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  5. "Nein, ich habe es nicht dabe…

"Nein, ich habe es nicht dabei."

Translation:No, I do not have it with me.

April 10, 2013



What would be grammatically wrong with "Nein, ich habe es mit mir nicht". How do I know when I must use the da-* words?


Unfortunately, you just have to know. You'll certainly be understood if you say "mit mir," but you'll also be immediately recognized as Ausländer. Believe me, I've done it! :-) Use dabei instead; that's one of the things this section is trying to teach you. In time, you'll come to know when it's correct to use so-called da- and wo- sentence constructions.


I want to know the answer to this too - is it just 'not the way a German would say it', or is it actually wrong?


It's wrong. You need to use "dabei".


Why though? Is it just bort's particular construction or can „mit“ never be used to convey "on one's person" (and if so, why)?


You can say "Ich habe es nicht dabei", or more colloquially "Ich habe es nicht mit". If you add "mir", it's wrong.


Dabei means in that, with it, and with me? This is all very confusing to an English speaker and makes it difficult to tell what they mean


Think of dabei haben as a set phrase meaning “to have on/with one”. So:

  • Ich habe es dabei. (I have it with me)
  • Du hast es dabei. (You have it with you)



You mean like a separable verb "dabeihaben"???


You’re right, dabeihaben does appear to be a separable verb (and therefore should be written as one word when dabei is not separated). I didn’t think of that possibility because I can’t think of any other separable verbs with dabei.

In any case, thanks for pointing it out!


Really like this tip/association! Please have a lingot


Is "mithaben" a synonym to "dabeihaben"? Someone also commented you can say "Ich habe es nicht mit" with the same meaning.


Yes, mithaben is a synonym of dabeihaben but a very colloquial one. I would advise against using it in writing (unless you’re citing a spoken dialogue word for word of course).


You could use "bei mir" instead of "mit mir"


On itranslate, "dabei" means "there", so i dont see why it's necessary here. It's easier to say "es fehlt"--"it is missing"- oder "ich habe es mit mir nicht" sounds acceptable, too. :)


Dabei = "Therewith" or "Herewith" basically.


"Ich habe es mit mir nicht" is totally incorrect german. I know it can be hard to accept but english isn't the standard that all other languages have to adhere to. Other languages express things differently.


dabei= bei das= bei es= bei mir (I think), germans don't use " by it=bei es" they use dabei instead, it's valid for all da-words


No one has really given a sufficient answer. What does "dabei" mean? German speakers out there help!!!!


da + preposition means there/here/it + preposition meaning. An "r" is sometimes added after da if the preposition begins with a vowel. For example "darauf" means on it and "darunter" means under it.

Here dabei means "thereby", "herewith", etc... If you literally dump those translations into English it doesn't make a lot of sense, so we translate it as "with me".

"No, I have it not herewith" Is the most literal translation. In English we would never say we have something "herewith", so that is why the translation is "on me" or "with me".

If you can think of the da + preposition rule then when your mind translates "herewith" that will help you remember "here with me" or just "with me".


btw you can also do this same adding of a preposition logic with "wo" to make a question.

wovon: what from worüber: what about wofür: what for

Not sure why "wo" means what in this context when it means "where" by itself, but it does in this particular construct. A lot of these wo + prep constructs make more sense in English if you swap the word order (e.g. from what)

Wovon träumst du? (what do you dream of?) Ich träume davon (I dream of it)


"Wo" actually still means "where" in this context. It just turns into old English.

"Whereof", "Whereupon", "Wherefore", "Whereby", "Whereover" etc.


thank you so much for this! such a neat and concise response!


Thank you! This is helpful!


Thank you very much.


Take a Lingot for this spectacular answer!


'no i don't have it on me' was not accepted for me :(


It sounds correct but may not be included in the program. You should report it.


How about damit?


A short summary from my German textbook (Kontakte 7th ed.) mit is for instrument, togetherness, and means of transportation. bei is for vicinity (this example, here with so "da(here, something abstract)+bei(with)", somebody's place, and place of employment.

So definitely can't use damit here. Hope this helps.


What about if you are referring it as something non abstract such as a phone/ or a person??


I just list some simple cases. You can find more discussion here: https://www.lsa.umich.edu/german/hmr/Grammatik/Relativsaetze/relative.html

For a person, you would use "der/die (not das I hope)" (also depends on the case), just like the English "who/whom". Example:

Da ist der Mann, der Rumpelstilzchen liebt. (There is the man who loves Rumpelstilzchen) Da ist der Mann, den Rumpelstilzchen liebt. (There is the man whom Rumpelstilzchen loves)

For things like a phone, you would still use the article that corresponds to its gender, similar to the English "which". Say:

Stefan trinkt viel zu viel Kaffee, der seinen Magen zerstören wird. (Stefan is drinking much too much coffee, which will destroy his stomach.) "Kaffee" is masculine so we use "der" here.


With German to say you have been doing something... Would you just say past perfect e.g ich habe gespielt.... So this translates to I played/have played/ was playing/ have been playing?


"have been doing" is different from "have done" in English so I won't use German present perfect to say that, not for "was playing" either. The German present perfect is close to the English present perfect, even it can mean the simple past in English, but it stresses the effect on present.


I have also seen beim or am and then the verb also.. E.g ich war beim lesen meaning I was reading


This link also discusses the "da-compounds" case, which tells under what situations we can/cannot use da-compounds. Say

"Da-compounds cannot be used to refer to people or most animals ("most" means: start using da-compounds at the point where assuming any kind of personality for the animal would be absurd, e.g. for insects)"



But in this sentence "Ich habe es nicht dabei", I am referring to a person mir. According to the rule

"Da-compounds cannot be used to refer to people or most animals"

doesn't this mean that I can't use dabei in the sentence, but rather "Ich habe es nicht bei mir" instead?


dabei works fine here in this sentence -- it's not short for bei es or bei das (i.e. doesn't refer to any particular "it" or "that") but simply means "with (me/you/her/us/etc.)" or "on (me/you/her/us/etc.)".

  • 1646

Said Han Solo to Greedo.


I put, i do not have it, it was wrong?


I do not have it - Ich habe es nicht - I do not own such an item

I do not have it with me - Ich habe es nicht dabei - I own such an item but have not brought it along


why not: "No, I do not have it by myself"?


Just wondering, can this sentence also mean "I do not have it at the same time?" Where does the possessive come in?



dabei = with me/on me


Doesn't dabei mean with that?


Depending on the context, "dabei" can mean all sorts of things.



I answered with "No, I don't have it at the same time" and it was marked correct.


That's not what it means. It shouldn't have been marked correct.


Just discovered something new. I had this wrong, when I pressed check a red message saying:"correct mistake" came up. I checked the comments and typed the correct answer. Will this occur with each error or only the very complex? I'm not sure I like it being so easy.


Beats being forced to go with wrong stuff and then having to deal with getting that out of your mind, and finally get their so called right answer. You do better going through a dictionary with examples, Now if Duo had people who knew some German? Who knows


I got that a couple of times They saw me sweating. Actually it was when I went ahead and clicked discuss sentence to try and learn from everyone, having thought I lost a heart and might they be rewarding that. Good Idea anyway, now I always look at all the input- its great. Can learn a big bunch more, there you go!. Oddly when doing that, and bought a spare heart on each unit, I have not had to use the spare. Alles gute! aj


As far as I know, "da" sticked in front of a preposition means it, for example damit - with it, dadurch - through it, darauf - on it. Is it common to use "dabei" in this meaning?

There are also trennbar verbs like "mit|haben" (have with oneself) or "mit|bringen" (bring with oneself).


Can someone tell me why "No, I do not have it with myself." is wrong? Apparently I am unable to answer a German question due to an incorrect understanding of English grammar. :)


In English, one would say "I don't have it with ME." not "with myself".


I don't think your English is grammatically wrong, but it doesn't mean the same as the sentence provided. In fact, I can't really think of a situation in which it would be used.

"To have x with me" means that you currently have x on your person (in your hand, in your pocket, in you wallet etc). The sentence given - "No, I do not have it with me" would normally be used if someone asked you for something but you couldn't hand it over because it was somewhere else. E.g. "Could you give me the ticket?" "No, I don't have it with me - I left it at home." You could also substitute "on me" for "with me" in most circumstances.

"To have x with myself" is a bit trickier. The only instances I can think of are things like "I'm having a conversation with myself" or "I'm having dinner with myself" (i.e. you're doing the thing alone).

Myself (as well as yourself, himself etc) is used when the subject is the same as the object of the sentence/phrase (e.g. "I entertained myself", "She sang to herself", "We dug ourselves a hole"). That is, it is the reflexive form of I. See Reflexive verb on Wikipedia.


Does anyone know what "dabei" means? Is it just "with me?" Can it also mean "with you/him/her/our/themselves?"

My dictionary doesn't have a definition, just some examples of the word in use.


So with the correct statement can I say "ich habe es dabei."? (Google translates it as "i have not been there" instead of "I have it with me".


Google Translate is highly unreliable, especially with idioms. I suppose it's okay for "translating" into your native language, just to give you a rough idea of something, but that's as far as I'd go with it.

Ich habe es dabei or Ich hab's dabei is fine if you mean I have it [with me/on my person.]


Kann ich sag' auch, "Nein, ich habe es nicht damit."


would "nein, ich habe es nicht damit" work? Thanks


No, it wouldn't. Give the tipps under the lightbulb icon a try, they are really helpful.


So the meaning of "dabei" depends on the subject, right? So it wouldn't be only with me but also with you/him/her, etc??


That's right.

Hast du einen Spiegel dabei? -- Nein, aber frag mal Karin; sie hat immer einen dabei. "Do you have a mirror on you? No, but ask Karin; she always has one on her."


alright, thank you


I looked up to Google translate and haben and dabei is "one element verb" it means "have along". So I'm assuming the translation would be " i don't have it along with me". Could any native speaker clarify?


I’m not entirely sure what “one element verb” is supposed to mean. But dabei haben is definitely a fixed idiom with the meaning you described.


Ah i see, "one element verb" is my own term to call any verb who has 2 word on it :D, i don't know what they're called so


In that case, yes, dabei haben is a “one element verb” :D I’m blanking on the official linguistic term right now; instinctively I’d probably call it a “multi-part verb phrase”. If the parts are separated from each other, we usually speak of a Verbklammer (verbal bracket) in German.


No, I do not have it nearby


No, dabei haben means to carry something on your person, not just have it somewhere nearby.


I tried 'no, i do not have it to hand', because i thought that translated happily with darbei (in my mind there-by/beside/at). It didnt work.


So is 'dabei' a catchall phrase meaning with it, at it, there at, and with me? How does one determine the intended meaning? Are these sort of slang phrases or idioms where the actual words don't directly translate directly to the meaning? Do we just have to memorize each of these phrases?


Dabeihaben is a separable verb which means “to have with/on oneself”. By itself (i.e. not as the prefix of dabeihaben) it is basically just bei + the demonstrative das “that”. Das doesn’t like to combine with prepositions. Instead we prefix the preposition with da(r)- (the -r- is only present if the preposition starts with a vowel, e.g. über “over” → darüber “over that”).


Thank you for your explanation.


What about "No, I don't have it handy" or "at hand"?


"Handy" seems very colloquial to me and I wouldn't be surprised if even most Americans didn't understand it, so the fact it isn't accepted isn't all that surprising even if it is technically correct.

As to the correctness, I feel like "to have x handy" means "to have x readily available" rather than "to have x on my person", so while the meaning isn't far off I don't think it's quite the same (although they would be largely interchangeable in many circumstances).


That means something else.

I would understand "I don't have it handy" as "It's not easy to get to it" - but that could mean that you have it with you in a bag filled with all sorts of other things that you would have to sort through, or maybe you have to open a lock first for which you would have to find the key and you don't remember in which of your many pockets you carry that, etc.

So you might still have it with you (dabei) even if you don't have it handy.


"I got it in my purse for you, right now. I brought it just for you, because I knew you were going to ask for it..................Haha, ich habe es nicht dabei." - Joseline 2014


Dabei means [matter, with me, there, yet, with it]


Do not have and haven't is the same. Both are correct.


What was your answer? "No, I haven't it with me?"

That just sounds wrong to me.

Where are you from where native English speakers say things like that?


Could someone please help with why "No, I do not have it near" is incorrect?


My problem with the first level in each category is that they "highlight" (lowlight!) the new words in barely readable yellow text. Duolingo -- if you want us to remember new words, make them easier to read, not LESS so!


I would think it would accept "No, I don't have it along." That's how I would say it in English.


'No I haven't got that with me' didn't pass...


Is this also how I would say 'I don't have it on me'? They are similar, but I don't know how literal these expressions are.


I’m assuming “I have it with me” to you means that I have brought it, just not necessarily on your body (but maybe in your car). etwas dabei haben would be appropriate in either of those cases.


Star Wars quote?


Probably not, at least not intentionally, seeing as this would be a very obscure one. Obscure enough that I don’t remember the German version (though to be fair, it has been a long time since I have watched the German dub of Star Wars).


"I don't have it with" is not accepted and should be as it's idiomatic and grammatical and has the same meaning as the suggested English answer. The "me" is not required (though it is common), since it's implied by the structure of the sentence.



Disagree. I would consider "I don't have it with" to be extremely unusual if not completely unheard of. Duolingo seems to avoid slang because every imprecise answer could only serve to confuse the learner, or fool the system into thinking the learner understands something they actually didn't learn correctly.


Apparently our dialects are different enough that it doesn't work in yours. It does in mine: "Do you have it?" "I don't have it with" is entirely unremarkable and implies that I do have it, just not here and now.


dabei means "yet" So it can be translated to "i do not have it yet" !


"Noch" means yet. "Dabei" literally means "therewith/thereat". In this context I think it corresponds with "on me" as in "I don't have it on me"


I have never heard somebody say “to have something near” to express having something with them. If you’re a native speaker and such an expression is acceptable in your dialect, feel free and use the flag button to report a missing correct answer next time the sentence comes up.

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