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"He is not capable of doing it."

Translation:Er ist nicht in der Lage, es zu tun.

May 20, 2017



"He is not in the position to do it"?


Er kann es nicht machen?


not capable ("er ist nicht in der Lage..." or "er ist nicht fähig,...") is more like he lacks the ability to do it while "er kann es nicht machen" is more like he lacks the means of doing it.


Its basically the same, but it would be He can not do it. Now if theres any difference between He can not do it and He is not capable of doing it, it might be very minor.


"Er kann es nicht tun" is accepted, which I think is a better translation. Not being in a position to do something doesn't necessarily mean not being able to do it.


I'd argue 'he's not in the position to do it' has a different meaning than 'he's not capable of doing it'. The implication is there is something blocking it being done


I think "Er ist nicht im Stande es zu tun" should be accepted as a valid translation. It is in common use.


I think "Er ist nicht im Stande es zu tun" should be accepted as a valid translation. It is in common use.

I've added it, in both spellings (im Stande/imstande).


Kann man "Er hat keine fähigkeit, es zu tun?" sagen?


Fähigkeit is a noun and has to be capitalised.

I'd use it with the definite article -- but even so, Er hat nicht die Fähigkeit, es zu tun sounds clumsy to me. "He does not have the capability to do it" is not as "clean" as "He is not able to do it".


Can someone please explain how one is to know in what position to place the "nicht".


Here's one way of getting it pretty much always right, that actually turns out to be pretty easy when you get your head around it! (I read about it on the blog at yourdailygerman.com)

Nicht always comes directly before what's being negated, as long as you think of the "natural" position of a verb as being at the end of a sentence. That is, when the "nicht" is at the end of the sentence you're "really" negating the conjugated verb that sits in its usual second place. Give that a try on some example sentences and see if it makes as much sense to you as it does to me.


Now that's an interesting conceptual hack! I just think of it as "nicht at the end negates the entire sentence," but this one is kind of cool!

My father once complained bitterly that German is all long, long sentences, where you have to sit and wait for the verb at the very end to find out what they're all about.


"He's not in the position to do it" Is the best translation, I would think


No, that would be a wrong literal translation. "While "Lage" translates to "position", the whole expression does not.


Why it is "Es zu tun" and not "zu tun es"?


What about "Er vermag es nicht zu tun,"?


Bismarck would say that, but nowadays this sounds oldfashioned. Youngsters might not understand you, on a university discussion on a social science topic someone might talk like that.


Er ist unfähig, es zu tun. ...nicht in der Lage = not in a position to...which is a different meaning!


Kann man sagen: Er ist in keiner Lage, es zu tun.


I think that "he is not capable of doing it" and "he is not in the position to do it" can mean different things


"He is not capable of doing it." Can this be translated as "Er ist nicht kompetent es zu tun."? If not, why not?


What is the role of zu in this sentence?


Can "um" be inserted here? Er ist nicht in der lage, um es zu tun.


Can "um" be inserted here? Er ist nicht in der lage, um es zu tun.


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