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    #1

    Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    Hello there,

    I am working as a German teacher in Japan. But from time to time I have to read English essays (written by Japanese teachers) as well. Since I am living here in Japan my English skills mixed up with my Japanese skills. Sometimes I can`t say whether a sentence is correct or not. So I found some sentences which a a bit strange for me. I am not sure if they are really incorrect. So I wanted to ask someone who knows English much better than me. What do you think? Thank you very much for your help!

    1) Goethe's works are the heritage of the world.

    2) Laziness is strange to the woman.

    3)
    He is helpless against these facts.

    4) There is no hero for a servant.

    5) All that he is interested in is interesting to me, too.

    6) Many people want to be a millionaire , which seems nonsense to me.

  1. Tarheel's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    Those sentences are strange to me too. And, mostly, pretty funny. (My rule is that it should make sense.)


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    #3

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    They are mainly direct translations from German sentences. For me as a German I can understand those sentences, but I have no idea how they can sound more naturally.

  2. Tarheel's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    Well, I studied German once upon a time (in high school, a long time ago). But I wouldn't expect to do well at it today. Anyhow, those sentences are not in German, are they? Now, let's get to work.

    First of all, you want to know how the sentences can sound more natural.

    I can help you with one sentence, thus:

    Many people want to be millionaires, but I think think that is a nonsensical ambition.

    There are many ways to phrase the second part of that sentence.

    The rest of them will need more work (from me). I will have to first figure out what the writer is trying to say, then I will rephrase them into idiomatic English. (Thankfully, that's my specialty.) Some context would probably be helpful.


  3. Tarheel's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    Quote Originally Posted by dianalein View Post
    1) Goethe's works are the heritage of the world.
    How about:

    Goethe's works are a gift to the world.

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    #6

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    They are translations from German sentences. There is no context. That makes it so hard not only to understand the German sentences, bute even more to rewrite than in English.

    1) Die Werke Goethes sind das Erbe der Welt.

    2) Faulheit ist der Frau fremd.

    These are the first two sentences in German. Even now they are not really making sence.

  4. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    When you said "There is no context", what did you mean? Surely you did not find these six German sentences simply written on a piece of paper somewhere. They must have come from somewhere - that's the context. It's important to name your source.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. Tarheel's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    Two things. The first is that I agree with emsr2d2. There has to be some kind of context. Nothing really makes sense out of context. Here's an example of what I mean: "He came to town and gave a speech; then he left." There are a lot of details that you need for that sentence to make sense to you. That's the context. In any case, I have another interpretation for you. (Read on.)

    For:
    5) All that he is interested in is interesting to me, too.

    Try:
    I am interested in everything he is interested in.



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    #9

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    Thanks. I like

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    #10

    Re: Some (maybe) strange sentences.

    These sentences belong to a textbook. I even don`t know the title. I`ve just got a mail saying that these sentences belong to a textbook and I should have a look on them. So for me there is not really a context. So my source is a mail from a friend using a (for me) unknown textbook.

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