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  5. "Hier fallen manchmal Fische …

"Hier fallen manchmal Fische vom Himmel!"

Translation:Sometimes, fish fall from the sky here!

May 17, 2018

50 Comments


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

Is this phrase supposed to be some idiom?


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

No. Just random Duolingo weirdness :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sol52347

What is wrong with"Here, sometimes fish fall from the sky!"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TheM11Mum

I said 'sometimes, here, fish fall from the sky' and it was wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

That sounds pretty unidiomatic to me. We don't usually put two consecutive adverbs at the beginning of the sentence. It's not really wrong, and people might say it sometimes, but it sounds pretty clumsy.


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

When the subject is not in the first position in the sentence, doesn't it have to come right after the verb? How did manchmal end up in between there?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chooch639215

can they just stop with the stupid sentences? It's distracting and confusing when you're trying to learn idiom and they throw a completely nonsensical sentence at you, and think it's cute. I'm all for fun, but this is simply idiotic. It reads so awkwardly in English that I wouldn't be surprised if it's the same in German


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

Don't be grumpy.

Sometimes fish are funnelled into a tornado and fall from the sky.

Google "raining fish". It happens more often than you would imagine.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chooch639215

Sure, I was being grumpy. Here's a lingot for calling me out and your sidetrip to google "fish falling from the sky." I'll have to do that myself. But do you blame me or anyone else who hates a waste of time like this sentence? German is hard enough. Just look at everyone scratching their heads in this thread. It's pretty absurd, with everyone gutting it out, doing their level best to figure out utter nonsense. What is the lesson this sentence teaches, other than patience with the teacher?


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

counterpoint: many users, myself included, tend to find the 'weird' sentences more memorable. i've definitely recalled a few words in various languages (shoutout to "my dog is similar to a mushroom") because of how wacky the sentences were, which felt worthwhile to me!

moreover, on a serious note, which i think this is the main reason course creators come up with sentences like this besides just for fun: if the sentences are wacky/random, they're that much harder for you to guess from context. That forces you to actually learn what all the words mean, instead of relying on guessing—which I know I do often, because some of the most common kinds of errors I make occur when I substitute a word that makes more sense in context in my mind for the translation actually being requested!

In short, these kinds of sentences keep me on my toes, and that's why I appreciate them. And while I do understand wanting to separate actual idioms from funky sentences, I feel like learning languages by other means (watching TV, e.g.) in addition to Duolingo tend to be pretty helpful with that.


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

I have occasionally wished, and not been granted, that some lessons would all be wacky and grammatically correct. It would be frustrating, challenging, and, more than a bit, memorable.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Annika449124

I agree with you, they should stop. And it also sounds weird to me as a native german.


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

Looks like I'm having (again) more problems with English than German...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/spineda1992

I hate these stupid sentences... I am a native English speaker and it marked wrong: fish sometimes fall from the sky here... If that is wrong then all German course is trash


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Betsy222189

sometimes fish fall here from the sky. Should be correct


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

That would change "here" into a destination-- i.e., "Fish fall to here from the sky"-- which is not what the German says; "here" is just a location in the German sentence. You could, however, say "Sometimes fish fall from the sky here."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ClareSheph4

This sentence is just wrong on all levels and is pointless to boot. There are thousands of useful sentances in German. This is becoming ever more rapidly a waste of time. Time wasting is not fun.


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

What's wrong with 'Fish from heaven sometimes fall here'?


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

"vom Himmel fallen" would always be understood to mean "to fall from the sky". Your English word order suggests that "from heaven" refers to the fish.

("der Himmel" does mean "heaven" in a theological sense as well as "sky".)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Altopiano0

Ich dachte, da wären Manna, die vom Himmel gefallen sind.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sol52347

Himmel is the German word for heaven ... Gott im Himmel


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Abby870033

And it also means sky.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sol52347

True, but answering "heaven" should not be marked wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chiron0224

"Here, fish sometimes fall from the sky" was marked incorrect?


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

Duo probably is unaware of the idiom.

Here, we quite often speak like that.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/David215844

I know this phenomenon really does occur, so it's not the idea behind the sentence which bothers me, but the word order of the translation. There may well be only one way to correctly say this in German, but in English the word order isn't so restrictive; there are several ways it can be written, all of them quite correct. I tried a couple of variations of exactly the same words given as the correct translation, just ordered slightly differently. They were both marked wrong despite being perfectly acceptable English. Maybe Duolingo should either avoid sentences like this or allow a wider range of answers. Just a thought.


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

"or allow a wider range of answers"

They do, but they rely on users to report for the less common versions that they miss. Next time please report it.


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

"Here fish sometimes fall from the sky!" is not accepted, but should be, since it is just a rewording of the suggested translation. On another occasion I wrote "Fish fall from the sky here sometimes!" and it was not accepted. Come on, moderators, do things right!


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

Comment moderators dont have power over the lessons/reviews. You have to report it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Paul466138

Hmm. "Fish sometimes fall from the sky here" gets rejected. As does "from Heaven" which is another meaning for Himmel, no?


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

This should be correct and seems a more natural english translation: Fish fall from the sky here sometimes


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wsiev13

why is heavens or heaven incorrect ILO sky?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cyrax84

I get that perhaps heaven sounds dumb but this is something you hear when you are around German elders as a child. Americans say "manna from heaven" or something like that. I don't like that this system rejects literal, technically correct answers.


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

I put sometimes fish fall from heaven here but it was rejected.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Grawl71

What is wrong with, "Sometimes fish fall here from the sky."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

That's an odd-sounding word order, unless you're saying that the fish fall to here from the sky (but that's not what the German sentence says).

You could say "Sometimes fish fall from the sky here," or one of a few other wordings.


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

Unfortunately, as a native English speaker that is exactly what I thought it meant (that the fish were falling to here), much to die Eule's displeasure. But I think I may be forgiven, because a) we have no context and b) it would not be the first time that the Owl has given us such a strange sentence. What would the German be for Sometimes fish fall to here from the sky? "Hierhin?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

Yes, though I believe "hierher" would be more common.

The German "hier" unambiguously refers to "here" as a location, so context wouldn't matter.


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

Is there any more elegant way to write this sentence in German? It feels very awkward. Perhaps 'Manchmal fallen Fische von Himmel hier.' would be a clearer sentence? The English isn't much better. In the English sentence, the placement of 'here' is what makes the sentence unwieldy. 'here' is irrelevant in the sentence provided by Duo. Sometimes, fish fall from the sky. Oh, by the way, the fish fall here. - or an alternative - Sometimes, fish fall here (at this spot!), from the sky. - Or, as Copernicus offers, 'Here, sometimes fish fall from the sky." Brings 'here' back into the core of the sentence rather than floating at the end. We're certainly getting a lot to discuss from this little sentence.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

Actually, I specifically said that "Here, sometimes ..." sounds wrong to me. I would say the most natural-sounding English phrasings are "Fish sometimes fall from the sky here," or "Fish fall from the sky here sometimes," or "Sometimes fish fall from the sky here" (Duo's sentence). "Here, fish sometimes fall from the sky" is also reasonable if you want to kind of topicalize "here" (sounds like you're listing off places and what happens at each place).

I'm not really sure why you want to make "here" the core of the sentence when the actual really interesting thing in the sentence is that there are freaking fish falling from the sky. The "here" part just gives context, and since we're already "here" (at whatever place "here" is), it's not really that important. What we really care about is the falling fish, so "here" does belong at the end.

The German is fine too. Again, "hier" doesn't need to have emphasis, so putting at the end, where it does have emphasis in German, is pretty odd.


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

Sometimes here fish fall from the sky. No difference in meaning, no native speaker would cringe, although there is some difference in grammar. Why does Duolingo feel compelled to correct English grammar in a German course?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

Afraid that translation does sound pretty strange to this native English speaker. We don't usually put two adverbs at the beginning of a sentence like that; one of them should be moved somewhere to the right.

It's not exactly correcting English grammar. Each possible translation is put in by a human by hand, and these humans have little reason to deliberately enter bad-sounding translations into the database. Even if they did, they couldn't possibly account for all the possible grammar mistakes and word order changes someone could make; even totally correct answers have to get added to exercises all the time as people come up with unexpected valid answers. This course assumes you already know how to speak correct English, and it is a machine, not a human, so it can only assume that any answer not in its list of correct answers is a mistake in translation rather than one in English.


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

Understood and good point. Do you have any idea what the throughput is on reports from users who claim their answer should be accepted? It's opaque for users. And, naturally, few ever see the fixes as they are off to another unit by the time it is, if it is, fixed.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

Reports are definitely processed very slowly. Once in a while I get an email about a suggestion I made, and it's always one I made months before at best; I usually don't even remember making the suggestion.

Duolingo is free and the people who process reports are (I think?) volunteers, so unfortunately there's not really enough people or enough incentive to make this happen much faster.

So yeah, you probably won't see your suggestions get fixed for a long time, if ever. (And if they don't accept your suggestion, you won't get notified and you'll definitely never know.) Not ideal, but hey, it's a free service.


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

Yep, we should all practice being grateful for this platform.


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

Kafka on the shore refference?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sergey485450

Here does not need to be at the end of the sentence.


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

Maybe they live at the bottom of a waterfall!

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