"Er macht sich Frühstück."

Translation:He makes himself breakfast.

November 9, 2013

36 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tom-tky

Couldn't it also simply be He's making breakfast? Also wouldn't He's making his breakfast be Er macht sich sein Fruehstuck?

March 1, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V2Blast

The "himself" is slightly more important in this sentence than it usually is for reflexive verbs because it indicates who the breakfast is for.

July 9, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/johnmcm42

Okay, but why would it not be mir (for himself) rather than accusative?

October 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/check2012

If this is correct, why isn't "Meine Frau sorgt sich" translated as "My wife worries herself"? In the answer, "herself" is left out.

November 9, 2013

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

Good question. In real life, you don't tend to hear "Meine Frau sorgt sich" without it being followed by what it is that she's worried about, e.g. "Meine Frau sorgt sich um mich/um ihren Hund/um die Oma/etc."

If you just want to say that she's worried, you'd say "Meine Frau ist besorgt".

However, I don't think that "Meine Frau sorgt sich" is actually wrong as such....

November 9, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/check2012

Thanks for the quick response. Just to clarify, "Meine Frau ist besorgt" is in the passive. Yet if I wanted to say, for example, "The dog is eaten," I say "Der Hund wird gegessen." Why in one case do I use "ist" + the past participle, and the other I use "wird" + the past participle? Or is "Der Hund ist gegessen" valid as well?

Thanks! :)

November 10, 2013

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

I'm not a grammarian, just a native speaker ;-)

OK, "In Korea werden Hunde gegessen" = Dogs are eaten in Korea

If something "ist gegessen", it usually means that a topic has exhausted itself, that we're done talking about it. So, the phrase "der Hund ist gegessen", would only really occur in real life if there was a big hoo-bullah about a dog, but now it's all done and dusted.

November 10, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marco1603

I think this link might clear some things up a bit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passive_voice#Stative_and_dynamic_passive

"Meine Frau ist besorgt." is then not really passive but "besorgt" is rather used as an adjective. In German we can form the passive voice with the auxiliary "werden" or "sein" plus the past participle. "werden" means literally "to become" and is used with verbs that describe a process/action, while "sein" is used with verbs describing a state or condition.

I am not a native English speaker but I have heard sentences in English which contained passive(-like) voice that were formed with "be" or "get", and not with "have"

He is gone. vs. He has gone.; He got fired. vs. He was fired. etc.

Not sure if these sentences are grammatically correct, but they are similar to how you would express it in German.

November 10, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V2Blast

In most English translations of sentences with reflexive pronouns, the pronoun is implied/understood and thus unnecessary. Sometimes it's accepted; sometimes it's not. (And on rare occasions the reflexive pronoun is necessary in the translation.)

July 9, 2014

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

Why do I make 'mir' noodles, but he makes 'sich' breakfast?

I.e. "Ich mache mir Nudeln" vs. "Er macht sich Frühstück."

December 8, 2013

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

That's the same thing - dative. If you switch the subject (Er vs Ich), the pronoun is consistent: Ich mache mir Frühstück, Er macht sich Nudeln.

December 8, 2013

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

Perhaps I don't quite understand. Why is it not "Ich mache mich Früstück" or "Er macht ihm Frückstück?"

December 8, 2013

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

Maybe I can help explain this better. You wouldn't use "mich" in your first sentence because that's the accusative reflexive pronoun, but in the sentence "Frühstück" is already accusative so the reflexive pronoun has to be dative (it also makes sense if you forget about reflexive pronouns, the accusative object is "Frühstück" so you can then ask "For whom do I make breakfast?" to find the dative object - "Me/mir.") It's the same reason why you say "Ich wasche mir die Hände."

And, like SimoneBa said, your second sentence means that he makes him (some other guy) breakfast, not himself. That's just the difference between personal pronouns and reflexive pronouns. For the first and second person (mich/mir, dich/dir, uns/uns, euch/euch), the personal pronouns are the same as reflexive pronouns, but for the third person (both singular and plural) pronouns are "sich" in both the accusative and dative. These links might help: http://goo.gl/xQAnh7 , http://goo.gl/YOHRQ2

Hopefully this makes things a little more clear! If not, I'll gladly try again. :)

December 8, 2013

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

Many thanks. That second paragraph was particularly helpful.

December 8, 2013

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

Good job! I failed miserably ;-)

December 8, 2013

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

Danke! :) It's kind of a complicated topic to explain when it's just a thing that you intuitively know (honestly, I had to keep looking up words like "personal pronouns" in order to even make anything I wrote make sense ;P ).

December 8, 2013

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

Excellent explanation, wow, thanks!

December 12, 2013

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

"Er macht ihm Früstück = He makes him (i.e. another male person) breakfast.

Sorry, I'm not all that good at explaining grammar... someone else will be able to explain this much better than I can.

December 8, 2013

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

Then 'sich' is both accusative and dative...?

December 8, 2013

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

only in the reflexive, yes. the accusative and dative of 'er' is ihn and ihm respectively, but in reflexive form, as in "oneself", it is "sich" in both cases. it was confusing to u because the reflexive forms in both cases for "ich" remains the same, ie. mich and mir. just remember this rule of thumb, in the reflexive form, it either remains as it is in the acc. and dat. cases, or is replaced by sich (only for er/es/sie). see a side by side list of cases and reflexives and it will be clear.

December 19, 2013

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

Why did I have to put 'his breakfast' and not just 'He is making breakfast'? Thanks!

April 30, 2014

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

He makes breakfast: Er macht das Frühstück (yes, you do need the article "das" in there in this case, if you leave it out, it means he's actually eating breakfast.)

He makes himself breakfast: Er macht sich Frühstück

April 30, 2014

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

It just seems totally random to me. Most of the example sentences have some form of 'self'/'selves' in them, but we do not need to write them. Example :- der teller befindet sich in der Küche. Literally - the plate finds itself in the kitchen, but we write, the plate is in the kitchen. What is the difference with this example, is it because of the word "machen" and therefore we really need to say who this is for? Any help would be appreciated :-) Freuen wir uns doch - let us rejoice ourselves ;-)

July 31, 2014

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

What you're referring to are reflexive verbs. Verbs which require a 'sich', but you don't necessarily translate it into English.

'Machen' doesn't need 'sich', so the fact it's there means it's specifically for him.

'duschen' means to shower. Could shower someone else I guess?

'sich duschen' means 'to have a shower'. You could also translate it more directly as 'to shower oneself'.

July 31, 2014

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

Danke Druckles! :-)

July 31, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/josephk27

For the lions perhaps?

April 29, 2015

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

Or maybe practicing for the men's being-eaten-by-a-crocodile event?

December 19, 2015

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

Why Duo sometimes demands "himself/yourself etc." and sometimes is punishing us for putting it in sentences? It's so fuc**ng annoying!

June 4, 2015

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

Because it's wrong. You should read the other comments.

June 4, 2015

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

You are right. Vielen dank.

June 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/david649465

Currently, the answer "He's making his breakfast" is accepted, but I don't think it should be. "Sich" doesn't imply possession ("his"). It is a reflexive pronoun, so "He's making himself breakfast" or simply "He's making breakfast" make better sense (and I believe are both accepted). I reported the "his" variant as incorrect.

February 1, 2018

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

"He's making breakfast" lacks the information that he is preparing breakfast for himself ("sich").

July 5, 2019

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

"He makes breakfast" is not accepted, but corrected to "He makes himself breakfast", which in English is redundant, I believe.

December 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amy1706

If he is making himself breakfast, why isn't it phrased, "er macht sich selber frühstück" ??

March 2, 2019

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

The answer given was 'he makes his breakfast'. The above 'he makes himself breakfast' I can understand. However why was my answer ' he is breakfasting' not accepted.

November 21, 2013

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

Well, because that would be "Er frühstückt".

He's making himself breakfast means he's preparing it, i.e. before he gets down to actually eating it, so your answer describes a different part of the process, and that's why it's wrong.

November 21, 2013
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