Mensch, pass *doch* auf, wo du hinläufst.

fabio407

Senior Member
Brazilian Portuguese
Hi,

"Mensch, pass doch auf, wo du hinläufst. Du bist mir voll auf den Fuß getreten!" (DW Deutsch Lernen on Facebook)

In the sentence above, the particle "doch" is used to soften a command, isn't it? Or is it used to intensify it?

Thanks in advance for your help!
 
  • fabio407

    Senior Member
    Brazilian Portuguese
    Thank you, JClaudek and Holger!

    It's really hard to get the meaning of this particle in some cases. According to a source [I didn't take note of it on my notebook], in the following three examples "doch" is used to soften a command. I can't see the difference in the given four contexts [the one above and the following ones] based in which I could figure out whether the particule is used to soften or to intensify the command. Maybe because in the following cases the command is supposed to be an invitation as well? [I mean, the particle "doch" turns a command into an invitation? what would not apply in the example given above?]


    "Komm doch mal vorbei."

    "Komm doch nächste Woche (in dieser Woche) zu mir nach Haus."

    "Kommt doch her."
     
    Last edited:

    ger4

    Senior Member
    German
    The functions of these modal particles vary depending on the situation... On top of that, combined with other particles or adverbs (or with different intonation patterns) some more nuances can be expressed...
    [I mean, the particle "doch" turns a command into an invitation?
    In this example, it is true:
    "Komm doch nächste Woche (in dieser Woche) zu mir nach Haus."
    Without doch, the sentence would sound more like a command: "Komm nächste Woche..."

    "Komm doch mal vorbei."
    Here, the verb itself, vorbeikommen, signalizes 'informality' and wouldn't be used in a command. Adding doch and mal 'emphasizes the informality', in a way.

    "Kommt doch her."
    This sentence can be interpreted differently, depending on the context, tone of voice etc.... It can express annoyance (i.e. 'Why do you expect me to come to you? If you want something, you should come to me!') or even a threat... With a friendly intonation, and (usually) adding mal, it could sound like an informal invitation - even though, in that case, Komm doch mal vorbei (as above) would make more sense.

    Mensch, pass doch auf, wo du hinläufst.
    If you combine doch with mal, the expression would be softened slightly: Mensch, pass doch mal auf, wo du hinläufst.

    In other words, it is hard to find a 'common denominator' for the different uses of doch, neither "softening" nor "intensifying" seems to characterize its function properly...
     

    Darth Nihilus

    Senior Member
    Brazilian Portuguese
    Sometimes we use our "mas" for similar purposes:

    Komm her! = Vem cá! (command, rather rude)
    Komm doch her! = Mas vem cá! ( softening the command)

    Mensch, pass doch auf, wo du hinläufst. = Meu, mas presta atenção onde você anda (porra!).
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top