Shhhhhh. Keep this under your hat. Some German verbs are living a lie, hiding a terrible Geheimnis.
This is a lesson from the VHS. Some verbs objectify a little oddly for our tastes as native English speakers. Saying “*Ich helfe dich” would earn you an urgent stage-whisper from the instructor: “Psscht! Was ist das Geheimnis von helfen?!“1
For some of these verbs, you can sort of see a reason for another object in the English translation’s use of a preposition. For others, there is just no discernible reason for these verbs to force their objects into case-drag. Continue reading
- Oddly, the German subtle attention-getter is not “Pßt!” [↩]