I wanted to say

I read your profile and I see that you are in America.

So in German, I wrongly translated as

Ich lese dein Profil und ich kann du bist in Amerika sehen.

Someone corrected to

Ich lese dein Profil und ihre kann sehen das du aus Amerika bist

So I want to know if it can be

Ich lese dein Profil und ihre kann sehen das du bist aus Amerika

And if not, why?

Also I would like to better understand the usage of ihre in there.

  • Are you sure about the transcription of the corrected german sentence? In the best case scenario "ihre" is a copy/paste relic.
    – user6191
    Jun 4, 2014 at 0:38
  • I'm not sure. A friend told me, she's from Germany, but I think she's very lazy on assisting though. What do you mean by copy/paste relic?
    – kaneda
    Jun 4, 2014 at 0:45
  • Your titel is confusing me, are you asking anything about 'können' here? It looks to me like a problem with word order and translation
    – Pasoe
    Jun 4, 2014 at 7:45
  • A comment to my answer might have cleared my confusion. Did you want to know, if you should use "können" here?
    – Pasoe
    Jun 4, 2014 at 8:29
  • I don't quite understand why the majority of the answers here suggests that "I read" should translate to "Ich lese". Isn't the past tense/present perfect ("Ich las"/"Ich habe gelesen") much more obvious here? Especially since, provided that the person is currently in the process of reading the profile, only the present progressive form ("I'm reading...") would be adequate.
    – MCL
    Jun 4, 2014 at 9:54

5 Answers 5


The corrected version you posted is wrong. It would translate to something like "..and I can see you are from America"

Your version

Ich lese dein Profil und ihre kann sehen das du bist aus Amerika

is not correct either.

The part and I see that you are in America translates to

und ich sehe, dass du in Amerika bist.

So the full sentence would be

Ich las dein Profil und ich sehe, dass du in Amerika bist.
  • and I see that you are in America does not translate to ich kann sehen ... but to ich sehe .... Where does the kann come from in all the translations? Jun 4, 2014 at 8:08
  • you are right there, my bad, I guess I took it from the question. I'll edit my post. Also explains the question title. Thanks for mentioning
    – Pasoe
    Jun 4, 2014 at 8:23
  • So if I wanted to say I can see it's better translated as ich sehe and not ich kann sehen? Why ignoring the can after translated?
    – kaneda
    Jun 4, 2014 at 12:32
  • 1
    You didn't say can in your question. If it is I can see you should keep the kann in the translation.
    – Pasoe
    Jun 4, 2014 at 12:38

"Ich lese dein Profil und ihre kann sehen das du bist aus Amerika" is wrong in more than one way:

  • you cannot use "ihre" like that, it makes no sense. Maybe someone meant to say "I read your profile and hers" (ihres / ihrs = hers). Or it should read "ich" instead.
  • there is a comma missing after "sehen"
  • replace "das" with "dass" after "sehen"
  • change the word order to "dass du aus Amerika bist"
  • Ich lese dein Profil und kann sehen, dass du aus Amerika bist?
    – kaneda
    Jun 4, 2014 at 0:48
  • @kaneda Correct. :)
    – elena
    Jun 4, 2014 at 7:43
  • 4
    Why did you translate in America (eng) to aus Amerika (ger)? That's not right.
    – Pasoe
    Jun 4, 2014 at 7:54
  • @Pasoe: Weil das der Fragende geschrieben hat. Ohne zu wissen, um was für ein Profil es sich handelt, kann man nicht sagen, ob es "in" oder "aus" sein sollte. Oder was stört Dich an "aus"?
    – Robert
    Jun 4, 2014 at 19:11
  • @Robert "aus Amerika" wäre "from America", "in"(eng) wird nie mit "aus"(ger) übersetzt. ->dict.cc
    – Pasoe
    Jun 5, 2014 at 6:41

Kaneda, the mistake you made is an understandable one:

In the English

"... I see that you are in America"

the "that" can be ommitted:

"I see you are in America"

This might give the impression that "you are in America" can be treated as a unit, i.e. "the thing I see" = "you are in America". And this unit you transferred as a whole to German. Unfortunately it doesn't work like that. Had it been

"I can see your location"

your strategy would have worked, because we have a real object here.

"Ich kann deinen Standort sehen"

A dass-clause behaves quite differently. In future, just remember that unlike the English "that" the German "dass" cannot be ommitted and that it requires restructuring the word order:

"Du bist in Amerika" -> "..., dass du in Amerika bist."

The "kann" part of your question: "Kann" could be used in this sentence - just like in English "I can see that you are in America" makes sense. But it's not there in the original as it is now.

I'd forget the "corrections" introduced by your German friend entirely - most of them are horribly wrong and only lead to confusion. [Side note: Three answers and no one noticed that "I read" is past tense? The German should be "Ich habe dein Profil gelesen".]


Apart from the fact that the version that was corrected by someone is also wrong (as mentioned in other answers), I don't understand where the können is coming from and why it should be necessary.

One of the possible translations of your original sentence (and the one that's closest to the original) would be

Ich lese dein Profil und sehe, dass Du in Amerika bist.

  • 2
    I would guess that "read" is past tense in the original, which would make "Ich las..." the correct translation. In a chat or similar, I'd use "Ich habe dein Profil gelesen..." though.
    – Raphael
    Jun 4, 2014 at 8:47
  • 1
    I'm going with the OP's original translation. While his word order is wrong I trust his use of the correct tense ;-) Jun 4, 2014 at 8:50

The usage of tempi in the proposet translation "Ich las dein Profil und ich sehe, dass du in Amerika bist." makes no sense. The act of reading the profile information and noticing the whereabout happened in the past and simultaneously. So you need to say

Ich las dein Profil und sah, dass du in Amerika bist."

(The removal of the second "ich" is intentional, it is unecesary and could therefore hinder the flow of reading)

Other possible translations are

Ich habe auf deinem Profil gelesen, dass du in Amerika bist.

Ich las auf deinem Profil, dass du in Amerika bist.

Ich habe durch dein Profil erfahren, dass du dich in Amerika aufhältst.

Aditionally it needs to be clear which profile is meant, otherwise something like "dein Facebook-Profil" is better.

  • Can you explain the usage of sah in your first sentence?
    – kaneda
    Jun 4, 2014 at 20:28
  • 1
    It is "sehen" in präteritum; the tempus needs to be this one because of the simultaneity. It's in the first person. There is no special meaning attached to it, simply the quite vague verb "to see", e.g. looking at the monitor.
    – caconyrn
    Jun 6, 2014 at 16:46

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