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  5. "Es sind persönliche Gründe."

"Es sind persönliche Gründe."

Translation:They are personal reasons.

July 17, 2013



Why is the sentence Es sind? It should be "es gibt" or "Sie sind" right?


This is idiomatic German, a very common construction and means "they are" or sometimes "there are". In this case "Es" is a "placeholder" and the verb agrees with the actual subject. Here is an example to demonstrate the difference between the singular and plural forms of this construction:

"Wer ist an der Tür" (Who is at the door?) "Es ist eine junge Frau" OR "Es sind drei junge Frauen" Inverted: "Eine junge Frau ist es" (Sie (she) ist es) or "Drei junge Frauen sind es", ("Sie (they) sind es") (You cannot say "Es ist drei Frauen")

"Es gibt" is always conjugated the same way, because "es" is the subject. "Es sind" is different in meaning to "Es gibt". In this sentence it really means "THEY are personal reasons" but NOT "There are personal reasons" (Es gibt)


    It's my observation that this idiomatic use is sometimes to 'avoid' using Sie so often, which could mean "she/they/you" depending on the context - and while context clarifies the meaning sometimes, it can still result in ambiguity or misunderstanding (it happened to me).


    Thanks for the excellent explanation.


    wa, danke sehr ! jetzt klar:)


    yeah, why not "sie sind" instead of "es sind"? I am taking it that "es sind" is simply an expression and we shouldn't make the literal translation of "they are" as "sie sind"?


    So many replies and nobody can still tell why "Es sind.." and not "Sie sind.." in the sentence ?


    It is ansewered now


    If we use " Sie sind " Instead would it still be correct?


    "Sie sind persönliche Gründe" would be correct.


    This "native English speaker" uses either of these, depending on the context. Once again native English speakers disagree about what native English speakers would say. I moved from Chicago to Boston and struggled to understand these people. Imagine the differences between Chicago and Sydney. Also, just because it "sounds right" doesn't make it proper grammar.


    it's personal reasons...why not?


    Because in English, when using a copulative ("linking") verb such as "be/is/are" the number (i.e., singular vs. plural) of the subject (der Nominativ) should match the number of the predicate object, and the verb should be conjugated to agree. So, "They are personal reasons" or "It is a personal reason."


    I am english and have no problem with the vast majority of people's theories on the thread but my reason for coming on here has still not been answered. Why es and then sind. Surely it makes no sense. Es gibt....fine. sie sind.....fine but es, singular, sind.....plural. so surely it ought to be es ist. Quite evidently there is a reason for es sind otherwise it would be wrong but nobody appears to have explained why. Apologies if i have missed the answer already given on the thread.


    Hi maybe this thread and the answer from christian might help you: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/523935


    It's idiomatic. Es is a "placeolder" at the beginning of the sentence or clause. Here's a good explanation: http://www.canoo.net/services/OnlineGrammar/InflectionRules/FRegeln-P/Pron-es.html?lang=en#Anchor-es-11481


    Warum. . Nicht Persönlichen. . Gründe ist plural


      Because there's no article in front. Hence different declination.


      My answer was " these are personal matters " . Not accepted.


      Genau. "These are . . . " and "They are . . . " are not equivalent. Had the German sentence been "Das sind persönliche Gründe," then "These are . . . " would have been correct.


      Here instead of saying 'Es sind persönliche Gründe', can we not say 'Die Gründe sind persönliche'. Instead of es(if we consider in English- They is basically a personal pronoun, so should it be used for reasons/grounds which is not a person? ). Instead can we not use the definate article Die here?


      Die Gründe sind persönlich = The reasons are personal

      Die Gründe sind persönliche = The reasons are personal ones

      Neither of them is quite the same as "They are personal reasons".


      Mizinamo's explanation is absolutely correct (of course). But there is a slight misunderstanding expressed in Mini359442's question:

      "They is basically a personal pronoun, so should it be used for reasons/grounds which is not a person?"

      Although they are called personal pronouns, they are not reserved for use with people/persons. They can be used to refer to any noun/object, even abstract ones such as pronouns. (See what I did there?) "They", in particular, is used to refer to multiple objects: it is the plural form of "it", which is clearly used for non-people but is still called a personal pronoun.

      Of course, "they" is the plural form of he and/or she as well.

      Note that even the singular "he" and "she" can be used for non-people in some cases: boats, ships, and aircraft are commonly referenced as "she". And when I call my cat, he pretty much ignores me.


      Why "Es sind..." rather than "Das sind..."?


      Both are possible in sentences, just as "They are..." and "Those are ..." are possible in English -- depending on what came before.

      "They are..." would usually refer back to something you had discussed previously, while "Those are..." would be more common for introducing a new topic into discussion.


      Use “es sind” if you are talking about people/animals/ideas, and “es gibt“ if you’re talking about concrete objects (such as Es gibt vier Orangen BUT Es sind fünfzehn Damen).


      Shouldn't it be "there are"? "They are' doesn't seem to make sense to me in this sentence.


      Why doesn't it make sense? As in the response to "Please tell me why you aren't coming to work tomorrow?" or to make it less awkward, to "Tell me what made you decide not to come to work tomorrow."

      I'm thinking one would easily rather respond "It is because of personal reasons", but that a sentence construct doesn't translate well from one language to another is not surprising. As long as it still makes sense and is grammatically correct... Not a native English speaker, pardon me if i'm off.


      Usually we (English speakers) would answer "for personal reasons" - "I'm taking the day off for personal reasons." Using "because" requires something more concrete - "I'm taking the day off because my mother is sick."" "I'm taking off because I have personal issues [to attend to.]"


      I would just say "personal reasons", but "It is because of" and "they are" work equally well with this sentence...as a native English speaker (USA)


      I am not quite sure but "there are" is more like "Da sind persönliche Gründe." oder "Es gibt persönliche Gründe."


      Why not "The reasons are personal."?


        Different sentence construction.


        Why Personal causes is wrong?


        Does the computer voice sound more like Grunde with no umlaut to anyone else? I don't hear the [y] , it sounds more like [ʊ] to me (rhymes with und.)


        I think "es sind" has the same function as the French "ça est" (abbr. as "c'est") and the plural form "sind" marks the "neutrality" of the expression (intended to work with any gender and singular/plural noun). Am i right?


        "Sind" is used here instead of "ist" because the "real" subject ("Gründe") is plural, and so sein is conjugated to agree in number. It's not a matter of "neutrality".


        Why is "it is for personal reasons" wrong?


        The plural "sind" tells you that "personal reasons" are the true subject of the sentence. A kind of equivalent in english is "there is/are", and how "there are personal reasons" is different from "they are personal reasons" or from what you suggest. (it's just a parallel though, because German has much closer to "there is" with "es gibt")

        The sentence you propose would, on top of the verb being aligned with "es" and be singular, also require a preposition. I wanted to say "für" but i'm not 100% on that, and google translate gives me "Es ist aus persönlichen Gründen". So probably they're right.


        What is "Es"'s purpose here?

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