The tall tree stands in the forest. It has stood there for two thousand years. It has been taller than all others for seven hundred and fifty. It has seen hardships. It has seen pain. It has seen blessings, and curses, and rain, and sun, and all the other things that make life what it is.
And it can never tell of the wonders it has experienced.
I do not understand the point of all this debate. If the objective of Duolingo is to demonstrate actual conversational current language use, I can definitively state as a tree-loving and literature-educated native American English speaker, who has also been using German since childhood, the only way to translate "Der hohe Baum steht im Wald" this is: THE TALL TREE STANDS IN THE FOREST. Everything else suggested here for English just sounds ridiculous and it is not up for debate---this is how we say it, always! I dearly wish this incorrect Duolingo translation would be updated!
High or higher up. i.e. you can go higher up a mountain, you would not say "I go taller up a mountain". "The children are taller than they were before." You would not say the "Children are higher than before", unless they were climbing a hill. Which is why, in general, reference is made to the "highest" mountain because it relates to sea level. But comparing trees in a forest one can be taller than the other. High relates to sea level, tall is used in comparison.
You are right, Linda, "Wald" means "wood", in the sense of a collection of trees, smaller than a forest, often used in the plural. In casual speech, though, the distinction between "wood" and "forest" is often blurred. Did Duo not accept "wood" or "woods" in place of "forest"?
It's not uncommon to say that a fairly tall thing is "standing" on a surface or "standing" somewhere, even if it's not alive and doesn't have legs. That simply means that it is on top of some surface, in this case the ground. I could say, for instance, that a cup was "standing" on a table or that a tower is "standing" on the ground.
Sorry, I should have written "The tall tree." But "lies" in the forest would be correct. Take, for example, Treebeard's response in J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Two Towers," "My home lies deep in the forest, near the roots of the mountain." That doesn't mean that his house fell or had been cut down. It means that his house "is" or "stands" there.
A house is different from a tree.
You might say a building, a town, or something that doesn't usually have common options to assume different positions, "stands" or "lies" in a particular place. A tree, however, is not said to lie in a place if it is standing.
That's just how the language works.
Well, while "lie" can mean lie down, it also means that something "lies" in a place, or is somewhere. So, in this case, I have to go with winedirector, as one of google's definitions is "the way, direction, or position in which something lies." It is better to use "stands", as that is the action it is doing, and that is the way Duolingo is using it, it can be correct (if not old fashioned, like emiliamirova said).
Examples: - The ocean lies just beyond the forest - My house lies in the mountains - It lies deep in the cave
Tolkien used deliberately poetic and arcane language, especially for the Ents. It was part of his myth-making, and a way of signifying when characters like the Ents or Elves where ancient and perceived the world differently. While his prose is beautiful, it is usually stylised at best, deliberately archaic (and quasi-medieval) at worst. That's not a bad worst, but hardly an indicator of common usage. (Says the giant Tolkien nerd.)