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  5. "Er liest."

"Er liest."

Translation:He reads.

January 4, 2013

87 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Silascou14

Anybody has tips on how do know the difference between Er and Ihr? kinda hard sometimes!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jmhall

What exactly is confusing about the two? If its the pronunciation try to remember that er sounds like "air" and ihr is more like "ear". As far as when to use them, for ihr I first remember that wir is not too far off from "we", it's translation. Then ihr sounds like wir, without the w. So I imagine the ihr is "us without me" or "you all" (you guys, youse, y'all, you-uns, pick your favorite regional dialect). For er its just a matter of memorizing that er and sie mean he and she. Another good practice is to pay attention to the form the verb is conjugated in. With the exception of a handful of irregular verbs most of them follow a general rule for the verb endings that help you determine what perspective the subject is in, either first (I, me), second (you), or third (he, she , it) and whether the subject is singular or plural ( I - we, you- you all, he- they). The catch to this is that german has a "formal you" (Sie) used is situations when you are not familiar with the person you are addressing, or someone in a position of authority as a sign of respect. For that you just need to pay attention to the context in which it is used, and the verb form. I realize this is a lot of info, and I apologize


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bonobo

Google translator confirms your explanation that ihr sounds like 'ear' and er sounds like 'air' (yeah, I couldn't think of any better way to check), but this one definetly sounds like 'ear' to me. Is this some kind of accent or regional thing, or is the sound just wrong here?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MikeNesbitt1462

The fast and slow pronunciations are different. Trust your instincts.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cobbalorey

Don't apologize! That was quite useful info, thank you!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/natasha_al_

It sound like 'ear' not 'air', but why it is "er" ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bob_Dean

It sounded like 'ear' to me, too. I just can't tell the difference in sound.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pepecx

Man spricht "Er" wie "Ear" aus (:


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Silascou14

Thanks for the input! I was just talking about the sound, but i realized the main cause for my confusion was that i was doing the exercises with my cell phone's crappy sound box and with a lot of noise around me. Once i had the brilliant idea of buying a new headphone, this "ear" and "air" became easier to distinguish. Here's your lingot!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/isa167.3

Don't apologize for something that you don't have too. btw, thanks for your information. i appreciate it!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyanLeeCastillo

That was part of the confusion for me. It kept saying "ear liest" so I put "Ihr" and it was "Er". It got me like three times. As someone who doesn't have the conjugation down yet, I'm relying on pronunciation to know what to write and how to spell it. I was under the impression that "Ihr" sounds like "ear" and "Er" sounds like "air" as well, but in this question it is just simply not the case...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

No, you are essentially correct, although both English words you chose are both a little dipthongy (if I can make up a word). The vowel sounds are just a little shorter than that. The e in er is like the e in end and I in ihr is like the i in ink. Assuming that the voice above this discussion is the same as you had on your exercise, I can clearly hear it as correct. But my hearing of it was perhaps also informed by knowing the difference between the respective conjugated verb forms liest (sounds like least) and lest which sounds like lest. To be fair I have been caught and probably will be caught again with these one and two word clues. But to be fair, if you are anything like me you have been tripped up by someone you know coming into a room and saying two words out of context to you in your native language. Part of it is just the nature of the beast.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wabbit_killa

Thank you for that explanation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/katrico1

at first I had he (er - air), then listening again heard ear (ihr). So I got it wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

The clue if you mishear or are unsure of the subject pronoun is to check the verb form. In the verb lesen, er liest has a long e vowel sound for liest. Ihr lest has a short vowel sound. In everyday conversation people mishear and self correct by using this sort of clue. Few people are even aware that they do that. Since the tendency is to hear a word if one is at all similar, when the self correct doesn't work, you sometimes hear people repeat back something crazy as what they heard you say. They crazier, the least likely the ability to self correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eric_Young

I try and listen for the "ih" (English "ih") sound when the speaker is using Er. Then I listen for a stressed "ee" (English "ee" again) sound when the speaker is using Ihr.

I simply remember that the first letter of each ("I"hr & "E"r) sounds opposite than you expect. (Ihr = ee-hr) (Er = ih-r).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BabyFaceTom

Thank you, that will definitely help a lot for me, I mess up all the time, but now I understand.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Anita859023

The only thing I've noticed is Ihr sounds more like "ear" and Er sounds more like "air"; it's all in the vowels.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

Exactly. Any single iteration of each word might stray a little from the standard, because every day speech is less than perfect. But luckily every day speech comes with context that helps you decode it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/apriilcarr

Ihr is for you. Er is for he


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Robbadob

Wonderful tip, apriilcarr! Thank you for adding to the discussion in your own unique way.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ryleek3

Er is man and ihr is you


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VarshaSadh1

Er=he (trick to remember - Er starts with E and he end with e) Ihr=you


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Simbarashe113085

Er: is masculine ( boy or man it just represents a male)

Ihr: is plural and is used to refer to 2 or more people. You use it when you are talking to them directly eg. Habt ihr gegessen?... Did you eat?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

Yes. To clarify ihr is the familiar plural you. Sie is formal, and is both singular and plural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tyler491477

i take that back its the other way around


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JannieWhit1

Er is differred bc ihr is a word that sound alike bit diffrent it means dif but you will hear and see it sorry


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tyler491477

Ihr is he er is she


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pepecx

Ich lese | Du liest | Er, Sie {~Singular},Es liest | Ihr liest | Wir lesen | Sie {~Plural} lesen ♡ ♡ |"Sie" in singular= Sie ist ein Mädchen | "Sie" in plural= Sie sind Mädchen|


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pepecx

Isst = essen [Sie isst einen Apfel]

Ist = [Sie ist ein Mädchen]


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jayemeii

What is the difference between "lese", "lessen" "liest" ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

They are different congugations of the verb lesen. Ich lese du liest, er/sie/es liest, wir lesen, ihr lest, sie/Sie lesen. In English regular verbs only change in the third person singular. I/you/we/they think but he thinks. Of course there are many irregular verbs. There are many resources on the internet to teach you the rules of forming the various tenses as well as having verb congugators.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/keerthana.rao

iam confused when to use liest and lesen ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BeerForBirds

See here: http://www.canoo.net/inflection/lesen:V:haben I recommend bookmarking the English version of canoo.net.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MarvinWall1

If it ends in "st" , it refers to du, er, or sie. If it ends in en, it is formal Sie (you) or They


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Robbadob

Don't forget about ihr!

lesen (to read)
ich lese
du liest
er liest
wir lesen
ihr lest
sie lesen

It seems like the most unpredictable one most of the time.

[2019/04/21]


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/asamiraevyn

She reads would be "Sie liest."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SandeepSur4

When to use 'du'and when to use 'ihr'?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Robbadob

Good question! Du is second person singular (one person) and ihr is second person plural (multiple people). In English, this distinction is not made, so either could be used in a question asking to translate "you". This question asks about "he", though.

When in doubt, remember: ihr = you all. There is also the polite pronoun Sie, which can be singular or plural but always takes third person plural verb form (lesen here, but again, the question is about er).

[2019/04/21]


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/roninrabbit

I love that when played back slower, the pronunciation of the word definitely changed from er (air) to ihr (ear)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

No. lisent is not a word in German.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Constantin825535

cannot catch the difference between ihr and er.... any ideea?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

Well with some verbs like lesen the conjugation sounds different, but it can be difficult to hear some of them. But part of the problem is always hearing things out of context. The only advice I can give is to expose yourself to as much fluid spoken German as possible. Of you are a Netflix subscriber, any of their own shows are dubbed in many languages. Watch one in English and then again in German. It will help you catch a lot more. Eventually it will come. I used to have a problem with Nacht and nackt, and I still can't always hear the difference between Stadt and Staat, but those are fortunately not as commonly occurring problems.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EdenHart3

how does "liest" mean both" is reading" and "are reading"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

Liest is both the du form and the er/sie/es form of the verb to read. In the present indicative lesen is conjugated as follows

ich lese

du liest

er/sie/es liest

wir lesen

ihr lest

sie/Sie lesen

So Du liest is you read/are reading and Er liest is her reads/is reading.

Obviously German, like English, is not a language that could ever drop subject pronouns like Italian, Portuguese or Spanish do.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

The du form (you -- when speaking to one person) usually ends in -st and the er, sie, es form (for "he", "she", or "it") usually ends in -t.

For example, du trinkst "you are drinking" and er trinkt "he is drinking".

But the verb lesen has a stem les- that ends in an -s, and that causes a simplification: instead of writing du liesst with one -s- from the verb stem and then an -st ending, the two -ss- get turned into just one, and so we write du liest.

And then liest happens to end up looking the same as er liest, which has just the -s- from the verb stem and then the ending -t.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/arminmirho

Du liest, Er liest Why do both of them have the same form of verb?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

Because the verb lesen has a stem that ends in an -s.

After -s (and also -z -x -ß), the du ending -st gets simplified into just -t: we say du liest, du tanzt, du boxt, du heißt and not du liesst, du tanzst, du boxst, du heißst.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

I don't know what languages you are familiar with, but German, like English, is a Germanic language and has less distinct verb conjugations.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marijamilj13

Grrrrr !!! I am definitely the worst at the easiest two word phrases ! And I simply cant hear any difference between the speakers and my pronunciation !


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

I decided that it was a problem with the speaking exercises in general. It is important to always continue to pronounce the words, but you may want to consider turning off the speaking exercises if they aren't providing you with helpful information.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iamTvisha

While i can hear the difference clearly! Er sounds like air and ihr sounds like ear. If you still cant hear the difference, you can literally guess the word by simply looking at the verb conjugation. This should help


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AhmedRaza209382

Copy the text, it may come to great use. bit long but might help you alot. Hey, so here is what I have come up to. (Not a german, correct me if wrong) So basically there are regular verbs and irregular verbs in Deutsch. (german ;)) First of all what you need to know is the base form of a word. In english, we have base forms of words like 'to drink', 'to eat', 'to read' In german too, we have base forms;trinken, essen, lesen. (An easy way to remember the base form is to remember that they are the same as when you apply them after they(Sie), the formal you(sie), or we(wir) like;sie essen/lrinken/Lesen or;sie essen/trinken/lesen or;wir essen/trinken/lesen With this cleared, lets get back to regular and irregular verbs. Regular verbs are also called weak verbs in german and they have the same stem vowel. From what I have learned the stem vowel is the words first vowel. For example, Trinken (to drink) is a regular verb. It always start with trink; Ich trinke, Sie trinken, Er trinkt However, Irregular verbs tend to differ. There stem vowel (the first vowel) changes when the pronoun is singular and second(person you are talking to; for example, du(you)) and third perspective(person you are talking about, but not to him; for example, er/sie/es(he/she/it)). All in all, it changes after du(informal singular second person (you)) and he/she/it (singular third person)). By changing in stem vowel, I mean that like trink- it doesn't always start with the same letter. Essen(To eat) and Lesen(To drink) are irregular. The verb does not always start with ess- or les- It starts with iss- or lies- For example; Ich esse/lese Ihr(informal plural you) esst/lest du (you) isst/liest er/sie/es(he/she/it) isst/liest Now, i believe, this may have cleared your doubt about why essen sometimes begin with i and not e. This is what i have learned about regular and irregular verbs. Now, lets revise the verb ending rule we learned in previous lesson. Appreciate my hard work ;) its hard to draw a table with spaces on a phone Last thing, before you read the chart, if for example, the chart says, with du, the verb ends with -st and the starting letter verb is trink-/iss-, it would be trinkst and 'isst', not issst. incase the last letters of these 'starting letters' are -ss, the s in -st will not be considered and it eould become -sst not -ssst. I don't know the case with single s (-s)

Pronouns Ending

Ich -e(trink/ . esse/lese)

Du -st(trinkst/ . isst/liest)

Er/sie/es -t(trinkt/ . isst/liest)

Wir -en(trinken/ . essen/lesen)

Ihr -t(trinkt/ . esst/lest)

sie(formal 'you') -en(trinken/ . essen/lesen)

Sie(They) -en(trinken/ . essen/lesen)

If it helped clear your doubt, upvote it so others can also clear their doubts. not begging btw, if you don't want to upvote it your choice. Danke Tschüss/Auf Wiedersehen Guten morgen/tag/abend/nacht


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AhmedRaza209382

ehh, i just learnt you cannot copy on mobile. in this case, you can take a screenshot


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marijamilj13

Thank you all for your answers on my comments. I am an old lady who started learning German for fun and I am pretty bad with computers and internet. I have just figured out how I can answer back. Silly, isnt it ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marijamilj13

what does it mean btw and upvote ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iamTvisha

So du and er, sie, es all take liest?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

So du and er, sie, es all take liest?

That is correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/thouhastme

The audio sounded like it was starting with a G sound. Very confusing trying to figure out how to write down 'Gir leest'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eyeaspasta

Did anyone else hear "isst/ist" i thought i heard that.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iland6

Maybe it would be better to hear the "Er." If the voice did not sound mostly like a robot.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/joeyabing

why is SHE is wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/asamiraevyn

She reads would be "Sie liest."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FatimahSir

How do I differ between 'he reads' and 'he is reading'? If 'he is reading' is 'Er liest' then what is 'he reads' in German?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

You don't differ. German does not have progressive tenses, so er liest means both he reads and he is reading. Even a language such as Spanish which does have a progressive tense doesn't use it as extensively as English does, so their present tense is also used most of the time we use the progressive. It actually sort of makes more sense that the present tense is used to talk about what you are doing now, but in English all action verbs use the progressive tense to talk about what you are doing. In my limited language knowledge that is unique.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rhody

Why is "he reads" incorrect?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

It should not be incorrect. Report it. I tend to translate the present to the present as well because in those languages which I study which do have progressive tenses they use a tense for tense convention. But in German and French which have no progressive tenses, Duo does encourage present progressive translations of present tense sentences. We use the present progressive extensively in English especially for action verbs, so statistically when you see the present tense the appropriate translation will likely to be the present progressive. This is even true in Spanish, Italian and Portuguese where they do have progressive tenses. But we do obviously use the present tense sometimes. With action verbs like read (as opposed to verbs like think, feel, know and other state of mind/emotion verb) we generally only use the present tense for general statements (He reads before going to bed) or in narration. But you should report it


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hannah966658

I want to restart this question


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kleidi15

how we say "he reads"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kleidi15

its the same with the "he is reading"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

That's right. German does not make a difference.


[deactivated user]

    Could I also say, "I am reading"? Or, "I'm reading"? It doesn't say if it's an option or not, and I'm not sure.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

    Yes. The present progressive is a valid translation for the present tense of many other languages since English uses this tense pretty much as the default for talking about action verbs being currently performed. But, just so you understand if you are, or plan to, learn other languages on Duo, if a language has a present progressive tense, like Spanish for example, Duo likes to reserve the progressive tranlations for that tense, even though those tenses are not used in the same way. But languages like German and French have jo progressive tenses.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

    er means "he".

    It does not mean "I".

    er liest is "he reads" or "he is reading".

    It cannot mean "I am reading" or "I'm reading".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alex222686

    Why "reads" is not good


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

    If that was the entire sentence you wrote, then it's wrong because you have to include the subject in English. "He reads" would be a possible answer.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SaeedKhosr1

    I wrote reada but it is accepted :)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ReesaRilli

    I'm sorry you guys but this is bs. Is it really not possible to have an ACTUAL human voice recorded for these courses? This robotic cow CLEARLY pronounced it as "Vee-er liest", even in slow mode.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tyler491477

    Ihr means she Er means he, Ihr Liest is He is reading

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