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  5. "Ich will zuerst schlafen."

"Ich will zuerst schlafen."

Translation:I want to sleep first.

December 17, 2012



Is this in a sense "I want to be the first one to fall asleep" or is it like "I'll do it later, but first I want to sleep"? Are they immutable like in English?


The second sense. And I am not sure what you mean by immutable.


I stumble upon this four years later and realize that I said “immutable” instead of “interchangeable“. I'll leave my shame for the world to see.


Definitely no shame, but kinda funny :)


How would you say "I want to sleep first" as in "I want to be the first one to sleep" in German?


Ich möchte als Erster schlafen is clearer in that meaning.

(More literally, "I want to sleep as a first one"; less literally, "I want to be first when we sleep".)


It could be both.

"I want to be the first one to sleep" (Ich will ZUERST schlafen) and "I want to sleep first (and then do the other thing)" (Ich will zuerst SCHLAFEN).


I think it more accurately describes the second


"I want to first sleep", seems equally correct to me, no?


Honestly "I want to sleep first" is the best sounding English translation here.


I agree with tonoito. "I want to first sleep" doesn't sound as natural as "I first want to sleep" or "I want to sleep first" (the best answer in my opinion). I'm not saying the answer is wrong, I can think of contexts in which it would be used, but I still think it is the least likely to be heard or used.


@tzjames - Not really - you have "split the infinitive" by putting the "first" in there, which used to be a serious English grammar crime! ( At least, until Captain Kirk his Star Trek crew decided to boldly go in search of new worlds. . .)


mm.. I would make that "I first want to sleep". But that's just me.


The program is picky about word order in English, which is quite annoying.


We are forced to refresh our English as well, it's not too bad. :D


Without thinking, and already down to zero hearts, I typed "I will sleep first" here and gasped audibly as I entered, realizing I had typed "will" instead of "want to"... but it was accepted? XD

That being said, darn these false cognates sometimes!


I Phil, are you still seeing the hearts? Do you use the windows app of duolingo? Hearts were removed a long while ago from android and the website. Hearts worked for me. They motivated me to check the answer before pressing enter.


My kids have the hearts on their kindle tablet app. Maybe its just not updated.


I liked the hearts too. It motivated me to ask why something was wrong and kind of study the grammar instead of temporarily memorizing the right sentence structure so I would get it right at the end of the lesson


Why is 'I wish to sleep first' wrong? Is 'wish' not an acceptable rendering of 'wollen' here?


Yes, I would think so- try reporting it & asking for it to be accepted.


I translated "I want to sleep first" and it accepts it.


why "zuerst"??????????


Why not? I may be tired and want to sleep first before I do something else.


Ja, man könnte auch ::"Ich will zuvor schlafen," sagen.


I am wondering this as well. We learned erste as first in the ordinal numbers section.


zuerst is an adverb.

erst- is an adjective, e.g. das erste Buch.

You can also use it as an adverb, though: Ich will erst schlafen. could also mean "I want to sleep first (before I do that other thing)".


Why it is "schlafen" and not schlafe ? I thought that: Ich schlafe - I sleep Wir schlafen - We sleep


"schlafen" is also the infinitive form which means "to sleep ". The conjugated verb is "want " or "will".


"First I will sleep" was accepted as a correct answer but shouldn't be accepted - Oct 5, 2017


Why can't I type "wanna" here?

  • 2870

@VaderGareth : That word is grammatically not correct.


Why is it "schlafen"?


I'm not exactly sure what the question is, but schlafen means to sleep.


While I don't know the names of the types/parts of speech relevant here, the whole/unconjugated verb "schlafen" is used because "will" (first-person conjugation of wollen) comes first in the sentence.

[at least so far] when there's a conjugated verb at the beginning of a simple sentence, the next verb will just be the raw word, regardless of gender/perspective. Schlafen/gehen/ haben vs. schlafe/gehe/habe, for instance.

I think that's the gist of it, but maybe someone else could give a simpler description with better grammar-related vocabulary.

  • 2870

What do you mean?


It has nothing to do with grammar. An invented word cannot be correct or incorrect grammatically, it can just not be recognized by any dictionary, or could be too slang-ish for Duo to accept it.

Although I agree with you that it's silly to accept every possible slang version of a sentence because someone is too lazy or too cool to type in the whole thing, saying that it's “not correct” is simply wrong.


Why can't I say Ich mag zuerst schlaften instead?


Based on what I've learned, "mag" suggests enjoyment, not want. So that would mean "I like to sleep first."


can anyone please explain me why is it "schlafen" ?


I am open to correction from native speakers, but it's because the main verb of the sentence is "will", and the "schlafen" is an extension of it, so is in the infinitive form, not the plural. It's the same in the English - main verb is "want", extension is "to sleep", not just "sleep" or "sleeping".

  • 2265

As I had commented, I learnt later that if modals(will, should, can, might may etc) are used, verbs must be in the infinitive form. (Basic form without any past or future) Its similar to english.

  • 2265

Schlafen is for plural right? Then why is it used for I?


The second verb in the sentence needs to be in the infinitive form.

  • 2265

Ja, Vielen Danke :)


"I will first sleep" is wrong. why?


The German word "will" does not translate to will in English. It actually means want (to). The German word for the English "will" is werden.


Could "möchte" be used here, or there are idiomatical/gramatical differences between them?


Idiomatic difference: Technically "möchte" (subjunctive version of mögen) would mean "would like" which in English is often used as a politer form instead of "want" which would be "will". http://german.about.com/library/weekly/aa032299.htm


I'm confused here because "I want to be the first to sleep" which could in the proper context be said as "I want to sleep first" that is if you were speaking to another person who wants to sleep is different than "I want to sleep first" in the sense of before you go to do something else should you be talking to that same person about your own future plans instead... which context is this?


The translation, "I want to sleep first." is ambiguous. "First, I want to sleep." is unambiguous. Is the German sentence is ambiguous?


oh! perhaps you are right. I didn't consider that the sentence might be equally ambiguous in German as well. any natives know?


Your queries already have been resolved above


I thought that adverbs come after verbs, so it would be "Ich will schlafen zuerst", but I think they come between modal and normal verbs. Is that true?


The “normal” verb comes at the end. Adverb comes after the verb will, which is the actual predicate of the sentence.


It can be both, but the meaning changes. See mizinamo's comment on the top.


Why not I want sleep first?


Schlafen is not capitalized, therefore, not a noun.

  • 1124

It hints that one can say 'for the first time' but then won't accept it!


The hints are global, so some of them may not apply to the current sentence.


I put "will" here just to see if it would accept that because I knew it was wrong, and it did.

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