1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "Sobald du siehst, sehe ich."

"Sobald du siehst, sehe ich."

Translation:As soon as you see, I see.

January 2, 2013



This is easily the stupidest,most artificial, unrealistic example EVER! The grammar is correct but it makes NO sense whatsoever in real life.


[boring conversation snip]

"Therefore, you're carrying a webcam around on your head this time."

"Really? That still doesn't explain how both of us can see wildlife if you stay in the cabin."

"It's simple. Sobald du siehst, sehe ich."


NIce try but no... in this case "sehen" would be used transitively so in order to sound like genuine German it should be:

"Sobald du was siehst, sehe ich es auch."


Just reading the comments makes me laugh lol


You are correct! I've seen your construction on the web before in an authentic German blog.


I think the fact that your example needs cabin-based VR and has webcam-related shenanigans proves the point about not being related to real life.


The English grammar is not correct. If you say, "as soon as," then the next clause should be future tense.


Not if talking about a concept (as in this case) or recurring events in the past ("as soon as I see a bird, I shoot him. Every time")


Ok. I see that.


Still does nothing for pedagogy, even the context is meaningless


As long as the grammar is correct, I see no reason to complain about the meaning of a sentence.

If you are looking for a really tough one try with this one: "Colorless green ideas sleep furiously" (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colorless_green_ideas_sleep_furiously)

Besides, I remember a movie that I saw when I was a child where a scientific and his vehicle are miniaturized and injected in the body of another man (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzkcSwlrdgg). Then the scientific, in order to listen and see what his host sees and also to stablish a comunication with his host, he conects devices from his vehicle to his hosts senses. I can imagine, in this context, that the host, after fainting and not really understanding the science behind that, he asks the scientific: "Can you see what I see?". And then, the scientific would answer: "As soon as you see, I see".

Final joke: "What does say an eye cell to his neighbor cell?" "As soon as you see, I see"


The comments are just getting better


Interesting comments. By the way, "scientific" is an adjective. For the noun denoting the profession, we say "scientist". That strange pronunciation of "ich" like "aich" could be a local variation or affected by the preceding sound. Ich sehe is the independent clause, and one would expect the pronoun to precede the noun, but as "Sobald du siehst", the dependent clause, is the first grammatical element, requiring the next element to be the verb, it seems that the second element rule takes precedence over the independent clause rule.


Actually, I like the setup of the sentence. First, it disguised you and you'll not forget. Secondly, it let you focus on the Sobald instead of the meaning of the sentence.


True, and examples like this are irritating - but I would suggest that this doesn't make them invalid. The more eccentric the sentence, the more one is forced to grasp the meaning of individual words rather than (to some degree) just guessing the overall meaning of the sentence.


Totally agree, just posted this same message on another sentence that people were complaining about.


Good point, I hadn't thought of that.


I made this exact point on another post (Raum ist teuer), i think they have it set up like that to also track what words are your weakest words.


It sounds like one of those sappy poetic soap opera lines.


Frustrated me, simply no meaning and discouraging. I agree


The audio sounds nothing like the answer!


I agree. I thought the last two writers were "sie leid" according to the audio.


I thought the last phrase was sehr dich after listening to it four times on slow and twice on regular


solange, sobald, what's the difference?


Solange - As long as (easily remembered.. lange, long) Sobald - As soon as (easily remembered.. think of the phrase bis bald - see you soon, bald ~ soon


facepalm I had never put two and two together before with sobald and bis bald.

Excellent point of reference.


Wow, great tip!! :D


Why not: As soon as you see I will see. (normal everyday English)


yea that's what I put because that's exactly what we would say.


Exactly! Why is "I will see" wrong?


The reason it is not correct is because when I say, "ich sehe," that means "I see." Ich sehe is only ever the first person present tense. If you wanted to say I will see, you would need to say "ich werde sehen." Ich werde sehen is the first person future tense.


In German if you do not indicate a specific time in the future, you can use the present tense. So say my German friends.


This is also why it is sometimes hard to translate into English as the same sentence in English Would have "will" even though the German's would say something different.


Why can't you say, "Sobald du siehst, ich sehe"? I understand that word order needs to be inverted for some of these conjunctions, but not sure on how to do it.


From what I remember, the general rule is that the verb is the second grammatical element of the sentence, or the second "slot" of the sentence, not necessarily the second word. (This isn't always true in certain idiomatic cases, for example when answering a question with "Ja" or "Nein" followed by a clause.) For this sentence, the subordinate clause "Sobald du siehst" in its entirety forms the first grammatical element, so the verb "sehe" goes into the second "slot" after the subordinate clause.


Yep, the verb is the last word for subordinate conjunctions.

I'm going to take a stab at this common question...When one action is answering a question about a first action, the second action is the subordinating conjunction. For example, I am learning German because I work in Hamburg. Ich lerne Deutsch, weil ich in Hamburg arbeite. The second action (I work in Hamburg) explains "why" the first action (I am learning German) so usually the verb for that second action would go at the end of the sentence.



From the little I understand, if-the second part is subservient to or dependant on the first part, the verb and the pronoun are reversed.


The audio is awful on this one and it's kind of hard to figure out what it means since the sentence is quite weird.


This makes no sense in English. Does it actually make sense in German?


It pronounces "sehe" as zee-uh and "ich" as eesh, but "... sehe ich." as zee-aysh. Is this the right thing to do with two words in German or was it ignoring the space where it shouldn't have?


That's what I heard. I really don't think it's right.


Here is a less literal example for usage of such a sentence: I do, sometimes, mistake friends for enemies, truths for follies, but you have always made me understand. You light my way whenever you find the answer; Sobald du siehst, sehe Ich.


The example dont always have to make sense at first read. You can always put it in some context for it to be valid. The point is you are learning how to formulare sentences.


I'm having trouble with the second part too, I hear something else entirely when she says "sehe ich". Does the sound for "ich" change when it's in the end of a sentence? "Aich" instead of "ich?

About the meaning: could be a mom teaching a child about mirrors :P


I hear that too, and also wanted to know if the pronunciation is meant to change from "ich" to "aich". Not sure why your comment was -1.


Why doesn't this sentence require an accusative pronoun? Sobald du siehst "es"...


It doesn't necessarily need one. One could be put in the sentence, but it stands as is.


I hear "sehe" like "sehr".


Earlier in this lesson, Duolingo asked that I listen to this phrase in German and type what I heard, in German. It gave a translation in that exercise that differs from the translation for this exercise. The first was "As soon as I see you." The second, the correct translation according to Duolingo, is "As soon as you see, I see," which is the literal translation. But is this an idiomatic expression in German that an English speaker should translate as "As soon as I see you?"


As a native English speaker, I would have translated this sentence as "As soon as you see, I will see." However, I typed it in as "As soon as you see, I see" as I wasn't sure if they would see "will" as correct or not. Any translation errors you see, should be reported and they'll look at it to see if they agree or not. Thanks!


Can someone explain why at the end of the sentence, instead of "ich sehe" it's "sehe ich"?


Verb in the second position rule; see my comment below.


A very silly sentence


Why doesn't the translation "look" work here?


Just in theory, can "wie" be used instead of sobalt? Hints say that "wie" is also translated as "as soon as".


"Ich" sounds like it's pronounced wrong here.


something like "provided you see, I see" would be acceptable?


This sentence is an example of why I much prefer my wife's Austrian pronunciation. S sounds like ess, ie sounds like ee and sehe sounds like sayhay not sayer - much easier to distinguish for my 'English' ears.


present tense can sometimes be used as future tense.
Wouldn´t "As soon as you see, I will see" also be correct?


I don't understand the meaning of sentens..can get some help pls?


Please correct the voice over

Related Discussions

Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.