Words of the Day – “von … aus”

Hello everyone,

and welcome to our German Word of the Day. And today, it’s actually two words because we’ll take a look at the meaning of the combination

von… aus

 

The idea for this came when someone recently asked a comment about the phrase “von Natur aus” and why there was an aus in there.
At first, I was gonna use answer 3b from the “Lazy German teachers’ Handbook” …

“I can’t explain that. It’s a fixed phrase and you have to learn it.”

… but then I realized that it’s actually kind of a useful phrasing that can even get you laid, or a raise if you say it in the right moment.
So let’s take a look.

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Kay
Kay
1 year ago

Hi

Nicht zum Thema gehoerig, aber ich war neugerig auf diese Uebersetzung:

Von meinem Bett aus komme ich jetzt an den Kuehlschrank.

Druekt man so aus, um etwas zu greifen? Ist dies dem “greifen” vorzuziehen? Wie wuerden Sie sagen: Can you reach the top shelf?

Vielen Dank

PeterB
PeterB
2 years ago

I forgot to click on “reply notification”, so I’m posting again to see if I get notified.

PeterB
PeterB
2 years ago

Could you please translate „Ich trinke das Bier von dir aus“?
I think I understand „ausdrinken“ (drink up), but what is von dir (is this the beer hat I got from you?).

PeterB
PeterB
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Ich soll das wissen. Danke auch für das Gefühl dieser Ausdrücke.

Wir werden gelehrt, dass von+Dative ein Ersatz für Genitive ist: ein Bier meines Vaters.

Aber manchmal können wir nur von+Dative benutzen: die Wirkung von Politik.

Ich soll mehr auf Deutsch schreiben.

PeterB
PeterB
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Danke! Das ist interessant. Mein Grammatikbuch gibt diese Beispiele:

Du sollst hier bleiben (obligation) = You are (supposed) to stay here.

Du solltest hier bleiben (recommendation) = You ought to stay here.

Ich kann besser den Unterschied zwischen eine Pflicht und eine Empfehlung mit “du” verstehen. Aber wie ist das mit „ich“?

„Ich soll das wissen.” Ist das eine Pflicht oder eine Empfehlung? Ich glaube ich meinte „eine Pflicht“, weil ich „von+Dative“ in meiner Deutschstunde gehabt hat. (I’m supposed to know this). Aber vielleicht ist „Ich sollte das wissen” auch möglich (I should know this).

„Ich sollte mehr auf Deutsch schreiben.“ Das ist eine Empfehlung. Also „sollte“, genau.

Wie ist das auf echtem Deutsch? Darf ich manchmal „Ich soll das wissen” sagen?

PeterB
PeterB
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Danke! Das hilft viel.

Coaching für Führungskräfte
Coaching für Führungskräfte
2 years ago

Dies war ein wirklich großartiger Beitrag, ich habe viel davon weggenommen. Vielen Dank!

Anonymous
Anonymous
2 years ago

Thank YOU man, you are really a star my dude

Banjolover47
Banjolover47
2 years ago

When I complete the quiz, the green progress bar stops about an inch from the end, and never shows me my actual score. This seems to happen frequently with your quizzes for some reason. Any ideas?

Banjolover47
Banjolover47
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Using Google Chrome on an Apple Mac Book Pro. This problem has not always been the case for me, but in the last month or so I have been seeing it with all the quizzes. No other issues, such as audio for example, have been noticed.

lt2240
lt2240
2 years ago

Wenn man Zeit hat, kann man auf den alten Leuchtturm steigen, von wo aus man einen super Blick über den Strand hat.
If you have time, you can climb the old lighthouse from where you have a great view of the beach.

**Could you say
Wenn man Zeit hat, kann man auf den alten Leuchtturm steigen, WOVON man einen super Blick über den Strand hat.

lt2240
lt2240
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Is it because you cannot use a wo-compound to build a relative sentence generally?
How about:
… alten Leuchtturm steigen, VON DEM man einen super Blick über den Strand hat.

Or is it maybe fair to say that “von… aus” is also necessary with locations to avoid the ambiguity in “von” that can be both “from” and “of” or is that mitigated because you have a Blick “auf” something… This is somewhat relevant to my research on visibility in literature, so sorry for the tedium!

Another thought – would it be fair to say that in the other usages “von… aus” expresses essence or predisposition? Are we getting into Protestant tendencies hiding out in German Language?

Thanks! Excellent work as always!
(Feel free to point me to an earlier post if you have covered something along these lines before!)

lt2240
lt2240
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Von Natur aus – that seems to get at a sense of “essence” for me – but at the same time, I can see that “by nature” would make more sense, because it is not Thomas’ essential being that makes him wash the dishes but his nature, which like all nature, has a bit of changeability about it. So I think I have talked myself out of essence… It is about origin, whether that is yogurt’s nutritional content or Thomas’ actions.

Thanks so much!

Kenneth
Kenneth
2 years ago

It’s good to see this post without the limitation :D :D really appreaciate the extra-donators, and Mr Emanuel, you guys made my day !

Zhao
Zhao
2 years ago

Danke alle, die ein kleine Zusatz bezahlen. Deine Gefälligkeit ist sehr hilfreich.

Raiean
Raiean
2 years ago

Hallo liebe Freunde und Freundinnen.
Danke für Ihre Hilfe. Ich muss Ihnen sagen dass ich Ihre Hilfe nie vergessen werde.
Ich freue mich sehr auf zusammen Deutsch zu lernen.

Aaya
Aaya
2 years ago

you’re really not letting the whole Parasite thing go, aren’t you? haha

Bosko24
Bosko24
2 years ago

Hallo Emanyel ich habe ein paar Fragen an dich. Und zwar welche Sinonyme benutz man in Deutschland fur Geld. Ich kenne die Kohle, aber gibt es mehr also was benutz man in der Strasse? Und welche Sinonyme gibt es fur das Portemonnaie. Danke im Voraus MfG

Isaque
Isaque
2 years ago

Hallo,

Im new here and I must say Im impressed by the quality of the content. Really glad to join this community and thank everyone who helped me to have a student account.

aoind
aoind
2 years ago

Standard marketing speak for “naturally contains” would be either “naturally high in” or “a natural source of”.

And perhaps more contemporary phrasing for “on one’s own initiative” or “of one’s own accord” might be “unprompted” (although that’s a bit stiff too), or variations on “without being told to”.

aoind
aoind
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Not sure I could describe the grammar but “unprompted” works here despite being a past participle adjective. Perhaps it’s a shortcut of the passive as in “He was unprompted” = “he did it unprompted”. “Unpromptedly” is not a word but “unpromptly” is, although it means something completely different.

aoind
aoind
2 years ago
Reply to  aoind

Thinking about this a bit more this crops up a lot with “un” words. You couldn’t say “He did it prompted” but somehow “unprompted” is fine. “The patient is now able to walk unassisted” is fully idiomatic, whereas if you wanted to say the opposite it would have to be “The patient is able to walk with assistance” – “walk assisted” is not used. God bless English, that’s what I say!

berlingrabers
berlingrabers
2 years ago
Reply to  aoind

I was thinking that there might be a tendency for that to be a “rule” for past participles used as adverbs with “un-.” But then…

– Maria made her way unhurriedly to the cafe.

“Unconcernedly” would be idiomatic too. But I guess, unlike “assisted” or “prompted,” you could use “hurriedly” and “concernedly” as adverbs (although the latter doesn’t sound as good to me as “with concern” or something). Hmmm.

Oh well.

aoind
aoind
2 years ago
Reply to  berlingrabers

It’s definitely not all “un” words – as you observe, some have earned their full adverbial “ly” suffix but there are definitely quite a few where the simple past-participle “un” adjective can be used adverbially. Off the top of my head: “unabetted”, “unaided”, “unchecked” (as in not slowed), “untrammeled”, “unimpeded”, “unhindered”. The common theme seems to be the denial or provision of assistance.

berlingrabers
berlingrabers
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

English really has trends more than it has rules…

Turtles
Turtles
2 years ago

I only did the first question wrong

Let’s have a nice Unicorn convo

E1: Von mir aus bin ich Schöne
E2 : Was? Du sieht aus wie eine explodierte Tomate. Vielleicht sollst du von dir aus aufrichtig sein
E1 : Von mir aus kannst du das sagen.

Turtles
Turtles
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

I did not mean it to Express an opinion per se. I meant it to like that example “Maria ist von Natur aus optimistisch”, but I guess that it doesn’t count when you are saying it. And mabye the adj was a bad one.

As for von dir aus aufrichtig. I meant to say that he should like be sincere (in what he does) by himself/voluntarily

Turtles
Turtles
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Ich notiere die Kontext von dem Aufsatz (aus)

Dankeschön. Ich noch eine Frage; Wie würden Sie die zweite Idee ausdrücken?

Ich versuche, zwei sprachüblich Sätze zu Schreiben. Ich hoffe, das ist keine Zumutung.

Von Natur aus ist er sehr Klug.

Von mir aus können wir Suppe essen,aber…

Turtles
Turtles
2 years ago
Reply to  Emanuel

Thank you. I got the idea now. Gonne keep it in passive list,but may use so I don’t forget it

Andreas Gugau
Andreas Gugau
2 years ago

Dein Englisch ist Scheiße!!!

Graham
Graham
2 years ago

I think a correct translation of „Thomas hat von sich aus die Küche aufgeräumt.“ would be „Thomas cleaned up the kitchen on his own“ (at least, that‘s how I would say it), but the English is ambiguous. Sentences like „He did it on his own.“ in English require some context to get the meaning. It’s not uncommon when the speaker realises that what he has just said is ambiguous to add something like “on his own accord” or “of his own volition”. Far more clunky than the German!

Ruth
Ruth
2 years ago

In places where cricket is played “von sich aus” would be “off his own bat”. A little history and explanation can be found here https://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/off-his-own-bat.html

Pentatomidae
Pentatomidae
2 years ago
Reply to  Ruth

Thank you for the link Ruth. I was going to suggest “off his own bat” but didn’t know where it came from. Such a useful phrase! But not as useful as “von mir aus” will be I suspect.

Ruth
Ruth
2 years ago

I haven’t read the article yet, just want to say “yes, please” to the offer to tell us about the Faroes (and the Faroese language?) when you get back. Have a wonderful time.

fairyhedgehog
fairyhedgehog
2 years ago

That was really fun, despite a total absence of unicorns!