Couldn't it also simply be He's making breakfast? Also wouldn't He's making his breakfast be Er macht sich sein Fruehstuck?
The "himself" is slightly more important in this sentence than it usually is for reflexive verbs because it indicates who the breakfast is for.
Okay, but why would it not be mir (for himself) rather than accusative?
If this is correct, why isn't "Meine Frau sorgt sich" translated as "My wife worries herself"? In the answer, "herself" is left out.
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....
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?
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.
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.
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.)
Why do I make 'mir' noodles, but he makes 'sich' breakfast?
I.e. "Ich mache mir Nudeln" vs. "Er macht sich Frühstück."
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.
Perhaps I don't quite understand. Why is it not "Ich mache mich Früstück" or "Er macht ihm Frückstück?"
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. :)
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 ).
"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.
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.
Why did I have to put 'his breakfast' and not just 'He is making breakfast'? Thanks!
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
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 ;-)
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'.
Why Duo sometimes demands "himself/yourself etc." and sometimes is punishing us for putting it in sentences? It's so fuc**ng annoying!
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.
"He's making breakfast" lacks the information that he is preparing breakfast for himself ("sich").
"He makes breakfast" is not accepted, but corrected to "He makes himself breakfast", which in English is redundant, I believe.
If he is making himself breakfast, why isn't it phrased, "er macht sich selber frühstück" ??
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.
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.