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  5. "He led us to the train stati…

"He led us to the train station."

Translation:Er führte uns bis zum Bahnhof.

July 26, 2017



Bis zum vs. Zum?


Bis zum: This is somehow an end, the person that led you there leaves or stops leading or something. Its until you reach the estimation Bahnhof and then the action ends or something else changes.

Zum: A more neutral way and would be used if the person leads you somewhere else afterwards AND also when its just to the Bahnhof, then both could be used, but this does not transport the information that then the action ends.


The English sentence does not imply that the action necessarily ended at the station


English does not have a simple way to indicate the action has ended, so when translating from English both "bis zum" and "zum" would be acceptable depending on your intended meaning in German. If you are translating from German and read "bis zum", then you can translate it simply as "to" even though it has a more specific meaning in German than it does in English.


You could think of "bis zum" as "all the way to the".


Or, may I suggest, "as far as".......?


Wer hat gewonnen?


Why "nach" isn't acceptable?


Because it's the wrong preposition -- we use nach with cities, countries, and continents (as long as they don't have an article) as well as in the phrase nach Hause, but we don't use it with buildings, shops, or other sites such as railway stations or airports.


I see "fuhrte... in..." can't be used here, though I feel subtle difference between them, "lead... along.." vs "lead into" perhaps, but is it that significant for native German speakers (that they depend on these to accurately describe the exact situation)?


There is no verb fuhren in German, so er fuhrte doesn't mean anything.

er führte uns zum Bahnhof means "he led us to the train station".

er führte uns in den Bahnhof means "he led us into the train station".

In the first case, the leading ended outside the train station, when you were "at" the train station; in the second case, the leading ended inside the train station, when you were "in" it.


hows that possible ? as far as i read...fuhren means drove...past tense of fahren


as far as i read...fuhren means drove...past tense of fahren

That's right. So "the verb" (the infinitive -- the form you would look up in the dictionary) is fahren.

There is no infinitive fuhren which might form er fuhrte.


I'm interested in the case-marking of the destination in this phrase versus this one:

"Ich führte den Richter in die Stadt"

Is it correct to say that the destination is dative here because it has an endpoint, whereas in the example for this question, the action stops at the destination? Also, does "bis zu" always force the dative case?


zu always takes the dative case, including when it's in bis zu.

Ich führte den Richter in die Stadt uses the accusative case after in because die Stadt is the destination of the motion führen -- I led the judge into the city.

If you had used the dative, Ich führte den Richter in der Stadt would mean "I led the judge in the city", i.e. die Stadt is not a destination of movement but is just a location: the leading took place entirely within the city. Presumably you led him around in the city -- but you did not lead him from outside the city to the inside.


Okay, may someone explain it to me, 'cause I'm not native on both of this languages and I'm lost. When I hear "er führte uns" I instantly think "He drove us". Whereas when I hear "He led us" I think about showing someone a direction, like talking someone by the hand and walking with him to show him the way. Why led is translated to führte? What am I missing?


When I hear "er führte uns" I instantly think "He drove us".

Are you confusing führen and fahren?

"He drove us" is er fuhr uns (past tense of fahren).

"He led us" is er führte uns (past tense of führen).


Yes, I probably am xD Someday I'll stop asking stupid questions


OK, my turn to "ask stupid questions" (although ololo's are not!)!

My first thought was to translate "Er fuhr uns bis zum Bahnhof". Is it really a total mistake, or could it be somehow correct?

Thanks for helping!


My first thought was to translate "Er fuhr uns bis zum Bahnhof". Is it really a total mistake, or could it be somehow correct?

Your sentence would be grammatically correct, and a wrong translation for "He led us to the train station."

It would have been fine as a translation if Duolingo's sentence had been "He drove us to the train station."


It was a useful question and the answer provided clarity to more people than just yourself. :)


Why isn't leitete accepted as the verb here?


That's a good question, AllanSteve! Interesting enough to drive me to look in Linguee.com to investigate. It seems that for most uses of "leadership" , "leiten" is used, and only where the meaning is "to physically provide a route to a person or animal" (as here) is "führen" preferred. So it comes down to context and in the clear context used here, "leiten" would never be used.


why not use hat gefuhren


Because gefuhren is not a German word.

The verb führen (to lead) has past participle geführt.


Had I wrote hat gefuerht (I can't figure out how to add oemlauts on this discussion page) would that have been okay?


Er hat uns zum Bahnhof geführt is one of the accepted alternatives, and I think Er hat uns zum Bahnhof gefuehrt. with ue instead of ü should also work.

Ditto with bis zum Bahnhof instead of just zum Bahnhof.


Thank you, Mizinamo.


My first thought when translating this from "He led us to the train station" was that we are dealing with movement from one place to another, and therefore I should say "den Bahnhof". But "zu" takes the dative. That's very confusing. Is this (zu = dativ) just a quirk of German, which even German speakers acknowledge is kind of strange? Or am I missing something obvious?


German speakers don't think about. It's just how zu works and so it seems completely natural to them.

How many English speakers think about the fact that we say "in ten minutes" but not "ago ten minutes" but instead "ten minutes ago"? Why is "ago" a postposition? Isn't think something even English speakers acknowledge is kind of strange? -- I'd wager that your average English speaker never gives it a second thought; they've been saying "ten minutes ago" since they were three years old and probably can't even imagine it being any other way.

Similarly with zum Bahnhof -- that's just how it is.


Thanks for your response. Language really is fascinating! And you're right, I've never thought about "ten minutes ago". It is pretty weird, now that you mention it. :)

I think what makes it hard for these exercises is that, as a newbie, I still have to think about whether I'm going to use dative or accusative, and "zu" seems to break a rule. I'm sure any German-speaking six year old would have no trouble with it.


"Er führte uns in den Bahnhof." Wrong?


"Er führte uns in den Bahnhof." Wrong?

Yes, since the English has "to" and not "into".


Why isn't it "zu + ACC" instead of "zu + DAT" since motion is implied ?


Why isn't it "zu + ACC"

Because zu always requires the dative case.


zu is not a two-way preposition. These are the ones:











What MortiBiRD states below is not the sentence given us to translate. It doesn't say that he led us only to the train station. It could mean either bis zum or simply zum.

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