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  5. "Du kannst mich nicht bezahle…

"Du kannst mich nicht bezahlen?"

Translation:You cannot pay me?

February 1, 2013



Ok, here it comes again..

Is this as in:

  • You cannot pay FOR me? (you pay FOR me, for my service) /ACC

  • You cannot pay TO me? (so you give the money TO me, ie for some product) /DAT

Is there a difference in these two situations in German? How would it be?

In my native language (Czech), there is. I'm just trying to get it.

Thank you!


Danke schon. (Und dein Deutsch und Englisch sind sehr gut und Sie kennen Tschechisch auch! That inspires me mehr Deutsch lernen!)



Du kannst mich nicht bezahlen? = You cannot pay me? = You cannot pay for me? = Nemůžeš mě zaplatit? (CZ)


Du kannst mir nicht bezahlen? = You cannot pay to me? = Nemůžeš mi zaplatit?(CZ)

I think in EN/DE the logic is the same as in Czech: you will use Accusativ is the person is too expensive for you and Dative is you can allow to pay that person, but there is for example some technical problem (the bank is closed, you forget the account number, ...)


This is weired. In czech "nemuzem mi/me zaplatit" is the same sentence just "mi" being more formal meaning "you cannot pay TO me". So what does german sentence really mean? He cannot pay TO or For the speaking man?


No, "mi/mně" and "mě" are not the same. The first indicates dative/locative (in Czech 3rd and 6th case) and the latter genitive/accusative (2nd and 4th case).

German follows the same logic but has less cases, fortunately for us :)


As a native American, it means to pay somebody, as their income or a deal. Just asking for deserved money.


I'd like to know this too.


It doesn't say "für" so no, it is not "pay FOR me"


And yet in earlier lessons where we learned the verb bezahlen it was almost always translated in English as "to pay for." The sentences were in the travel section... I remember something like "Wir bezahlen den Mietwagen." It wouldn't make any sense to pay the rental car directly... You pay FOR the service... Unless maybe rental cars in Europe are coin-operated? Maybe the sentence was "Wir bezahlen die Reise." Either way, für was not in the sentence, and yet the English translation put it there... Which means it was implied by the verb... Which makes the original question here appropriate.


To pay for (the object that is being purchased), not paying, kindly for someone else. For here has 2 meanings, i suppose.


well, respectfully, there must be some confusion here, as You cannot pay for me is accepted. And the drop-down menu give to pay, or to pay for as possible solutions. I wish a native speaker could clarify the very first question on this page. I am not getting it yet...


I though bezahlen meant to pay for?

  • 2298

It means "pay".

Ich bezahle dich. -- I pay you.

Wir bezahlen alles. -- We pay (for) everything.

Wir bezahlen nicht. -- We're not paying.


Wouldn't the first one be "Ich bezahle dich?"

  • 2298

Yes, you're correct. l made the mistake a few weeks after I started learning German. Sorry!!


Ah. There seem to be a few intricacies with German grammar that I don't get, so I just wanted to make sure it wasn't some weird contextual thing.


Then a 351 day streak and 25 level German (!!!) deserves a Lingot :)


Now @RaineyM is 800! Das ist toll!


Why is it "Du kannst" and not "Kannst du"? Since it is a question don't we switch them?


Not if the speaker is repeating another person’s statement, as if they can’t believe what they heard. “I ordered these things for you, and... You cannot pay me?” or some situation like that.


From http://www.dwds.de/?qu=bezahlenview=1

-2- jmdn. bezahlen ♦ jmdm. für etw. Geld zahlen, jmdn. entlohnen

It means that "bezahlen jemanden" (AKK) means to pay somebody, it takes AKK instead of DAT


can't you pay me? i guess would be the one as in english, for what I know you never start a question with the subject though.


No, both are okay; the difference is in the emphasis. I'm not sure how to go into more detail...

"Hey, my company is going through a difficult time, and my bills are stacking up, and..." "[So] You can't pay me?" or "Are you saying you can't pay me?"

Whereas the other one would be more like a request out of the blue

"Can't (or can, both will work) you pay me those 50 bucks back?"


What's the difference between "zahlen" and "bezahlen"?


When I clicked on 'bezahlen' because I forgot the meaning, the drop down menu gave me 3 choices: 'pay', 'PAY FOR' & 'paying'. I chose 'pay for' & got it wrong. That's what's confusing & frustrating.


Well, it seems now I can start my mafia family in Germany.


To quote DL- Du kannst nicht "nein" sagen


So if you cannot say you cannot pay for me, how would you say that?


NAAAH after reading all the posts this sentence is even more confusing Im going to report Some native german please clarify PAY TO or PAY FOR the person?


It’s accusative. Therefore you are paying the person directly.


So if I want to say "You cannot pay (s.th.) for me?", would that be "Du kannst mir (etwas) nicht bezahlen?"


In English, should we say "pay me" or "pay for me"? Need native speaker.


Well, we say both, but it depends on context.

If you and I went to a restaurant and I offered to pay for the whole bill, I would be "paying for you".

I might say to you, "It's ok, I will get this. I will pay for you".

On the other hand, if you were the waiter/waitress and I was paying the bill (handing you the money), I would be "paying you".

So to get the waiter/waitress' attention, so I can pay: "Excuse me Sir/Miss, may I pay you"


So for the above german sentence, it can be translated to "You cannot pay for me?" I don't know why Duolingo is sticking on "pay me" for that sentence.


No, in that case that would have a different meaning.

"You cannot pay for me?" would be like in a restaurant situation, when you were hoping the person might cover your part of the bill/check.

"You cannot pay me?" is like a situation with a loan-shark :)


Well "You cannot pay for me?" could also mean that you cannot give money in exchange for me. I always thought that's what bezahlen means, although it seems weird in this sentence.


This sentence is a question. Then why Duo can simply make it Kannst du mich nicht bezahlen? I understand it is possible to say but they are usually strict about the grammar and then this? In English again it is possible to say You cannot pay me? but usually we say Can't you pay me? Or is it normal for German to say? It is a bit confusing to me. I hear people say Du kannst mich nicht bezahlen, oder? but without oder it looks not right. Opinion from native?


Pleeeeeease dou , please , what about all these (questions mark ) without any resoan ? Somtimes it makes you think wrong way ? As you try to make it as question , but indeed it is not , and adding (?) Is agrammer mistake . Any suggestions ?


The question mark is there to make the sentence a question. And I'm not even kidding.


Hhhhhhh really , But what about translation in eng. It is not a question , you cannot pay me !


Actually, if you put the question mark there, it is a question.


So when i talk to someone how would you recognize that


By rising intonation at the end of the sentence.


Is this person serious? I don't think English is their first language... (not to be rude)


I understand your confusion. Look up "rhetorical question."

Also, imagine it in this scenario:

Person 1: your bill is $100. Person 2: I can not pay you. Person 1: You can not pay me? Person 2: no.

You might repeat a statement back as a question in order to verify it. The tone you use has a great effect, though, so doing this can sound angry ( "you crashed my car?!?") Or excited ( "you won a million dollars?!?")


It can absolutely be a question. English is my first language and I have occasionally asked similar questions. It's all about the intonation.


this sentence sounds wierd..please check it


sounds fine to me.


Does not "pay me" imply Dative case? I'd say "mich bezahlen" is "to pay for me" and "pay me" would be "mir bezahlen".


"Jemanden bezahlen" takes the accusative.


Can't it be "jemandem bezahlen"?


wenn Sie mir 100 Euro bezahlen, verrate ich alles!


'jemanden bezahlen' means 'to pay somebody'. 'jemandem etwas bezahlen' means 'to pay for something to somebody'. If you only have a direct object, it must be accusative in German. (Second entry in Pons)

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