1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "Sie haben Schlüssel."

"Sie haben Schlüssel."

Translation:They have keys.

January 23, 2013



Sie haben den/einen Schlüssel = They/You have the/a key. (singular)

Sie haben die/-- Schlüssel = They/You have the/-- keys. (plural)

So in this sentence "Schlüssel" represents the indefinite plural of some keys. Therefore, the only valid translation is "They/You have keys."

You is take as formal here.


why is it that,

Sie haben Schlüssel is not translated as She has keys

Asking since you seem knowledgable.

  • 583

Because the verb form tells you that the subject is not “she” but rather “they” (or possibly polite “you” which uses the “they” verb forms because it is derived from the pronoun “they”). “She has” would be sie hat, not sie haben.


No native English speaker would say "you have key". If there's only one key involved, you must have "the key" or "a key".

I have keys to the building. /or/ I have a key to the building.

The German word "der Schlüssel" does not have a separate plural marker, so "die Schlüssel" is only identified by the "the" word in the sentence.


Singl is also Schlüssel. Then it could be " you have key" Always need the or a/an?


"You have key" makes no sense to me, so in this case the only option would be "You have keys" in my opinion.


Schlüssel is same singular and plural so, " sie haben Schlüssel" is is meant they have keys


''you have the key'' also makes no sense to you?

  • 583

It does, but “the key” is talking about a specific key that has come up before, and only one of them. Schlüssel (without an article) is “keys”, that is, multiple unspecified keys.


Would the verb conjugation of "have" change if "sie" meant "she?" I would appreciate help! Thanks!


Yes. In that case (singular 3rd person 'she'), the conjugation would be 'hat'. Sometimes the only way to tell which 'sie' it is, is by looking at the verb.


Is there any way to say "They have key" in German and not "They have keys"? I'm asking because duolingo didn't accepted "They have key" in this case.


That is because it's incorrect in English. You have to use an article before 'key' (see comments below)


Why "You have the keys" is not good ???


"You have keys" and "You have THE keys" are not the same. e.g. "You have keys but you don't have the keys." might mean you don't have the keys we need, the keys to the apartment etc some specific set of keys.


Duolingo only accepts putting a 'the' in front of the noun when there is also one included in the German. Since it was not given as 'der Schlüssel', it's not seen as correct


how can one tell the difference between "sie", meaning "they", "sie", meaning "you", and "sie", meaning "she"?


It's the plural of "have". If it was "She has the key." it would be more like, "Sie hat den Schlüssel." So the use of "haben" indicates the plural, "they". My German articles may not be correct.


I'm really confused! Doesn't 'sie' mean they?? And what is the singular form of 'Schlüssel'??


It is confusing! 'Sie' can be she, they, or formal you (capitalised). 'der Schlüssel' is the singular, and 'die Schlüssel' is the plural, so that can be confusing as well because the word doesn't change, just the article. This happens with some masculine and neuter nouns (das Fenster; die Fenster).


So wait, when you have "Sie" capitalized at the beginning of the sentence, how do you determine whether it means "they" or formal "you"? Can you?


That really just comes down to context. Generally, in a story or something, the context will be obvious (either talking about people or talking to someone directly). In this situation of seeing a sentence out of context, it can be hard to determine.


Sie haben Schlüssel. Translation: They have keys. I thought "Schlüssel" meant "Key" and "Schlüsseln" meant "Keys." Please correct.


The plural of masculine 'der Schlüssel' is 'die Schlüssel' (no change in plural). When a plural noun is in the dative case, an '-n' is added (den Schlüsseln, den Kindern, etc.). You may have seen that form, which could've caused the confusion.


What happened to the "The"??

  • 583

There is no “the” in the English sentence, so there is no die in the German one.


Who would say "they have keys"??


I can think of plenty of times where I might say that he/she or they have keys. Do I need to be home when whatever group of people gets home from whatever they're doing? Nope, they have keys.


Does someone has idea where I can find all words connect with house on some free site. Need to find all genders. Thank you!


Some good English/German dictionaries online are www.dict.cc and dict.leo.org


It could be understood in two ways: 1) Sie haben - singular, formal : You have. 2) Sie haben - plural, informal : They have

  • 583

Correct. “You have keys” should be accepted. Feel free to report it using the flag button if it isn’t.


I wrote sie haben Schlüsseln and it got accepted as right answer.
Is that a bug or alternative pronunciation?

  • 583

It might have counted the extra -n, although technically it shouldn’t because Schlüsseln is the dative plural form instead of accusative plural which you need here (haben wants an accusative object). Maybe Duolingo just doesn’t know about that form because it happens not to appear in any sentence in its database? Not sure. In any case, it should definitely be Schlüssel, without -n.


What do you think is an error?


Is Schlüssel singular and plural?


Yes. This happens sometimes with masculine or neuter nouns, that the plural form does not change. The article is what gives it away: der Schlüssel - die Schlüssel ; das Fenster - die Fenster. Feminine nouns will always have a change in the plural, since both are marked by the article 'die'.

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