"You and I are going to have to sleep at the hotel."

Translation:Sie und ich werden in dem Hotel schlafen müssen.

April 10, 2018

9 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/az_p
Mod

    Maybe you found this sentence to be a (small) challenge? :) It's not so simple! Here are some tips, based on common mistakes:

    • "You and I" can be translated three ways (English isn't as precise as German here):

    Du und ich...
    Ihr und ich...
    Sie und ich...

    • Regardless of which form of "you" we use, the combination of "you and I" effectively means "we" (first person plural). Hence the conjugated verb form is werden (not werde or werdet or anything else).

    • The preposition in is a 'two-way' preposition, which means it can take accusative case (usually if it expresses a motion with direction) or dative case (usually if it expresses a location). Hopefully it's clear that "to sleep at a hotel" refers to a location, so we need dative case. Dative inflection of the neuter noun Hotel gives us the article dem.

    • It's possible to contract in dem to im, but not necessary. In written language, it often sounds more formal not to use contractions. In spoken language, you may choose to keep the words separate in order to emphasise the article: in dem Hotel. Placing verbal stress on the article allows it to function demonstratively (meaning "this/that hotel").

    • This sentence combines future tense and a modal verb. It's important to include both of these elements in the translation:

    Future tense only:
    Sie und ich werden in dem Hotel schlafen = "You and I will sleep at the hotel"

    Modal verb only:
    Sie und ich müssen in dem Hotel schlafen = "You and I need to sleep at the hotel"

    At first, trying to combine these two sentence structures seems like it causes a problem, since we are only allowed to have one conjugated verb per sentence (per main clause, specifically). In this situation the modal verb gets added to the end of the future tense sentence in its infinitive form (ending in -en). This is a pattern you will notice frequently with more complicated sentence structures involving modal verbs. You think you've heard the full sentence... then BAM!, a modal verb changes the meaning.

    • In the present tense, "need to" and "must" are synonymous. But it's only possible to form the future tense using "need to". It's kind of like the infinitive of "must" if you think about it.

    • The German sentence can use schlafen as the verb, but that really just means the act of sleeping. It might be more natural German to use the verb übernachten or a couple of others to refer to the whole act of "staying overnight" somewhere. Here are some other resources on this.

    • Although the English sentence can comfortably use either "at the hotel" or "in the hotel", the German sentence needs in.

    April 11, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Max.Em

    It's possible to contract in dem to im, but not necessary. In written language, it often sounds more formal not to use contractions. In spoken language, you may choose to keep the words separate in order to emphasise the article: in dem Hotel. Placing verbal stress on the article allows it to function demonstratively (meaning "this/that hotel").

    "In dem" I would always read as "in that", also in formal texts, so actually I consider the translation of Duo as wrong in this point. "Im" is such a common contraction in German, also accepted in formal texts, that it has always a certain meaning if one uses "in dem". For example, nobody would ever say "in dem Juni" without intending "that" particular June(, twenty years ago, when we first met, something like this).

    April 11, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael212800

    Great explanation.

    August 28, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Denise526954

    Thanks, great explanation. The only issue I'm still struggling with is the order of the verbs. How do we know whether müssen or schlafen comes last? Assuming we know werden takes second place in future tense!

    May 29, 2019

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

    I don't know if this is totally correct, but I remember learning at some point when you have two verbs that need to be in the infinitive at the end of the sentence (here schlafen and müssen), normally you would put the modal verb (müssen) last. I'm not 100% sure though.

    July 10, 2019

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/karthik.subr

    Duolingo says it is wrong to replace ' Sie' with 'Du' in 'Sie und ich werden in dem Hotel schlafen müssen' No idea why.

    April 10, 2018

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

    Du und ich werden... is correct, too. Please report it next time.

    April 10, 2018

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

    It's wrong because "Sie" is the polite form for "you", and "du" is the familiar form'

    April 10, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Paralars1

    Right, but the translation could be either one.

    April 10, 2018
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