"Es wäre nicht möglich, es selbst zu tun."

Translation:It would not be possible to do it oneself.

1 year ago

22 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/PaulMiller992045

In British English we would say "do it myself"

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/stepintime
  • 25
  • 24
  • 13
  • 10
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 4
  • 4
  • 4
  • 4
  • 2

(...or rather, "It would not be possible to do it oneself" - is that correct English?)

To be exact, if it was "...to do it alone", the German sentence would have to read, "...es allein(e) zu tun".

"...es selbst zu tun" can also mean that it's impossible to be done by several ("normal") people and you need to hire professionals to do it.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jessica33132
  • 24
  • 17
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8
  • 3
  • 2
  • 96

"to do it alone" also works equally in the plural. "We would not be able to do it alone." That is a fine and normal English sentence, and I think therefore that "alone" can be used to express the same thing as "selbst".

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WarrenBrow3

The indefinite pronoun "one" is rarely used in US English, it sounds outdated. So the chances of someone speaking US English actually using "oneself" are miniscule. I was marked wrong for "It would not be possible to do it myself."

dict.cc says selbst can mean: myself, yourself, himself, herself, ourselves, yourselves, themselves, or oneself. In other words, it's a reflexive for any possible personal pronoun. Its actual meaning would be supplied by context but in this isolated sentence there is none, so any of the options should be acceptable. Notably, itself is missing from the list, presumably since an object can't act on its own, at least until our robot overlords take over :)

Reported 2018-09-21

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mpineda18

Damn @warrenBrow3 great explantation. Get your lingot Good man

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/VaclavKlic
  • 25
  • 25
  • 18
  • 11
  • 11
  • 10
  • 10
  • 9
  • 9
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 4
  • 4
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 425

to do it on your own?

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MarkGrand

The translation is ambiguous. Does the sentence mean, "It would not be possible to do this without there being other people around." Or does it mean "It would not be possible to do this without someone helping me?" Does the German sentence have this same ambituity?

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/stepintime
  • 25
  • 24
  • 13
  • 10
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 4
  • 4
  • 4
  • 4
  • 2

In German "selbst" can only mean "without someone helping me/us" - the plural is possible as well, since "we" can lack knowledge or tools and need help from professionals just as well as a single person.

"without other people around" would be "...es allein zu tun", and this has an ambiguity and could also mean "without help". In the given sentence, "selbst" sounds less informal and I would definitely use "selbst" in writing, but sometimes "allein" is a lot more natural: "Ich schaffe / kann das allein!" = "I can do this on my own! (= I can carry this rock / tie my shoe laces without your help)", "Ich habe diese tolle Sandburg ganz allein gebaut" = "I have built this awesome sand castle all by myself" (and funnily, you use synonyms for "alone" in English as well in these examples)

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/VaclavKlic
  • 25
  • 25
  • 18
  • 11
  • 11
  • 10
  • 10
  • 9
  • 9
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 4
  • 4
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 425

without context the german sentence is ambiguous... on your own ... should be also accepted

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Russeau
  • 25
  • 14
  • 12
  • 12
  • 5
  • 2
  • 2

"it would not be possible to do it on your own" should also be accepted

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/artisancreek

Or... do it by itself

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/i1nTgQUl

I wrote, "It wouldn't be possible to do it ourselves." This was marked wrong, but I'm wondering why it wouldn't also be correct.

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Flannery65
  • 25
  • 20
  • 15
  • 13
  • 12
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 6
  • 6
  • 5
  • 5
  • 5
  • 4
  • 4
  • 3
  • 10

Why is "wäre" used and not "würde"?

4 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Agonisti
  • 23
  • 23
  • 18
  • 15
  • 9
  • 13

Can anyone shine light on this?

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jessica33132
  • 24
  • 17
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8
  • 3
  • 2
  • 96

"Wäre" is basically "würde sein".

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PKISR
Plus
  • 25
  • 2
  • 590

What is wrong with the translation

4 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/duolingo.hc
  • 25
  • 25
  • 25
  • 25
  • 12
  • 10
  • 9
  • 78

BAD BAD EXAMPLE/TRANSLATION

4 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BennyDACHO
  • 25
  • 13
  • 12
  • 11
  • 11
  • 10
  • 8
  • 8
  • 6
  • 4
  • 4
  • 4
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 47

What's wrong with "It would not have been possible to do it alone"

3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/beagoodone
  • 25
  • 12
  • 11
  • 11
  • 10

'zu tun es selbst' this was phrasal or clause verb in this sentence ?

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/G-Shumway

It does not accept “one’s self”, only “oneself”. Actually, both are correct. The later has perhaps become more common, but it is a derivation of the former which is certainly still in wide use, and perfectly acceptable.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SydneyBlak4

Must admit that wäre has me completely floored. If one can think of it as würde-sein it would be would- be in English??? Could the sentence be translated as "es würde nicht möglich sein........" I am not English and these things are difficult to think about in two foreign languages. Nun bin ich sicher dass Deutsch verrückt ist!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SydneyBlak4

After doing the exercises following this one, it all fell into place for me. Aber ich denke noch dass Deutsch und Englisch ein bisschen verrückt ist

1 week ago
Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.