"Schreiben sie ein Buch?"

Translation:Are they writing a book?

March 12, 2018

22 Comments
This discussion is locked.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tknkldfklty

Could this also translate as "do you write a book"? I thought this was also the polite 2nd person form


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/2Parannoyed

In the formal second person, "Sie" woukd be capitalised. So "Schreiben Sie ein Buch?" would be "are you writing a book?" whereas "Schreiben sie ein Buch?" means "Are they writing a book?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/paul769770

Thanks..helped me too


[deactivated user]

    How would I know who someone is talking about when we were talking face-to-face, or if they start the sentence off with Sie?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tyler115285

    Why is it all mixed up? I know its a different language and its structured differently but its hard to remember the order in which words come in phrases when the literal translation is all mixed up, "writing they a books?" Its really confusing for me


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ikwilvertalen

    In German, you use inversion when asking a yes/no question. That is, you switch the position of the verb and pronoun. You are actually doing the same thing in English. They are (pronoun, verb), are they? (verb, pronoun). Sie schreiben (they are writing/they write), schreiben sie? (are they writing?/do they write?).


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tyler115285

    Ohhh, okay that males a lot more sense, thank you!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RossLarcom

    Would 'Is she writing a book' translate as 'Schreibt sie ein Buch'? Schreibt er for he?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

    Would 'Is she writing a book' translate as 'Schreibt sie ein Buch'?

    That's right.

    Schreibt er for he?

    Yes, that's right as well.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jacob_ist_da

    Where does the "Are they" Come from in that sentience?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tknkldfklty

    "Schreiben" is the plural, third person conjugation meaning "they write." Also, "sie" means "they." Those are the two clues that helped me understand.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phichaiyut

    Why not "einen buch"??


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ednoria

    Because Buch is das Buch, so ein- doesn't have the masculine accusative (-en) ending. If it was der Apfel, it would be einen Apfel.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ValerieGib2

    I'm really confused about the word order


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SarahahaHughes

    How do you now it's a question?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

    How do you now it's a question?

    It starts with the verb, schreiben.

    Yes-no questions start with the verb in German.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LucienVanP

    I wrote "Schreiben Sie ein Buch?" , forgetting that until now we didn't learn the polite form of you in Duolingo. Without the context "Is the question asked to a person we just met?"Are you writing a book?" Or is the question asked about "they" like in "Are they writing a book?" impossible to find out! Duolingo did not notice my capital S. So no harm done...


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MihailoAleksic

    I said that and word "Schreiben" isn't accepted.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/yashSurana3

    Can we also write it as "sind sie schreiben ein buch?"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

    Can we also write it as "sind sie schreiben ein buch?"

    No.

    First, Buch is a noun and has to be capitalised in German (though Duolingo, unfortunately, does not check this).

    Secondly, sind does not belong in this sentence -- German does not use a helping verb in the present tense.

    Adding a helping verb that does not belong there would be like asking "Do they are writing a book?", which I hope you will recognise as grammatical nonsense.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VKVyas2

    They means Sie and you also means sie i.e sie rennen, they are running You is also sie Sie rennen... You are running Pl.clerify..


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

    you also means sie

    That is not correct -- lower-case sie does not mean "you".

    The formal "you" is Sie, always in uppercase.

    sie rennen, they are running You is also sie Sie rennen... You are running

    Right. Fortunately, in real life we have context.

    Just like how you know whether "He is running" is referring to the tall blond man or the short brown-haired man in real life.

    In Duolingo, where you have no context, you can translate Sie rennen. as either "they are running" or "you are running", as both of those are reasonable translations. You don't have to guess which is "the only one Duolingo will accept", since that's not a thing -- almost all sentences have multiple accepted translations.

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