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  5. Wir kommen aus England


Wir kommen aus England

Let's take an example friends, there's a guy who gets into a conversation with two strangers. The guy, who is a newbie to German language considers them to be German and begins to talk in German. He gets to a point when he tries to uproot his doubt of their nationality and asks them in German from where do they come? The strangers, who knew German pretty well blasts him into doubts about his German knowledge by saying : Wir kommen aus England. Now our guy gets frustrated as his mind leads him to a deadlock between two decisions, or translations which are : We are from England (That they belong from England) or They are coming from England (Maybe they are coming from a trip to England and they MAYNOT be from England and he need to conversiate with them further to know their nationality). So to keep up appearances which of the following our guy should choose, to believe that they are Englishmen or to go out and ask them for a 'clear' answer? How would you find out the right answer if you were in this position?

P. S : I had this question from a week and I won't be able to sleep properly if no one replies with the proper answer. P. P. S : Our guy is a 'newbie' as said before and has a limited stock of German vocabulary and Grammar.

June 15, 2018



"Wir kommen aus England" can theoretically indeed have the two meanings you indicated.

But normally, if the second meaning was meant, people would rather say: "Wir kommen gerade aus England". This means clearly that they are traveling, and that they have just come from England.

So, when traveling in Spain, I could say: "Ich komme aus Deutschland, aber jetzt gerade komme ich aus Frankreich." ;-)

  • 1322

TMI! You went from one extreme in your previous question with no context to the other extreme.

Please do not tell an entire story when you want to ask a simple question. It’s very difficult and time-consuming to find out what your actual question is. Formulate your question as concisely as possible. If you feel it’s necessary, you can add a more descriptive version or an example after your question. I guess that’s what causes the downvotes.


Hey! Sorry for the troubles I gave you in that question. I have updated that question now so you can get a proper look at my problems. I believe you should that question now.


Es tut mir leid, I never used any other forums before this.


Jileha. Always think you know everuthing. Ha!


Why didn't newbie ask if the were German rather than where they came from? Even in English "where do you come from" has dual meaning.


This 'where do you come from' has its own double meaning too. If the strangers say they were Germans, he would wrong their answer by replying that he wanted to know where do they live in Germany (as he feared he could be mocked as being slow witted by not understanding the nationality of the strangers by their language; which most humans do, guessing by language and accents) and if the strangers' reply was some other country except Germany he could be praised and seen as a wise man than others for not relying on the common belief (the one stated above) and making right decisions. This is the story behind the 'where do you come from'.


I'm sure one could tell form newbie's accent and choice of words that newbie was not a native German speaker. I would venture to say newbie is sensitive. Even in one's primary language clarification of meaning is needed with additional questions. Practice, practice, practice and don't be afraid to speak and be corrected because that is how one learns. No reason for shame; bravo and praise for learning a new language!

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