Forum Rocket German German Feedback and Comments Spätestens am Flughafen würdest du dann aber doch geschnappt.

Spätestens am Flughafen würdest du dann aber doch geschnappt.

sfpugh

sfpugh

From 11.1
Spätestens am Flughafen würdest du dann aber doch geschnappt.
At the last minute you'd go to the airport but then you'd get caught. (casual, singular)

I think the translation could be improved.
Doesn't it really mean something this:
At the latest  you would get caught at the airport.

Maybe you could add  "definitely/certainly get caught" for the modal particles aber &  doch
Am I right about that?
Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

Hallo sfpugh!

Thanks very much for noticing this! You're right, a closer translation would be something like "At the latest you would indeed get caught at the airport" or, more naturally, "You're bound to be caught at the airport at the latest." (The modal particles are closer to "indeed" than to "certainly/definitely" here.)

As a matter of fact, there is a small error in the German here. It should be Spätestens am Flughafen würdest du dann aber doch geschnappt werden - the added werden is needed for the passive construction to be complete. I will pass this on to have it and the translation fixed!

Viele Grüße, 

Liss
sfpugh

sfpugh

Thank you. I did not spot the missing werden. Is it something that could be left out in conversation or is it a definite error?
Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

Bitte! 

It is indeed an error, unfortunately - without werden, the sentence isn't properly passive, so it doesn't quite make sense. 

Tschüss!

Liss
sfpugh

sfpugh

Thank you, I suppose I thought that würdest du....​ geschnappt  was what made it passive -You would be ... caught.

How does the sentence work grammatically. Does würdest make it Konjunktiv II and geschnappt werden make it passive?
Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

Hallo sfpugh,
 
I apologize for the confusion! We have taken a second look at this and have found that we were too hasty in declaring this an error: ultimately, we've determined that the second werden is in fact optional, rather than mandatory.
 
To explain our reasoning in full (as it may be useful to know when speaking with some native speakers):
 
Essentially, what is happening is that würdest is the Konjunktiv II Präteritum of werden, AND, in colloquial speech, it can be used as a modal verb to turn any verb into Konjunktiv II  - this latter format is normally used for verbs that don't have a Konjunktiv II Präteritum form that is colloquially used (e.g. essen - you would normally say ich würde essen instead of ich äße).
 
For verbs that do have a common Konjunktiv II Präteritum form, like haben, you would normally say ich hätte, but you could also say ich würde haben to achieve the same meaning. It isn't necessary, however, and it's better to stick with the most common form, which in this case would be hätte. So this is the same thing that has happened on our end here: some native speakers might say ich würde werden to put werden into Konjunktiv II, but this isn't necessary: ich würde has the exact same meaning. This is how you may hear a native speaker comfortably say something like ich würde geschnappt werden - to their ears, this sounds like the accurate and complete passive form. Grammatically, though, the werden is redundant.
 
So, ultimately, the original sentence, Spätestens am Flughafen würdest du dann aber doch geschnappt, is indeed grammatically correct, and the werden isn't actually necessary. As you had suspected, the passive is already clearly indicated by the use of würdest + geschnappt

My apologies once again for causing you confusion and for our initial error! I hope that this clears everything up.

Liss
sfpugh

sfpugh

Thank you, it's all clear now.

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