Forum Rocket German German Vocab Der abstand von hier bis zum Sofa beträgt 3 Meter

Der abstand von hier bis zum Sofa beträgt 3 Meter

RexV

I have just seen this sentence “Der abstand von hier bis zum Sofa beträgt 3 Meter” which means “The distance from here to the sofa is 3 meters” according to the translation in my book.

When I check the word “beträgt” I can see that it means “to be” when using it as a verb.

When should you use “beträgt” instead of “ist”?
 

Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor

Hallo RexV,

In this sense, the verb betragen can be translated as "to be"; however, it isn't as versatile as sein "to be." 

Betragen is used more in the sense of "to amount to" or "to add up to"; so while it's possible to translate it as "to be," it's better to think of it in those terms so that you don't mix it up with sein.

A good technique to practice when you find that two words have the same definition in the dictionary is to look around at what other definitions each word has; often, in this way, you can tell that while the two words do share one definition, they are used in slightly different ways.

I hope that this is helpful!

Tschüss!

Liss

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