Er wird bald wieder gesund.

Anne Frank

Senior Member
Russian
Hi there! how would you translate Er wird bald wieder gesund in such a context:

Franz ist krank.

Еr hat eine Erkältung.

Er wird bald wieder gesund.
He is getting better and going to soon become healthy again?
then why the verb wird is in the present tense?
 
  • JClaudeK

    Senior Member
    Français France, Deutsch (SW-Dtl.)
    See here
    The use of the present tense in future meaning is much more common in German than it is in English. Especially in colloquial German, but also in the written standard language, future tenses are quite rarely used if the future meaning is already evident through context or a temporal adverb or clause. For example:
    • In zehn Jahren bin ich Millionär.
    "In ten years, I shall be a millionaire." Literally: "In ten years am I millionaire."


    Er wird bald wieder gesund.
    Here, the temporal adverb which makes things clear is "bald".
     

    manfy

    Senior Member
    German - Austria
    Er wird bald wieder gesund.
    He is getting better and going to soon become healthy again?
    then why the verb wird is in the present tense?
    In German it's quite common to use present tense for expressing the future.
    If you must you could say "Er wird bald wieder gesund werden", but that feels redundant. "Werden" with the meaning "to become" contains an intrinsic aspect of future and therefore the explicit future tense "wird ... werden" adds little value.

    A more common & maybe colloquial translation of "Er wird bald wieder gesund" is:
    He'll be up and running in no time. :)

    [cross-posted]
     

    elroy

    Imperfect mod
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    "Werden" with the meaning "to become" contains an intrinsic aspect of future
    I don’t think that’s the case. Only context determines whether it’s present or future.

    Immer wenn ich ihn sehe, werde ich glücklich. - present
    Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser. - present
    Hoffentlich wird die Lage besser. - future
    Wer wird Millionär? - future
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser.
    This is - present in a very wide sense - reaching far into the future - and a statement about development
    In my feeling it has aspects of future.
    It is basically about the future. But it started in the past, goes through the present time and goes into the future. This is because present time moves and is very short to very long but not strictly defined. It also depends on context.

    But the purpose is to indicate the future.

    So all in all it is complicate. It shows development.

    In past tense it is "Jeden Tag wurde die Lage besser" - This does not include future or present time.

    Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser werden. - This is about the future but does not include past and present time.

    I did not use "tense" but "time" because I mean the real time.
     

    elroy

    Imperfect mod
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    It’s present. It’s no different from “Jeden Tag esse ich einen Apfel.” It refers to something regular.

    Things are getting better every day.
    Every day I eat an apple.
     

    Frank78

    Senior Member
    German

    elroy

    Imperfect mod
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    Not so fast. Hutschi and Manfy are right.
    To be perfectly clear, when I said "It's present," I was specifically referring to the sentence "Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser." This refers to the present, not to the future.
    So you can either interpret "Ich werde gesund" as future with the main verb being dropped or a present with future meaning, a process".
    As I said, it can either refer to the present or to the future, based on the context. On its own "Ich werde gesund" has no further context so we can't tell which is intended. I disagree with you on one point: for me, a process is not "present with a future meaning"; I don’t know what you mean by that. An ongoing process is a process taking place in present time. So the two interpretations are simply 1) present and 2) future.

    Present: Er ist seit langem krank, nimmt aber seit ein paar Wochen neue Medikamente und wird gerade endlich wieder gesund. <is in the process of becoming>
    Future: Er ist sehr krank, aber wenn er diese Medikamente nimmt, wird er bestimmt bald wieder gesund. <will become>

    In other words, it's a morphologically present (or non-past) form that can either encode present or future semantically. If it encodes present, then semantically there's nothing "future" about it. Again, this is no different from "Jeden Tag esse ich einen Apfel" (present) and "Morgen esse ich einen Apfel" (future).
    Can't it mean ''wer wird gerade Millionär''? You wrote that only context determines present or future.
    Yes, sorry. I was referring to the famous game show, although I didn’t explicitly say that.
     

    elroy

    Imperfect mod
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    The present would be "Ich bin gesund".
    "Ich werde Arzt" can also never mean you are already a doctor.
    I just realized that you are incorrectly equating "sein" with "present" and "werden" with "future." Both "sein" and "werden" (in the present/non-past form) can refer to either present or future; all four are possible:

    Heute bin ich müde. ("sein," present)
    In einer Stunde bin ich bestimmt wieder müde. ("sein," future)
    Jeden Tag werde ich glücklicher. ("werden," present)
    Morgen werde ich bestimmt glücklicher. ("werden," future)
     

    Frank78

    Senior Member
    German
    On its own "Ich werde gesund" has no further context so we can't tell which is intended.

    That's the only thing where we disagree I think.

    A bare sentence like "Wer wird Millionär" or "Ich werde gesund" always has the connotation of a future meaning for me without an adverb like "gerade".
     

    Kajjo

    Senior Member
    In einer Stunde bin ich bestimmt wieder müde.
    ("sein," future) :cross:
    In einer Stunde bin ich bestimmt wieder müde.

    Nein, das wird jetzt ein Wirrwarr um Begrifflichkeiten.

    + Dieser Satz steht in der grammatischen Zeit "Präsens".
    + Das grammatische Präsens kann im Deutschen Zukünftigkeit ausdrücken.

    Das bedeutet zusammengefasst aber nicht, dass der Satz im Futur steht.

    Ich bin (morgen | jetzt | immer) glücklich. <Präsens>
    Ich werde (morgen | jetzt | immer) glücklich sein. <Futur I>


    Je nach Ergänzung und ggf. Kontext kann der Präsens-Satz Zukünftigkeit oder Jetztzeit ausdrücken.
     
    Last edited:

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    Are you sure? Can't it mean ''wer wird gerade Millionär''? You wrote that only context determines present or future.

    ''Wer wird gerade Millionär'' - This reaches from past time via present time into the future time. Cause is: It incudes a status change "right now".
    There is a difference to "Wer wird Millionär?" - here the change is in the future. Future starts immidiately after present time, so one minute later is in the future. Usually it has another meaning, pragmatically it means: "Wer schafft es, Millionär zu werden?" Grammatically this is present tense by some illogical reasoning of grammarians but it is about future time.
     

    elroy

    Imperfect mod
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    Nein, das wird jetzt ein Wirrwarr um Begrifflichkeiten.
    I think you misunderstood me.
    + Dieser Satz steht in der grammatischen Zeit "Präsens".
    + Das grammatische Präsens kann im Deutschen Zukünftigkeit ausdrücken.

    Das bedeutet zusammengefasst aber nicht, dass der Satz im Futur steht.

    Ich bin (morgen | jetzt | immer) glücklich. <Präsens>
    Ich werde (morgen | jetzt | immer) glücklich sein. <Futur I>


    Je nach Ergänzung und ggf. Kontext kann der Präsens-Satz Zukünftigkeit oder Jetztzeit ausdrücken.
    This is EXACTLY what I have been saying (and if you re-read my posts carefully, you'll see that). When I wrote "future," I meant "future meaning."
    A bare sentence like "Wer wird Millionär" or "Ich werde gesund" always has the connotation of a future meaning for me without an adverb like "gerade".
    Are you saying that there's no conceivable context in which those exact strings, without any intervening adverbs, would refer to the present?
    'Wer wird gerade Millionär'' - This reaches from past time via present time into the future time.
    Not grammatically. You're confusing grammar with your world knowledge.

    Grammatically, the sentence only refers to present time. Your world knowledge tells you that if somebody is in the process of becoming a millionaire, that process started in the past and will probably continue into the future. However, this is not what the sentence is actually saying. The sentence is only saying that right now, in present time, there is an ongoing process of becoming a millionaire. Again, it's the same as "Ich esse gerade einen Apfel." All this sentence is saying is that I am eating an apple right now. Our world knowledge tells us that I started eating it in the past and will probably continue eating it for at least some time in the future.
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    Not grammatically. You're confusing grammar with your world knowledge.
    I do not do this. It is just my point that grammar does not reflect the real times.

    The topic was "real time" vs. "grammatical time".
    Er wird bald wieder gesund.
    He is getting better and going to soon become healthy again?
    then why the verb wird is in the present tense?
    This was answered basically in #2 and #3 by Claude and manfy, and in following answers.

    Grammar is always semantics+syntax.

    World knowledge is part of semantics.

    Syntactically stand alone "wird" as main verb is presence/present tense. In most context it is future in real time, in some context it is also possible that it refers to present time. This is what you wrote and after thinking about it I completed it by past time.

    Grammatically mostly "tense" is used for the syntax, so I used "time" for the semantics.

    PS:
    Our world knowledge tells us that I started eating it in the past and will probably continue eating it for at least some time in the future.
    I fully agree to this.
    This is semantics, so it is part of grammar.

    Almost in every context Present tense goes from past time via present time into the future. Other context is possible, like Zenon's paradoxons or expressing past time using present tense.
    Er isst also gestern einen Apfel.
     
    Last edited:

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    In the examples we are discussing, real time and “grammatical time” coincide.

    I do not think so:
    (If "coincide means: present tense describes in all examples the (relative to the speaker) present time.)

    Er wird bald wieder gesund.

    future time. present tense

    In einer Stunde bin ich bestimmt wieder müde. (
    future time, present tense.

    "Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser."
    present tense; past, present and future time

    Wer wird Millionär? - future
    present tense, usually future time, or as title of a tv show it has no time. (No real time can be assigned to a pure name.)
    Context might change this.

    Edit: small corrections, and duplicate example removed.
     

    elroy

    Imperfect mod
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    I was only talking about "Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser" and "Wer wird gerade Millionär?".
    Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser.
    reaching far into the future [...]
    In my feeling it has aspects of future.
    It is basically about the future. But it started in the past, goes through the present time and goes into the future.
    :cross:
    present tense; past, present and future time
    :cross:
    ''Wer wird gerade Millionär'' - This reaches from past time via present time into the future time.
    :cross:
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    Thank you for explaining it, elroy.

    OK:
    "Wer wird gerade Millionär?"

    Present tense, status change, so it reaches from past time via present time into the future time. In a strict mathematical sense it has no time at all but an uncertain point of time near the present time.

    ---
    I do not understand why my examples you quoted are wrong.

    I think they are correct.
     

    Kajjo

    Senior Member
    I was only talking about "Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser" and "Wer wird gerade Millionär?".
    Both is present tense and present time.

    The verb "werden" by its core meaning incorporates a certain quality of change directed towards future. But I count this as present time change.
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    I give an example:

    "Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser."

    In my mind this means basically:

    ...
    gestern wurde die Lage besser,
    heute wird die Lage besser,
    morgen wird die Lage besser,
    übermorgen wird die Lage besser, in drei Tagen wird die Lage besser,
    ...

    The amount of days is uncertain.

    The difference. Kajo does not count "gestern", and he considers "morgen, übermorgen, in drei Tagen, usw." as present time.
    In case of "heute wird die Lage besser" I could say: ok. Present time. But tomorrow?

    We need at least three days for this phrase to make sense. (Otherwise "jeden" is not idiomatic.)

    If you include "morgen, übermorgen, in drei Tagen, usw." into present time, Kajjo is right.
     

    Kajjo

    Senior Member
    In my mind this means basically:

    ...
    gestern wurde die Lage besser,
    heute wird die Lage besser,
    morgen wird die Lage besser,
    übermorgen wird die Lage besser, in drei Tagen wird die Lage besser,
    This ist just an extrapolation by the meaning, but not a grammatical analysis.

    and he considers "morgen, übermorgen, in drei Tagen, usw." as present time.
    No, I don't. I just see the words of the sentence and do not add any made-up words. The sentence is just a general statement in present tense. No need to think about whether it might have been true yesterday or a year ago.
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    I described the meaning.

    Es wird täglich besser. This is a simple statement in present tense. This is pure syntax and does not describe the meaning.

    The minimal meaning is three days in a raw (usually more).
    In case of only two days you would not say "daily".

    At least one of the days must be in the future time (not tense).

    This is the minimal meaning.

    We agreed, as far as I see in #24 that "morgen" is in the future time.

    This way we have:
    Es wird täglich besser. This is a sentence in present tense.

    Semantically it is about future (at least partly) and parts can be about past time (not tense) and and present time.

    Both syntactic and semantic parts are part of grammar.

    I really do not see that this is wrong.

    In the beginning I thought that "Es wird besser" is about future time, But elroy showed that it can be about present time.
    I agreed to this.

    And I agree that there is a difference between time in syntax and in semantics.
    To show this I used "tense" to describe time in syntax and "time" to describe the "real" time= semantical time.
     

    bearded

    Senior Member
    wer wird gerade Millionär?

    Hutschi
    Does the adverb 'gerade' not refer to the present only (=derzeit/in diesem Augenblick)? After all (as can be read in all grammar books) ''er tut gerade'' is the usual/default translation of ''he is doing'' (now). I cannot see how you can extend this to the future or the past. Without 'gerade' I would understand your point better.
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    It refers basically to a quality change. I agree that it is at present time. It goes from short in the past to short into the future. It is (according also to the Zenon-Paradoxons) a prozess.

    If I say: "Beeil dich, er wird gerade Millionär. Du verpasst es sonst." you see that parts of the prozess are in the future time.
    "Gerade" is a point in time but also a process in time (a time range.)

    Here we see that the present tense fits quite well to describe it.

    The present time is moving from past to future. Future becomes past.
    Present tense can describe this, and this is the main application. "Gerade" makes it clear.
    Kajjo wrote:
    The verb "werden" by its core meaning incorporates a certain quality of change directed towards future. But I count this as present time change.

    With "gerade" this is the main meaning in such context. "Gerade" points to a point in time. If no context is given it points to the present time (in the fuzzy sense of present time.).

    If I am doing something:

    - past time - time near present time in the past - present time - time near present time in the future - future time

    I'm writing. This means I started in the past near the present time, I continue now and I'm end to write in the future.

    If I have ended now, I cannot say "I'm writing" because it does not reach into the future.
     

    Frank78

    Senior Member
    German
    Hutschi
    Does the adverb 'gerade' not refer to the present only (=derzeit/in diesem Augenblick)? After all (as can be read in all grammar books) ''er tut gerade'' is the usual/default translation of ''he is doing'' (now). I cannot see how you can extend this to the future or the past. Without 'gerade' I would understand your point better.

    In both English and German this time frame does include a certain time in the past and the future, otherwise it wouldn't be a continuous action.

    "Ich backe gerade einen Kuchen" = "I'm baking a cake" - You started at some point in the past and are now in the middle of this activity and will be finished in the near future.

    Maybe you shouldn't focus on "in this very moment" but rather on the temporary character of this activity.
     

    bearded

    Senior Member
    If ''wer wird gerade Millionär?'' can also mean ''wer wurde M.../wer wird M. werden..'' then what's the difference between
    wer wird Millionär and wer wird gerade Millionär
    or between Ich backe einen Kuchen and ich backe gerade einen Kuchen ?
    The adverb 'gerade' is there for a purpose / Das Adverb 'gerade' steht doch nicht umsonst da.
    Was machst du? -ich backe einen Kuchen (in diesen Tagen, morgen...) / - ich backe gerade einen Kuchen (in diesem Moment).
    Am I mistaken? / Liege ich da falsch?
     
    Last edited:

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    Ich verstehe leider nicht, was Du damit meinst.

    This is present style to describe the past.

    You can use present tense to describe things in the past time, in the present time and in the future time. Past time is seldom, it is used in some stories and in descriptions of history.

    Das Präsens (Gegenwart) und seine Verwendung im Deutschen
    Als historisches bzw. szenisches Präsens kann man die Gegenwart im Deutschen auch für vergangene Dinge verwenden. Das wird häufig gemacht, wenn ein Sprecher, Erzähler oder Schreiber aus stilistischen Gründen
    symbol_link.gif
    interessanter klingen möchte.

    As histocial presens or as presens at a stage present tense can be used to describe past time. Reasons are for example styl, or requirements to make something interesting.
    ---

    Present tense is just a syntactical feature of the German language.

    It is often connected with present time, and it can be connected as well with past as with future time.

    Franz ist krank.
    Base concept: Without context this is present time and present tense.

    Additional possibility: Context may change this to past time or to future time. (Here I do not mean syntax = grammatical time forms. )
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    If ''wer wird gerade Millionär?'' can also mean ''wer wurde M.../wer wird M. werden..'' then whats the difference between
    wer wird Millionär and wer wird gerade Millionär
    or between Ich backe einen Kuchen and ich backe gerade einen Kuchen ?
    1. Wer wird Millionär?
      Refers to future time.

    2. Wer wird gerade Millionär?
      Refers to present time in the sense "Who is becoming 'Millionär'".
    Note that "werden" is a main verb here. It is not an auxiliary verb.

    1. Ich backe einen Kuchen.
      refers usually to a plan (this means to future time) or to present time if context fits.
      In special context it can mean "I am baking a cake".

    2. Ich backe gerade einen Kuchen?
      refers to present time in the sense "I am baking a cake."
    Other times are possible in certain context but they are seldom.

    Edit: Typo removed.
     

    berndf

    Moderator
    German (Germany)
    I don’t think that’s the case. Only context determines whether it’s present or future.

    Immer wenn ich ihn sehe, werde ich glücklich. - present
    Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser. - present
    Hoffentlich wird die Lage besser. - future
    Wer wird Millionär? - future
    I honestly don't think this distinction makes sense. Werden always applies to an action that extends into the future. From a grammatical perspective, I very much doubt that it makes sense to regard present and future is systematically distinguished. Present is just a limiting case of the future or vice versa, however you prefer to look at it. Except in some limiting cases where werden unambiguously an auxiliary verb expressing a future state or action (like Morgen wird er müde sein), it might make more sense to understand werden as a verb expressing aspect then tense, namely a variant of the progressive aspect that describes evolving rather than just continuing progressive action.
     
    Last edited:

    Kajjo

    Senior Member
    Es wird täglich besser. This is a simple statement in present tense. This is pure syntax and does not describe the meaning.

    The minimal meaning is three days in a raw (usually more).
    Nein, sorry, Hutschi, hier verrennst du dich mal wieder komplett. Die Bedeutung von "täglich" ist "jeden Tag". Nicht mehr und nicht weniger. Du kannst da nicht einfach irgendwelche Phantasieangaben hinzudichten, nur weil sie inhaltlich vielleicht sinnvoll sind. Das führt für eine sprachliche Analyse auf Abwege, wie man hier ja auch sieht.

    Sieh den Satz einfach als das, was er ist. Ein klare Aussage über "täglich". Man könnte alle möglichen weiteren Aussagen ergänzen, um das zu spezifizieren, aber man darf keine theoretisch möglichen Aussagen einfach so willkürlich ergänzen, wenn man bei strikter Aussagelogik bleiben will.

    Ab heute wird es jeden Tag besser.
    Ich immer gehe davon aus, dass es jeden Tag besser wird.


    Die Bedeutung von "wird es jeden Tag besser" ändert sich dadurch nicht, die Bedeutung des ganzen Satzes natürlich schon, weil man ja was ergänzt hat.
     

    manfy

    Senior Member
    German - Austria
    Immer wenn ich ihn sehe, werde ich glücklich. - present
    Jeden Tag wird die Lage besser. - present
    Hoffentlich wird die Lage besser. - future
    Wer wird Millionär? - future
    I think I understand elroy's statement when I put my "English language perspective hat" on.
    The statement
    Things are getting better every day.
    very clearly points to the present because of the present continous. Personally I don't sense much of a future aspect here because that would need a "things will get better" or "will be getting better".
    The German form is different, though. 'Werden' does not have that link to a present aspect that 'are getting' has. For me, 'wird' does express or suggest the future (in the absence of context) and my mind automatically attaches this future aspect whenever I hear the word.

    I do agree with elroy on the point that context can change this. His first example is a good one:
    "Immer wenn ich ihn sehe, werde ich glücklich. "
    Here a future aspect in the sense of "werde ich glücklich werden" doesn't make any sense, therefore my mind quickly interprets 'werden' as an indicator for a process (as opposed to a state expressed by "Immer wenn ich ihn sehe, bin ich glücklich.")

    So, there is a bit of a difference when you look at these statements from a German language mindset and an English one.
     
    Top