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  5. "Seid nicht traurig."

"Seid nicht traurig."

Translation:Don't be sad.

June 13, 2016



While I appreciate that Duolingo has added an imperatives lesson, I do wish that they had a little grammar blurb. It's hard just fumbling along trying to understand what makes a verb the imperative form. Is it just the verb stem with no conjugated ending?


    Depending on which platform you're using, Duolingo does have a tips page accessed from the lightbulb icon when starting a lesson: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Verbs-Imperative/tips-and-notes

    If you are on a platform without the Tips & Notes, you can find them on the unofficial Duolingo companion site DuoMe: https://www.duome.eu/tips/en/de

    Getting this far into the course, it is also worthwhile searching the internet for other resources. There are many out there, such as this: https://deutsch.lingolia.com/en/grammar/verbs/imperative


    For example, let's take the verb "gehen". Geh is singular (du) and geht is plural (ihr).


    The explains in (notes) helped me a lot have a look at that.


    i don't understand in wich case would i use Seid instead o Sei. Is it the formal form?

    • Sei nicht traurig = directed to singular person
    • Seid nicht traurig = addresses several people

    • Seien Sie nicht traurig = formal form, singular and plural


    This is a strange situation in Duolingo. It offered me a blank followed by "nicht traurig." Well, either "Sei" (singular) or "Seid" (plural) could fit. But there was no audio, so there was no way to tell which was wanted. I guessed "Sei," but Duolingo said I was wrong. It wanted plural. I reported that "something else" is wrong with this question, but knew no way to give an explanation except by commenting like this. Thank you!


    Why couldn't this be "Be not sad"


    Because that's not modern English construction.


    It certainly sounds dated, but I wouldn't say it was wrong.


    And what about "don't be blue"? Duolingo does not approve of it.

    [deactivated user]

      In German "blau" is a euphemism for "drunk."


      How do I know when the negative goes right after the verb or at the end?


      The rule for simple sentences is that 'nicht' comes after: subject, verb, all objects; and before: everything else (expressions of time, place, and manner, predicate adjectives, separable prefixes, infinitives, past participles). Exceptions: though 'nicht' comes before general time expressions (Ich gehe nicht oft.) it comes after specific time expressions (Ich gehe heute nicht.). You may also wish to place special stress when negating something, and 'nicht' can come before that object, for example: Ich gehe nicht heute (sondern morgen).


      Should it not be seid ihr nicht traurig, informal plural. Infinative would be sei. Never heard a native German speaker say seid nicht traurig


      "seid" is imperative informal plural, singular informal would be "sei" (i.e. it means "Don't be sad."). The infinitive is "sein" ("to be").
      What you mean is "Ihr seid nicht traurig", a statement (no imperative), meaning "You [plural] are not sad".


      Thank you for the explanation. I meant to say imperative. Just to make sure that I understand correctly, are you saying that it is ok to drop the ihr in the plural?


      If using an imperative: yes, the informal imperative is used without personal pronoun (while the formal imperative uses "Sie"):

      • Sei nicht traurig. (sing. informal)
      • Seid nicht traurig. (pl. informal)
      • Seien Sie nicht traurig. (sing./pl. formal)


      Many thanks. Strange that I live in Germany and I have never heard anyone say it like that. They have always said Seid ihr nicht traurig but many thanks


      Strange. The word order "Seid ihr nicht traurig?" is the word order of a question (Are you not sad?), not the one of a "command" (Don't be sad). Are you sure?


      It's interesting, but probably amounts to a dialect variation, which doesn't lined up with the textbook standard of language (which happens everywhere in every language). I'm very surprised @ThomasGhob that you learned it that way, because the correct (standard German) form is just 'seid' as @biertopf wrote.


      I agree with you, I learned it this way at school too, and also heard it this way when I was in Germany.

      EDIT : Actually I checked out my notebooks from school and I learned it the right way, I don't know why I remebered it wrong, sorry.


      Should the word traurig be really spelled with the final sound as ch? because I heard from a native speaker that when there is a g at the end of the word (lustig, traurig, durstig,...) you should pronounce it as a g.


      The "-ig" suffix is an exception to that; that should be pronounced with the soft "ch" sound /ç/. With other vowels (e.g., "Weg," "Montag"), the final "-g" is pronounced with a "k" sound /k/.


      -Copernicus- is right but kindly note that in southern Germany almost every final 'g' is pronounced as such, and not with the 'ch' sound.

      So both variants are equally correct, but used in different locations in Germany. ;)


      "Sei" is fine. "Seid" is the plural form, for addressing multiple people.


      you cannot tell the difference between sei / seid, lass / lasst, ruf / ruft at all with this new voice. Not on regular speed or slow.


      This one gives me pause for thought. I keep wondering (since these are imperatives) if this is a command to not be sad. If you were comforting someone would you say it in this way too?


      You might, yes.

      Or Ihr braucht nicht traurig zu sein (You don't need to be sad) or Nicht traurig sein! (which is also a kind of imperative).


      Thanks. Why sein on the end? Edit* OK just realised Sein is to be, in this case. But still, why at the end?


      Infinitives always go at the end.

      This kind of command using an infinitive is thus not a complete sentence, I suppose, since there is no finite verb.

      You can often find it on signs that don't address a specific person but the public in general (anyone who reads it), e..g Bitte nicht aus dem Fenster lehnen (Please do not lean out of the window) or Raum nach Gebrauch wieder abschließen (Lock the room after using it).


      I write Sei nicht Traurig and its marked wrong then later I write Seid nicht Traurig and it's marked wrong. Wish Duo would make its mind up on what is being asked and what is the correct answer. Especially since the question being asked in both cases is "Don't be sad".


      Other than at the start of a sentence, "Traurig" with a capital T looks wrong to me. Whether that's the cause of your problems, I can't say.


      Why is it "seid" and not just "sei", or something else?


      "Sei" is also a correct answer. "Sei" is the singular (informal) form, for if you're talking to one person, and "seid" is the plural (informal) form, for multiple people.

      For most verbs, the plural imperative form will end with "-t" ("Spielt nicht im Haus"), but "sein" is irregular and doesn't do this.


      Wurden "Sei" auch hier arbeiten?


      Please read all of the comments on this page. The possible forms for the imperative in this sentence have been mentioned several times.

      Also, arbeiten does not labour here... I mean does not work. Würde ... auch gehen? or Wäre ... auch richtig/möglich? would be better alternatives.


      I read, "be not sad" is no modern english. But is it therefore wrong? I would be happy, when someone could me the difference..... Thank you!


      So "be not sad" can be considered grammatically correct; however, because it is not modern English, it is not accepted. In the same way that English no longer uses "thou/thee/thine", or the "-eth" ending (like one might find in the Bible or Shakespeare's works), the construction is archaic or poetic.


      I think tha'll find tha not reight there Jess. Where I'm from thou thee and thine are often heard. When the virus madness is over take a holiday in the North of England. You might be surprised. Maybe confused but surprised.


      I should say that in standard, modern, English one doesn't find thou-variations. I know in Yorkshire dialect it's a bit different, but for that you leave out "the" ;)


      Not sure how thia translation is correct? Can anyone help me with this sentence


      "Seid" is the plural informal imperative (command) form. So "Seid traurig" would mean "Be sad." Adding in "nicht" changes it to the opposite: "Don't be sad."


      Why 'sei nicht traurig' is incorrect?


      Why 'sei nicht traurig' is incorrect?

      If you came to this sentence discussion, you probably had either a listening exercise ("type what you hear") or a translation exercise from German to English.

      If it was a listening exercise: your answer is incorrect because the voice says seid, not sei.

      If it was a translation exercise: your answer is incorrect because sei nicht traurig is not an English sentence.

      For a more precise answer, please show us exactly what kind of exercise you had and exactly what you typed -- upload your screenshot to a website somewhere (e.g. imgur) and tell us the URL of the image.

      Thank you!


      while i supposed "Don't be sad " was the expected result

      seems to me be not sad is a reasonable slightly poetic way of saying the same thing and should be accepted


      seems to me be not sad is a reasonable slightly poetic way of saying the same thing


      and should be accepted


      Please use standard written English -- the kind of language you would use for a school assignment.

      Don't use colloquial language. Don't use poetic language. Don't use archaic language.

      Just use standard written English, please.


      will someone please explain to me why half the sentences do not have an exclamation sign at the end? is it a duolingo mistake or is there some german rule i.m not aware of? this is imperative after all!


      An exclamation point is not needed in either the German or the English. It's just used to add emphasis, so it's never necessary grammatically. You can add an exclamation point to any sentence to show shouting, excitement, anger, etc.

      So an exclamation point would probably indicate that I was shouting "Don't be sad" or saying it urgently or excitedly, which is unlikely given the sentence. The period makes more sense here.


      So I answer "be not sad", not commonly used in English but found in literature. Marked down, why anyone?


      Marked down, why

      The answer is in your question:

      not commonly used in English

      Please use reasonably standard 21st-century English. Don't speak like Shakespeare or like a rapper. Just write the way you would in a school essay.


      You having a bad day Miz? take a chill pill, not the end of the world but thanks for your clarifications.


      Because Duo expects modern everyday English, not old-fashioned or literary English.


      Even though my answer means the same and displays an understanding? It primarily expects US English. I have no problem with that as the app is run and supported in the US. Maybe the moderators might consider accepting it, that's all I'm trying to say.


      Even though my answer means the same and displays an understanding?

      Yes. Because Duo doesn't understand English or German, so it has no way to know what answers indicate an understanding. It can only compare the response to a list of acceptable answers that volunteers have compiled.

      And we're not going to add dozens of literary, "technically correct", or otherwise non-standard versions.


      The problem is that, even though you know you understand it, the app cannot necessarily know that with such a literal translation which is not not used in common spoken English (neither US nor UK English). Using outdated or old-fashioned literary phrases does not display understanding of modern language. If people said "be not sad" to me, I would assume that they were learning the language, not that they were fluent English speakers.


      I was going to say something funny, but i saw "Stop the clutter" :( :( :(


      These forums are there to discuss the sentences (grammar, alternative translations, etc.), not acutally for saying soemthing funny IMO.

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