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You use "eine" for nouns that are grammatically feminine and "ein" for nouns that are grammatically masculine or neuter.
The gender of a noun (whether it's masculine, feminine, or neuter) can't always be predicted, so you should learn the gender along with the word.
So instead of learning "Frau", learn "eine Frau" or "die Frau" so that you will know that it's feminine.
With a woman it may seem obvious, but with "das Messer, die Gabel, der Löffel" (the knife, the fork, the spoon) it's not particularly obvious why each implement has the gender that it does.
Finishing this course on Duolingo will allow you to reach level A2 to B1: http://www.deutsch-als-fremdsprache.org/en/faq/323-what-does-language-level-a1-a2-b1-b2-c1-and-c2-mean.html , – you will need to put much more work and energy into it, however, if you are looking for proficiency sufficient for a professional capacity.
It's ein Mädchen (not "madchen"!) because the noun Mädchen is grammatically neuter.
And, for example, eine Person "a person" because the noun Person is grammatically feminine -- even though a person can be male or female.
The grammatical gender of a noun does not necessarily correspond to the natural gender of the thing the noun refers to.
Nein. Ein is used for masculine and neuter (not "girl") objects. Eine is for nouns with feminine gender.
It may seem nit-picky, but it will help in the long run to keep the concepts of male and female separate from masculine and feminine. Grammatical gender (masculine, feminine, neuter) and anatomical sex (male, female) are entirely different; they are often unrelated and/or counter-intuitive concepts.
That's not always true.
ein Mädchen "a girl" uses ein to refer to a female, and eine Person "a person" or eine Geisel "a hostage" could refer to a male person or hostage, for example.
eine is for grammatically feminine words, not necessarily for words referring to females.
Quick tip to save you all time. LOOK AT THE TIPS AND NOTES.
You can access it by going to the website version of duolingo, pc or mobile.
So many times I see people asking basic questions that were covered by the tips and notes section, near the start of all the duolingo language courses.
Every lesson has a tips and notes section, please read them.
True, but I don't think we can answer with both/alternate answers at the same time.
I had never tried to put in two answers at once before, but just did a lesson where I tried several times. Best example is depicted here:
I tried also using an "or" between the alternate answers: still not accepted.
Granted, this is a small, anecdotal test, but given that this one should DEFINITELY have two acceptable answers (determining the meaning of "sie" in this sentence is completely dependent on a larger context) I would never routinely give two answers: the likelihood of dual answers being accepted seems very, very low.
Maybe that's not what jumpingeor meant (and maybe SaralsCool123), but that's the way I read it. If jumpingeor had included a screen shot or used quotes to be precise, it would have clarified the matter.
Ah. No. I would not expect Duo to accept more than one valid answer at a time -- only instead of, not in addition to.
So in your case, "I will test her" and "I will test them" should each (separately) be accepted, but not both together, no matter how they are joined ("and", "or", period, space, ...).
If there are multiple translation possibilities that come to mind, you should pick one and just enter that one - whichever one it is.
All ladies are women, but not all women are ladies.
What that means is: "lady" is a word which tends to ascribe/imply certain virtuous traits to a woman, which is otherwise a purely biological distinction (i.e., female). It is the polite and genteel way of referring to a woman.
Consider that "Lady"--in the context of "Lady MacBeth" or "Lady Diana Spencer"--is a royal title, akin to "Lord".
And now, stand by for complaints that "Lady" is demeaning and unacceptably misogynistic in modern society.
And in the context of learning German:
a woman = eine Frau
a lady = eine Dame
(Though that's not used as a title in German -- when we talk about English speakers who use the title 'Lady', we simply borrow the title. For example, Diana is often known as "Lady Di" in German.)
Bonus: "ladies and gentlemen" (as a polite term of address for a group of people) is (sehr geehrte) Damen und Herren.
And the equivalent of "Mr Smith and Mrs Taylor" is Herr Schmidt und Frau Schneider.
(i.e. literally perhaps "Gentleman Smith and Woman Taylor".)
Na ja . . . , although failure to use capitals and/or correct punctuation in DuoLingo will (rarely) result in your answer being marked wrong.
Still, it is a good idea to practice using the correct capitalization and punctuation rules if you want to communicate (and/or read) effectively.
Though I realize this question is three months old, I'd just like to chip in for any future readers.
I would disagree with zengator. True, the "a/an" distinction does not apply to German grammar, but while using a loanword in an English sentence it would. Words beginning with a vowel use "
an" and words beginning with a consonant use "
While writing it out as "I am ein Anfänger" would be understood here, or in other bilingual circumstances, I would generally be tempted to use,
"I am an Anfänger."
You misunderstood Zengator's answer.
He says it was not relevant in German, not it was not relevant about borrowed German words (if Anfänger was, ) in English. (Anfänger = beginner in English)
He wrote «I am ein Anfänger» as an example, to make understand «Ich bien ein Anfänger», and «ein» is not a «an», not to teach English.
No you can not. That would be "A woman man." or "A woman, man."
The phrase (it is not a sentence) presented is similar to a list. Either each item in the list gets its own article, or no items have an article. Additionally, if one uses articles, all would normally be either definite (der, die, oder das) or indefinite (ein oder eine).
An argument can be made that one could mix indefinite articles with no articles if the list were composed of both singular (receiving an article) and plural items, e.g.:
- a man
- a woman
- a dog
- a horse
This is because there is no plural indefinite article.
Potentially, in specific context, one could mix definite and indefinite, but consistency and organized thought prefer no mixture.
None of the words is in all caps.
But all the nouns in this sentence have their first letter capitalised because all nouns in German have their first letter capitalised.
It's a rule of German spelling just like English has a rule capitalising things such as "French" or "July" which are lower-case in some other languages.
There are various pronunciations of the sound "r" in both Germany and France.
But the most common or standard version is the same in both languages -- a voiced uvular fricative [ʁ], not a trill.
In the word Frau, though, it is likely to sound like an unvoiced uvular or velar fricative [χ~x], due to voicing assimilation after the unvoiced [f].
Assuming that you meant to close the quotes after the second man, and that your question is basically about whether capitalizing the "A" makes a difference: no, not to die Eule. But one should still strive to practice the rules regarding capitalization, which are fairly simple:
- in English, capitalize the first word in a sentence and all proper names
- auf Deutsch, großschreiben das erste Wort des Satz und alle Substantive oder Namen
Because when you say "Frau", is does NOT mean "miss".
"Miss" before a name, as a title, is "Fräulein", though that title (like "Miss") is going out of fashion.
"Frau" as a title before a name is "Mrs" or, if you want "Ms" (which is pronounced "miz", as far as I know -- not "miss").
But when used by itself (not in front of a name), it cannot mean that.
You may need to check your spelling. Duolingo can be very specific about certain terms. For example, many people type "a womEn" when the correct answer is "a womAn". If you can send your answer, we may be able to explain what the problem is.
However, any problems you experience with the app/website should be reported by clicking "report a problem". If you are using the app on your phone, this will appear as a flag after answering the question. By reporting the problem this way, the technical team can work to fix the issue.
Hey GHkHEy, I'm not sure what the two things you are comparing are exactly. Are you inquiring about the difference between "
Ein" and "
Eine"? If so, the former is used when referring to a single masculine or neuter noun. The latter is used when referring to a single feminine noun.
Additionally, this is unaffected by the following word's vowel or consonant sound (unlike English).
Ein Apfel (masc.) = An apple
Ein Kind (neut.) = A child
Eine Frau (fem.) = A woman
consistently in this test, you classify "Frau" as "woman" and "Mann" as "man." But depending on context, they could just as easily mean "wife" and "husband"; "Frau" could also mean "Mrs." So without providing the context, it is impossible to know how to translate - and you mark multiple answers as "wrong".
There is context here -- eine Frau is not in a possessive context, so the meaning "wife" is ruled out, and Frau is being treated as a noun (with indefinite article before it) rather than as a title before a family name, so the meaning "Mrs" is ruled out. Only the primary meaning "woman" is possible here.
Welcome to DuoLingo. You'll find that most of the time--especially when just beginning--that any question you might have has already been asked and answered in the comments.
Bonus: when looking for your specific question, you'll often find answers to questions you haven't had yet.
ein is used for masculine and neuter nouns.
The noun Mädchen is grammatically neuter -- that is why it takes ein.
The grammatical gender of nouns does not necessarily relate to the biological gender of the thing that the word refers to.
Löffel "spoon" is masculine, even though it's not even alive. Person is feminine, even though a person can be male or female. And so on.
You have to learn the grammatical gender of a word when you learn the word.
I think you're confusing the word "vowel" with "indefinite articles".
The vowels are A, E, I, O, U, Ä, Ö, und Ü (lc: a, e, i, o, u, ä, ö, und ü).
In English, one vowel--"a"--is also the indefinite article used when the following word begins with a consonant sound. (If the following word begins with a vowel sound, then the indefinite article used is "an".) Examples:
- a dog, a bird, a car, a big ape
- an apple, an uncle, an orange, an unhappy camper
- a uniform
- an honest man
- a hotel, an hotel
The last three examples show how it is the initial sound of the following word that makes a difference. The final example may actually vary depending on how "hotel" is pronounced. In the U.S., the h is pronounced, and so "a" is used. In the U.K., the h may not be pronounced (so the word sounds more like "oh-tell") and so "an" is used.
Auf Deutsch the indefinite article is ein, which is inflected to agree in number and Gender with the noun it is introducing: ein, eine, einer, eines, einen, oder einem. (Note that eins--with only the initial e--is the German word for "one".)
Words are capitalized (first letter only) in German when they:
- are the first word in a sentence,
- are proper nouns (i.e., names such as James or Mary or Rover)
- are nouns
- are the second-person, formal pronouns (Sie, Ihr, Ihnen, etc)
Why? Well, you may as well ask why rules 1 and 2 are used in English, Spanish, French, and many (most? all?) European languages. Convention. Protocol. Tradition.
(Note that unlike English, the first-person pronoun, ich, is not capitalized, unless rule 1 applies.)
Genau. How is the system supposed to know whether you're:
(a) confused about whether Frau means "woman" or "man" (and vice-versa) or
(b) so proficient at learning new languages that you're ready to start mixing and shifting and using all sorts of creative and abstract alternatives and variations?
The answer is: it can't. So, instead, it treats anyone working at a beginner level as a beginner. So, if you are an expert, perhaps this is not the place for you.
eine can mean "one" or "a" or "an".
ein can mean "one" or "a" or "an".
The distinction between the two has to do with grammatical gender: ein before masculine or neuter nouns, eine before feminine nouns. It's completely unrelated to whether English would use "a", "an", or "one".