases than in English. I'm afraid you'll simply have to learn the verbs it works with. But it never works with sagen: "Ich sagte ihr, dass sie kommen soll" or "Ich sagte ihr, sie soll kommen". (literally: "Le dije que debe venir"; "I told her that she should come") The form with "sollen" is often used when in English the form "tell somebody" + "to" + infinitive is used.
  9. loureed4 Senior Member

    Thanks a lot Dornröschen!! :)

    Is this possible: "Ich habe ihr gesagt, dass sie kommt." ?
  10. Dornröschen

    Dornröschen Junior Member

    That's grammatically correct, but it means something else. You're not telling her to come; she is coming and that's a fact. (English: I told her (that) she's coming/she will come. Spanish: Le dije que (ella) viene/venía/vino.)

    I'm afraid in the German version of your sentence there's no way around the "sollen". :)
  11. Arukami Senior Member

    That means "I told her that she's comming" and that, expect for a single case I can think of, doesn't make any sense. Why would you tell her that? If she's coming, she'll know that herself. :p

    There is, however, a case were one might say that: If she always denied that she would come but you have told her that eventually she would be coming, and in the end she really showed up, then you might say: "Ich habe ihr (immer) gesagt, dass sie kommt (käme/kommen würde)."
  12. loureed4 Senior Member

    Gosh, this is turning too difficult for me, hehe. :)

    Thanks Arukami!

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