"The luggage is in the car."


July 5, 2017

This discussion is locked.


Why is "荷物が...あります" wrong here?


Could you also say "車の中に荷物はあります。"?


Grammatically it is correct but it is not natural. If you talk about something, naturally you start with the topic first.

You can use this sequence naturally if it is negative


There is no luggage in the car.

(In the car, talking about luggage, there isn't anything.)

or if you have other information


Although there is luggage in the car, it can't be opened.

(In the car, talking about luggage, although it exists, it can't be opened.)


Although there is luggage in the car, there is nothing else.

(In the car, talking about luggage, although it exists, talking about other things, there isn't anything.)


Amazing explanation Keith, as usual


"Although there is luggage in the car, it can't be opened." What is "it", the car or the luggage?


the topic is 「『車の中に』荷物は」, so it's the luggage. you would change the topic as 「、車は」 to avoid confusion, i guess


I tried 車の中には荷物があります, as in a response to, “What’s in the car?”


This sounds like "the car luggage is here (exists)" which is weird, like your searching for luggage you know is in a car. Maybe if you have two cars and tell someone "get the luggage; it's in the cars" they would say this, but even then they'd probably still use が, because they might be finding more of it as apposed to finding where it all is, or something.


Yes, that is good and accepted



Could you use "車に" instead of "車の中に" to mean "in the car"?

similar to saying there is money in the wallet with "財布にお金があります"


I tried the same but it seems the lesson will expect you to specify "inside the car". Although 車に is pretty understandable but maybe not right for this context.


Why do we have to say "car-of-inside-in" instead of just "car-in" (kuruma-ni)?


I think the に is more like "at" so 車の中 is important for "at the car's inside", instead of just "at the car".

That's how I see it, at least


I just submitted 車に and it was expected.


I use が instead of は why is it wrong?


It's not necessarily wrong, it just adds a different nuance so probably isn't immediately accepted as a translation.

Since we are saying "the luggage", with "the" which refers to specific luggage, we can assume it is known information in English. Known contextual information would be marked with the topic particle は. This puts emphasis on what comes after it, so here it would be the location being stressed, as that is the new important thing we want to say about the specific luggage. "On the topic of the luggage; it is in the car"

が introduces new important information to the listener. This puts emphasis on the existence of luggage, like saying "Luggage is the thing that is in the car"

TyrantRC also explains a bit in the above comment https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/23376379$comment_id=38039583


I'd think が is what you'd use if, for instance, you were explaining why something else can't fit in the car. The Duo won't accept any solution using が here.


I'm learning kanji with WaniKani, and I'm wondering, shouldn't this be a valid translation too: 荷物は車内にあります。 ? According to Duolingo, it has to be 車の中、not 車内. Is that just Duolingo being Duolingo, or is there a reason for it?


Technically, it seems like it should work, however this is a problem you run into when you're combining lesson plans from different places that were created independently of each other. We haven't learned the kanji for "車内" yet in Duolingo, but I assume your answer would back-translate to "[The luggage] is (inside the car)." I also don't yet know the difference in nuance between 車の中 and 車内, although auto-correct is constantly insisting that we're talking about something related to 社員 rather than 車.


Why is this あります rather than です? I thought this sentence would mean 'there is luggage in the car', and in fact when I gave that as the translation it was marked correct. Here we're talking about a specific luggage, right?


You're correct in that あります would mean "Luggage exists inside the car," which is how a Japanese person describes where something is. We would use "is" in English, but not in Japanese. One of the hardest things about learning a new language is breaking the habit of looking for analogs and just accepting that people from other countries say things differently.


"Inside the car"?


「車の中には荷物があります。」 I gave that as a translation and was marked incorrect. I want to improve my understanding of when -には is appropriate, and this seemed like a situation where it would work... I suppose it should work, but it stresses the location "inside the car" as the subject rather than "luggage"... So would that mean my -には usage would be more like "Inside the car, there is luggage."?


So would that mean my -には usage would be more like "Inside the car, there is luggage."?

yeah, I believe so. Another one would be "there is baggage inside the car". I don't think the は is really needed there, you can just say「車の中に荷物があります」。

The reason why 荷物は is marked as the topic as a translation for "The luggage", it's because the speaker is assuming that the listener already knows what the 荷物 part means, and what's important in the sentence「荷物は車の中にあります」is the「車の中にあります」part and not the topic. The は in there shift the focus in the sentence to everything that's not marked by は.

Its the difference between "saying new information" and "saying something about something".

「荷物は車の中にあります」"speaking of the baggage (the listener already knows what baggage means in this context), (it) is inside the car" (and concludes with information about the topic).

「車の中に荷物があります」"there is baggage inside the car" (new information).

には as a compound particle is just the combination of に and は、sometimes used as a grammatical expression of "concerning 'x'" or "for 'x' thing".

「この荷物は私には重すぎる」"(as for) this luggage is too heavy for me"

But most of the time you use it when you want to mark something that is grammatically connected to the verb by に as a topic.

その部屋には荷物が多い」"that room has a lot of baggage in it" or "there is a lot of baggage in that room".

In this case は sounds more natural because the important part of the sentence is "there is a lot of baggage".

Some material about には:





I typed 荷物。は 車 に。あり。ます and it is ok


Why 財布が車の中にはあります Is wrong?


財布 - wallet
荷物 - luggage

は generally goes before が in a phrase as well. は marks contextual information for the statement you are about to make, so this would go at the beginning, and が marks important new information, naturally going closer to the verb.


on the topic of luggage, it belongs to the car's insides.


Is it more or less natural with or without the の中 (both are accepted)? Is there any possibility you might imagine the luggage, say, strapped to the top of the car without it?

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