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  5. "Sie haben Bücher."

"Sie haben Bücher."

Translation:They have books.

January 22, 2013



I get confused with Sie (She) and Sie (They)! Can someone help me out?


You usually can tell by the form of the verb. For example: Sie hat-She has vs Sie haben-They have. You just have to learn the verb conjucations-comes with practice.


Yeah, sure... but how about when you don't have the verb. Sometimes you have to choose the verb, and it's wrong because it wasn't the pronoun you thought it was. What then?


In the question I got, I had to choose whether the correct verb was 'habe', 'habt', or 'haben'. In this case it is obvious that 'haben' is the correct answer (and therefore 'sie' refers to 'they') because 'haben' is conjugated as 'hat' not 'habt'.


This is actually a neat answer. Thanks!


If I'm understanding correctly, the difference between "hat" and "habt" is similar to English's "have" and "has" (ie. "I have an apple" vs "She has an apple")?


This actually helped me. I put habe in when it was haben and i didn't understand why it was wrong.


In the Duolingo world, for this excersice you could possibly answer "Sie hat" = She has Or: "Sie haben: = They have. I guess we simply need to see if one or the other is offered as the answer. There is no other way to know.


Sie and sie each have different Conjugations...so sie (she) words will end in "t" and the sie (they) will end in "en".but there are also some words that dont gave these certian endings. Those are irregular words and have a different rule. Here is a list of the conjunctions: ich=e ending Du=st ending Er/sie/es=t ending Wir=en ending Iht=t ending Sie=en ending

Ex: ich schlafe Du schlafst Er schlaft Wir schlafen And so on


Ex: ich schlafe Du schlafst Er schlaft Wir schlafen And so on

It's du schläfst and er schläft with umlaut.

schlaft is the verb form for ihr, and schlafst simply does not exist.


It depends on verbs


As an Austrian, I would translate it with "You have books" or furthermore "They have books".

"You all have books" would rather be "Ihr alle habt Bücher"


You are right here, but the problem is that English is somewhat ambiguous, because it doesn't distinguish singular "you" and plural "you".

Thus, if you want to translate the sentence "Ihr habt Bücher" to English, it makes sense in a German course to stress that the "you" here is plural, and the easiest way to do that is to translate it with "You all have books".


This is why Scotland wins: "Youse have books"


Try "y'all have books" on for size.


I didn't know there was a plural for you.


well, some countries have ways of saying it plural. Ireland: ye Scotland: youse America: y'all for example


American south. Y'all short for you all


Originally "you" was the plural form and "thou" was the singular but the latter has mostly fallen out of usage and "you" now gets used as both singular and plural.


Technically speaking "you" is the plural in English. Or at least it was until it got used as the formal you. That's why we say "You are" rather than "You is" like other singular sounds.


Ireland (south and west, excluding Dublin) wins, we say ye, apparently it was common in old English


You have books would be correct, though. Sie can also be used for one person, that you respect or don't know. Kind of like 'vous' in French when you're only talking to one person.


I was searching for someone to ask: how Germans call their language: German or Dutch, or these two are different things? You know, the first thing which student (who learns German from textbooks) learns is the name of language in cover page of the book. In Duolingo we do not have anything like this. There is no cover page...


It's German, or in our language "Deutsch", afaik Dutch is spoken in Netherland


Except Pennsylvania Dutch, which is more like German


It is German, just a dialect which has been isolated for a long while. They don't call it "Dutch", that comes from the English-speaking people surrounding them misprounouncing "Deutsch". It was also common for WWI vets to call the Germans "Dutch".


Dutch is spoken in the Netherlands, and we call our language "Nederlands".


Doh-echh (pronounciation)


I lost a point here because I couldn't tell the difference between habe and haben, and the sie/sie/Sie doesn't help >.<


Me too. I wonder why not "Sie habt Bucher" ? as Sie = Formal you here


At the beginning of a sentence, you can't tell the difference between sie and Sie, because the first word of a sentence is always capitalised.

So Sie haben Bücher. could mean either "You have books" or "They have books".

It can't mean "She has books" because the verb form is not correct for that -- that would be Sie hat Bücher. (not sie habt -- the verb is irregular -- as is the English one, where we say "she has" and not "she haves").

Bucher (bookers / people who book) is the wrong word in this sentence, though; it has to be Bücher -- or if you can't type that, then Buecher.


I get it. Thanks a lot.


I think the voice recognition is off. I said "Sie haben Büch- shit, ❤❤❤❤" and it gave me the point...


The voice recognition is terrible. I once hummed jibber-jabber and I got a point...


I was once completely silent on one, and still scored a point. :)


How do you all manager this, and i lose points because mine decides i didn't say it right when i did, out it flat out thinks i didn't say a word at all... >.>


I get that result sometimes too. I guess it depends some on the noise level around you, some on luck and a little bit on how well you pronounce and articulate the word. ;)


Same happens with me every time


Someone else made a valid point: not everyone wants to see cursing in a game for all ages. Perhaps an edit to your quite valid comment?


I should agree with you but please don't use that word i said they read books instead of they have books that makes noooooooooooooooooo sense @ all WHATSOEVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Why the translation is "You all have books"? Why not "You have books."?


I hate it i cant finde the diferens in her voice betwin habe and haben ( btw sry for bad english )


so the only difference between Sie:they and sie:she is the capitol?im so confused


The answer lies in the verb: Sie haben = they. Sie hat = she


sie haben = you have

ihr habt = they have


So how do you say, she has water?


For everyone who is confused: sie (she) - hat, wir und sie (they) -haben, ihr - habt.


I keep hearing "sie" as "wir" and the opposite. Any tips?


"Sie" means both "She" and "they" and the verb makes the difference. In this sentence we have only the option "haben" and not "hat" that it is right with She.


It's really a problem when the pronoun is at the beginning of the sentence. You have to guess if it is she or They


No you don't -- if the pronoun is the subject, the verb form will be different.

sie hat "she has" / sie haben "they have".

What you can't tell apart at the beginning of a sentence is sie haben and Sie haben "you have".


I had to pick the verb in this case.My choices were hat or haben. It was a 50/50 shot. I had no verb to guide me and had to guess.


Was this a drop-down list where you had to pick one option to correctly complete a sentence, or a multiple-choice question where you had to pick all the correct answers that translated a sentence in the other language?

For this sentence, I see one drop-down list exercise but the options are "haben, habe, habt" -- there is no "hat" in that list. Of those, only sie haben works, as habe is for ich and habt is for ihr.

If it was a multiple-choice question, I would expect there to be an English sentence, "They have books", and you have to pick the correct answers. If Sie hat Bücher is one of them, you could eliminate that because sie hat cannot mean "they have".

If neither of those is what you saw, and you had to choose between sie hat and sie haben completely without context, that does seem a bit unreasonable.

If it happens again, could you make a screenshot, please?


What is the diference between "habe" and "haben"? I don't get it. Don't they mean the same thing?!


They're both forms of the verb haben, so they mean the same thing in the sense that "am" and "is" mean the same thing in English, since those are both forms of the verb "to be".

But you can't just switch them around and say "he am" or "I is"; "I" always goes with "am" and "he" always goes with "is".

Similarly, in German it's

  • ich habe
  • du hast
  • er hat, sie hat, es hat
  • wir haben
  • ihr habt
  • sie haben

and you have to choose the appropriate verb form that matches the subject.


Thanks a ton!!!! :)


In pittsburgh we would say Yinz have books. This is the first time i'm trying to leave a post here, not sure how i will know is anyone responds, yet, i'm sure ill figure it out. My question is is it my imagination or has the app been avoiding using the formal Sie? Just starting, does that come later?


Formal "you" is indeed introduced later in this course.


My question is about the umlauts. To save time (admittedly a fraction of a second) i will sometimes write the umlauts as the letter followed by and e. Exp. Ü= ue, ä=ae. This is excepted about 95 % of the time, but occasionally not. Should i be paying more attention to using the umlaut, or is the letter followed by an e OK?


I believe that ae oe ue ss are accepted here on the course as workarounds if you can't make ä ö ü ß.

"Out in the wild", though, you should use the proper letters. It's really just a workaround, like how old typewriters sometimes didn't have a zero key and made you use the capital-o instead: they look kind of similar, but they're not really the same.


'Sie' means 'they' and 'sie' means 'she'. Am I correct? Please help.



sie can mean either "she" or "they".

Sie, capitalised, means "you". (It's the polite pronoun.)

However, at the beginning of a sentence, you can't tell the difference between sie (lowercase) and Sie (capitalised), because - as in English - the first letter of every sentence is capitalised.

So when you see Sie as the first word of a sentence, it could mean "she", "they", or "you".

You can tell the difference between "she" and the others by the verb form -- verb forms for "she" usually have a -t at the end, verb forms for "they" and "you" usually have an -en at the end.

Here, it is Sie haben Bücher with -en on the verb, so it can't mean "she has books", but only "they have books" or "you have books".


It seems t me this can go two ways depending on the verb I choose: She has books OR They have books. They marked it as wrong when I wrote "Sie hat bucher". Is that not, in fact, as correct an answer as "haben"? Why did it mark "Sie hat bucher" wrong?


If you came to this sentence discussion, then you probably either had a "translate German to English" exercise, a listening exercise, or a fill-in-the-blank exercise.

If it was a "translate German to English" exercise, then Sie hat bucher is wrong because that sentence is not English.

If it was a listening exercise, then Sie hat bucher is wrong because that's not what the voice said -- or at least, not what it's supposed to say.

If you had a fill-in-the-blank exercise, then the only one I see has the template Sie ... Bücher and the four options haben - habe - habt - hast to go into the blank. I do not see a hat there.

Also, bucher is not even a German word -- the word for "books" is capitalised (like all nouns) and has an umlaut: Bücher. (If you can't type umlauts here, then write Buecher. Bucher is a different word and means "booker" or "bookers", i.e. a person or people who book things, perhaps journeys.)

If my crystal ball was somehow incorrect, a screenshot showing your exercise and what Duolingo said in response would be useful.


Regarding the umlaut, I was unable to input it. Thanks for the "Buecher" advice. Duly noted. I did not take a screenshot as I simply input the "correct" answer the second time it came... I'll keep an eye out for it. To be honest, I had the issue a short while ago but can't remember the format of the question. Maybe I am remembering it wrong... Thanks for the quick response. That was very helpful!


Yeah. Sorry about that. You were right. "hat", surprisingly, was not there. I am not sure what I saw... Maybe I misread "habt" for "hat"? Thanks for the help! That cleared up a lot. Also, what is crystal ball in German? I wouldn't mind borrowing yours a couple times. It worked perfectly.


I too got confused with thw Sie as there is no other indicator to say whether it was sh


If you look at the verb, it will tell you what the pronoun should be. Because Sie can mean "she" or "they"
But then if the verb is "hat", the pronoun is "sie" or "she" If the verb is "haben" then you know the pronoun is "Sie" or "They"


I understand completely what you are saying, but as the 'sie' is the start of the sentence then a capital S is used and if there is no other indicator to tell you which Sie it is, when you have to fill in the missing verb, it could be formal you, she or they


That is true.

But formal you and they use the same verb form: Sie haben / sie haben.

And "she" would have sie hat -- but hat is not one of the options for the fill-in-the-blank exercise.

There is only habe, habt, hast, none of which would be appropriate for a subject of sie (it's ich habe, ihr habt, du hast).

So only haben works here -- regardless of whether the sentence-initial Sie means "you" or "they".


Haben was a choice and that is what I put in.


As I recall in choices like that, there will be only one choice that makes any sense.


Why can't I say "they have the books" rather than "they have books"


Why can't I say "they have the books" rather than "they have books"

Because those mean different things.

"the books" refers to a specific set of books that the listener can identify -- often, because you have spoken about that set of books before.

"books" is non-specific; the speaker might have a particular set of books in mind but does not assume that the listener can identify them.

German has the same distinction here: sie hat die Bücher and sie hat Bücher do not mean the same thing.


how can you tell if this was she or they


You can tell by the form of the verb. "She has" is "sie hat", and "they have" is "sie haben".


Would "haben sie Bücher" make it a question over a statement?


Yes, it does. "Haben sie Bücher?" means "Do they have books?".


How to pronounce Bücher?


How to pronounce Bücher?


Only the first of those sounds exists in English, so it's difficult to describe what it sounds like.

Listen to it here: https://forvo.com/word/b%C3%BCcher/#de

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