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sie: she or they

How would you know if 'sie' referred to her or to they in a sentence?

January 30, 2018



Well because the verb is always different. It is for example; sie lauft (she walks) and sie laufen (they walk)


sie läuft, for those who can write umlauts ;-)

[deactivated user]

    In theory everyone can with the ALT codes... but most often than not laziness speaks louder.


    yes but then you can write 'ae' instead (eg laeuft) :)

    [deactivated user]

      Yes, but for whatever reason I never got used to write that way.

      Valid option nonetheless.


      Thank you! Totally forgot it


      Sie with capital S can be also the formal you.

      Imagine a flowchart.

      Question 1. What is the verb conjugation?

      1a, like sie hat -> it is she. Done.

      1b, like sie haben -> go to question 2.

      Question 2: Is it capitalized?

      2a, Yes and it is not the first word of the sentence. -> formal you

      2b, no. -> they

      2c, yes, but it is the first word of the sentence. -> go to question 3.

      Question 3: Is there any other clue here, a noun maybe?

      3a, Sie sind eine Frau -> Formal you, singular.

      3b, Sie sind Frauen -> Formal plural you, or they

      3c no clue. -> Formal you or they

      [deactivated user]

        Watch the verb for instance... Sie ist is she, Sie sind is they. There are other ways but this one is what came to mind first.


        You look at the conjugation. They will always be Sie gehen. She will always be Sie geht. You formal, will always be like Sie gehen. But Sie will always be capitalised. If it occurs at the beginning of the sentence, then you'll have to determine it from the context.

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