1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "Seit wann trinkt er Tee?"

"Seit wann trinkt er Tee?"

Translation:Since when does he drink tea?

August 17, 2013



Why isn't this good? "Since when has he been drinking tea?"


I'd say its probably something to do with the tense in this case... I could be wrong!


I see it as an action question verses a to like question. "Since when does he drink tea" is asking when all of the sudden does he like drinking tea and "Since when has he been drinking tea" to me means when in time did he start drinking the tea he is currently drinking


Clearly that is the difference in English, but what in the German tells us that the question involves a long historical time period?


Verb usage "Seit wann trinkt er Tee" = since when does he drink tea and "Seit wann hat er Tee trinken" = since when has he been drinking tea


Adam1978's translation is fine and should have been accepted. "Seit wann trinkt er Tee?" Can express surprise that he likes tea, in which case the English equivalent is "Since when does he drink tea?!" but it can also mean a straightforward question, for example in the case of a small child who you notice drinking tea for the first time, "Since when has he been drinking tea?" Unlike English, German uses the present tense in a case like this, to express a situation that is continuing into the present and is expected to continue into the future. Another example: "Seit wann wohnst du hier?" = "How long have you been living here?" (Also, KendallHolm, the past participle of "trinken" is "hat getrunken.")


I know it is not the translation of the German but as an English speaker, I would ask When did he start drinking tea' to ask for this information.Since when' sounds very awkward to my Canadian ears


Should it be "Seit wann hat er Tee getrunken?" Though the corresponding English would be closer to "Since when did he drink tea?" Is there a past progressive in German?


No that is not correct. 'Since when does he drink tea' is not a construction used in English - except as a rather rude and agressive (and American) way if saying 'I didn' know he drank tea'


Sounds ok. Also Janet1930 - I agree - "When did he start drinking tea" would be the preferred expression for this Australian too. "When did he start tea-drinking" might be even less ambiguous, or even "When did he take up tea-drinking".

Or "How long has he been drinking tea?". It's ambiguous, but maybe the German sentence is also ambiguous.

OR How about "How long has he been a tea-drinker?"


ADVICE TO LEARNERS : be careful when using since as a preposition (seit),or as a conjuction(da)....

Zu wichtig ....good luck


Yes, what distinguishes it between " since when does he drink tea" and "since when did he drink tea"? Using DID was wrong. Though to me it's better English.


How long has he drunk tea? How long has he been drinking tea? Since when has he been drinking/drunk tea? The English translation Since when does he drink tea? (to my UK ears) sounds as if he has only just started drinking tea and the speaker is expressing surprise. I don't think that is what the German means.


In German 'seit' is followed by the present tense; in English 'since' is followed by the past or perfect. Duo should take account of this difference in the translations.


I'm drinking tea as I answer this... spooky.


Since when did he drink tea is what I would say in conversation


This one always gives me a double take, in my english (SSE) I would never say 'since when does' I would always treat it as the whole sentence was past tense, I would say 'Since when did', because 'since when' is a question about the past. Clearly the purpose of the question is to illustrate that this is how they say 'since when did' in german, but in german it's not treated as past tense.


I put "Since when has he drunk tea?" which was accepted. It seemed to register the surprise implied in the question


How this could be related to " dativ " ?


Because "seit" requires dative.


I keep writing "since when he drinks tea?". Guess I need to start English course as well lol.


can i say "since when DID he drink tea"?


Seit wann trinkt er Tee. The translation ' since when does he drink tea' is very un English if you are asking when he acquired the habit. This sounds more like a statement of disbelief and would probably be expressed as ' Since when did HE drink tea'?. Admittedly not great grammar but we all have our quirks


"Since when" seems very colloquial to me and I don't usually trust literal translations like that. Please can someone confirm if this is something native speakers would say to express surprise and incredulity?


"Since when" would be used in everyday conversation if someone is surprised about another person picking up something. It isn't used much, but is still considered everyday conversation.


When did he start drinking tea?


The audio sounds nothing like that to me. I hear Seit anderen teddy!


nothing wrong with the audio


Actually, the female voice sounds like trinkt ihr


There was another similar sentence to this. "Sie liest seit sie jung is". Then only the past tense was accepted. In this sentence only the present tense is accepted. Duo is contradicting himself.


'Since when has he been drinking tea? . . . . . ?


This sentence has been repeated so many times. I don't mind repeating sentences, after all it's good practice, but I have more difficulty with other structures and vocab. Duolingo really needs to shake it up a bit.


Whst if I wanted to say "since when do you drink tea?" Could I say "seit wann trinkst du Tee?"

[deactivated user]

    Because a brother wants tea


    so condescending duo!


    Difference between Seit and Da?


    "Seit" means "since" in relation to time ("ever since"). "Da" means "because" (or "since" in the sense of "because"). ("Da" can also mean "there" as well )


    So which part of this sentence "Seit wann trinkt er Tee?" is in dative?


    None of it, really. There is confusion in a couple of the comments above that refer to the dative case. "Seit" takes dative only when functioning as a preposition followed by a noun and its modifiers. Examples: "seit unserem letzten Treffen" (since our last meeting); "seit ihrem Geburtstag" (since her birthday). But when followed by a time adverb like "gestern" the dative case is irrelevant because adverbs aren't declined. "Wann" is similarly an undeclined adverb. Also, "seit" can function as a relative adverb, introducing a whole time-expression clause, just as we use "since" in English. In that case, the clause that follows it begins with a noun in the nominative. Example: "Ich habe nichts gesagt, seit meine Mutter nach Hause gekommen ist." ("I haven't said anything since my mother came home.")


    "Wann" is technically in the dative (since "seit" takes a dative object), though of course it doesn't conjugate.


    Can anyone tell me why we drop the "s" in this sentence? "Since when does he drinks tea?" is incorrect! But "He drinks tea." is correct! Sorry, but English is not my first language...


    Anytime you have an auxiliary verb like "does" (or "will/can/should" etc.), the second verb goes in infinitive form, which is just "drink," regardless of the subject.


    Thanks a lot! Much appreciated.


    I agree with everyone else who has said "since when does..."isn't typical English as "since" is typically followed by the past tense.

    I note one person said "since when has he drunk tea?" was accepted, in which case "since when did he drink tea?" should also be. They mean pretty much the same, with the second formulation perhaps indicating a greater degree of surprise.


    Why not: Seit wann er trinkt Tee?


    In questions using question words like "wann/wer/wo" etc., the verb belongs right after the question word. "Trinkt" needs to come immediately after "wann."


    Why is " Since when did he drink tea?" wrong? Danke :)


    because your sentence is in the past and this one is in the present.


    You pronounce Wann as Mann definite M


    I agree! I listened several times. it made no sense, but sounded exactly like Mann


    Why us "since when did he drink tea" not correct?


    since when does he drink tea is simply not an English sentence and makes no sense, so what should that sentence read in English??


    "Since when does he drink tea?" is a perfectly fine sentence in English.


    your example CapnDoug is stilted.....an English speaker wouldn´t use ´since´ at all but would say ´how long has he been drinking tea´ because German uses the present tense after seit and if we use since in English it is followed by the present perfect or present perfect continuous.


    Your example CapnDoug would only fit if someone were surprised at his drinking tea


    Exactly right, you have understood the sentence perfectly.



    Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.