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  5. "The hand lies on the table."

"The hand lies on the table."

Translation:Die Hand liegt auf dem Tisch.

January 18, 2013

5 Comments


[deactivated user]

    As the hand is part of the body and cannot be (lie) on its own, except the hand is disembodied, Germans would say: "Die Hand ist auf dem Tisch."

    Some German sentences in this context:

    "Nimm die Hand vom Tisch!"
    "Er hat die Hand auf dem Tisch" (where "seine" is implied) "Seine Hand ist auf dem Tisch" Maybe even: "Seine Hand liegt auf dem Tisch" But just: "Die Hand liegt auf dem Tisch" sounds very much like the disembodied hand lies on the table.

    Some German dialect: "Er hat seine Hand auf dem Tisch liegen" (I would judge it as not "Hochdeutsch")


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nahukas

    Why is not correct: Die Hand liegt am Tisch?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WolfStriker1

    You've got to use "auf" because a table provides a horizontal surface, which usually requires "auf." "An" is used more for vertical surfaces, like a window: "Die Hand ist an dem (am) Fenster."


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zhgyt88

    Why sometimes "on the table" is translated as "auf dem Tisch" and sometimes as "auf den Tisch"?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WolfStriker1

    Because "auf" is one of those two-way prepositions. "Auf dem Tisch" shows that something is positioned statically on the table, while "auf den Tisch" shows movement to the table. For instance:

    "Die Vase stellt auf dem Tisch." - the vase is on the table (no movement)

    "Ich stelle die Vase auf den Tisch" - I'm placing the vase, so there's movement.

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