Hello I am trying to understand the first sentence here… to me it says “hello, how go it to you”, or that is what the definitions say… but how do you know what that means in English???
This is on the LingQ 1010 Getting started lession - 1) Hallo. Wie geht es Ihnen?
Well, there is “Hello”, a greeting, followed by the word for “How” … What could it mean? I don’t want to rob you of the pleasure of working it out for yourself!
Remember, word-for-word translations do not work for most languages!
How goes it? <— this is a more or less direct translation and has the same meaning in German as it does in English
With greetings, it’s best just to learn them as phrases rather than analysing them too much, IMO.
“Wie geht’s” roughly translates as: “Hi, what’s up?”
“Wie geht es dir” roughly translates as: “How (are) you doing?” or “How’s it going?”
“Wie geht es Ihnen” is the same but uses the more formal “Ihnen” (dative case of “Sie”) rather than “dir” (dative of “du”). The more formal tone might be conveyed in English as: “How are you keeping?” In England perhaps we might say: “How do you do?”
It is interesting that the subject is not YOU but IT, or es; the object is YOU, or Ihnen. It is like a phrase “How is the world treating you?”
How does it go to you?
What is Es? I do NOT think that it signifies Freudian Es, or “id.”
Therefore, “Wie geht es Ihnen?” is not a threatening message at all.
“Das Es ist in der Psychoanalyse Sigmund Freuds einer der drei Bereiche der menschlichen Psyche.”(Wikipedia)
Yes, it is an indirect construction. (I’m not referring to Freud’s Es.)
Dative case? 日本語では、これを「与格」とか「3格」とか呼んでいます。
Wie geht es Ihnen? =
geht: goes (v. gehen)
Ihnen: for-you (dative of ‘Sie’, formal 2nd person plural and singular)
lit. how does it go for you? If used as a greeting, ‘it’ surely refers to life or affairs in general.
Hope this helps.