"خَلْف اَلْبَيْت سَيّارة."

Translation:There is a car behind the house.

July 4, 2019

25 Comments
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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bonjour689181

Can someone explain what wording or part of a word makes the "There is" in this sentence? I can see the part "a car behind the house" but am lost for the there is without the word "Hunak."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/StevenWest12

This may get a bit technical, but here goes:

"There is" is not written in Arab, but you might argue it should be there in English.

In English, we use "There is..." to introduce a new indefinite object into a conversation (i.e. "a car" that is new to the discussion versus "the car" which was already established at an earlier point in time). The word "There" is semantically empty in this construction, i.e. it does not indicate location as such, but only exists because English declarative sentences grammatically require at least one constituent to precede the verb.

In this particular case, you could also topicalize (i.e. 'move to the front') the location: "[Behind the house] is a car." The word "there" is no longer required, because the verb "is" is now preceded by another constituent. Notably, however, this does subtly change the meaning, because we are now emphasising the location of the car rather than the existence of the car.

I am no native speaker of Arabic, but from what I have seen so far, هناك functions exactly the same as "There is..." in English, and as the example above shows, topicalisation of the location is equally possible in Arabic (.خَلْف اَلْبَيْت سَيّارة). Therefore, it seems to me that this word order also emphasises the location خَلْف اَلْبَيْت over the car's existence; compare هناك سَيّارة خَلْف اَلْبَيْت . This would mean this sentence should be translated as "Behind the house is a car.", but it would be good if a native speaker could confirm.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Garrett694306

Or even in an odd, archaic sounding form, one could say in english "Behind the house, a car"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Anthony101199

Behind the house is a car.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FiKG8a

in colloquial syrian or palestinian you would say "fi sayyara (behind/infront of...) el beit". The word 'fi' functions as 'there is', and even as an affirmative, eg, 'is there a car...?' answer 'fi', ie, yes/there is. I can't imagine it being omitted.


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

هناك سيارة خلف البيت


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

Why not "a car behind the house "?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/StevenWest12

Shouldn't the correct translation for this sentence be "Behind the house is a car."? There's a subtle difference in meaning with "There is a car behind the house." which I assume "هناك" would also express.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Leigh4d

That's what I entered and it was correct.


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

Is it optional to use هناك?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Behemot97

You can't use هناك here , because there is already one preposition here خلف


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

Thank you! I didn't realize هناك was a preposition.


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

I notice a pattern here, after doing a lot of mistakes. Anytime, I see behind, next to, the background, in front of beginning the arabic sentence, the translation is there is or there are. Correct me if I am wrong.


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

Will it be wrong if I say "A car is behind the house"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Behemot97

i hear an at the end of sayyara,which is accusative and it should be un,strictly speaking


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

Duolingo, I find, plays VERY loose with tanwiin. They seem almost obsessed with putting -an at the end of a lot of things that should have -un.

It's one of my biggest annoyances with Duolingo's Arabic course.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HaroldGarr6

the structure makes a lot more sense if you think of it as "Behind the house, a car"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AbdulRehma576896

They taught me wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/archie863392

midunesti nane nane nane


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

can someone explain why the audio pronounces it as "Khal-feel bayt" instead of "Khal-ful bayt" or "Khal-fal bayt"? i wish they put a kasrah on the ف to make it clearer (خلفِ) if that's really the actual pronunciation and not an audio mistake, or hearing mistake on my part =/


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

هناك سيارة خلف البيت


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

It's like "behind the house, is a car"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Shadia2721381

'Hounaaka' means there and there is no such word in this sentence . Really

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