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  5. "Wir sind im Meer geschwommen…

"Wir sind im Meer geschwommen."

Translation:We swam in the sea.

December 24, 2013



Just so those of you leaving English know, "have swum" is almost never used in spoken English (or written for that matter), but rather "swam" would always be used. "Swum" just sounds weird but it is a word...

December 24, 2013


I failed this exercise because I don't know English. How humiliating.

May 3, 2016


Learning is never humiliating.

May 13, 2016


omg the fact that your profile pic is a thumbs up is the icing on the cake hahahahahahahah

January 4, 2019


Well, as for me, I have swum in the sea, so I guess it matters at what reading level most of your friends or associates happen to be.

January 17, 2017


Oh, danke!

October 3, 2019


really? Swum is the correct word? I would say "swam" everytime, swum just looks wrong...

June 30, 2014


I swim
I swam
I have swum

It seemed natural to me at least :/

December 26, 2014


Your example is very good. I tend to use swam and swum interchangibly, such as "I swum the race yesterday", which is not correct.

January 19, 2015


It sounds like wir sind immer geschwommen (by the way i am german)

May 14, 2014


to me too :(

January 6, 2015


So, "sind" could also mean "have"?

July 26, 2014


It's a little complicated.

"Sind" means "are"... except when used, like this example, as a "helper" verb with a past participle. In English, the helper verb is always "to have"... but in German it can sometimes be "sein" - usually when the past participle is a verb that indicates motion, travel etc..

So it doesn't literally translate as "have", but for all intents and purposes if you were to translate the entire sentence into a meaningful corresponding sentence in English, yes, you'd have to translate it as "have".

Does that make sense, or have I just made it more complicated?

July 28, 2014


Sehr hilfreich. Das macht sehr viel Sinn. Danke, ph516503.

September 24, 2014


Bitte zengator.

September 24, 2014


I thought that sein would only be used in a change of condition or location and everything else would be haben?

November 16, 2015


This article explains it:


I guess you would count swimming as "a change of location".

November 17, 2015


Nice explanation I must say. Also, if we use haben here"Wir sind im Meer geschwommen", does it make sense?

October 18, 2014


Ignore if this reference if you are anti-... but in the church, they say things like "Christ is come. Christ is risen. Christ will come again." English was once spoken that way too...

November 14, 2014


Do the German equivalents of those sentences take a different form as well?

January 19, 2015


I think this is like French, le passé composé. Être/sind and avoir/haben are auxiliary verbs.

October 3, 2019


What the difference "in the sea" and "at the sea"

March 20, 2015


I'm not a native speaker but from what I've learned, "in the sea" refers to being specifically into the water, swiming, surfing, sailing, etc. And in German it would be "im Meer".

"At the sea" only infers proximity. You could be at the shore, or in a beach house a few meters away from the sea, etc. And this would be "am Meer" in German.

May 18, 2016


Is that the reason why this is a dative case ? To indicate that the activity is under water ?
"im Meer" = "in to the sea" ?

September 6, 2016


In fact it's dative rather than accusative, because there is no directional movement. Swimming is movement, but there is not specificed directional component e.g. the sentence does not respond to 'Wohin'. If you said 'Wir sind ins (in das) Meer geschwommen' it would imply that directional 'wohin' sense and would translate more to 'We swam into the sea' e.g. from the river.

December 1, 2017


Why not: "we have been swimming"? I use to swim "continuous" ;)

April 17, 2014


My inclination as an American English speaker is to say, 'We went swimming.' I would never say, 'We have swum.' And unless it was a very direct response to a question such as 'What were you doing at the time?' I would not say, 'We were swimming.'

May 16, 2015


Why is no one noting that "the sea" is "die See". This sentence's dative construction of "im See" can not mean the sea. Rather "der See" means "the lake", yet Duolingo will not accept lake in the answer.

September 7, 2015


Luckily this sentence is 'im Meer' not 'im See' :-)

September 7, 2015


I'm glad someone else noticed that---der See is the 'the lake' and therefore am See must be 'in the lake.'

November 25, 2015


How do I know whether a sentence is in present or past tense?

June 24, 2016


Through recognition of the conjugated forms of the verb.

That's one of the more difficult aspects of language, no? It's why children (and many of my ESL friends) say "I sitted on the bench."

April 20, 2017


How do we know whether to use "sein" or "haben" as the helping verb? Is it just memorization or is it optional?

November 19, 2016


Memorization, but with the rule of thumb that if it concerns movement, it is likely sein.

April 20, 2017


Irregular verbs should be phased out.

May 27, 2017


Perhaps you might want to try the Esperanto course.

May 29, 2017


Sea was not accepted it said it has to be ocean

July 26, 2017


Why is it wir sind

September 21, 2017


Because Wir is "We" and sind is the necessary auxiliary verb when forming the past tense with a verb that indicates personal movement, such as schwimmen/geschwommen.

September 22, 2017


Would it also be possible to reiterate as "We were swimming in the sea" ?

March 3, 2019


"To reiterate"? I'm not sure what you mean by that.

However, in English, "We were swimming . . . " and "we swam . . ." are pretty much the same and are both valid translations of "Wir sind im Meer geschwommen."

March 3, 2019


Why is "We have swam in the sea", not accepted. If 'sind' also means have, then this should be accepted?

September 12, 2019



Today we swim. Yesterday we swam. We have swum in the sea and in the lake.

And sind does not mean "have". At all. It is, however, the auxiliary verb used auf Deutsch with the past participle for verbs describing motion. Z.B., :

  • Ich bin gerennen.
  • Wir sind gegangen.
  • Er ist gelaufen.
  • Du bist geschwommen.

English uses "have" [exclusively?] for main verb past participles. German uses haben for non-motion verbs:

  • Ich habe gegegessen.
  • Er hat gelesen.
  • Wir haben gesagt.
September 12, 2019


I was behind in my understanding of non-motion and motion verbs. I watched a Youtube video that explained it well. Now I am straight. Thanks for the response.

September 14, 2019


If you found the video useful, consider posting a link to it here so that it can help others.

September 15, 2019
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