"Ich esse einen Apfel."

Translation:I eat an apple.

January 2, 2013

130 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/bluewintersrose

Why not "ein" or "eine" but EINEN??

May 18, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/jesslc

Because the noun (ein Apfel) is being acted on by the verb. (in this example the apple is being eaten)

The "ein" changes to "einen" when the noun is being acted on. This is known as the accusative case. See for more info - http://german.about.com/library/blcase_sum.htm

June 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/ReddySrikar

Is "Ein Apfel ist gut"-correct?? Nominative case right?

September 7, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

Correct.

December 26, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Wiijimmy

Thanks!

August 20, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/kostasgr

I agree with 'ein' (not 'eine' though, as it's for female nouns). This is my logic: 'Apfel' is male, so it's 'der Apfel'. Since 'ein' is also for male (complementary to 'der') nouns it should be 'ein Apfel'. But it's wrong in this case :(

November 5, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

In nominative case, you say der Apfel or ein Apfel as it is a masculine noun. For example: Der Apfel ist gut / Ein Apfel ist gut. But if you use accusative case, the article is adapted: Ich esse DEN guten Apfel / EINEN guten Apfel.

November 6, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/selinatargaryen

Is every word before the accusative "apfel" need to write a -en?like den and guten?

August 21, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN

Adjectives also have to agree with nouns for number (singular or plural), gender (masculine, feminine or neuter), case (nominative, accusative, dative or genitive) and even change endings if the noun is preceded by a definite article (weak declension since the definite article does all the work) an indefinite article or possessive pronoun (mixed declension) or no article (strong declension in which the adjective is declined as if it were the definite article). Worse, adjectives also have comparative and superlative forms!
http://www.canoo.net/inflection/gut:A

May 28, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Steph830101

Omg!

August 16, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AndrewMarquardt

"Einen" just means "an", so because Apfel starts with a vowel, like in English, instead of "a", you say "an".

October 16, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

Not true! It's not like it is in English, see other comments.

October 16, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Samwise663839

That makes sense from an English perspective, but that's not the CASE

May 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/BeemaaN

What's about 'das Mädchen', the girl is female, why we don't say 'die mädchen'?

September 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

"Mädchen" is a perfect example to show that (grammatical) gender is arbitrary. It does not necessarily comply with the biologic gender.

September 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN

"die Mädchen" does exist, but it is the plural form "the girls". The girl is female, but the word "Mädchen" has the grammatical gender of neuter and must take "das" in the singular. http://german.about.com/library/weekly/aa042098.htm

May 28, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/James14820

Its das madchen because girl in german is a nueter term

January 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

dchen.

January 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/AnasAGAG1997

because the apple is object (Akkusative)

October 15, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/german_junge

Ein is a but we dont say a apple do we? We say an apple therefore we use an in german aswell, which happens to be einin! Thats why

July 21, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

That's a completely diffent thing!

July 21, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/mbliss5339

We use "an" apple because the word apple starts with a vowel, not because it is receiving the action. A good example of this would be in the following sentences: A lofty man. An arrogant man.

June 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN

"Ein" is "a" or "an".

May 28, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/solopipe

LOL @ "einin".

December 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/solopipe

LOL @ "einin".

December 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Mikster_666

Ein is used for male articles. Eine for female. Einen means an. Just like english, a apple doesnt make as much sense as an apple.

January 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
Mod

    Sorry, but this is incorrect.

    German does not have the "a/an" rule like English, where you use "a" for words that begin with a consonant sound, and "an" for words that begin with a vowel sound. You can say ein Apfel or ein Rock in German, even though you'd have to say "an apple" or "a skirt" in English.

    Ein turns into einen for masculine nouns in accusative case. Read Duolingo's lesson tips (scroll down) and the other comments which explain this well.

    January 29, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/VulcanCoconut

    its confusing cause i'm trying to learn and the grammar is bad in German when i translate.

    January 2, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/EmeraldCrackle

    It's okay, Vulcan. I am having a hard time with the grammar, too. My plan is to just keep chipping away at it until it sticks :)

    January 21, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/vikasTawde

    Yah same goes for me

    July 10, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Shebly

    The thing to remember is that any verb in german includes 'am/are', so Ich esse means I [am] eating. adjectives don't though, so you need to say Ich bin gut, for I am good.

    March 21, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

    I'd rather say: there is no present progressive in German, so "I eat an apple" and "I am eating an apple" would both translate to "Ich esse einen Apfel". The statement "any verb in german includes 'am/are" is not really true!

    April 3, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/sausha80

    @biertopf can you please give an example where "any verb in german includes 'am/are" is not true?

    May 16, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

    As I said before: There is no present progressive in German. Thus the statement any verb in german includes 'am/are is actually wrong (in my opinion) or at least irrelevant. You are thinking too much in terms of the English language.

    September 9, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

    That means: If you say "Ich esse" it can mean both "I eat" and "I am eating". "Bin" can't be used in German.

    July 25, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Dondi.Naliorf

    So if i say ich esse it will be automatically translate to i am eating in english ? Bin is not needed anymore in german? Ich esse einen Apfel also means i [am] eating an apple?

    July 24, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Dondi.Naliorf

    Got it. Danke, Ich verstehe

    July 25, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/adirid

    Why can't I say isst instead of esse.

    March 20, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/Andreas305

    In general all the three persons oft the singular habe different forms of conjugation. You have to get used to it ;-)

    For the plural forms it is easier: first and third Person are always like the infintive form, except the verb "sein". And the second person in plural is often similar to the third person singular.

    In the case oft the verb " essen" it is a bit special, the second and third person singular are similar.

    ich esse, du isst, er isst, wir essen, ihr esst, sie essen.

    March 20, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/JuliusTanu1

    I need explain about isst, esse, etc., please..?

    October 3, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

    Please read the other comments, it has been explained several times. Or use Ctrl + F on this forum page and search for conjugation.

    October 3, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/akhilesharkala

    why not isst here..?

    April 1, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/DaNNyTaL

    Because is not the third person singular (ich esse, [...] er/sie/es isst...).

    April 18, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/AdamNovagen

    So let's see if I'm starting to grasp things. Would "the dog is eating an apple" be "der Hund essen einen Apfel?"

    November 16, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

    Almost - you have to use "essen" in the correct - i.e. 3rd person sing. - conjugation: Der Hund isst einen Apfel.

    November 16, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Daniel739970

    Why is it i cannot say "Ich isst einen apfel?"

    January 29, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

    It's the wrong conjugation. Same reason why you can't say "I eats" or "he eat". For "ich" the correct conjugation is "esse". "Isst" is for "er/sie/es" (he/she/it) or "du" (you).

    January 29, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/chrspurser

    What the heck does "You used the definite "the" here, instead of the indefinite "one". " mean?

    May 20, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/jesslc

    That's the difference between:

    I eat the apple (this sentence has the definite article "the"). In German - Ich esse den Apfel

    I eat an apple (this sentence has the indefinite article "a/an"). In German - Ich esse einen Apfel

    In the first sentence you are referring to a specific apple ("the apple") that's why "the" is known as the definite article. Hope that helps.

    June 1, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/DeliaBtzt

    Yes. I see now! Danke!

    September 16, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/yulaida

    I also confuse between Ein Apfel and Einen Apfel

    December 11, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN

    Both mean "an apple", but "Ein Apfel" is in the Nominative case so it can be used as the subject of a sentence : "Ein Apfel ist gut." or as the Predicate Nominative which refers back to the subject after the verb "to be" or "to become": "Das ist ein Apfel." (Das = ein Apfel) and "Einen Apfel" is in the Accusative case which can be used for the Direct Object of the verb (that which is acted upon by the verb) "Ich esse einen Apfel." Also, some German prepositions require the object of the preposition to be in Accusative case. (We will have to memorize those prepositions.)

    http://german.about.com/library/blcase_sum.htm Case http://german.about.com/library/blcase_nom.htm (Nominative case) http://german.about.com/library/blcase_acc.htm (Accusative case) http://german.about.com/library/blcase_acc2.htm (Prepositions for Accusative)

    May 28, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/moharam123

    Also the translation is (I eat one apple)I think give me you opinion

    September 15, 2014

    https://www.duolingo.com/XiaoYinLi11

    I wrote I am eating a apple. Wouldn't that be technically correct?

    November 4, 2014

    https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
    Mod

      In English you need to use "an" for words that start with a vowel sound.

      January 12, 2016

      https://www.duolingo.com/8Bruce

      How do I know whether to use "esst" or "isst"?

      November 15, 2015

      https://www.duolingo.com/Andreas305

      Just have a look at the present conjugation of the verb "essen".

      http://german.about.com/od/verbs/a/Verb-essen.htm

      November 16, 2015

      https://www.duolingo.com/JamesGrizz

      Why not Ich esse den Apfel?

      December 8, 2015

      https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

      That would be "the apple", here it's "an apple".

      December 8, 2015

      https://www.duolingo.com/NoahHundt

      I put " I ate one apple" instead of " I eat one apple". How is this wrong?

      January 6, 2016

      https://www.duolingo.com/Andreas305

      Of course it is wrong.

      i eat = ich esse (present tense or Präsens)

      i ate = ich aß (past tense or Präteritum)

      January 6, 2016

      https://www.duolingo.com/shunjie21

      i eat an apple doesn't make sense in english... i was surprise duolingo said its correct... it's either i eat apple, i am eating an apple

      February 20, 2016

      https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
      Mod

        It's perfectly fine. For example: "Every morning I eat an apple for breakfast".

        February 20, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/GokulKiran1

        Can it also mean, Im eating an apple?

        January 19, 2016

        https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
        Mod

          You need to use "I'm" or "I am", but yes, that is otherwise correct. Generally when using Duolingo, you will have fewer rejected answers if you don't use contractions (like "I'm", "don't", "would've", "can't", "she's", "They'll", etc.).

          January 19, 2016

          https://www.duolingo.com/BearBearluv

          I finnaly figured this out. so "esse" is just for you and "ist" is for plural. YESSS!! XD

          January 28, 2016

          https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
          Mod

            Not quite, but you're getting the right idea that one verb has different forms depending on if it matches with "you" or "I" or "he" or "they", etc. These forms are called conjugations, and they are formed by conjugating the verb (choosing the right ending to put on it).

            Ich esse = "I eat"
            Er isst = "He eats"

            Note that English also conjugates the verb (compare eat with eats), although where English recycles the same form in multiple situations (also "they eat"), German has more versions (sie essen).

            Duolingo's lesson tips show the conjugation of essen if you scroll down. You can also look up the full conjugation of any verb on Verbix or Canoo.net. Those sites have a lot of extra information you don't need yet, so just focus on the 'Present Indicative' section.

            January 28, 2016

            https://www.duolingo.com/Mikster_666

            What is the difference between "isst" and "essen"??

            January 29, 2016

            https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
            Mod

              They are different forms of the same verb, called conjugations. Read the lesson tips when using Duolingo in a web browser, and read the other comments which explain this.

              January 29, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/IRfRK

              Please what's the difference between "Essen" and "Isst"?

              February 28, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

              These are different conjugations of the verb "essen" (to eat):

              • du isst: you eat
              • er/sie/es isst: he/she/it eats
              • wir essen: we eat
              • sie/Sie essen: they/you [formal] eat

              NB: verbs are written in lowecase. Das Essen (uppercase E), however, means "the food".

              February 29, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/Andreas305

              Just have a look at this page:

              https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Accusative-Case

              If you scroll down on that page you will find the conjugation of the verb "essen", which should answer your question. And if you have a mix-up with "isst" and "ist" you will also find the conjugation of the verb "sein".

              February 29, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/RoboticBowtie

              the accusative reminds me of the accusative in Esperanto! does it work the same way or is it slightly different?

              April 4, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/Andreas305

              Yes, that is right. But in Esperanto every noun is marked consequently in the case of accusative, an -n as far as i remember. Same in Hungarian with a -t there :-) In German only the male nouns get an accusative form of the article and in a few cases a suffix.

              April 7, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/RoboticBowtie

              thank you!

              April 7, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/SinthiaVee

              Is this (my first attempt at my own German sentence) correct? Er ist eine gute Apfel. The online translations say things like: Er ist ein guter Apfel. This is confusing me.

              July 5, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/bobforce1

              I have a question when you go to germany or talk how will the german or who are talking in german are going to get what im saying for example [Er ist]=means he is eating How are they going to know what im saying really saying because they can thi k that i said he is

              Pls help Danke. :)

              July 14, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/Dizz

              Context. If you're talking about someone's profession for instance, and the answer is Er ist Richter, you know the meaning is he is a judge, not he's eating a judge.

              FYi He's eating is Er isst, not ist.

              July 17, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

              Please ask this again and use some of these . , ? so that we can understand what you want.

              July 16, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/FullerDre

              I ate an apple or a apple why eat or why not ich bin esse einen Apfel

              November 3, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

              I ate an apple [...] why eat:
              The German "ich esse" is present tense, so the English translation must be present as well, therefore it's "I eat", not "I ate" (which would be "ich aß" in German).

              or a apple
              "a apple" is wrong in English, it must be "an apple". "an" is used instead of "a", when the following word begins with a vowel sound (as apple does)

              why not ich bin esse einen Apfel
              You try to form a progressive present in German, which does not exist. There are no progressive tenses in German. Both "I am eating" and "I eat" translate to "ich esse".

              By the way, the first two questions have already been answered - so next time please first read the other comments.

              November 3, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/Juliana445094

              Ok someone needs to explain this stuff to me in ways I can understand. Everytime I hear the word noun,verb or adverb it takes me like an entire minute to figure out what that even means. What is an adverb anyways?

              December 23, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

              You could read - e.g. on wikipedia - what these are. Then the explanations here will be easier to understand for you.

              December 23, 2016

              https://www.duolingo.com/Vincent_Jordi

              "Ich "EßE" einen apfel" was accepted, is it right to write EßE?

              January 11, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

              No, the first "e" is pronounced short, so it must be written with "ss", not with "ß".

              January 11, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/Vincent_Jordi

              Then duo is wrong, Thank you.

              January 11, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/meeatzpie

              The answer is weird, I wrote I'm eating a apple, and the solution was I'm eating 1 apple... Did I get it wrong?

              July 1, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

              Yes, "a apple" is wrong in English -- "apple" starts with a vowel sound, so we say "an apple".

              July 1, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/meeatzpie

              Sorry, I meant an apple, I just mistyped.

              July 2, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/RaviKumar159965

              Can any one tell me difference between essen,esse, isst? Thanks in advance...

              July 19, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

              Have a look at "Conjugations of the verb essen (to eat)" in the lesson notes for the "Accusative" skill: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Accusative-Case

              Basically, which one to use depends on the subject (ich, du, etc.).

              July 19, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/Viktor218883

              How do you say you have eaten an apple ? Is that were gegesst comes how does it work im confused?

              July 26, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

              Du hast einen Apfel gegessen.

              July 26, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/MehariGheb

              What is the different? between , Ich esse einen Appfel. and Ich esse den Appfel. ?

              February 17, 2018

              https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

              Basically the same as between "I am eating an apple" and "I am eating the apple".

              (By the way, it's spelled Apfel in German, with pf rather than ppf.)

              February 17, 2018

              https://www.duolingo.com/amog101

              Why not ich esse den Apfel? It's accusative right?

              April 9, 2018

              https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

              Ich esse den Apfel. = I am eating the apple. (accusative, definite)

              Ich esse einen Apfel. = I am eating an apple. (accusative, indefinite)

              Both are accusative and both are correct sentences that mean different things.

              April 9, 2018

              https://www.duolingo.com/jami.saich

              Why isn't it " I ate an apple"

              April 22, 2018

              https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

              "I ate an apple" is past tense.

              ich esse einen Apfel is present tense.

              April 22, 2018

              https://www.duolingo.com/Evan461918

              so why is it sometimes "ein apfel" and "einen apfel" at others? What's the difference? How can I know?

              August 12, 2018

              https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

              ein Apfel is the nominative case, einen Apfel the accusative case.

              The subject of a verb is in the nominative case -- so you would use ein Apfel when the apple is the one doing or being something.

              The direct object of a verb is in the accusative case -- so you would use einen Apfel when the apple is having something done to it.

              For example: Ein Apfel liegt auf dem Tisch. Ich sehe einen Apfel auf dem Tisch. "An apple lies on the table. I see an apple on the table."

              In the first sentence, the apple is the one that is doing the lying on the table; in the second one, the apple is the one that gets seen by me.

              The accusative case is also used after certain prepositions.

              August 13, 2018

              https://www.duolingo.com/gilbertomelfe

              Shouldn't it be "ein Apfel"? After all it's "Der Apfel"! Neuter Noun, right?

              March 10, 2013

              https://www.duolingo.com/Hectorcano

              Hi! "Der" is masculine noun, therefore it declines to akkusativ in this case, that's why the "n" is there. Den Apfel, einen Apfel.

              March 10, 2013

              https://www.duolingo.com/PippiniBoo

              Can you give me an idea of the flow chart here? Do you determine the gender of the noun first, and then if some criterion is met, then you assess the case (which I'm still not clear what these are), and then you determine the article from there? Please assume I'm a grammar moron who can't tell first person singular from a hole in the wall (because, you know, I am).

              November 13, 2013

              https://www.duolingo.com/essssssscher

              Look at which case the sentence falls under, and then make a modification to the (definite/indefinite) article if required.

              There are four cases: nominative, accusative, dative and genitive.

              In this case it is accusative case as you (the subject) acts upon the apple, and since the gender of the noun, apple, is masculine, then you need to use einen instead of ein.

              For more information: http://german.about.com/library/blcase_acc.htm

              June 12, 2014

              https://www.duolingo.com/ABrokenDream

              And "ein Apfel" would be "one apple" in most cases

              February 17, 2017

              https://www.duolingo.com/fairburn96

              So when ein apple was acted by verb der apfel being den apfel and ein apfel being einen apfel..?

              May 19, 2015

              https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
              Mod

                Yes.

                January 12, 2016

                https://www.duolingo.com/Cerenbus

                Why is Apfel and Milch capitalized?? Do you capitalize food?

                July 21, 2015

                https://www.duolingo.com/Andreas305

                Why don't you read the tips and notes? The first one for "Basics 1" explains, that in German all the nouns are capitalized.

                July 21, 2015

                https://www.duolingo.com/Cerenbus

                I did read the tips and notes. I'm allowed to forget things I only read once, all right? Thanks for the condescending help.

                July 21, 2015

                https://www.duolingo.com/HuibDeVis

                ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤ not 1

                November 29, 2016

                https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

                ?

                November 29, 2016

                https://www.duolingo.com/IreneLangh

                I have a small issue with the English sentence here. Who says "I eat an apple"? One says "I am eating an apple".

                May 5, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

                What do you do every morning? I eat an apple.

                Was machst du jeden Morgen? Ich essen einen Apfel.

                June 22, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/marta523609

                danke

                July 24, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/Abedlrahman

                Why esse not essen ?

                August 10, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

                Because the subject is ich and not wir or sie.

                Have another look at the lesson notes: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Animals-1

                August 10, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/Manas648981

                Really tough guys. Grammar is confusing .. oh god...someone teach me like a kid please

                August 14, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/BluIcePig

                @biertopf why is it that Bin "can't" be use then? I know the sebtence xan translate to either I eat/I am eating but couldn't Bin be included to clarify if someone wanted??

                September 24, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

                No, it can't, it would grammatically be wrong in German., as there are no continuous tenses in German. If you need to express that something is happening at the moment (where you'd use the present continuous in English), you can add the word "gerade" (at the moment) in German: Ich esse gerade einen Apfel.

                September 24, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/Mikayla22578

                why is the word apfel masculin

                November 29, 2017

                https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
                Mod

                  No reason. Nobody decided to sit down and decide which words use which genders - it's just how the language developed naturally over time. We just have to memorise it, unfortunately.

                  November 29, 2017

                  https://www.duolingo.com/Sundayschool

                  THAT'S WHAT I WROTE

                  March 9, 2018

                  https://www.duolingo.com/boguszbat

                  eine = a an - n = a eine + n =einen

                  July 10, 2017

                  https://www.duolingo.com/biertopf

                  So ein Quatsch.

                  July 10, 2017

                  https://www.duolingo.com/474695

                  Why are nouns in German capitalized. I know in Basics 1 in said that they were, but I don't know why. Some one help me bitte!

                  November 24, 2015

                  https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN

                  I think it helps for some words like "essen" which is the verb "to eat" and also the form used for present tense "eat" for we, they and formal you, while Essen is the noun "Food". It is nice to easily tell which words are nouns. Why do other languages not capitalize nouns?

                  May 28, 2016
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