But it is not. It is just in English that they both mean the same. In my mother tongue I also have two separate verbs for them.
I might be wrong, but when to think about it; kennen; is used we talk about the things we are familiar with; like a person, a place and some others. It generally follows nouns and pronouns.
Ich kenne ihm. - I am familiar with him. Ich kenne diese Stadt. - I am familiar with this city. (I know where everything is located and which pubs are good etc.) Ich kenne dein Haus - I am familiar with your house. (I know how the rooms are located etc.) Ich kenne alle Antworten. - I am familiar with the answers.
whereas wissen: is used for expressing facts, something we have knowledge about - as opposed to kennen, this one follows phrases and subordinate clauses.
Ich weiß wo dein Haus ist. Ich weiß nicht wenn sie zürück kommen wird.
I dont know if it makes sense to you. Sorry for any grammar mistakes :)
It doesn't really have to do with the nouns being plural. The definite article is used when we are talking about specific or particular nouns. Generally, if German has a definite article so will English and often the reverse, unlike Spanish which often does not correspond. This is an idiom and the translation is not direct. For some unknown reason English uses a specific "the answers" which must be short for "all the answers to all the questions" and in German "alle Antworten" makes sense because there is an endless supply of answers. Also, in English all as an adjective looks exactly like all as a pronoun. Here "the" helps us see that "all" is a pronoun. In German, the adjective would have been allen. http://german.about.com/od/grammar/a/DefiniteArticles.htm http://german.about.com/library/weekly/aa100900a.htm
JayWing is correct.
"alle" could be a form of the adjective which means "all or every", but not in this case, because the plural would then have been "allen"
This is why the English translation was not "all answers", because this word "alle is not an adjective here, but the plural form of the article or pronoun.
"alles" is a form of the indefinite pronoun which means "all or everything or everyone" and also a form of the article which means "all" in English. (There is even a form "all" of the indefinite pronoun and article which is not declined ["flektierte" in German] and is only used with "der,die,das,dies...." and so does not change endings, because the other article is doing the ending changes instead.)
As an adjective meaning "all or every", the ending changes to match the gender, number and case of the noun it is describing. See the following examples of ending changing for adjectives: http://www.canoo.net/services/OnlineGrammar/Wort/Adjektiv/Deklinationstyp/Schwach.html
Here is more information about adjective endings from another source in English: http://german.about.com/library/weekly/aa030298.htm
This one includes accusative case: http://german.about.com/library/weekly/aa033098.htm
Here is a list of articles ("Artikelwörter" which are used with nouns) , including "aller, alles, alle, alle" http://www.canoo.net/services/OnlineGrammar/Wort/Artikel/Artikelwort/Liste.html
Ah, here it is, indefinite pronoun (the nominative case first line for Masculine, Feminine, Neuter, Plural looks exactly like the article list above, but it is used with no noun at all.): http://www.canoo.net/services/OnlineGrammar/InflectionRules/FRegeln-P/Pron-Indef/Pron-all3.html
Maybe its because Antworten is plural? like, antwort = answer, antworten is answers so maybe they put alle in because "antworten" was plural?
Here we are learning the verb "kennen" which means "to know someone or something". "can" is "können" That would be "Er kann um alle Frage zu beantworten." which is actually a harder sentence to learn.
When we are not in the idiom section, we should try to stick more to the words being used. In the section on idioms, we tried to translate whole sentences to other applicable expressions.
There seems to be a little overlap.
"kennen" means "to know somebody or something".
"wissen" means "to know something" or "to know".
So, both could be used here, but "wissen" could not be used when talking about knowing people. Type each word into this dictionary to find more information about each.: http://en.pons.com/
- Antworten is a noun and has to be capitalised
- German doesn't need die here; it treats alle X differently from how English treats "all the X".
With "most", it's the other way around: "most answers" would be die meisten Antworten.
You might as well ask "why does English not use 'the' -- it's a superlative, after all, and you can't say 'Everest is highest mountain on earth' or 'John is cleverest boy in his class', so why can you say 'I know most people' and not 'the most'?"
Just the way the languages work.