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  5. Ihr beide <> Y'all or [?]


Ihr beide <> Y'all or [?]

Hi, I've seen a lot of questions throughout the lessons that questions one with "ihr beide" and the answer of "y'all" is never accepted, but rather some really odd and foreign ways of writing such as "Both of you" and "you both guys"

Could ihr beide ever be referenced as y'all outside of duolingo? I've been at German now for roughly 4 years, and out of everything that confuses me and literally stumps me for hours on end, is possibly this phrase.

May 11, 2018



Wait! I learn English as a foreign language, and maybe I am too bold to say this, but I have certainly acquired some linguistic skills in it. So I am quite confused seeing your comment: what on earth is wrong with "both of you"? ("Ihr beide" means literally "you both"/"both of you", not "you all"/"y'all", by the way.) English speaking people do not use the "both of you" form anymore?

  • 1869

"Both of you" is entirely normal, as a native English speaker, and this is the first I've ever heard of it not sounding natural to a native English speaker, so don't worry about using "both of you".


It appears to be a regional thing in my eyes. I have personally never used the phrase "both of you" in my entire life. So, to start learning it out of the blue, is extremely difficult. No one around my parts even uses the term, professional and non-professional folks. It's giving me a hard time to say the least.

In the Appalachia dialect, we use "y'all" to refer to two or more people, in some cases we can use it to refer to singular, but that seems to be on a more familiar level with the individuals.

I have used however, "both of y'all" to refer to two separate groups as one, though. It's used rarely but folks seem to understand it.


Many are unfamiliar with the subtleties of Southern speech. I can relate to what you are saying completely. I've gotten more than a few questions incorrect because of this. Now I know that I'm not the only one. Thanks for your post.


May i ask if "y'all" or other terms of Southern speech are accepted in Southern, Texas (?) schools since both of your experiences sound like "both of you" is outside of your "comfort zone"?
I know (most of the time at least) the difference what is proper German and what is my native local slang and in school i would never have used something equivalent to y'all. At least as far as i understand the term now (i might have heard it before duolingo, but never understood it entirely). There are differences between German German, Austrian German and Swiss German that are officially accepted. I wonder if "y'all" is actually slang or considered proper English on an official level, say in written exams?


Interesting. I am quite sure that I have used "both of you" a lot, with both Americans and (mostly) with Europeans, and they did never correct me. Moreover, I can't recall any occasion, but I feel I have heard it a lot, too., but that may have been my fellow Europeans who also spoke English as a foreign language. Strangely, y'all sounds somewhat odd to me, I don't think I have encountered it at all in real life (meaning offline), so it may be only used in American English.


Indeed, it is a regional colloquialism. Such things lend charm to the cultural experience in my opinion. I'd wager that more than a few Englishmen would find Southern conversations baffling.


ihr-> you (plural)

beide -> both

ihr beide shows that there are two people beeing adressed. you can also say ihr drei to adress 3 people or ihr vier to adress 4 people ...

y all does not show how many people are beeing adressed. (you did not translate the beide part.)

so it would correctly translate as:

the both of you.

the three of you

the four of you

i have heard and seen that a lot from native english speakers from all over the world. (america, england, south africa and australia) but i have never heard anyone say y all. for ihr beide. i guess thats slang?


It seems most regard y'all as slang, but I grew up speaking the Appalachia dialect which is the mountainous region in the South. How you described "you both" is exactly how we use "y'all". We sometimes use it to refer to singular you, but that seems to be common amongst familiars.

I have also asked this same question on a German for English speakers Discord and a few have answered me saying both "ihr" and "ihr beide" can be referred as "y'all", though one or two individuals mentioned "ihr beide" can only be used as "y'all" or (plural you) if you are familiar with the person, in which case I would have to use "Sie". Though I often wonder if using "Sie beide(n)?" could potentially be used or "Sie" would be for either or equivalent of "Ihr" & "Ihr beide"


you can say Sie beide. if you are not on familiar terms with the persons you are adressing. and ihr for people you are familiar with.

it is true that you can reffer to two people with "ihr" only (dropping the beide). ihr beide is mainly used if even more people are around to make clear that this is only for two people out of the group. if you would only say ihr in this situation one could think that everyone is involved.

i grew up in the black forest (a highland area in south west germany) we are having a strong dialect (swabian or schwäbisch in german) as well. but if i would use it here on duolingo it would be marked as wrong too. i think they don't like dialects ;-)


Thank you for your input. Also, that is really interesting as to where you grew up. One of my German lineages is from Staufen im Breisgau and from my genealogy and linguistic research, I believe they (ancestors) spoke "High Alemannic Dialect"


in the Breisgau area (it is bordering the black forest actually, so it is quite close to where i live) they do speak a high alemannic dialect thats true.

[deactivated user]

    No English person says "y'all". Indeed, before I started on Duolingo I had never seen it written down and believed it was Southern American dialect. "Both of you" or "the two of you" are the correct forms in English, and you could also say "you both" or "you two". "You all" would be fine if you were referring to more than two people.

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