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  5. "לאן אתה הולך?"

"לאן אתה הולך?"

Translation:Where are you going?

June 29, 2016



what's the difference between using לאן and איפה? Are they interchangeable in this context?


No, איפה wouldn't be used in this instance. לאן is only used when showing movement towards somewhere. So, "?לאן הוא רץ" and "?איפה הוא משחק"......."Where is he running?" and "Where is he playing?" The first instance could be thought of as "TO where is he running?" to make it a little more clear. Hope that helps! :)


Actually I wouldn't consider it too strange to hear לאיפה instead of לאן, though it would surely be colloquial. I'm not sure I never use it myself.


The word לאן is whither (where to; destination); but איפה is static location (the English "where" as opposed to whence or whither).


Just for the record, I thought I would mention that הלך is going somewhere on foot. If you go somewhere in a car or a bus, for example it's נוסע (nosea') (just remember it's to ride) or if you are going somewhere on a bicycle it's רוכב. In fact one guy went to get on the bus. Wanting to make sure it went to Jerusalem, he said אני רוצה ללחת לירושלים. The bus driver responded אז לך (So walk!) slammed the door shut, and drove off. Just remember חלך is go when it's on foot, נוסע is when go means ride, נוהג means to drive by the way, but riding a bike is רוכב . Why רוכב? Well it comes from a root רכב which is biblical texts refers to things that drag themselves across the ground, such as snakes, and other creepy-crawlies, and modernly רכבת means train, by the way. You can see the similarities. Oh, and רכבת תחתית is the subway as it's a train that runs underground.

I also wanted to note that if you want to hear the pronunciation by a sabra (native Israeli) or any other language, simply go to www.forvo.com, copy and paste the word there and for most words you can listen to a recording of that word. You can do the same for a ton of languages by the way. I just hoped this would help some people who are beginning their studies.


Are you sure about the biblical meaning of רכב? Just checked Even Shoshan; the biblical examples it gives pretty much match the modern usage - go on an animal's back (modernly it was extended to bicycle).

In the bible there's of course also the noun רכב /rekhev/ - the metal horse chariots which the arch enemies of the Israelites would have and the Isralites would not... (In modern Hebrew it was borrowed as כלי רכב = "vehicle", and even more modernly the כלי is usually omitted and we just say רכב.)


Do I "רוכב" or "לוקח" or "-נוסע ב" for bus? Or any/all? How about for train? Same?


For a bus you use נוסע, to travel. In fact I knew of one guy that was trying to catch the bus to Jerusalem, but wanted to make sure the bus that stopped for him actually went there. He said אני רוצה ללכת לירושלים to which the bus driver said אז לך!!! (so walk!) slammed the door shut and drove off. For cars and buses it's definitely נוסע (to travel on/by) If I recall it's רוכב for trains and motorcycles (taken from the word to slither like a snake but I would still prefer a sabra (native Israeli) confirm the latter. The word from train came from רוכב by the way, which is רכבת . I love Hebrew and all the permutations you can get from a verb. It's a very descriptive language. Of course that's from a kid that used to color toy scrolls when he (I) was a kid.


It's נוסע ב for both bus and train. Colloquially also לוקח.


"where are you walking to" was rated wrong, not sure if that should be the case


Some consider it bad grammar to end a sentence with "to." In this case it just sounds strange to me with "to" on the end. Generally we would just say, "Where are you walking?"


This comes from the myth that you can't end a sentence with a preposition. But in reality, in the English language, a preposition is a perfectly fine thing to end a sentence with.


I see what you did there. ;-)


Haha, cute. If you wanted to be absolutely proper though, you would say, "...a preposition is a perfectly fine thing with which to end a sentence." A bit wordy for everyday use, but you would never end on a preposition if you were writing a formal research paper or an article for a scientific journal.


As a scientist, I can confirm I have definitely ended sentences with prepositions. Even in formal reaearch papers, sometimes you have to. Sometimes, there are only so many phrases to work with. Of course, it depends on the field you work in. Writing in passive voice doesn't make it easy, but it can be accomplished if one has to!


What more than such a nice sentence (I wonder if more can be tacked on) to end the comment with can we hope for?


Yes, prescriptivism run amuck, unfortunately! If we cannot first describe how a language is actually used, then we cannot prescribe how it ought to be used—not without being unwarranted and arbitrary (in doing so). Some of our "grammar rules" have more to do with Latin than English. From my experience, Ancient Hebrew and Koine Greek break many of the same 'rules', as well! They're not alone. Here's a short, pithy article on this particular topic: http://blog.oxforddictionaries.com/2011/11/grammar-myths-prepositions/


It is normal to end a sentence with to in English. It's wrong many languages, but English along with some of the Scandinavian languages, etc. are exceptions to this.


It's not bad grammar, it's bad teaching of grammar. The rule was meant for Latin grammar.


Not just Latin. Romance languages too. And English uses relative pronoun phrasing as well. Sometimes people don't use them, depending on the case. At any rate, people don't say "Where are you walking to?" in English. They say "Where are you going?" A literal translation would be "To whence are you walking?", which sounds rather old-timey.


Romance languages all evolved from LATIN. It's ridiculous to use £10 words with a lay audience. How is that helpful?! That said, in response to your comment: So what? It's still OK to end a sentence with a preposition.


TeribleTeri, if you say it's "OK", to what standard is it OK? Does English have the equivalent of "La Academia Real" in Spanish?


Is it okay? Well sure, no giant axe is going to fall from the sky if you do. Sometimes it causes syntax confusion ("I have a rumour that I'm going to destroy you with.") Sometimes it's necessary ("She opened the door and walked in.")


is it possible to say "walking to" in English? I'm not sure about that =\


It's fine both to say "walking to" and to end a sentence with "to," both in a question and in a statement.

・"Where are you walking to?"

・"The beach is where I'm walking to."

This is admittedly odd sentence structure in this context, but on a technical level it works.


דע מאין באת...


לאן את הולכת would be fem yes?


This should refer ... To where


"To whence are you going?"


Exactly. You got it! This is the grammatical structure לאן follows. As you successfully demonstrated, English originally followed this structure too. For anyone that gets this mixed up, this is a great way to remember. לאן is basically 'to where' by the way.

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