I hope you don't mind me / my correcting...

Scholiast

Senior Member
Moderator note: Thread split off from here. :)

Gruss Gott
"Um sicher zu gehen, dass ich alles perfekt verstanden habe, sag'/sagt mir bitte, ob diese Sätze richtig sind: (I hope you don't mind my correcting your German a little bit. :))"

This is perfectly grammatical, with "correcting" construed as a gerund. But it sounds almost pedantically hypercorrect (a common feature of English as spoken by highly educated native German-speakers): here Umgangssprache would be "I hope you don't mind me correcting your German a bit", where "correcting" can be taken as a participle, but it is more likely in fact simply a grammatically loose colloquialism; and "a little bit" would be used where you are particularly anxious not to offend the addressee, or you are talking to children.
Ich hoffe, dass dies hilfreich sei.
 
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  • Dan2

    Senior Member
    US
    English (US)
    (I hope you don't mind my correcting your German a little bit.
    This is perfectly grammatical, with "correcting" construed as a gerund. But it sounds almost pedantically hypercorrect (a common feature of English as spoken by highly educated native German-speakers): here Umgangssprache would be "I hope you don't mind me correcting your German a bit", ...
    I agree that in conversation "me" is more common than "my" in this context. But (and this may be a US vs UK thing) I totally disagree that "my", in writing, sounds "almost pedantically hypercorrect" or that it's in any way to be associated with being a native German speaker; I probably would've written "my" here myself.
    and "a little bit" would be used where you are particularly anxious not to offend the addressee, or you are talking to children.
    If "a bit" is to be preferred over "a little bit" in this context, it is to such a small degree that it amazes me that you see use of the latter as fit for criticism. "a little bit" could easily have been written by a native speaker here.
     

    ablativ

    Senior Member
    German(y)
    I hope you don't mind me / my correcting...

    Kann man nicht einfach den Satz mit "me" übersetzen bzw. auffassen als:

    Ich hoffe, du hast nichts dagegen, dass ich ... korrigiere.

    Und den mit "my":

    Ich hoffe, du hast nichts gegen mein Korrigieren (meine Korrektur) ...

    Sorry, Englisch ist ja nicht so meine starke Seite.
     

    Scholiast

    Senior Member
    Greetings everyone
    1. Dan2 is quite right, "a little bit" makes only the tiniest of nuanced difference (and my remarks were not intended as a criticism, just as matter of conversationally idiomatic refinement) - but I suspect that coming from German, this was instinctively meant to reflect the diminutive in "ein bisschen";
    2. Gernot: if by AcP you mean "Accusative cum Participio", then "me correcting" can indeed be construed grammatically as such (but certainly not as an Ablative, Latin-style, me corrigente, as "to mind" is a transitive verb and, albeit often only implicitly, demands a noun or noun-clause as a direct object). But I am not sure that colloquial English idiom admits of such fine semantic definitions.
    3. ablativ: indeed your German translations seem perfectly sound to me.

    One might further suggest that - again, idiomatically - "I hope you don't mind if I correct..." is perhaps even commoner (at least this side of the Atlantic) than "...me correcting").

    Alles gute

    A footnote
    I now realise this is more about English than about German, so, Sir Moderator, I shan't mind if you wish to remove the entire thread [!]
    Best,
     
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    berndf

    Moderator
    German (Germany)
    I now realise this is more about English than about German, so, Sir Moderator, I shan't mind if you wish to remove the entire thread [!]
    There is no problem with this thread. This forum addresses problems in translating between German and other languages in both directions. Suggestions directed towards German native speakers to improve idiomaticity of their expression in English are within the scope of this forum as long as the extent of such hinting stays within reason.
     
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    ablativ

    Senior Member
    German(y)
    Would not "...du nimmst's nicht übel..." be slightly more conversationally idiomatic than "...du hast nichts dagegen..."?
    Yes, in this case it would be (more?) conversationally idiomatic to say:

    "Du nimmst('s) mir doch nicht übel, wenn ich ..." "Du nimmst's" is hard to pronounce.

    In colloquial speech, you could even shorten the question to "was dagegen, wenn ich ... korrigiere?".

    In English: "Mind if I correct ...?" or even "OK if I correct ...?"
     
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