Translation:There is a chair behind me.
Dont forget that we've seen this kanji before! Its the kanji in 午後 for "p.m" or literally "after noon". The kanji for "after" is the same as "behind", 後。Hope this helped. I nearly cried when i realised it.
I knew it was familiar but i can never connect the dots, at least not yet... Thank you!
I think they don't see ushiro as "after", I think they see it as the sun being "behind now" when the time marks 12:01
I feel people are struggling a lot with context. Now maybe I've set up a wrong understanding but the way I see it: if we don't have context (which we usually don't here because we get only one sentence) always asume "I" (the speaker talking about oneself). I understand that with a conversational language that often omits the person being talked to and is heavily influenced by context even for things like "is there multiple of the object" it'd be good practice to have the different possible versions of the sentence. However, I feel that's due to the limits of the Duolingo studying model.
Exactly. See Japanese pride themselves on inferred meaning. Incomplete sentences abound and the listener must solve the problem of what the subject is. You will see this all the time in conversation. It's like a conversational game for them. So, without any context clues ask yourself, what subject would go with this sentence most of the time. This isn't a limitation to duolingo as much as it is people trying to impose an English thought process on Japanese constructs. The Japanese leave out subjects where they think you can infer them. Hope this helps.
I think the limitation is Duolingo's lack of context. What you describe is interesting, but not applicable to this learning experience.
I'm interested in seeing that in action, but single sentences do not give us a problem to solve. We're just left randomly assigning the subject as whatever we want.
If Duo had a conversation option in Japanese, they could probably better convey this unique aspect of the language, but given current limitations, users are just sure to be left confused as to why none of these sentences have subjects, and that's unfortunate.
Reading the comments has helped me a lot on this, but comments can't be an the complete solution to this.
It's not saying that something is behind the chair though. It's saying that the chair is behind something (or someone) - most likely the speaker.
Without context, this sentence is odd. What makes the meaning "behind you" ? Why not - The chairs are in front of the stage. No. The chairs are behind.
As the other guy kinda wrote rudely. Most pronouns are implied. For example あね would be my sister whereas おねさん would say mostly your or someone elses sister since we got the お for politeness in front.
- There's no word for stage. 2. うしろ means behind/after not in front.
As it stands the Japanese literally means, if we break it down - あります there is, いす が a chair, 後ろに behind.... behind who/what? 私 の is implied because the speaker is talking about where the chair is in relation to her/himself.
How would i say "I am behind the chair"?
Not having these sort of things side by side really messes with my dyslexia lol
"I am behind a chair" would be 私は椅子の後ろにいます｡ (わたし は いす の うしろ に います。) Saying that you are behind something really changes up the sentece as compared to saying "there is something behind (me [implied])". You could omit the わたしは and have the meaning not change though.
I don't understand why "me" is implicit, and in what cases this apply?
Because the speaker is talking about where the chair is in relation to themselves - if the soaker was taking about where the chair is in relation to someone else or something wise then they would specify that because it wouldn't be something you could determine from context eg. あなたの後ろ - behind you, テベルの後ろ - behind the table
Sorry - soaker is meant to be speaker but I can't edit comments on my phone :'(
In (ni) the position of behind (ushiro), the chair is (arimasu). The chair (isu) (we know chair is the subject because of ga) is behind. Behind who? Behind me (assuming the unmentioned topic (wa) is the speaker, watashi).
Also because of the choice of verb - あります, if the speaker was talking about themselves the verb would have to be います.
I think there is just a higher chance you are telling the listener about what is behind them, because people generally do not know what is behind them at all times.
If this were in fact a real conversation, I doubt it would be this confusing
So, I got screwed up and said "I am behind the chair." What would that look like, for a bit of reference?
椅子の後ろに(私が)います。I'm behind the chair.
(私の)後ろに椅子があります。the chair is behind me.
- you can leave out what's in the parentheses as it can be implied.
- the word that comes before の specifies the positioning of 後ろ.
- as you might have read in other comments, が acts as the subject marker, indicating the subject of the verb.
- in the 1st sentence, います (from the verb いる) is used, as the subject 私 is an animate object. in the 2nd sentence, あります (from the verb ある) is used, as the subject 椅子 is an inanimate object.
I put "there is a chair behind" and it was marked correct. I am assuming it too presumed "me" at the end.
I wrote "a chair is behind" and was marked wrong. Without context, it is impossible to know what the chair is behind. Perhaps the question was "What is behind the door?". I feel as if my answer would be acceptable, since both parties (the questioner and the answerer) have already established that they are talking about the door.
How am I, the Duolingo learner, supposed to know exactly what the assumed question is?
Duolingo seems incredibly finicky. I often feel as if I need to learn Duolingo in order to learn Japanese.
All translations have to be added individually by hand. Understandably, unlikely, pushing the bounds of idiomatic English sentences like, "A chair is behind" won't have made it to the top of the priority list, as few people will have concocted them to bother submitting, and the contributors can hardly be blamed for having failed to come up with such turns of phrase themselves. As a rule of thumb, the point of the course isn't to teach you oddball Japanese, so if the translation you come up with is oddball English, then that's a hint you might be at least somewhat off the mark.
Snowflake - WHAT door?? There is no mention of a door anywhere in this sentence.
They are trying to establish a possible context for this sentence. What is behind the door?
A chair is behind.
Still not a good sentence.
That would be その は 椅子の後ろにいます (そのはいすのうしろにいます)
You can leave out "その は" if it's implied in the context.
In this lesson, the correct answer is "It is behind the chair (assuming 'it' is left out and implied in the context)"
その is a determiner, it must come before a noun. if you mean "that is behind the chair", you should use それ.
I always, always, somehow manage to understand these the opposite way / ie, I am behind a chair. Any tips on how to get who is behind/in front of what?
Person 1 + は + Person 2 + の + 後ろ/前 + に + います
Person 1 is behind/in front Person 2 (you can leave out "Person 1 + は" if it's implied in the context)
後ろ/前 + に + Person 1 + が + あります
There is Person 1 behind/in front of (me).
が marking いす let's is know that we're talking about the chair and also the verb あります let's us know that we're talking about an inanimate object ie. in this case the chair. In this sentence 私の is implied but if we were talking about the position of the chair in relation to someone else or something else let's say well use my mum 母 and an the table テベル as examples then の which we know can act as a possessive or also help words modify/describe other words let's us know who or what the position is in relation to. Eg. 母の後ろ - behind "belonging to" my mother, OR behind "in relation to" my mother. Similarly, テベルの後ろ behind "belonging to" the table, OR behind "in relation to" the table. Of course this is not how you would translate these sentences in natural sounding English, I'm just trying to break down in English what the Japanese is saying so that hopefully it's easy for you to figure out using your understanding of verbs and particles which position relates to which person or thing.
Sorry - predictive txt got the better of me again. That 'is' after let's should be us. I can't edit my comments on my phone though, sadly.
Why is it not "there is a chair behind it" why me? Does something specify this?
If the sentence you're asking for is a question, it would be "Is it behind a chair?". If not, the ? should go outside of the «».