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14:37 Aug 3, 2006
This question was closed without grading. Reason: No acceptable answer

German to English translations [PRO]
Law/Patents - General / Conversation / Greetings / Letters / Land register extract
German term or phrase: wäre
3. Nach Mitteilung der Stadt G sind im Baulastenverzeichnis die in der Anlage B 3 aufgeführten Baulasten zu Lasten des Grundbesitzes verzeichnet. Dem Verkäufer 1 ist nicht bekannt, dass diese Mitteilung unrichtig wäre.


Is the seller saying it has no knowledge that the notice COULD BE wrong, or that it IS wrong?
Bryan Saliamonas
United States
Local time: 13:00

Summary of answers provided
3 +4could/might beKieran McCann
1 +4was
Derek Gill Franßen

Discussion entries: 8



2 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 1/5Answerer confidence 1/5 peer agreement (net): +4
wäre (in this context)

...as in the past tense of "sei" (reporting what someone else said).

Derek Gill Franßen
Local time: 19:00
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in category: 32

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  BrigitteHilgner: Indirect speech - it's so easy to confuse people ...
2 mins

agree  Rebecca Garber
3 mins

agree  Rachel Ward
11 mins

neutral  Victor Dewsbery: So what do you do with the word "was"? Can't see how it fits into a meaningful sentence.//Your wording implies that it was wrong but he didn't know. I do not agree with this interpretation.
26 mins
  -> "The Seller (said that he) is unaware that the notification was wrong." To me it seems that someone else alleged that the notification was wrong: "That was wrong." "I am unaware that it was wrong. Are you sure?" They are merely reporting what was said. :)

agree  Rahel H.
4 hrs
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32 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +4
wäre (in this context)
could/might be

I agree with Bryan: there is no reported speech here, this is 'wäre' in the sense of 'sein könnte' not the subjunctive for reported speech. The construction is: 'the seller is not aware that this statement could/might be wrong' ie 'is not aware of any reason why...'. Brigitte's translation is therefore correct, but the 'is' can only be used because the construction of the sentence has been turned round from 'no reason why...might not be ' to 'as far as he knows...is': the 'wäre' in the original construction still retains the force of 'might/could be'.

The only way it could be reported speech would be if the document is implying that someone else has said that the 'Mitteilung' is wrong. But then 'ist nicht bekannt' makes no sense: it would have to be 'war nicht bekannt', because the seller is aware of it now. Plus, Bryan tells us no-one has made such a statement.

Note added at 1 hr (2006-08-03 15:49:43 GMT)

For the pedants (ie myself):

' mir wird gesagt, dass er Übersetzer sei...I am told that he is a translator': reported speech, subjunctive

' mir ist bekannt, dass er Übersetzer ist...I am aware that he is a translator': no reported speech, no subjunctive

' mir ist bekannt, dass er Übersetzer sei...I am aware that he is said to be a translator': no reported speech, subjunctive because someone else is implied to have made the statement

Kieran McCann
United Kingdom
Local time: 18:00
Native speaker of: English

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Derek Gill Franßen: But how can you be unaware of something that might not have been? Either the Seller thought it was correct or did not know that it was incorrect (IMHO).
16 mins
  -> hi Derek: I think we agree that your reading makes sense if a third party has indeed said it is/was incorrect, but that seems not to be the case, plus would surely require 'war nicht bekannt'?

agree  Terry Gilman: agree
23 mins
  -> thank you

agree  Victor Dewsbery: I'm with your interpretation (although "could/might be" is only right in the context of your explanation). As you say, the whole construction needs turning around.
31 mins
  -> thanks Victor

agree  Michele Fauble
6 hrs
  -> thank you

agree  Joern Gaedcke: Definitely not 'past tense', that would have been 'gewesen wäre'. I am afraid it is plain and simple bad writing in German (IMHO from a former teacher og German)
6 hrs
  -> thank you
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Voters for reclassification
PRO / non-PRO
Non-PRO (1): HarryHedgehog

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Changes made by editors
Aug 3, 2006 - Changes made by Marcus Malabad:
Term askedwäre (in this context) » wäre
FieldOther » Law/Patents

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