German dative/accusative vs. Slovene locative/accusative

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trance0

Senior Member
Slovene
Split from here.

Maybe a bit off topic, but worth mentioning. In Slovene this logic with "hide in/into" doesn't fully work, because one can use either accusative or locative(in German one would use dative in this case). So, in Slovene both interpretations are possible with this verb, i.e. the change of position and the change of state(visible/hidden), whereas in German only one is possible.
 
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  • trance0

    Senior Member
    Slovene
    In Slovene, it is actually more usual to use the accusative with this verb, so exactly the opposite as in German. But the logic is the same. So, in German both versions are grammatically correct, but the dative construction is more common:

    Ich habe die Katze in den Schrank versteckt. *(1)
    Ich habe die Katze im Schrank versteckt. *(2)

    *(1) This version is more common in my native tongue.
    *(2) This one is more common in German.
     

    sokol

    Senior Member
    Austrian (as opposed to Australian)
    Mod note: I created a new thread so that we can focus on the contrastive aspect - German dative/accusative vs. Slovene locative/accusative.

    Ich habe die Katze in den Schrank versteckt. *(1)
    Ich habe die Katze im Schrank versteckt. *(2)

    *(1) This version is more common in my native tongue.
    *(2) This one is more common in German.
    Well - that's not quite correct, you'd have to change the verb with dative: either "gesteckt" (which would be better with a living creature) or "gelegt".

    In German accusative in this construction always is directional - a movement from A to B is indicated with accusative. (The same's the case with Slovene accusative).
    And German dative means that action takes place at location A (without moving to A), but it is possible to move in location A - in fact a movement is indicated by "verstecken" (you move money around, or the cat, or whatever). That's about the same in Slovene, right?

    (Only that locative with no movement at all should be the most common use of locative, but it would also work with "to hide + locative", right?)
     

    trance0

    Senior Member
    Slovene
    First, yes to both your questions. Then a question from me. You mean it isn't correct to use verstecken with living beings in general or is it just wrong to use the version with 'verstecken plus accusative'? In English and Slovene you can use 'to hide, skriti/skrivati' for animate and inanimate objects. If the answer is yes, then it is only possible to use verstecken as described in Duden with inanimate nouns.

    P.S.: I admit that 'stecken' sounds more natural compared to 'verstecken' even to me in my two examples, but I thought that using 'verstecken' in this sense isn't wrong grammatically or (at least not completely) idiomatically.
     

    sokol

    Senior Member
    Austrian (as opposed to Australian)
    Well, verstecken + accusative doesn't work in this specific context:

    - Ich habe die Katze in den Schrank versteckt. :cross:

    But this isn't a general rule. See for example:

    - Ich habe den Schlüssel versteckt.

    The reason why accusative isn't possible in the first sentence seems to be that the sentence then would have two accusative objects (die Katze - accusative; in den Schrank - accusative): and that just sounds weird. (Oh, I think that two accusatives are possible - but not for the life of me I can't come up with an example right now.)

    Anyway, it is good to know that indeed German dative/accusative represents roughly the same distinction as Slovene locative/accusative; only that it doesn't work for all cases, as we have established here. :)
     

    trance0

    Senior Member
    Slovene
    You probably meant something like: 'einen Lehrer eine Frage fragen'. As for your explanation about double accusatives, I am not sure. 'Den Schlüssel auf den Tisch legen' has two accusatives too and works fine, doesn't it? So, I guess it just isn't idiomatical to use two accusatives in this case with 'verstecken'.
     

    sokol

    Senior Member
    Austrian (as opposed to Australian)
    Apparently this form is correct! It is just not used much any more. I wasn't aware of it either. cf. here.
    Oh, it seems I've been lazy when reading that post.
    Strange, I could have sworn it is incorrect. :)
    You probably meant something like: 'einen Lehrer eine Frage fragen'. As for your explanation about double accusatives, I am not sure. 'Den Schlüssel auf den Tisch legen' has two accusatives too and works fine, doesn't it? So, I guess it just isn't idiomatical to use two accusatives in this case with 'verstecken'.
    Right, that's the one - "wen eine Frage fragen", we had that one recently. - So yes, it seems you're right that the double accusative just doesn't sound too idiomatic here to me but seems to be perfectly correct. (I still can't believe it. :D)
     
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