I put a letter into an envelope

  • Liam Lew's

    Senior Member
    I'd also use the verb "stecken".

    Colloquially, "tun" is also possible.
    Hast du den Brief schon in den Briefumschlag getan.

    Even in colloquial language I'd prefer "stecken" to "tun".
     

    ABBA Stanza

    Senior Member
    English (UK)
    Even in colloquial language I'd prefer "stecken" to "tun".
    But "stecken" also sounds colloquial to me, maybe because I'm thinking of the verb "to stick" in English, as in British English phrases such as "Just stick it in an envelope and bung it in the letter box".

    The second reason for me thinking that "stecken" is quite colloquial is that I've seen that the authorities in Germany (i.e., the Finanzamt, and so on) often seem to use "einlegen" instead of "stecken" in this context. Indeed, I'm wondering whether the latter would be used in Beamtendeutsch at all. I've even seen that many people just use "legen" instead, but again I'm not sure whether the use of the "ein-" prefix would sound better to native ears. Hopefully, someone on this forum will enlighten me ;).

    Cheers
    Abba
     

    Liam Lew's

    Senior Member
    Neither "legen" nor "einlegen" sounds good to me in normal standard German, "einlegen" sounds worse.

    To me you just don't "lay" a letter into an envelope, you put (stick) it into an envelope. "stecken" sounds perfectly fine to me in standard German.
     

    perpend

    Banned
    American English
    Ich benutze "Kuvert" noch, z.B.: Bitte, den Brief ins Kuvert tun. (Please put the letter in(to) the envelope.)
     

    Schimmelreiter

    Senior Member
    Deutsch
    Ich benutze "Kuvert" noch, z.B.: Bitte, den Brief ins Kuvert tun. (Please put the letter in(to) the envelope.)
    We should be aware that this meaning of tun is colloquial.

    With an imperative infinitive (I hope the term is plausible :)), I wouldn't use a comma after bitte.

    It may be regional but may I say that I love the zu infinitive in the imperative role: Bitte den Brief ins Kuvert zu stecken. (Besides, it sounds a tad more formal than the bare infinitive. I don't know, though, how widespread its use is.)
     
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