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"Which horses are you sitting on?"

Translation:Auf welchen Pferden sitzt ihr?

December 26, 2017



Why does auf need to be placed at the beginning of the sentence and not the end?


"On which horses are you sitting?" is a better translation if you follow the English rule of not ending a sentence with a preposition.


I don't understand why horses would be written as "Pferden". Can anyone point out the grammatical pattern that I'm missing? Thanks in advance.


Is this sentence, auf takes the dative case (specifically plural dative case) the article for that is "den" plus -n ending for the noun. The nominative plural would be die Pferde. Dative plural: den Pferden.


Besides the Articles, you inflect endings onto nouns: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (1) masculine and neuter Genitive: -s (-es if the word ends on s, ß, x or z) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (2) Dative plural: -n (-ø (no ending), if the plural ends on n) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (3)Some masculine words like Junge, Knabe, Bär, Name, Zeuge, Bube, student, Löwe, and some others end on -en (or -n if there is an e at the end of the word) in all casus exept the nominative singular (called n-declination)


Michael, no. Most nouns will have an n at the end no matter what if it's dative plural. That's just how it is. den Männern, den Kindern, den Computern, den Schülern, den Pferden, den Tischen, (unless the standard plural is -s... and maybe some other exception that doesn't come to mind at the moment).


"x or z"... I thought this was a german course...


Are you saying that 'Pferde' is a weak noun?


Sometimes I feel like it's easyer to solve a integro-differential equation than constructing a good german phrase


Don't have a clue what that is but it does sound easier than German. Get an upvote and a lingot, for the laugh.


I think she's saying that 'Pferde' is a weak noun, which means it takes an additional 'n' at the end except in the nominative case.


Sometimes you need to proofread your comments.


It is a better translation but remember, there is no such rule in English as to not ending sentences with a preposition, this false information needs to stop spreading asap.


Really? I must have had some shifty English teachers in the 40s and 50s.


There is a comical quote falsely attributed to Winston Churchill that demonstrates this false grammar rule quite well. It goes, "Ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which I will not put". Obviously, "to not put up with" and other phrases in English have to end in a preposition or they don't make sense.


So many rules of "correct English" change with the decades. AT school in the 90's we were told you never start a sentence with "and". Or "but".

But of course, as you read books and start creative writing you realise this is a load of rubbish. And you wonder has your teacher ever read a book before?

For a bonus point: "I before E excet after C" is DRILLED into UK primary school children. Then we go to High School. And we realise that there are far more examples of words that go against this rule.

I will be the first to say it: The English language is screwed. A mess.


Naomi: Thank you for that enlightening information. I also thought a preposition should not end a sentence. Who woulda thunk!!


It is not a rule in English that a sentence should not end with a preposition: it was considered to be inelegant English and therefore to be avoided.


Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you


Folks, we've been over this more than once. English is not one language. It is many languages. They don't share the same grammar. One does not end a sentence with a preposition in formal English. You do end sentences in informal English with prepositions. This isn't hard.


Nope. That is a completely made up rule from the 19th century by some Latin fetishists. No naturally spoken or written form of English has ever had the no preposition at the end of a sentence rule.


That would be a Latin rule. It is fine to end a sentence with a preposition in English.


Preposition (on) or prepositional phrase (on the table)?


Both. "What table are you sitting on?" is perfectly acceptable. As is "Are you sitting on the table?"


In theory yes, but most native speakers ignore this rule.

"On which horse are you sitting?" sounds archaic and too formal for spoken English. The only contexts I can think that this rule would be followed is in written law, conversation with a monarch or inside the Houses of Parliament!


I don't know where you live in the UK but many more educated people here in the North do speak like that: "On who's authority is that?" "From where did you get that?" It's really not as archaic as you think, it's just the reserve of the half of the population who read a lot and are exposed to more culture and media outlets than what they see on reality TV.


Indeed. "Propositions are not words to end sentences with."

  • 1105

I still don't understand, but isn't it possible at all to say, like ryanmyers0 asked, Welchen Pferden sitzt ihr auf?


No. Consider the following- a. (Sitzt) ihr? --The verb goes to the first position. b. Wo (sitzt) ihr? -- Verb in position two. c. (Auf welchen Pferden) (sitzt) ihr? -- Verb still in position two.

In a, the verb is in the 1st position, as expected. in b, it goes to the 2nd position as there is a question word that precedes it. in c, it remains in the 2nd position. This is because entire clauses can be considered together as a single chunk. Here, the clause is Auf welchen Pferden. You are trying to split it by pushing auf to the end. So, your translation is wrong.


Because you can't seet on many Horses in the same time?


Why is Ihr setzt the only translation of you (plural) are sitting that is deemed to be correct. What is wrong with Sie setzen as an equally valid translation of the plural You are sitting?


"Welchen pferden sitztz ihr auf" was marked wrong...can someone tell me why??


No, there are a few corrections needed. "Pferden" must be capitalized, and the verb should be spelled "sitzt". Also, the preposition "auf" must be followed by its object, which in this case is "welchen Pferden". The word "auf" should only be at the end like that if it's part of a separable verb, e.g. "Ich stehe auf." (aufstehen) In that case it's not a preposition, so different rules apply.


Perfectly explained. Thank you!


How do you know / how can you predict which words (like "Pferde" and "Kinder") get an "n" added to them in the dative?


It is only in the Dative plural, if the plural does not end with n or in all cases except the Nominative singular for words from the so called N-declination (Bär, Junge, Bube, Zeuge, Name, Student, and others), which you need to learn, (Note: They are always masculine)!


I just tried: Auf welchen Pferden sitzst du. (instead of "sitzt ihr") and it was accepted. But then I realized that ihr is multiple people sitting on multiple horses, but du is just one person sitting on one horse (selected out of a group of horses), but my sentence still reflects that "du" is "sitting" on a singular "horse". But, Pferden is not singular.

So, I'm now wondering if: Auf welches Pferd sitzst du? is a properly written question to ask a single person sitting on a single horse?


The correct sentence would be "Auf welchEM Pferd sitzt du"


Think we might be over analyzing here. Even one person can sit on multiple horses...just not at the same time. Perhaps there is some rich dude that have 5 horses and sits on one horse for a minute, then the next, and next, then have have his tea and crumpets...smile!!!


if ihr was to be replaced with du, wouldn't sitzt become sitzst? As Duolingo is not accepting my answer


The question "which horses are you sitting on" implies that a group of people is being addressed, so I think the "ihr" form of "you" is more appropriate than the the singular "du" form, here.


I, for one, believe one person can straddle between two horses.


Good point which only occurred to me after I saw the preferred translation. But Duo accepted 'du', however painful the image. (But maybe it refers to a set of photos of 'you' on several different horses...)


It could be like: ''which books do you read?'' Which doesn't mean you read them at the exact same moment. So 'du' is actually very logical


No the ending -st is reduced to -t, if the verb ends on s, ß, x and z. or (more poetically) you can use the ending -est.


I've just looked up 'aufsitzen' which translates as 'to mount'. I couldn't understand why auf used the accusative until I realised they aren't sitting on (state) but mounting the horses (movement) therefore dative. This needs to be clearer DL!


Why is it wrong to use "setzen Sie" ?

[deactivated user]

    Correction: "sitzen Sie"


    Can I replace "Auf" with "An", so the sentence "An welchen Pferden sitzt ihr?" still carries the same meaning?


    No. Auf is on and an is at


    Auf welchen Pferden setzt du? Why not ok?


    Auf welchen Pferden sitzt du


    If 'Auf' triggers the dative case, then shouldn't it be 'welchem' ?

    Is it because the answer to the question will involve a direct object ? That is - we will sit 'on these horses'. Here 'these horses' is a direct object, hence the question is welchen. But the auf(on) forcefully triggers the dative case hence Pferde becomes Pferden.

    Does this make sense ?


    i am struggling with this sentence, but my take would be this: the plural for horse (Pferd) is Pferde the rule for dative words is 'everything gets an 'n' ' in the plural case.

    from: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Dative-Case/tips-and-notes

    now welche (which) declines for case and gender

    from: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/questions-2/tips-and-notes

    Because it is dative and plural then it gets an 'n' ending as well.


    M: welcher (er to go with der) F: welche (e to go with die) N:welches (es to go with das) P:welche (e to go with die)


    M:welchen(en to go with den) F:welche (e to go with die) N:welches (s to go with das) P:welche (e to go with die)


    M and N: welchem (em to go with dem) F:welcher (er to go with der) P:welchen(en to go with den...everything gets an 'n' for dative plural)

    and I'm assuming dative use of auf because there is no movement from one place to another, the simple statement of what are you (all) sitting on implies that there is either just a statement or whatever movement there is, is within the confines of the situation.

    from: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Prepositions/tips-and-notes

    so auf(dative) welchen (dative plural declension) Pferden (dative plural)...after that i struggle with the whole ordering of the sentence.


    Just replying to myself as I still try and grapple this statement. So I have re-arranged the sentence to have it make sense to me, in turn hoping that the german structure still works.

    re-arranged to: you are sitting on which horses

    Du sitzt (and presumably Sie sitzen, ihr sitzt) auf welchen Pferden

    This was accepted

    is this a perfectly normal rearrangement of the words for a german sentence?


    auf welchen pferden sitzt sie? whats the issue?


    There are two main issues:
    1. Since "sie" is not capitalized, it can only mean she or they, not you.
    2. The conjugation "sitzt" is only used for du, er/sie/es, and ihr. Since you used "sie", the sentence you wrote means: "Which horses is she sitting on?"

    Although not as critical to understanding your intention, both "auf" and "pferden" should be capitalized, as well.

    Here are a few examples of correct translations that might help:
    Auf welchen Pferden sitzen Sie?
    Auf welchen Pferden sitzt ihr?
    Auf welchen Pferden sitzt du?


    I tried Auf welchen Pferden sitzen Ihnen and it was denied, should that not be correct?


    Please help me understand why using 'ihr' instead of 'dir'? Thanks


    If ihr is you all, why do you use sitzt instead of sitzen? There are multiple horses, so thete must be multiple yous.


    "welchen pferde sitzen sie an?" no good?


    The question is "write in german" and the "correct solution" is in english


    Can't Sie setzen (setzen Sie in the question) also be used for formal 'you' plural? DL won't accept it so I guess not (?).


    Yes, it can. However, the verb that is needed here is "sitzen", not "setzen".


    my correct answer was not considered so. why?


    Why dir is not accepted at the end, instead of Ihr?


    You can't sit on more than one horse at a time. The original sentence is nonsensical, unless the "you" refers to more than one person. Or unless the one person has more than one butt.


    why is "welchen pferden sitzt du an?" wrong?


    Der Satz ist auf Deutsch nicht korrekt! Konjugiert man im Plural so: ihr sitzet


    The conjugation "sitzet" is only used in Konjunktiv I. There is nothing in the English sentence to indicate that Konjunktiv I should be used here in the German sentence.

    Here are some conjugation tables for reference:
    https://dict.leo.org/englisch-deutsch/sitzen (click on the rectangle next to the word "sitzen")


    Why isn't it du instead of ihr.


    Why is it sitzt and not sitze? I thought Ihr (you all) would take sitzen....


    What is wrong with the singular? Someone could be trying out the horses!!


    I thought that the plural of pferd was pferde. I note that Herr also has a plural Herrn. Is this in the accusative? Why is a noun affected so.


    "Welchen Pferden sitzt du auf?" why is it wrong?


    That would work if it were a separable prefix verb "aufsitzen", but it's not. You have to have the preposition before the noun in German when it's an actual preposition rather than a particle that looks like a preposition (which would go at the end).

    It looks like there is an "aufsitzen" (https://dict.leo.org/german-english/aufsitzen), but is one of several verbs that mean "to mount" or "to get on", so your sentence would mean "Which horse are you getting on?"


    "Welchen Pferden sitzt du auf?" Why is it wrong????


    This is the dative case ( indirect object ) indicating location, position, etc., and the plural in German has an ' n ' ending. For example, ' die ( plural ) = den ' in German.


    sitting on is in the present, so how many horses can you sit on at once? Really? Difficult to try to learn a new language when the statements used to learn that language are stupid and make no sense.


    Auf welchen Pferden sitzten Sie?

    sitzten? Was ist das?

    I put 'auf welchen Pferden sitzen Sie?' and it came back with the nonsense above.


    Probably because a human being cannot sit on several Horses at the same time


    I have to say, this doesn't make a lot of sense in English. You might say 'which horses are you betting on?' (in a race), but for sitting on them you would more usually say 'which horses are you riding?'.


    Maybe it's not a real horse. Maybe it's a statue of a horse. "You can't sit there!" Don't overthink it. Except for horse jockeys who seem to ride their horses with their butts hovering over the saddle, one generally needs to sit on a horse in order to ride it. You can sit on it and not ride it (perhaps the horse refuses to move).


    I know I got it wrong, but if I said "Welchen Pferden sitzt ihr auf", would that still get the question across?


    Why I can't say: Auf welchen Pferden sitzt du?


    Verb doesn't come second..


    No, it does. V2 doesn't mean that literally the 2nd word of the sentence is always the verb. It means that you can only have one constituent before the verb, and the prepositional phrase at the beginning is one constituent. [Auf welchen Pferden] sitzt ihr?


    How is it possible to sit on multiple horses. This sentence makes no since.


    The "you" is in the plural form "ihr" not "Sie" or "Du".


    Is it possible to sit on the back of several horses?


    Well, the Bible says Jesus rode two donkeys:

    "The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them; they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their clothes on them, and he sat on them." [Matthew 21:1-7]

    Maybe he adopted a "wide stance" when riding. ;-)



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