That would be "Sie kennt uns" ʒrd person singular. However, it could also mean "You (formal) know us"
So, given that the 'Sie' is at the start of the sentence and would be capitalised anyway, we have no way of knowing if this would be "You (formal), or "they"... is that right?
Indeed. And in spoken language (but not written) that is also the case in any other position. In written, capitalisation helps though.
Got it, thank you.
English seems to provide a lot of clarity with pronouns, which is missing in many other languages. This is probably why I'm struggling with it here a little.
For example, in Spanish they often don't bother putting the pronoun in there at all... so 'nos conoce' could mean 'he, she, or you' know(s) us'; 'nos conocen' can mean 'they or you(pl)' know us... I guess in comparison to that German is pretty straightforward in this regard.
Actually, English isn't very clear at all. Look at the word "you". Can mean one person or a whole group. And "we" can both mean "Me and my friends" or "Me and you" or "Me, my friends and you". There are languages that have different words for all these wes.
Pronouns are usually omitted in Spanish because context provides enough info to determine to which pronoun or entity the speaker(s) refer(s).
If not, the speaker is advised to provide enough info to disambiguate the context and to clear up any confusion that may result from that situation.
Agree with saschambaer, English it is unclear with pronouns.
I have another example: i love you, in spanish means te amo or te quiero, but English speakers use it to express love or desire with no indistinctions.
Or: me and my girlfriend and in spanish we are used to think about girlfriend as the member of a couple. But in english sometimes they use it to describe a friend which is a girl.
I thought it is capitalized since it's in the beginning of the sentence, How would one set the difference?
Good question... answer is you can't. You can only tell by context, which is pretty limited in these short sentences.
In written text its okey, but how one would differentiate betwn "Sie" and "sie" in spoken sentences.
It'd be by the context and verb following. In this case you would know that it was "they" being referred to as it's followed by "kennen", if the speaker said "kennt" then they would be referring to "she". However, differentiation between whether its "they" or "you" being referred to would the depend on the context. I hope that makes sense :)
No. That would be a question like "Do you know us?" German is quite strict in syntax and verbs only go at the beginning of questions. Also, Sie is the formal form of you whereas du is informal. This particular sentence could be translated as either they or the formal you with this verb conjugation.
They can both be translated as 'to know', but kennen refers to having acquaintance (ich kenne dich = I know you). Können refers to knowing how to do something, but also more generally means 'can' (ich kann das machen = I can do that).
It's one of those sentences where.. the verb determines the noun used. Sie capitalized is the formal 'You', sie lowercase is the word for 'She'. Since Sie is at the start of the sentence it is capitalized regardless of whether it means Formal You or She. So you must rely on the verb (and context) to clue you in. We don't have any context in these Duolingo exercises so I think they're trying to teach us to pay attention to the verbs moreso than the subjects.
“Take a look at this site. This is very helpful. http://www.vocabulix.com/conjugation/German-Verbs.html Type any word 'kenne' and click 'search.' And the click 'Show All' for 'Present.' You will find what to use and when.”
I think everyone is missing the point of this sentence. It CAN BE the formal you, theoretically, but in practice this would not be used in English. "You know us" would more likely be used as You know who we are. So the plural -en =they because in practice They know us is common. You know us is not.
I just answer this correctly and it said I was wrong even though it was exactly the same answer showed as correct