1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "Das sind die Lampen vom Balk…

"Das sind die Lampen vom Balkon."

Translation:These are the lamps from the balcony.

December 25, 2015



why "these are the lamps 'of' the balcony" is marked wrong? "von" means both "from" and "of" right?


I was thinking the same. I was thinking of a feature of the balcony and not a kind of lamps.


Can Das refer to a plural as well, meaning "these?"


Yep. "Dies(er/e/...)" can also mean "this/these", while "das" is often more like "that/those".


"Dies" can mean "this/these", but not "Dieser/Diese..." which are more like "this one, these ones".


Can't it be "those" too?


Yes, Das sind... can also be "Those are ....".


After all the learning, I am still confused and don't rightly know when to use "vom" and "von". The same confusion with "zu, zum, zur"


vom is a contraction of von dem "from the / of the".

zum is a contraction of zu dem "to the", and zur is a contraction of zu der "to the".

So the question boils down to whether a "the" is needed or not (which is often the same as in English, but not always).


Thank you mizinamo, that is very helpful. It is the 'not always' that I confuse myself with. It is like being a teenager again - should I or shouldn't I ;)


These are the lamps of the balcony. Surely this is correct.


That doesn't sound like a natural English sentence to me. What does it mean?


What's that light? THAT's the lamps from the balcony.


Would a correct translation of such a sentence be "Das ist die Lampen vom Balkon."?


No. Das ist die Lampen is not correct in German.


So, is "That's the lamps from the balcony." another correct translation of the given sentence "Das sind die Lampen vom Balkon."? (if not, how to say it in German)


So, is "That's the lamps from the balcony." another correct translation of the given sentence "Das sind die Lampen vom Balkon."?

Depends on whom you ask. I think we don't accept it here, as being too colloquial.

I think it's not good Standard Written English, and we would require "Those are the lamps..." rather than "That's the lamps...".


OK, danke.

So it means in German what I think it means even though I am not sure about the correct English phrase.

I wanted to start with "That" in the English translation to emphasise that I mean something general that is specified later, a bit in the meaning "That is caused by the lamps", having in mind a simillar situation as the first comment in this thread. But it is possible that English would use "those" anyway, I am not an English expert either.


This is a great place for English's genitive case (a/k/a the Saxon genitive).

These are the balcony's lamps should be accepted. And I've reported it.


That's not commonly used with inanimate possessors, though.

We say "in the corner of the room" rather than "in the room's corner", and so on.


I use it (and hear it used) all the time.

The car's drive train needed repairs; the city's transportation system is improving; this table's legs are broken; the milk's "best by" date was last week; the light's intensity is blinding; the razor's edge is dull; that jacket's buttons have fallen off; the house's roof is in good shape, but the walls have to be painted; I'm enjoying the sun's warmth; she wasn't happy with the room's decor; he felt disoriented by the hallway's angles; the balcony's lamps were too dim for reading.


is "lamps of the balcony" correct too?


Lamps tends towards archaic English. We tend not to say street lamps, we have street lights, we would not say balcony lamps, we would say balcony lights. Lamps tends to be preserved for old fashioned period lighting. So, a natural English translation should be allowed of "Those are the lights of/from/on the balcony." I don't think that German and English light and lamp map one to one as Duo has implied.


Street lamps does not sound wrong to me. They have reached the age of electricity here, though, so maybe going forward....


Lamps of the balcony is not English. We would say from the balcony or balcony lamps.
Example: A "picture of the balcony" is a photo of it, while a "picture from the balcony" is a photo taken using the balcony as a vantage point, or a picture which used to be on the balcony. A lamp of the balcony would imply a lamp looking like a balcony!


I agree with you. I cannot judge the German grammar (as I am still learning) but the English translations in many cases are appalling and we should keep reporting it as it is not acceptable.


If indeed 'das' can mean 'those', Duolingo does not yet accept it as a translation for this statement.


And the same, eleven months later.


It accepts it now. I just put in "Those are the lamps from the balcony" and it worked.


Can anyone explain the problem with 'These lamps are from the balcony' please?


"These are the lamps from the balcony" -- "the lamps from the balcony" is a collection of lamps that is known to the listener (perhaps you had been speaking about them before), so they have the definite article "the". In this sentence, you are pointing to some lamps and identifying those visible lamps with the known collection.

"These lamps are from the balcony", on the other hand, points at some lamps and says that they are from a (known) balcony. There is no implies known collection of "the lamps from the balcony" in this sentence.


I learned in school 50 years before: that is der, die, das; these is/are jene. But American is no English...


"Jene" is not used very often anymore.


I wrote these are the lamps from the balcony and told THOSE are the lamps from the balcony. How can i know These from Those??


the man pronounced the word Balkon right, the woman doesn't


I also found the 'new' woman's pronunciations rather awkward. Maybe she is from a different part of Germany with a different dialect?


I translated it to be: "These lamps are from the balcony." It said it was wrong and said the correct answer is, "These are the lamps from the balcony." There is no difference here except where the word "are" is located. Why did my answer get marked incorrect?


There is no difference here except where the word "are" is located.

That's not true; one sentence has a the that the other one does not have.

In one case, there are several lamps, and you are pointing to just some of the the lamps and saying something about "these lamps" -- what sets them apart from the others is that they are from the balcony.

In the other case, you are pointing to something and telling the other person what you are pointing to: the lamps from the balcony.

Two different scenarios.

  • Diese (Die) Lampen sind vom Balkon. = These lamps are from the balcony.
  • Dies (Das) sind die Lampen vom Balkon. = These are the lamps from the balcony.

Different in German and different in English.


How is this sentence dative?


sentences aren’t in the dative (or any other) case.

parts of sentences take cases to show their role in the sentence.

In this sentence, Balkon is in the dative case, as required by the preposition von.

(vom Balkon = von dem Balkon)


Why not: "They are the lamps from tge balcony"??? Duo says no...


Page down a little and see my reply earlier. It might help for both you and DynamicFox.


Would "Das sind die Lampen aus den Balkon" mean the same thing or would it be like the lamps were moved from the balcony and taken somewhere else?


aus den Balkon would not mean anything at all.

aus requires the dative case, den is dative plural, but Balkon is masculine singular.

And aus is basically "from out of" -- but a balcony is not considered a container that something can be "inside".


Why is those are the lamps from the balcony not accepted?


I believe it should read: THESE are the lamps from the balcony.


vom is a contraction of von dem = of the / from the (before a masculine or neuter noun)

Before a feminine or plural noun, von der or von den do not contract into a single word.


I wrote "They are the lamps from the balcony."


"They" are incorrect. Try: "These....."


When to use Diese/Dieser?


There is only one 'the' in the list given.

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