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"Sometimes, fish fall from the sky here!"

Translation:Hier fallen manchmal Fische vom Himmel!

March 25, 2018

89 Comments


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

can someone help me with the word order here?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LucasPereira2003

You could change "Manchmal" and "Hier" but you have to keep the verb at the second place and at the end you have to put "Fische vom Himmel".


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

From what I can tell, we want the noun first and verb second. The noun is "here," because that is the what the sentence is all about. "Fish" are actually a direct(?) object, so they go later. Time is always preceeding the direct object, which it does here as well. What is left is what the direct object is doing, falling from the sky. I hope this helps answer some questions, and I would be glad to learn from any mistakes I have made if this reasoning isn't completely accurate!


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

Hier” is an adverb, it's in first position simply for emphasis. “Fische” is the subject (“fallen” is intransitive, it doesn't take objects). In German, however, there are different criteria determining word order. One depends on the role of the phrase (subject, object, adverbial and so on), but that doesn't explain why “manchmal” here comes before the subject. A possible explanation for that is that “sometimes” is a kind of pronoun-adverb (by no means an official designation), and thus sticks closer to the beginning. Another possibility is that “manchmal” is there because it, too, is being emphasised. A native would probably tell you that this is the order because it sounds right, and in this case this might actually be the best explanation.

An interesting question would be whether “Fische” could in fact come before “manchmal” as expected based on the rules.


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

If you were following the [time][manner][place] rule of ordering, surely:

(No Time) Manner = "manchmal" and "vom Himmel" Place = "hier"

Following these rules, the sentence would be: "Fische fallen manchmal von Himmel hier." Is this acceptable?


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

It's curious that you'd consider ‘manchmal’ and ‘vom Himmel’ as manner, when I think they are rather better represented as time and place, respectively.

Regardless, I do think your proposed translation is acceptable, but keep in mind that TeKaMoLo isn't very strict and in particular it can be overridden by many other considerations (among which the placement of emphasis and certain short elements that, while technically being adverbs of one kind or another, behave like particles and tend to stick to particular places in the sentence irrespective of semantics). In this case, I also think ‘Fische fallen hier manchmal vom Himmel’ would sound better, but my German is not perfect.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlLeslie1

Moderator, please delete this rubbish. Thank you.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Steve254604

I put "Manchmal fallen Fische hier vom Himmel!" and it was marked wrong. I'm thinking this is also correct, but further thoughts are appreciated...


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

I tried like 8-10 variations here, none of which were accepted, which makes me think this is an exercise forgotten by the Duo team.

Duo requires a word order that is not required by German grammar - just allowed by it.

Duo team needs to admit there are perfectly legitimate alternative word orders they ought to accept as answers - or explain why here only one specific word order is somehow acceptable (which is not the case usually in German).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rpaugh82

I put "manchmal fallen fische vom himmel hier" and that was wrong as well. If Duo is going to throw sentences like this at us then the English version should more closely represent the intended output. They clearly emphasized "sometimes" yet do not allow "manchmal" to come first. This makes learning a new language unnecessarily difficult. Since English really has very few rules about word order (cue angry replies from all the English majors...) so they should be reorganized to be as close to the intended translation as possible, then maybe mix it up for level 2.


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

I agree - Manchmal ('sometimes') is an expression of time, akin to 'always' and 'never', so should come first. 'Hier' is self-evidently location, as is (I suppose) 'vom Himmel'. It marked me wrong too!


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

I did the same


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fco349466

I wrote "Manchmal fallen hier Fische vom Himmel" and was marked correct


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/john376507

duo stop confusing beginners : there are a few variations


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

Is something wrong with "Manchmal fallen Fische vom Himmel hier"? If Duo wants a specific word order, I think the same should be used in the English as long as it is acceptable, and saying "Here fish fall sometimes from the sky" etc. would be absolutely fine.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/requin230

You cannot put "hier" at the end.

Hier fallen manchmal Fische vom Himmel

Manchmal fallen hier Fische vom Himmel


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/igap.astina95

Would you be kind to explain why we cannot put 'hier' at the end of the sentence?

Previously, I put 'hier vom Himmel' together and was marked wrong. So I decided to separate them by using Fische 'Manchmal fallen hier Fische vom Himmel'. But I still do not get a good grasp of it, tho.


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

Yes, it is useless simply to say you "can't" do it.


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

I don't understand why "Fische fallen manchmal hier vom Himmel" is wrong, but "Fische fallen hier manchmal vom Himmel" is correct. In the german word order, isn't time supposed to be before place?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RaviShastr1

why "manchmal, fallen fische hier vom Himmel" is wrong..can someone please tell me word order here...for example as the mentioned format: " verb+ subject followed blah "


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/requin230

If you put "hier" before "Fische" it should work


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dr.AnanyaH

Why hier can't be put at the end?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/requin230

Because that's not how it is said in german.


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

that is not an adequate answer.


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

It seems there are a number of potential "correct word orders" so lets move on and not waste time thinking about "fish falling from the sky!"


[deactivated user]

    Ok . German is weird.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cathlev94

    Why can I not say "Hier fallen Fische manchmal vo, Himmel"?


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

    Your adverb has to come directly after the verb. But you put Fische between manchmal and fallen.


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

    Manchmal fallen hier Fische von Himmel?

    Why wasn't that accepted.


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

    That word order is accepted now.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/velo777

    The problem is "von", not the word order...she needs von dem, or vom.


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

    Wrong again 7 months later


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

    Help please, why is Manchmal fällen fische vom Himmel hier! wrong?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/requin230

    It is "fallen" not "fällen" and you can't put "hier" at the end.


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

    "vom Himmel" versus "aus dem Himmel"? Any differences?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndrsSzala5

    What's wrong with "Machmal fallen Fische vom Himmel hier"? Please reply or mark it correct if it is!


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

    Manchmal fallen fische hier vom himmel ....not accepted ..why


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sheila351374

    Is this phrase similar to the idiom " pigs might fly"?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aleema-Imran

    What's wrong with these: 1. Fische fallen manchmal hier vom himmel 2. Fische fallen manchmal vom himmel hier

    In the tips, it says that manchmal either comes directly after a verb or at the beginning of the sentence. But no such rule is being followed in the accepted sentence. Am I missing something?


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

    Adverbs come after the verb and follow the TMP (Time, manner, place) order with adverbs and your examples follow that. (hier after manchmal) (But not following TMP doesn't make the sentence incorrect.) But it is more natural to write the object (Fische) after the location (Himmel). In Duo's example machmal comes after fallen too.

    And like you said, manchmal can come in the first position too. Manchmal fallen hier Fische vom Himmel. is accepted.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laura.USA

    In Duo's world, I believe it.


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

    It has happened in real life in many places. If you think that's the strangest thing to fall from the sky, you should search for the Kentucky meat shower.

    Sometimes Duolingo's statements are not as strange as you might think.


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

    I though we used accusative when there was a movement implied. (Here the fish falling from the sky). I'm a bit confused D:


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hans408748

    It's dative because "von" is a dative-only preposition.


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

    I always thought that after the verb "fallen" should come the noun "Fische" when using the inversion mode after an adverb like 'Hier". My question is WHY you cannot say: "Hier fallen Fische manchmal vom Himmel!! Any knowledgeable German native speaker??


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

    Is “Fische fallen manchmal hier vom Himmel” okay? I don’t understand the word order here at all and the other comments are not really helpful...


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

    Your sentence is grammatically correct. You've followed the TMP (Time, place, manner) order and only switched Fische with hier. Though as far as I've noticed, in most sentences, they write the location before the object. So I think it's more natural to write "Hier fallen manchmal Fische vom Himmel".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SeanMcHugh13

    This was accepted: Manchmal fallen hier Fische vom Himmel.


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

    I am sure that Germans will understand no matter of the word order. Delving into perfect grammar can be more confusing than teaching.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Willem975258

    I'd appreciate language and idioms that were even remotely usable in real-life scenarios. They are plentiful


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

    why is 'Manchmal fallen hier Fisch vom Himmel ' marked wrong?


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

    Unlike English where fish is both singular and plural, "Fische" is the plural for "Fisch" and that's what you should use.


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

    Any native speakers here? Is this an idiomatic phrase? Why is only one word order accepted?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Judy981329

    Duo is far too rigid with word order.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chelsea551134

    Is this just a random Duolingo sentence, or is there an idiomatic meaning?


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

    Is Vom Himmel fallen manchmal hier Fische. correct? It follows the "time, place, manner" order for the adverbs.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gregory146754

    Getting to be a waste of time


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ScottLyons10

    I put "Fische fallen manchmal vom Himmel hier" and it was marked wrong. I have looked through the previous responses but cannot find a clear answer as to why.

    Is it a matter of what you want the emphasis to be? In the Duolingo answer, is it emphasizing the "here", whereas in my answer it is emphasizing the "fish"? And if so, then without further context in the conversation it seems either answer could be correct.


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

    Where is "Himmel" not preceded by "die"?


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

    Why should it be?

    Himmel’ is a masculine noun (‘der Himmel’), it would only take ‘die’ in the plural (nominative and accusative). In the dative singular, it takes ‘dem’ ⇒ ‘von dem (Himmel)’ → ‘vom Himmel’.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fuzzytetra323

    "Vom" is a combination of von + dem


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ajna
    • 2272

    Why not "hier fällt manchmal Fisch vom Himmel"? Why plural?


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

    In my native comprehension, I just know that fish, here, is plural. But, I'm thinking that it's because manchmal being sometimes, implies that more than one fish can or will fall from the sky. Because if it was only one fish, then it would happen only once, and "sometimes" wouldn't be plural, it would have to be "sometimes, a fish falls"; or, "at sometime a fish falls". So, perhaps simply, it's because it's sometime vs sometimes. I have observed that when there is a lack of clarity with English, we'll add more defining words that describe the situation; and here for me it's some-times. IOW, more than one time. lol, so in English, with "fish" being both plural and singular, we have it covered! ;-)

    If you think about it in English. If one caught one fish; one might say jokingly, "I caught fish." which if the other person being a good friend might say, "fish" or "fishes"? :-D

    The word fish, in English, is funny that way. "I caught many fish" and "I caught many fishes" mean the same thing, and "fishes" in this case just sounds wrong. How many fish falling from the sky did you catch? :-) Yep, fish is plural without having a defining article. 1 fish, 2 fish, 3 fish, blue fish. Dr Seuss taught us that! But, not in german... Ein Fisch, zwei Fische, drei Fische, blau Fisch. Maybe Duo should use that one: Translate this Dr. Seuss sentence... lol


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ajna
    • 2272

    Well, I just noticed it is "fish fall", not "fish fallS".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Joseph556092

    Ich verstehe nicht, warum meine Antwort falsch war. Kann jemand bitte es mir erklären?

    Manchmal fallen hier Fische aus dem Himmel!

    Danke für irgendeine Ihrer Antworten!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Steve879761

    Honestly, at this point, youre just taking the piss


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

    Why do the fish fall von the Himmel and not aus the Himmel?


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

    It is actually correct. Here are some aus dem Himmel examples and vom Himmel examples. As I've noticed, most examples for "vom" are referring to something physically coming down from the sky but a lot of examples for "aus" are referring to something being from the sky. But there were examples of the second usage in the first link. (Remember when we used "aus" in sentences like Ich komme aus Deutschland etc.)

    Here are some explanations of the differences between von and aus: von Vs. aus


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

    why fallen and not fallt


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

    Fische is plural so you have to use fallen.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lulu3257

    I do not realize where my mistake is. I wrote " Manchmal fallen Fische vom Himmel hier" Can anyone help me please?


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

    What ever happened to "time, manner, place"?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlLeslie1

    Question please. When fish fall from the sky, why is it important to change the emphasis from 'Sometimes' to 'Hier'?


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

    Time, manner, place. Does not seem to apply here. So that has gone right out of the window for me ???? zb. (time)... Manchmal (manner)... fallen[V2] Fische (place)...vom (von dem)Himmel. Very wrong. So from now on, i'm going to try and place 'HIER' first and then try to work out the rest.


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

    I don't really understand what you have actually sent as your answer that was wrong. Can you type the full answer? I don't see hier included.


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

    why Manchmal fallen hier Fische vom Himmel! is not accepted?


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

    What's wrong with "Manchmal fallen Fische hier vom Himmel"?


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

    What is wrong in "Fische fallen manchmal hier vom Himmel"? Switching manchmal and hier around does work, and I agree it sounds better, but shouldn't manchmal hier also be grammatically correct?


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

    'Fische fallen manchmal hier vom Himmel' 'Manchmal fallen Fische hier vom Himmel' Should also be accepted


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aleema-Imran

    Why is this wrong: Fische fallen manchmal vom Himmel hier? It doesn't violate any rules that I know of =(

    Secondly, can we use aus der instead of vom? How do we know when to use either of them?

    Thridly, what should be the position of 'hier' here? (No pun intended)

    Thanks in advance =)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mike17927

    Why not- Manchmal fallen Fische from Himmel here


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bob690

    Would "Manchmal, Fische vom Himmel hier gefallen" be acceptable?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Steve254604

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t “gefallen” a participle? This is a present tense construction.


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

    Well, ‘gefallen’ can be present, but then it would be a different verb (‘mir gefällt’ = ‘I like’). bob690's sentence still slightly falls short of a correct past construction: that would need an auxiliary verb (in this case ‘sein’) to form the Perfekt: ‘manchmal sind hier Fische vom Himmel gefallen’ = ‘sometimes fish have fallen from the sky here’.

    Another pointer to bob690: second position in main clauses must always host the conjugated verb. If ‘gefallen’ was meant to be the only verb, it's in the wrong position.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoyAlcock1

    I am putting the correct version of the answer, but Duo is not allowing me to progress


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/requin230

    It would help you and us if you put your whole answer here or a screenshot. Sometimes there is a small, easily overlooked, error in the answer.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nikoloz419258

    "Kafka on the Shore" anyone?


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

    The word order is insignificant as some German friends tell me

    Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.