"Bitte schließen Sie die Tür."

Translation:Please close the door.

May 14, 2013

44 Comments

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

Anyone know the difference in usage between zumachen and schliessen?

December 17, 2013

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

From what I've gathered in many cases "zumachen" and "schließen" can be used interchangeably and the same goes for "öffnen" and "aufmachen".

July 31, 2014

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

Why is Please close "her" door wrong? Whats the context of Sie, here?

February 10, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

First of all, the upper cased 'Sie' is the formal you, rather than 'she'.

Second, 'sie' is the 3rd person singular female personal pronoun in nominative case. To say "her door", you would need the possessive 'ihr', which would be "ihre Tür" (inflicted properly since Tür is female).

Finally, you should read about the imperative mood in German - http://www.dartmouth.edu/~german/Grammatik/Imperative/Imperativ.html .
One of the possible ways to phrase an imperative in German is for the formal you - Sie - which was used here. You do that by using the infinitive form (e.g. essen, gehen, treffen, schließen. The exception to this is 'sein' which you will use 'seien' for) in the same structure as a question (i.e. verb first, then Sie.
For example "Eat it" would be "Essen Sie es"

February 10, 2014

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

Excellent response but just one minor correction: Sie (the "formal you") is a 2nd person nominative pronoun; sie ("she") is a 3rd person singular nominative pronoun.

February 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

Correct, thank you :)

November 29, 2016

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

does "Sie" in imperative always go after the verb?

March 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

I assume you mean in this form of the imperative mood? then yes. The other forms don't have "Sie" and some don't use any personal pronouns.

March 27, 2016

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

Would it be correct to translate this more closely to "Please, can you close to door?" Or am I trying to hard to make the Sie work in my mind? Because in your other example of "Essen Sie es" would it not be able to be translated as "(You) Eat it" since the "you" in that sentence is implied in the command? Sorry for the possibly annoying question haha.

May 10, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

No worries. No, it cannot. The question you have in mind would be "Bitte, könnten Sie die Tür schließen?" -> "Please, could you close the door" (changed "can" which is for for inquiring about possibility, to "could" which is better for making a request/instruction).
Putting "please" aside, and like I said above, this is the same structure as the question "Are you closing the door?". You can tell the difference by the lack of question mark when written and the intonation when spoken, aside from context which usually would be enough.
Did I answer what you meant or was I off point?

May 11, 2017

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

Thanks for this explanation AsafH and have a lingot

November 28, 2016

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

Well, in German, when you give a command, your sentence also includes the person you address, which would be, 'Sie'. In English, the 'You' is hidden, as in, "Do your Duolingo every day!" compared to "You, do your Duolingo every day!" Hope this helps.

July 31, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

Not necessarily, read about the imperative mood. German has a total of 5 imperative structures:

  • 2nd person formal (Sie) - what you are referring to
  • 2nd singular person informal (du)
  • 2nd plural person informal (ihr)
  • 1st person plural (wir)
  • 3rd person (er/sie/es) - old fashioned, not really used

The pronouns are only included for Sie, wir, and third person but not for du and ihr.

August 1, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Conor-Fitz

Just out of curiosity, when would a command ever be directed to a third person?

August 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

Good question! God save the queen :) Still feels very unnatural to me, except from phrases.

March 27, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Janice528090

Why is the word Sie in this question?

August 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dahlie5

1) It's not a question

2) Because this sentence needs a subject?

November 11, 2016

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

Because it's an imperative, not a question. You must always include "Sie" when it's imperative.

March 3, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bob20020

Why add SIE? Can it be BITTE SCHLIEßEN DIE TÜR???

June 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

No - What you suggested is not a valid imperative sentence in German (actually not a valid sentence at all). The closest is "Bitte die Tür schließen". Read about the imperative mood in German - http://www.dartmouth.edu/~german/Grammatik/Imperative/Imperativ.html .

June 7, 2015

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

Hodor!

June 19, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/b3ddobson

Don't claim to be an expert but.... I think it is more common to say Machen Sie die Tuer zu! or informally Tuer zu! to request the door be closed. I hear zumachen much more than schliessen in use. Schliessen can also be used sometimes to mean to lock or closed. Sperren is also used for close or lock. Consider the road sign Strasse gesperrt! Good luck on figuring this one out!

September 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/antonio6088

Is it OK to say, "Schliesen Sie bitte die Tür" the previous sentence "Nehmen Sie bitte Platz" Why interchange the position of "Bitte"?

November 22, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hailstorm1

Can you also say : Schließen Sie bitte die Tür

May 19, 2017

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

"Please lock the door" would not work?

May 14, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Herbstzeitlose-

That would be "Bitte schließen Sie die Tür ab".

schließen = to close
abschließen = to lock

May 14, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/abrody1

Danke

October 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vign2211

could you please close the door - y is it wrong

June 8, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Levi
  • 2100

@vign2211: "could you please close the door" is wrong for 2 reasons: 1. That sounds like a question to me. 2. 'could' is not necessary. So, the German sentence simply means "Please close the door.".

June 8, 2013

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

Bitte schliessen Sie die Tür ZU ?

July 17, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/G.P.Niers

Zuschließen = mit einem Schlüssel fest schließen = to lock. So no.

February 6, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brodie1

How would the phrase be written if 'Sie' was not capitalised; 'they'?

September 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

If I'm not mistaken, that makes no sense. "They please close the door" would be a translation which you can see doesn't make sense. In this case (capitalised) it makes sense since using the format you Sie is also used as the imperative form (Close the door, or here - Please close the door)

October 27, 2013

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

Can you please close the door should definitely be accepted! Right? (Im not native in either of the languages)

June 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

Well, you could use them almost the same. But your suggestion is a question of "are you able to", duolingo's sentence (in both languages) is an imperative (that is, command) "Please close the door".

July 17, 2015

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

Why can I not state "Bitte schließ die Tür" ???

November 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lenze3

"Bitte schließen Sie die Tür" "Bitte schließ die Tür" would be right too, but it's informal, you would say that to a friend. ;)

November 19, 2016

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

how come ¨can you please close the door¨ is wrong, yet ¨could you please close the door¨ is not?

March 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Asaf-fu

"can" means the literal "being able to"/"having permission to" while "could" is used as a polite request.

March 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/arman194463

How say "hold the door hold the door"? GOT...

April 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kirill493159

Isn't "Nicht schließen" translated as "don't shoot"?

August 13, 2018

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

So, in the dictionary https://dict.leo.org/german-english/Schlie%C3%9Fen I see that "schließen" can mean "to close" "to finish" or "to lock." How can one distinguish between a request to close the door versus one to lock the door?

August 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Minervas37

"(to) close" = "schließen" / "zumachen"

"(to) lock" = "abschließen" / "zuschließen" / "absperren" / "zusperren"

"(to) block" = "blockieren" / "versperren"

May 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PrakashJos18

My answer is correct

March 20, 2019
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