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  5. "Generally, it is green."

"Generally, it is green."

Translation:Normalerweise ist es grün.

June 14, 2017



Why is the word order changing ?

I mean why not "Normalerweise es ist grün" ?

Does "normalerweise" change the word order ?


No, "normalerweise" does not change the word order. The emphasize does. You could also order it: "Es ist normalerweise grün." = "It is generally/normally/in most cases green."

But here you put "generally" to the front. Probably to connect the sentence better to something said before or to put more emphasize on the word. The same was done in German. Now, the order of a sentence in German and English surround two different concepts. English always sticks to the "subject-verb-object" order. It might shift it around in the sentence but those three stick together in this order.

German on the other hand takes the verbs as a frame of the sentence. The finite verb is (in a main clause) always in the second position, and if there is a second verb, it is at the very end of the clause. So here, the position of "ist" is firm like concrete. The rest can be made flexible, although it might create some stress in tone.

You might also notice that English sets a comma after the first word as if to underline that the real sentence starts afterwords. German doesn't do that. In spoken language, you would hear no pause after "normalerweise".

I hope I could be of help.


Thanks. May I ask, how can I ask a question? "Ist" goes in the first place? But where is the place of "normalerweise" - second, third or last?


"Ist er normalerweise grün?"

That is difficult to explain, if you want it brief. In this clause, this is the only natural sounding order.

"grün" as the adverb has a very strong binding to the verb so it acts here like a separable prefix. Hence it is pushed to the end.

"er" is a personal pronoun and the subject, so it is better very close to the front.

That leaves only the third position for "normalerweise". Which doesn't mean that it will always appear there.

In another sentence for example: "Geht normalerweise der Kühlschrank nicht?" = "Is the refrigerator normally not working?" or "Braucht man denn dafür normalerweise keine Schere?" = "Doesn't one normally need scissors for that?"

If you are interested in a lengthy explanation, try this site:





Please excuse me, I have more than a question mark about the sentence: "Im Allgemeinen ist es grün." Why is the "A" capitalized? "Allgemeinen" can be a noun?!

What does "Im" mean? "in dem"? so it is "In dem Allgemeinen ist es grün" ? so "Allgemeinen" is a masculine noun?


allgemein is an adjective ("general"); in im Allgemeinen it's used as an abstract noun meaning something like "general things; generality", so im Allgemeinen = "in the generality" with the meaning of "in general".

(A bit like das Wahre = the things-which-are-true = the truth or true things from wahr "true".)

im Allgemeinen is a fixed expression, though; you can't expand it to in dem Allgemeinen. (As usually, im = "in the" but in dem = "in that".)


What about allgemein? I thought allegemein meant generally?


You could say "Im Allgemeinen ist es grün."


I'm sorry, but surely I should be allowed "Im Allgemeinen, es ist grün." Does it really make that big a difference if it is "ist es" as opposed to "es ist"?.....


"Im Allgemeinen, es ist grün." is not a usual (if not even a wrong) German word order / sentence construction, it sounds like a too literal translation from English. In German you'd usually say "Im Allgemeinen ist es grün."


I see. I think its just one of those things I am going to have to learn and accept. Vielen Dank!


I wrote "Meistens ist es grün" and was marked as incorrect. Usually and generally mean the same thing right?


Not quite. Generally means most of the time (more times than not). Usually means with very few exceptions (almost always).


not happy about comment. this is not a question.??


You'll have to be more specific about your problem. No, it's not a question, but I don't think that's what you're asking. Tell us what your answer was so we can figure out why Duo gave you that message.

If you wrote something like "Ist es normalerweise grün," then putting the verb ("ist") first makes it a question, hence Duo's response.


I agree , i see the punctuation (a period) so i write it as a statement . But Duo flags it as wrong and shows it as a question. I don't understand...


My answer was ( Normalweise es ist Grün ) Normally it is green. Why is this incorect ? In the area you tap a word to see it's translation it even shows "es ist" so why does it show us this ? That just leads us to be wrong...


Normalerweise es ist Grün is incorrect because in a statement, the verb has to be in the second position -- you put both an adverb normalerweise and the subject es in front of the verb ist, meaning that the verb is now in third position.

Also, grün is an adjective here, and shouldn't be capitalised.

The correct word order is Normalerweise ist es grün, with the verb ist in second position, right after the adverb normalerweise.

Note that the distinction "question" versus "statement" in terms of word order is not in where the subject is (before or after the verb), but where the verb is (first or second position).

Here, the verb is in second position, so it's a statement. The fact that the subject comes after it is irrelevant here.

Ist es grün? -- Question (verb first)

Normalerweise ist es grün. -- Statement (verb second)


I used the term "Im Allgemeinen." Where can I look up the conjugation of that word?


You don't have to. The fixed phrase im Allgemeinen is the only context I can think of in which that word is commonly used.


Let me use words like usually and normally interchangeably instead if swapping bwreen them and marking it wrong


why is it written "ist es grun" ? wouldn't that be a question?


German puts the verb as the second element in a sentence. So whatever you put first, the verb comes next. Since "normalerweise" is first, "ist" comes right after.

A question would have "ist" at the very beginning: "Ist es normalerweise grün"?


Im allgemeine oder Im algemeinen ist es grün. Ist es nimmer ''im allgemeine''?


No. Remember that im is a contraction of in dem and thus includes the definite article. Any following adjective thus takes weak inflection, which is -en in the oblique (non-nominative) cases such as the dative here.


Why would 'gewöhnlich' not be acceptable here


gewöhnlich = usual(ly)

Gewöhnlich macht er das Frühstück, während sie duscht. He usually makes breakfast while she has a shower.


Ya, know I can only get my head around this by saying. German always seems to say things in reverse order from what I think it should. My Dads German friend told us that. When a German feeds His cow. "He throws the cow over the fence some hay. " Either Germans farmers are really "stark" or they say things in a different order.


Hmm, usually a German would "der Kuh etwas Heu über den Zaun werfen", i.e. He throws the cow some hay over the fence. The word order you said ("He throws the cow over the fence some hay." / Er wirft der Kuh über den Zaun etwas Heu) sounds very clumsy and would usually not be used IMO. I'm a native speaker.


Hope I didn't offend. I really like learning the language. However it is a challenge at 70+ and I was never good at English grammar. So learning "Deutsch" is real work. I have friends in Germany and they are learning English faster than I am learning "Deutsch" Oh well . My Dad's German friend was an amazing guy. He and My dad were real role models. Hard workers, good brains and common sense.


No worries, you didn't offend.
What is true IMO: German gives you more freedom concerning the word order of a sentence than English does.


Why ,is it in this case instead of ,it is? Lo


I'm not sure what you mean. The correct translation is "Generally it is green"; there's no "is it."

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