"Wat zijn zij precies?"

Translation:What are they exactly?

July 22, 2014

9 Comments

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

Does zij here refer to people, or could it refer also to objects?

My current understanding is that to refer to objects it would have to be

wat zijn het precies

July 22, 2014

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

Correct. "Zij" must refer to people. Objects must be referred to as "het".


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

If it is referring to people, than why does it say "Wat" and not "Wie"? I have run across many sentences that do no accept "Wat", when referring to people.


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

Same as in English: "What are they" = "Wat zijn zij", "Who are they" = "Wie zijn zij".


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

Even if it is in plural?


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

Then it would be "wat IS het precies" for things and "wat is hij/zij precies" for people (with "zij" third person feminine singular).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ronaldsantoro243

How about "Exactly what are they?"


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

Well in English that is about the same as "What are they exactly", right? So I think this would translate fine.

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