"The chair is below that."
It means "Underneath that [thing], there is a chair/are chairs." While this could refer to the same situation as "The chair is below that", the sentences are nonetheless different: in the latter the subject is clearly the chair (which happens to be below something else), but in the former the location gets a stronger emphasis.
これ、それ、あれ (kore, sore, are) are "this" "that" and "that over there" where the name of the thing being referred to is not known or used.
それは何ですか (sore ha nan desuka?) What is that? これは水です (kore ha mizu desu) This is water
When you want to name the object being referred to you use この〜、その〜、あの〜 (kono, sono, ano) instead.
このテーブル (kono teeburu) this table
その椅子 (sono isu) that chair
あの人 (ano hito) That person over there
The その〜 form is not a standalone word for "that," (that would be それ) but is attached to the thing your naming. In English we just add the name of the thing to the demonstrative ("this" to "this apple") but in Japanese the form changes from
これ (this) to このリンゴ (this apple)
In the context of this question to my understanding:
"The chair is below that."
The "that" at the end of the given English translation implies an object has been indicated in the previous sentence. However this is not what the その in the Japanese translation refers to.
その下 instead applies only to the word "below" in the English translation, or more literally "that underneath area." The thing that the chair is under is implied by the fact that under is a relative term and there must by definition be something above it.
All of which is a long winded way of saying that therefore いすはその下です would more literally translate to something like:
As for the chair, (it is in) that under(neath area).
Rather than thinking of その as a standalone word for "that", I prefer to think of そ as the concept of "away from the speaker" or "nearer to the listener." It is constant in words like それ and そこ and therefore the の still functions as the possessive particle making その〜 something like "attribute of an area nearer the listener."
they all translate as "The chair is under (below) it (that)"
I personally have never seen using その下. Also Liam315 last paragraph of the comment doesn't seem to make sense to me. The translation given for this exercise would suppose "that" to be a pronoun, not an adjective. その is "that" as an adjective, so それ should be used instead. I would have written 椅子はそれの下です。
But then again provide there is no context to this phrase the use of その下 can be plausible if the context made clear what is that's above the chair.
Anyway this exercise choice (far from being the only one) is very unhappy...
その is already a contraction of それ and the possessive の. そのの would be like writing "that's's" and doesn't make sense. Words like その、あの、この must be paired with nouns to specify which noun is being talked about and do not stand on their own.
その is paired with the noun 下 to mean "The below belonging to there near the listener" or simply "that below"
Liam above has a much more in-depth explanation.
椅子はその下にあります should work just fine and mean the same thing. ある is a pretty standard way of describing location without implying that the existence of the thing is new information.
If it were その下に椅子があります then maybe I could interpret it as "There exists a chair below that" implying I didn't know there was a chair at all.
Regardless of the slight difference in potential meaning, it should still work.
Right. I've been hearing that a lot of phrases in Japanese aren't able to be translated so directly, so I feel like they shouldn't falt us for using "あります" here. If it conveys the same message, it should be allowed.
For example, I've heard people say "何仕様かな?" ...which some would translate as "What should (I) do?" ...despite the phrase never using "する."
It's supposed to be THE chair, that is, a known chair, nothing new. In this situation it's better to use は, since it marks a known topic. If we were talking about A chair (a previously unmentioned one), we'd use が (and probably also a different construction, like その下は、いすがあります). That being said, the difference between は and が is quite difficult to grasp, so people probably don't need to worry about it too much at this level.
It's supposed to be saying した in this context, but the TTS picked the wrong word/reading.
The reverse question also has the same issue. https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/32546110/椅子はその下です。
"that chair is down" and "the chair is below that" are two very different sentences even in English. The first (what your answer says) implies that the chair has fallen over, or has been taken off a shelf and is now "down." The second implies that the chair is in the downward direction of "that." or in other words, "below that"
I answered: その下に椅子があります。 Duolingo marked it as wrong. Does anyone know what's wrong with the answer above, if there's really anything wrong with it? I understand my answer shows a greater emphasis on the location instead of on the object, but Duolingo seems to accept the change in other exercises. Is the sentence gramatically incorrect in any way?
I think 椅子はその下にあります is accepted if you were wondering about that.
Your sentence is correct, but using が is more like saying new information, so your sentence would be translated to "there is a chair below that" while in english when you say "the chair～" means the listener already knows about this chair and is just expecting the answer of where is it...
You basically use は to speak about known things between the listener and you. 椅子は means "speaking of the chair". You know the listener knows about the chair but you want to add its location, does that makes sense?
TTS is bad at guessing context so just picks a reading at random. It tends to be much better in a full sentence but even then it gets things wrong sometimes.
もと is a reading of 下, but in this specific context it has the wrong meaning. した is the one that should be used here.
It's interesting that that is the reading the new TTS system chose; the old TTS system liked to use げ instead, which is also another reading but wrong for this context.
Could anyone please explain why it's placed "その下" and not "下その"? I was just really confused about this, since I tried to put "下その". And the unfortunate thing is that Duolingo never really teaches you about syntax, only how to say certain phrases. If anyone could help that would be immensely appreciated!
は v.s. が shouldn't matter yet in this context. They both work and the difference is too subtle for these earlier lessons.
Answers using ある properly should be accepted. Something like 「椅子はその下にあります。」is perfectly valid and conveys the same meaning. This is a pretty basic construction.
I guess that's because there's a known chair (THE chair) we're talking about. So there goes は instead of が, です instead of あります, and there should be no に. As confusing as it is, it's the only option that gets accepted here
If あります was used a ni would be needed to mark the location of existence, but here です is being used to equate the two nouns "Chair = 'that below'". The "below" is a description of the chair itself, not a description of the place where the chair happens to be, if that makes sense.
That's not really the rule,
が is often used with です, it just depends on the context and what you want to emphasize.
は marks the topic of the conversation. This is information that is already known to the speaker and provides context for the rest of the sentence. In the English we have "the chair", with "the" indicating that we are speaking about a specific chair, we can assume a specific chair is known information by the listener so the known information particle は would make more sense. The part we want to emphasize here is the location of the chair. This would answer the question "Where is the chair?"
が is the new information particle and puts emphasis on the word before it so 椅子がその下です puts emphasizes on the existence of a chair, rather than the location of the chair. This would read more as "A chair (is the thing that is) below that". This could answer the question "What is below that?"
Both should be okay here, though は sounds better for the translation.
It works grammatically though the meaning would be slightly different,
その下に椅子があります [Below that] [There is a chair] - It puts more emphasis on the existence of a chair since you have "Chair" marked with the new information particle が. It could answer the question of "What is below that?"
椅子はその下にあります - [The chair] [Is located below that] - This has "chair" marked as known information with は and stresses the location of "is below".
椅子はその下です - [The chair] [Is below that] - This has a similar meaning to above but uses the stative "です" instead of the location of existence "にあります"
These would answer the question of "Where is the chair?"
I said その下は椅子です and it was marked wrong.
My understanding is that this basically means "that things underside is the chair", while 椅子はその下です。 means "the chair is that things underside." And these seem interchangeable.
Indeed the natural equivalents in English to that "The chair is below that", and "below that is the chair", are interchangeable.
Google translates this is a "below that is a chair", which I guess would be different. Is that the problem, that this sentence puts the wrong emphasis?
I'm not really sure to be honest and I would like to know this too, especially why the voice says もと here but した in the lessons. This is what I found about it on Jisho, but I don't really think it answers much. From what it says, what I gather is that it depends on the context.
They are wrong because all of them have それの下 in them instead of その下。They should all be accepted if you make that change. There are some other comments towards the top that explain why this is (better than I could). I think the first one also might sound awkward to a native speaker because I don't really see sentences structured that way, but could definitely could be wrong since I am not a native Japanese speaker.
I think the issue with your sentence is because of the あれの下 for the same reason that それの下 would be wrong. There are some comments towards the top of this discussion that probably explain it better than I could. Plus, using あの下 is also changing the meaning of the sentence a bit because it would mean "that something" that the chair is under is much father away than その下 since usually it is described that これ is close to the speaker, それ is closer to the listener than the speaker, and あれ is far from both. The にあります part and the rest is just fine.