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"Wir befinden uns vor einem Gebäude."

Translation:We are in front of a building.

February 26, 2014

15 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CarolZaczk

What is the advantage to using reflexive here? Does "Wir sind vor einem Gebäude“ sound wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alpog

"sich befinden" is a little more formal, kind of like "we are located..." or "we find ourselves" rather than just "we are...".
„Wir sind vor einem Gebäude“ is fine though, doubt it would be accepted for this question, but valid nonetheless.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MichaelEhr

Would "We are before a building" work?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V2Blast

Sounds very unnatural. In general, "before" is not commonly used in English to mean "in front of" (unless you're trying to be literary or dramatic, e.g. "Before us stood the ruins of an unknown building.").

EDIT: Even then, "I am before [a place]" sounds weird. "I stand/stood before [a place/person"] would sound more natural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/raans
  • 2686

According to the "New Oxford American Dictionary": before (2): in front of. Yes.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/the_Morag

Bofore is a bit off, I would not use it here, because it is more towards coming in order of. "this before that" or "today before tomorrow", while "in front of" actually only refers to location, which is the point in this sentense.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alpog

Yes..... In this case using "before" on its own is kind of stilted. If you say "We stand before a building" however, that eliminates other meanings.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JeersMPGA

Is sich replacable with the accusative pronoun? i.e. Wir befinden sich = Wir befinden uns


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alpog

No, uns is both a regular accusative/dative pronoun, and a reflexive accusative/dative pronoun, and can only be used for "us".
Sich is only a reflexive accusative/dative pronoun, and can only be used for "him/her/them/you (formal)".

E.G.:
(literal translations)

  • „Ich befinde mich...“ - "I find myself..."
  • „Du befindest dich...“ - "You find yourself..." (informal)
  • „Ihr befindet euch...“ - "You find yourselves..." (informal)
  • „Wir befinden uns...“ - "We find ourselves..."
  • „Er befindet sich...“ - "He finds himself..."
  • „Sie befindet sich...“ - "She finds herself..."
  • „Sie befinden sich...“ - "They find themselves..." or "You find yourself/selves..." (formal)

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JeersMPGA

This makes sense, danke!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/c3230

So this sentence translates to "We find ourselves in front of a building"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alpog

It's a possible translation I suppose. But you'd more often see it translated as "to be located", "to be situated" or simply "to be (somewhere)"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/c3230

I meant the literal translation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SirCol13

Does "Wir finden uns vor einem Gebäude" have the same meaning?

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