1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "No, please."

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

"No, please."

December 30, 2012

10 Comments


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

According to my knowledge, and a native speaker I asked, a german would always say "Nein, danke", even though the meaning would be "no, please" and not "no, thanks"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jvs2

Thought the same..


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

We never say "Nein, bitte", it's definitely "Nein, danke".


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

I also thought the same!


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

Also thought the same


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

I always thought "Nein, bitte" meant "no, thanks".


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

As far as I've understood, "bitte" has kind of always a "positive" meaning. And you can actually use just "danke" to mean "nein, danke", if the context is clear. Someone offers you coffee - "bitte" would imply you want some and "(nein), danke" that you don't want. A bit confusing for English speakers, I know. So "nein, bitte" as meaning "no, thanks" would be a bit mixed to a native. To their ears it could sound a bit like "no, (but I'd like some) please" and they would probably ask you again.

There are some exceptions though, like "nein, bitte nicht" "no, please don't". But other than those I would say it is safest to just say "bitte" in the positive "yes that would be nice, thank you" meaning, and save "danke" for the polite refusal - and as a thank you after somebody already poured the coffee.


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

And just an extra note: That's how I've understood it from context and following conversations. I did not read that in a book. I can be totally wrong. I've not been living that long in Germany that I could really understand all the nuances :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dezz18

it sounds weird in duchtch

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