Community Web Version Now Available
Laura Middleton
Why is ‘haben’ in the infinitive in the sentence; ‘Welche Farbe haben ihre Augen?’ Thanks a million for taking the time to answer this question – it’s VERY much appreciated!!!. But hmmmmmmm I’m still confused!!! I’m not sure whether this makes a difference, but I should have capitalised ihre’ – so that it should have read ‘Ihre as in ‘which colour have her eyes’’; as ‘Welche Farbe haben Ihre Augen?’ I understand what you are saying that ‘Augen’ is the plural form of ‘Auge’ but still not sure why haben is in this form (sorry am so stupid’!! – definitely do not have natural flair for learning languages but am still trying!! Laura
Feb 13, 2010 8:55 PM
2
0
Answers · 2
i think maybe i'll additionaly give you the whole conjugational paradigm of the verb "haben". Infinitivform: zu haben ich habe (1. Person Singular) du hast (2. Person Singular) er/sie/es hat (3.Person Singular) wir haben (1. Person Plural) ihr habt (2. Person Plural) sie haben (3. Person Plural and honorific Plural 2. Person) Imperativformen: habe! (2. Person Singular) habt! (2. Person Plural) You might have noticed now, that the form for the invinitive, for the 1. Person Plural and for the 3. Person plural are identical. Which one is meant in a sentence is selfunderstood. Just exclude the possibilities that don't seem to make sense. The remaining one, is the right one. Below i'll add examples these cases of "haben". Infinitivform: Nichts ist schöner, als einen Freund zu haben. (note that the infinitiv in german sentences ist ALWAYS used with the little additional word "zu") 1. Person Plural: Wir haben in dieser Sache wirklich nichts zu verlieren. 3. Person Plural: Ihre Augen haben eine wunderschöne Farbe. (It is the eyes that posses the color here. So it's 3. Person Plural) 2. Person honorific address: Sie haben wunderschöne Augen! (transl: "You have beautiful eyes!". In this case the person who is adressed posses the eyes. But because the person is addressed in the honorific Plural it's still "haben") consider in contrast ----> Du hast wunderschöne Augen, denn deine Augen haben eine einzigartige Farbe!
February 14, 2010
Hey Laura "haben" here is not in its infinitive form. This is the conjugated form of "haben" with "sie = the plural form" "Augen" is the plural form of "Auge" which means eye "das Auge" That's why it assumes the plural form "sie" :)
February 14, 2010
Laura Middleton
Language Skills
English, German
Learning Language
German