1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "You are my guest."

"You are my guest."

Translation:Du bist mein Gast.

May 25, 2018



from an earlier exercise i thought it was der gast.. so why not meinen gast in the above example? if one doesnt know if it is a female or male guest is it assumed to be das gast?


1) (das) Gast does not exist. It is (der) Gast) (and rarely some people use (die) Gästin for a female guest).
2) With a verb like sein (and also werden, bleiben, heißen) you have a predicate nominative as the predicate noun is an attribute / definition of the subject of the sentence and not a (direct) object. Hence mein Gast = nominative.


thank you for your detailed explanation but in my limited understanding of english grammar i still dont understand why my guest is not accusative... i hate to tell you i dont have a clue what predicative nominative as the predicate noun is an attribute / definition of the subject of the sentence and not a (direct) object all means !!! but thank you so much for taking the time to comment


I'll put it like this: "you" and the "guest" are the same person. An object (which would demand an accusative or genitive case) is a thing that the subject does something with; even if I do something to myself, I'm both the doer and the object: "Ich (nominative) wasche mich (accusative)." ("I wash myself.") But in the sentence "I am a man", I am not doing anything to the man - I am the man. It's a mere juxtaposition (or attribute / definition, as quis_lib_duo said).

It's similar to describing nouns with an adjective as in "Der Apfel ist grün" ("The apple is green"): the apple and the green colour are "on the same level", there's no action involved, it's a mere description of how things are (not of things being done). In "Der Apfel ist mein Frühstück" ("The apple is my breakfast"), it's still the same principle: there's the apple, and there's my breakfast, they're identical. Nothing needs to be done in order to make the apple my breakfast, I just define the apple as breakfast.


i think light is beginning to dawn amidst the haze!!! in other words if the example had been you invite my guest, then the guest would have been accusative because something "is being done to" the guest ?


Yep, that's right :) - "You invite my guest" = "Du lädst meinen Gast ein", with "du" = subject (nominative case) and "meinen Gast" = object (accusative case)

(added difficulty: "einladen" ("to invite") is a separable verb, so the prefix goes at the end of the sentence)

Not to talk too much about direct and indirect objects and cases and stuff, but if you look at "Ich gebe meinem Gast einen Apfel" ("I give an apple to my guest"), the thing something is being done with is primarily the apple: I give it. So it's the direct object and in accusative case. The guest is just the one the apple is given to: indirect object, dative case.


thank you very very much for explaining that in such simple and easy-to-understand terms... thank you for your time and willingness to help...


Danke. It opened my eyes. Now I got clarity. Thank you very much.


This may help: http://www.dailygrammar.com/Lesson-105-Predicate-Nominative.htm . It deals with predicative nominatives in the English language, but it's a good pointer to understand them in German as well.


the tip of "equals" is definitely helpful! i am so often falling over this principle in grammar but hopefully now i have managed to grasp it... VERY impressive streak - well done!!!!!


Why is - Ihr seid mein Gast - incorrect?


Since "ihr" is plural, you have to put the guests into the plural as well: "Ihr seid meine Gäste."

(...unless you're in a pseudo-medieval movie and "Ihr", capitalised, is used as a formal address for a single person, but that shouldn't be accepted by Duolingo :) )


Why "Ihr seid meine Gäste" is not accepted by Duolingo?


Two reasons. Firstly, there is only one guest, whereas "Ihr" means you (plural). Secondly, the singular for guest is Gast, the plural is Gäste. "Ihr seid meine Gäste" would mean "You are my guests".


I'm wondering why Duo sometimes offers "Besucher" as "another right answer" for "Gast" but in this case insisted on "Gast." Is there some incomplete overlap in the terms? (Denotation as opposed to Connotation?)


at stepintime - thanks again... your example of giving my guest an apple is great ... can i ask you to clarify why in den menschen geht es gut the people are the indirect object? i am really battling to see it ...i thought they were the subject!!!... confusion, she reigns!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Maybe it helps to think of it as "It is going well with/for those people".

From a grammatical point of view, "es" is the subject of the sentence, and in the English sentence you'd see why the people are an object: they're preceded by a preposition, "with/for". The idea is the same in the German sentence, but unfortunately you can't see it reflected by any preposition.


so in other words, the people are in the accusative? i thought someone mentioned that it was dative! i think i must have misread another comment... thank you again for you time and concern and all your help


"den Menschen" is dative. Both accusative and dative are used for objects; cf. the "Ich gebe meinem Gast einen Apfel" example above: "meinem Gast" is the indirect object in dative case, "einen Apfel" is the direct object in accusative case.

"Es geht jemandem gut/schlecht" is used with dative, and I can't really explain why.


bless you for your honesty!! i thought if menschen was dative it would be dem rather than den which i associate with accusative but as i still have to get to the dative section dont stress... one day i guess more of the fog will clear!!!!!!!! i really DO appreciate all your time and kindness in helping me so much with the explanations.


You're welcome :)

"dem Menschen" is dative singular (for masculine and neuter words): "Es geht dem Menschen gut" ("The person/human is doing fine"), "Ich gebe dem Menschen einen Apfel" ("I give an apple to the person/human"). And "den Menschen" is dative plural as well as accusative singular: "Ich liebe den Menschen" ("I love the person/human"). Have fun discovering more of German grammar later on :)


Ihr seid mein gast was marked wrong??


why ihr seid mein gast is not acceptable?


Ich denke die Höflichkeitsform sollte man erlauben. Ihr seid mein Gast.

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