1

Which of the following sentences is correct in German?

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe und ich muss die machen.

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe und ich muss sie machen.

In this sentence, die/sie refers to Hausaufgabe, which I want to avoid to repeat.
What should I use die or sie?
What is the difference between both of them in the context of this sentence?

2

Observation 1: Your German translation differs from your English original for no apparant reason. You can (and probably should) translate it using a relative clause, too:

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe, die ich noch machen muss.

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe, welche ich noch machen muss.

Both these options are equivalent. Sie is not an option in this sentence.


Observation 2: In your translation, both options are possible. Using sie will result in a well-formed grammatical sentence that an advanced pupil will tell his teacher or that you would use in any situation where you wouldn’t openly swear.

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe und ich muss sie noch machen.

Using die is much more colloquial and slightly derogatory towards the homework. I would expect the pupil to use die when talking with his friends, not his teacher.

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe und ich muss die noch machen.

You’re never wrong with using sie here and you should be sure you really want to use die if you are going to.

  • thank you for the explanation, one more moment. In the observation #1 you wrote «Sie is not an option in this sentence.», but in the observation #2 you write «You’re never wrong with using sie here». I make a feeling that the observation #1 contradicts with the observation #2. Am I right? Which of this form should we use in the relativsatz in German? – Mike B. Dec 15 '15 at 16:55
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    @MikeB. The first only concerns the relative clause modelled from your English original. Observation 2 only concerns two main clauses connected with und, as in your question. I’ll edit. – Jan Dec 15 '15 at 21:07
1

The smoothest translation would be

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe, welche ich machen muss.

But referring to your two options

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe und ich muss sie machen.

would be the better one.

  • 1
    Can you please clarify what is the difference between die and sie in this sentence? – Mike B. Dec 14 '15 at 22:12
  • Using die in this instance has a much more colloquial sound to it. – Dosik Dec 15 '15 at 0:33
0

Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe, die ich erledigen muss.
Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe, die ich machen muss.
Ich habe eine Hausaufgabe, welche ich machen muss.

wären Sätze, die dem englischen Original näher kommen und üblicher sind. Da man Hausaufgaben dem Wesen nach immer machen muss, wäre die Verbindung mit und irritierend.

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    Thank you for the reply, can you, please, write your comment in English, I would like to be sure I understand it correctly. Thanks. – Mike B. Dec 14 '15 at 22:10
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    @MikeB. Here's a translation: "... would be sentences that come closer to the English original and are more common. Since one always has to complete homework assignments by their very nature, the connection with und would be irritating." – Numeri Dec 15 '15 at 0:01

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