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"Sie zeigt die Lampe einem Kind."

Translation:She shows the lamp to a child.

October 12, 2015

186 Comments


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

Isn't the correct form of the phrase "Sie zeigt einem Kind die Lampe."? As I learned, normally the dative element comes right after the verb.


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

Both are possible. German is relatively flexible with those things, even though your version is probably more common. I think they put it that way around to make it easier to translate from German into English because you don't have to change the word order.


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

You don't have to change the English order of the other way; "She shows a kid the lamp" is grammatically correct.


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

I think he meant the other order: "She shows the lamp a kid". This doesn't make sense in English without "to" ("to a kid")


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

We must just keep on reporting it when Duo gets it wrong. Sometimes the get subtleties of English wrong.


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

Yes it does. It means she is showing a young goat to a lamp


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marlboro1983

My thinking was that the word 'zu' should actually be in there, as in: "Sie zeigt die Lampe zu einem Kind"

Seems to be what Google Translate comes back with, too...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KennethAlf4

Google translate is not a reliable source


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

You don't need the "zu": the function of the "to" in the English version is incorporated within the Dativ form of "einem".

I don't know if adding the "zu" is superfluous or just plain wrong, aber ich weiß, es ist unnötig.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V.L.15

Methinks the existence of dative case would make the "zu" redundant here and probably wrong. Confusing things is that "zu," as a preposition, requires dative case in the first place.

I think the test would be, if you see a phrase which uses "zu" (such as "zum Schloß" or "zur Burg"), can the "zu" be removed? I don't think so, and that would be the answer: Can "zu" be added to the sentence above? I don't think so.


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

A dative article makes the object it is attached to act like an indirect object in English. The accusitive article (die) before Lampe means it is what is being shown, while the dative article before Kind (einem) means that is what the lamp is being shown to. This makes including the word 'to' unnecessary. Directly translating word-for-word does not always give good results.


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

Google translate can't always be trusted, it is a robot afterall. Dativ case pronouns, articles and prepositions in German in themselves include the "zu" or "to" aspect within them. Just like "mir," a dativ preposition means in itself, "to me" and therefore does not need the extra "zu." This is the same for pronouns, definite and indefinite articles (der, die das, - definite articles, ein, eine, einer, einem eines - indefinite articles).

In this case, "She is showing the lamp to a child," "zeigen" is a dativ verb, therefore the translation would be "Sie zeigt einem Kind die Lampe." The formal rule is that the dativ object (to a child) in its whole form, (so not packed into a preposition) is almost ALWAYS directly after the verb. Otherwise, if the dativ object is in preposition form (zb. "To the child" = ihm) the akkusativ object would be closest to the verb. "Sie zeigt die Lampe ihm."

I hope that makes sense. :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V.L.15

"She shows a kid the lamp" is correct only because, in English, we presume the indirect object before the direct object - because English does not show case. While neuter and female nouns do not show accusative case, all nouns show dative case, which takes the pressure off of word order in German.

Notice that I didn't say eliminates the need for word order, just that there is room for flexibility that English does not have. (See the other comment, featuring "She shows the lamp a kid")


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

Or in English "she shows the child a lamp" so as to distinguish a young human from a young goat.


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

Nein. The challenge concerns "einem Kind" (not "die Kind") and "die Lampe" (not "eine Lampe").


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/isab.j

I'm taking a German class in Austria atm and the teacher is very strict about the word order, i.e. dative noun before accusative noun unless the accusative is a pronoun, and perfective verb form always at the end of a sentence. Is this just one of those things that they teach in classrooms but which is not very important in real life? (like 'ne.. pas' instead of just 'pas' in French maybe?


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

Not really. "Pas" on its own is colloquial, whereas the alternative ways of ordering the nouns (switching the objects or even putting either object in the first position) are all acceptable in standard German and are actually more common in formal language than in colloquial speech, as they generally turn up in longer sentences and need more context.
Switching the two objects around doesn't make a noticable difference in this particular sentence, but that's only because it doesn't contain any extra baggage like prepositions to cause a problem, but by putting it first, you are emphasizing the accusative object more, which can sound unnatural on its own in a lot of cases (e.g.: "sie geht ins Kino mit einem Kind". Even if it's grammatically correct, I would expect the sentence to go on or assume that whoever wrote it wasn't a modern-day native speaker).
This is why your teacher insists on the standard order. It's safer than messing around with all the other possibilites, which don't work in all cases and would only cause confusion. But just for the sake of it, the following sentences are all correct:
"Sie zeigt einem Kind die Lampe" - standard order
"Sie zeigt die Lampe einem Kind" - highlights "die Lampe"
"Die Lampe zeigt sie einem Kind" - highlights "die Lampe"
"Einem Kind zeigt sie die Lampe" - highlights "einem Kind"
The first two sentences can stand on their own, the latter two have to be part of something longer to work (like "die Lampe zeigt sie einem Kind, den Kulli einem Mann" = "she shows the lamp to a child and the pen to a man").
But don't worry about those. Using only the standard order limits the expressiveness of the language a little bit, but as I said, it's safer and also a lot easier :)


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

I would say that Sie zeigt die Lampe einem Kind highlights "einem Kind", by putting it at the end of the sentence.


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

Perfect explanation, thanks. Shame Duo marks often marks the non-conventional order wrong, as there is no sense of the emphasis normally!


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

@mizinamo Was there some gedanken about the last word/words in the sentence? The last thought/last spoken and importance. A German idiom... I can't recall..


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KennethAlf4

My German teachers both native speakers emphasized that the dative noun normally is placed between the conjugated verb and a diect object noun, but it could come in first position followed by the conjugated verb then the subject and then a direct object noun. If the dative noun followed the accusative noun, it is wrong.


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

"Dative noun before accusative unless accusative is a pronoun." I did not know that was a rule, and I thank you for sharing. That helps sort out some things in my head.


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

It is not really important the kind of sentences in real life convertation, but in case, in university you just have to do, especially when you write a book. I'm not an german native speaker but living in Germany


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AliT.Firef

Could you tell that to DL in some of the other sentences? I've been marked wrong several times for this!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mnica668707

But in s previous lesson of duolingo it was reported as wrong to put the direct object before the indirect object, unless the direct object was a pronoun! And people in the comments confirmed that was the rule, although getting it wrong would still result in native being able to understand


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

When I was translating this same sentence from English to German on Duolingo, I did "die Lampe" before "einem Kind" once and it counted it wrong. Bunch of BS if you ask me... So I was right?


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

I thought of :"She shows the lamp a child".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/az_p
Mod

    That would be Sie zeigt der Lampe ein Kind. The cases matter!


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

    I guess so. That makes three times you've corrected me!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/az_p
    Mod

      It's a good way of helping with my own learning :) I'm going to double-check things before I write them! And when that fails to spot the mistake, someone else gets some practice to correct me and I learn from it too :P


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

      az_p, I need help with German grammar


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

      why is it der Lampe? Google translate shows 'lamp' as 'die Lampe.' does der refer to Kind in your case?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

      The feminine dative form of the article is "der." It happens to also look like the masculine form, but in this case it's feminine dative.


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

      I have struggled with this for a while until I came across the correct explanation : If the dative noun has an indefinite article and the akkusative noun doesn't, than the dative noun CAN be placed after the akkusative one.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V.L.15

      When I first learned German, 1981, I was taught that, among other things, dative case allowed for flexibility in word order since the dative case made it clear which was the direct and indirect objects. (I may be wrong, but I note that Duo doesn't seem to care about word order, either)

      This is as opposed to English and Spanish. Neither shows case, therefore, word order becomes crucial since there is no way to tell which is which.


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

      Could be because of the definite article ("die" Lampe)? There is a tendency (not an iron-clad rule) to put definite nouns (which is often given/old information) before indefinite nouns (which is usually new information).


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mehdi6Cl

      ja ich stimme dir zu, wenn es Nomen von Akkusativ und Dativ im satz gibt, steht erst Dativ.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RDBury1

      Duo is (imo) very confusing on this. I'm pretty sure that if we were asked to translate "She shows the lamp to a child," into German we'd be marked wrong for ""Sie zeigt die Lampe einem Kind," because it violates the Dative before Accusative rule. But then we get something like this as an example which supposedly we're to imitate. If they're going to make people learn the Dative before Accusative rule to get the answer right, then they should follow it in example sentences.


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

      Your concern is understandable, but please have a look at the other comments here, as it has been addressed several times, by igelchen, ilyes_ferchiou, and mizinamo.

      Edit That is, the explanation for the correctness of the word order given here. As to whether the same word order might or might not be correct in other sentences, I would be cautious. German is subtle.


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

      And, although no one seems to be saying it, duo marks wrong whenever I try the form used in this sentence...


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

      That was the first question that came to my mind


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

      Is there a reason why it would reject the English translation "She shows a child the lamp," or is it just an oversight?


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

      I, too, was dinged for "She is showing a child the lamp," which seems a more natural translation.


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

      Ditto. This should be accepted. "She is showing a child the lamp" and "She is showing the lamp to a child" are exactly the same meaning in English.


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

      This sentence makes it seem like she is showing a child to the lamp. Is the child a sacrifice to the lamp?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelG99

      No, fortunately not. :) You can tell what's going on here by looking at the articles. "Einem" indicates the Dative case, which tells us that the child is an indirect object (i.e. not the thing being shown, but rather the one to whom it is shown). "Die Lampe" tells us that lamp is in the Accusative case. If we wanted to say "She shows a child to the lamp", we would say "Sie zeigt der Lampe ein Kind" (or "Sie zeigt ein Kind der Lampe"). The beauty of German is that its grammatical precision allows us to mix up the word order without changing the meaning.


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

      Just curious, how would the line be if it had been the genitive case (i.e. the child's lamp)?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/az_p
      Mod

        Sie zeigt die Lampe eines Kinds = "She shows the/a child's lamp" ("She shows the lamp of a child")

        (Source: Canoo.net)


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RichardBas9

        Why did it reject 'she is demonstrating the lamp to a child'


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        "Demonstrating" is a bit more involved and detailed than "zeigen." The best translation is just "showing." (Really, "demonstrating" is a kind of "showing/zeigen"-- too specific here.)


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

        Why "einem" ??


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        "Kind" is neuter, and it's used in the dative here (since it's an indirect object). The neuter dative form for "ein" is "einem." (Conjugation chart here)


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/typark20

        igelchen's comment below is the most correct. The dative object (DO) should always precede the accusative object (AO) in standard german sentence construction. However, the order is flexible, but only to place emphasis on different parts of speech when deviating from the standard. Generally the later in the V2 portion of the sentence (following the first inflected verb) a speech part is, when outside of standard construction, the more emphasis is placed on that part. So in this case the speaker is emphasizing that she showed the lamp to a child, specifically. For even more emphasis the dative object can be placed in the V1 portion of the sentence, prior to the inflected verb (so; Einem Kind zeigt Sie die lampe). Remember this is all for emphasis, and something that german has that english doesn't, this flexibility in word order due to the differing cases. The key is to recognize which words take which parts of speech by the identifying the definite or indefinite article (der artikel oder ein artikel). And of course context. Hope this helps.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bwv1013

        She shows to a child the lamp. not accepted. Is it wrong translation or bad English?


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

        In this course, it's considered incorrect English to put the indirect object (the child, who is the "recipient" of the showing) first with "to".

        You can have either "She shows the lamp to a child" (indirect object second, with "to") or "She shows a child the lamp" (indirect object first, no "to"), but not "She shows to a child the lamp" (indirect object first with "to").


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ericsonn0

        ''She shows to a child the lamp.''. I think this is incorrect written English it requires the punctuation of two commas. Thus: She shows, to a child, the lamp. This then isolates the, ''to a child'', and makes the meaning clear. That is, ''She shows the lamp to a child.''


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

        It is unusual English. Not necessarily wrong, but odd enough to sound that way. With a pause after child, (which could be denoted by a comma) it would sound better.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ericsonn0

        zengator. I think it is wrong because it is incorrectly punctuated! For clarity of meaning, it requires two commas to enclose the ''to a child'' part of the sentence.


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

        I translated it to: She shows a kid the lamp.

        My translation wasn't accepted.. I wonder why?!!


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Luis951749

        According the TU Chemnitz dictionary, "die Lampe" can be translated to "the light". Why is the translation "She shows the light to a child" rejected?


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

        I suppose it's th other way around, with "the light" sometimes referring to a luminous-on-demand piece of furniture, rather than the flux of luminous energy itself. If that's the case, "the lamp" would be much less confusing translation.


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

        OK, granted that "light" has these different meanings.

        But, when it is said "die Lampe", isn't it assumed that who hears/reads the sentence will know which lamp/light is being meant?

        I understand it is not any light/lamp, but a specific one.

        And if so, why would it be different in English, "She shows the light to the child."?


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

        Yes: why?

        Light: "A source of light, especially a lamp, a lantern, or an electric lighting fixture." (The Free Dictionary) Ist das nicht eine Lampe also??

        I have reported it.


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

        Yes, "light" is a secondary meaning for die Lampe, but it the primary, most-common meaning is "lamp" in the sense of a light fixture:

        die Lampe


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/temitayo.f1

        She shows a child the lamp would be perfectly right as well


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

        True, and that's one of the accepted translations for a translation exercise.


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

        would the translation be "Sie zeigt (eine) Lampe (einem) Kind" for "She shows a lamp to the child"? ;i'm especially confused with what to put in the parentheses


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

        "She shows a lamp to the child" would be Sie zeigt dem Kind eine Lampe.

        The order Sie zeigt eine Lampe dem Kind sounds very strange to me -- the dative object usually comes before the accusative object if both are nouns. The dative object can be put at the end instead when it's new information, to emphasise it, but while "a child" (with the indefinite article) is new information, "the child" (with the definite article) implies that it's a known child and thus cannot be new information.


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

        That would be "She shows a lamp to a child."

        "dem Kind" would mean "to the child".


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

        Is "einem Kind zeigt sie die lampe" correct?


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

        Nearly. The noun Lampe has to be capitalised.

        Other than that, it is a grammatically correct sentence.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/o0oKrishnao0o

        Why isn't the lamp to the child correct?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        The German sentence uses "einem Kind," so you should translate to "a child."


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

        I don't see a preposition in this sentence. Why does it not need one? Is this a special feature of "zeigen" or is it common?


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

        It's quite common in dative case that the preposition 'zu' (to) is implied by, or already included in, the dative pronoun/article. eg. Zeig es mir! Gib es mir! However I have no idea on the particular rules when/why the 'zu' is or is not required......


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/typark20

        Zu is absolutely not required in the dative, it is implied.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        It's not implied or omitted; it's simply not used. Using "zu mir" for an indirect object would be incorrect. German does not use a preposition to indicate indirect object; the dative case by itself indicates that.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dennis766722

        then why would German use "MIT mir"? "zu" must be implied?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        You're trying to make this into a word-for-word translation, and you just can't do that. German's structure for an indirect object is just "mir eine Lampe zeigen." There's not a "zu" implied because "Sie zeigt zu mir eine Lampe" is completely wrong. If it were implied, it could go there, but it can't, so it's not. "Zu mir" is simply not correct and not how German makes an indirect object.

        "Mit mir" is just a completely different situation. German does use a preposition to express "with someone." It doesn't use a preposition for an indirect object.


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

        -Copernicus- is absolutely right. You could consider that the English concept of the preposition "to" is inherent to the German Dativ pronouns and articles, but that is not at all the same as "implied".


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kyle893116

        I wrote kid instead of child and got it wrong. Does it matter? Should I report it?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RichardAll840569

        I think a kid is a young goat.


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

        As a noun, "kid" has many meanings, including "young goat" and "human child".


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

        When is "sie" they, not she? and vise versa.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo
        • sie zeigt = she shows
        • sie zeigen = they show

        The verb forms will be different depending on the subject.

        In general, sie "she" has a -t ending in the present tense, sie "they" an -en ending.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jessica423052

        "She shows the child a lamp" is not correct? I put that but it didn't accept it.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        That's because the German sentence uses "einem Kind" and "die Lampe." Your translation should be "She shows a child the lamp."


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gabbi907924

        I made a mistske in the previous similar translation, bacause I put the "to" into it. Now Ileft it out, and this is the error...


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

        Whether to use "to" or not depends on whether the indirect object is before or after the direct object:

        • She shows a child the lamp. - OK
        • She shows the lamp to a child. - OK (though in my opinion not as good as the first one)
        • She shows to a child the lamp. - not OK
        • She shows the lamp a child. - not OK

        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sarah0741

        so are dative articles kind of like 'to a' or 'to the' instead of just a and the?


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

        Those are often good translations, but the dative case is not only used where English would use "to".


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

        I've read that this word order is used for emphasis. Which would be emphasized, the accusative or dative object? And would the emphasized word be given vocal emphasis when speaking?


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

        The dative object is emphasised because it has been moved from its usual location before the accusative object to the end of the sentence.

        And yes, in speech I would also put a bit more emphasis on the word Kind.


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

        This is what I thought, thanks for confirming!


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

        "hmm.. the pieces in this puzzle are starting to come together" says Colombo


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

        In all the previous exercises Duo wanted "she is showing ...." Now its wrong. Duo wants " she shows ...." What is the difference?


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

        In German? None.

        Without context (as with most Duolingo sentences), sie zeigt could translate to either "she shows" (habiturally, regularly, repeatedly) or "she is showing" (right now).


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        Duo accepts both forms. What was your entire answer?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/akili.alex

        If i say "She showed the child a lamp" how is this different from "She shows the lamp to a child?"


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

        One has “the child” and “a lamp”, one has “a child” and “the lamp”.


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

        'Showed' is in the past tense, 'shows' is in the present.


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

        Why is She is showing marked as incorrect when she shows and she is showing are valid forms of the English present tense - one being the continuous form


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

        Please copy/paste your entire answer. I'm pretty sure I've used both and had both accepted.


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

        Should 'She shows the child the lamp' be ok?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        No. The German sentence uses "einem Kind" -> "a child."


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stephen83116

        Here is another example that differs from everything that I have learned. If you have two nouns, usually the indirect object comes before the direct one. In this case, To Whom is it being shown...to a child. This is the indirect object of the sentence and should come second, not last as the translation has it. Very hard to learn a language when the rules keep changing for no apparent reason.


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

        The rules aren't really changing. As you said, "usually the indirect object comes before the direct object", not always.

        Because the objects are switched from their normal, expected ordering, it emphasizes the d.o.. In a sense, "She didn't show the child a chair; she showed him a lamp."


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stephen83116

        Thanks for the response!
        I would agree with that; however, we both know that there is flexibility with the sentence. As such, Duolingo should accept both translations. I entered it correctly from a grammatical standpoint, but Duolingo marked it wrong because it is trying to show an alternate way of writing it. Unless I am missing something, it should accept both translations, but provide an alternate means of writing it.


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

        It very much depends on what you wrote as your answer.

        • "She shows a child the lamp." <= should be correct
        • "She shows the lamp to a child." <= should be correct
        • "She shows the child a lamp." <= should be wrong
        • "She shows the lamp a child." <= should be wrong

        The key is, we're speaking about a specific lamp (the) and a non-specific child (a).


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stephen83116

        I do not remember now, but I do remember it had to do with the word order. Normally the indirect object would come before the direct object. In this case, I likely would have written "She shows a child the lamp". The answer provided I believe was "She shows the lamp to a child". This is what caused the confusion because of the noun rule. It should have accepted both answers, but it technically chose the incorrect sentence based on the noun rule. Thanks for taking the time to answer!


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V.L.15

        I like your answer, especially the “usually,” since word order ought to be flexible. One thing I really enjoyed when I learned German the first time was the dative case, in that it forces clarity between objects even if there’s an unusual word order.

        Another issue would be, what was Duo trying to teach here? (It’s been a few weeks, so I don’t exactly remember) If it was simply dative case, I can see many of these suggested answers being accepted. If it was strict word order (with no context demanding alternate emphasis), then I can see how these other answers might not be acceptable.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eugen598352

        German teachers say that Dative elements must be before Acusative elemens. This is important and there are many exercises to this topic.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        German teachers are unfortunately not always experts on the German language (as goes for any language teachers). Dative nouns most certainly don't come before accusative pronouns, for instance. ("Sie zeigt einem Kind es" is very wrong.) German direct and indirect objects can often be switched around to switch emphasis, and definite nouns (using "der/die/das") often go before indefinite nouns (using "ein") regardless of each one's case. Another common ordering is that long objects (using lots of modifiers, or just extra-long words) often are placed after shorter objects regardless of case.

        Dative before accusative is a commonly-cited rule, but it just doesn't hold in all situations. It can be a decent guideline sometimes, but don't expect it to always be true.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V.L.15

        In this, and many, instances of audio playback of the word, "Kind," by itself, is pronounced the same as "kind" in English. In an entire sentence, the playback is usually correct, but as a single word, "Kind" is almost always pronounced incorrect for German.


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

        I noticed that the male voice has on occasion said "Kind" with a long "i" like it would be spelled "Keind". He can be inconsistent. So, I agree with you... he messes up quite a few words like that; either that or maybe he's from some part of Germany with a thick, hardly ever heard accent that only Germans get to hear, except now us! lol Or maybe he's actually American, and just forgets, or that's how most Americans say it! :-o


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V.L.15

        What I really think is going on is that there is a "bank" of audio recordings for each of the words, as well as composed sentences. This is most noticeable in those "type what you hear" exercises, where the words in the sentence don't always sound like the words from the "word bank." (Lacking a keyboard with the appropriate accent marks and special characters, I find myself using the "word bank" a lot)

        At any rate, in the sentences to be typed, "Kind" is pronounced correctly; from the "word bank," "Kind" is pronounced incorrectly.

        And what I think is happening is that the editor happens to be picking the wrong "kind" for the "word bank"! (As in, it's picking the "kind" for the English exercise)


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

        I don't think these are recordings. I seem to recall a moderator or someone with more insight into the inner workings of DuoLingo than a standard user commenting that the voices are computer-generated. This fits in with the occasional wholesale changes in female/male voices. If recordings of actual people or voice actors were in use, one would expect that if a new set of female recordings were added, the old ones would not be discarded in their entirety.

        That said, your observation about the perceived mispronunciation of "kind" in isolation could be due to mistakenly applying the rules for English speech synthesis when German rules need to be used.


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

        Yes dative should come first.


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

        Why’s it “Sie zeigt die Lampe einem Kind” instead of “Sie zeigt einem Kind die Lampe”? I heard the dative, indirect object comes before the accusative, direct object?


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

        I heard the dative, indirect object comes before the accusative, direct object?

        That's the basic, unmarked word order.

        Here, the indefinite einem Kind is moved to the end to show that it's new information -- perhaps the answer to the question "Whom is she showing the lamp to? -- Oh, a child; I didn't know that!"

        Such movement is not always possible, so it's best to recognise it but not attempt to do it yourself until you have a firm grasp (from reading and hearing many, many correct sentences) on when it works and when it doesn't.


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

        In this specific example, are the accusative and dative cases able to move around? Is my example wrong?


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

        In this specific example, are the accusative and dative cases able to move around?

        Yes. The direct object is definite and the indirect object is indefinite in this sentence -- there, you can often move the indefinite indirect object to the end if you want to emphasise it, because indefinite nouns are likely to be new information, while definite nouns are almost always something you have spoken about already.


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

        I wrote "She shows the kid a lamp" – I think this should be accepted!


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

        It is "she shows A kid THE lamp".


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

        Yeahhh... the next time it came up, I noticed that. My mistake!


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JacquelineB77

        is not the meaning correct ??


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

        is not the meaning correct ?

        The meaning of what?

        Please quote the entire sentence that you are commenting on.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/David634390

        Why is the dative after the accusative? In another question, "Sie geben Wasser den Frauen" is marked wrong and requires "Sie geben den Frauen Wasser." When are the dative and accusative allowed to have a flexible order?


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

        When are the dative and accusative allowed to have a flexible order?

        As a learner, I would recommend that you always go with the rule of thumb "dative before accusative" and merely be aware of the fact that native speakers may something use other orders.


        New information can be "showcased" by moving it to the end of a sentence, after old information.

        In general, nouns with the indefinite article ein, eine, einen, einem (etc.) are new information and nouns with the definite article der, die, das (etc.) are old information.

        So die Lampe (definite) + einem Kind (indefinite) sounds more acceptable to me than Wasser (indefinite) + den Frauen (definite).

        But rather than being black-and-white rules, it's more of a continuum of acceptability -- some sentences are more acceptable than others when rearranged.

        To be safe, just keep the dative before the accusative except when the accusative is a personal pronoun.


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

        Why isn't "she shows the kid a lamp" accepted?


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

        Because the German sentence talks about a child and the lamp.


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

        What's up with showing things to kinds in this lesson First a man shows his shoes now a lamp, what's next?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Evelynne55466

        what I wrote is THE SAME PRINCIPLE as you wrote. What is wrong with yr vocab??


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

        what I wrote

        When you have a question about a sentence that was not accepted, please always quote your entire answer.

        Ideally by copying and pasting (do not re-type the answer, as this might introduce new typos or correct ones you made the first time) or by taking a screenshot, uploading it to a website somewhere, and including the URL of the image in your comment.


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

        It is probably old-fashioned, (but so am I!) I was taught that the word show could also be spelled shew, when a verb, but the noun was always Show. !!


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

        From the Wikipedia:
        shew: verb

        Archaic form of show.

        I think die Eule believes it is enough to learn to modern German from modern English, with a few colloquialisms, and that we don't need to start including archaic versions and alternatives of either language.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ericsonn0

        Somewhere, someone may label a word as being 'archaic' but, that word is still correct English. I believe, in this sense archaic only means that a particular word usage has been forgotten by most people. But, not by all!

        Words add 'colour' and 'depth' to a language. I have heard it said that one can effectively communicate knowing only 1200 words. But consider, what a dull, flat, boring world that would be!

        Ihre Eule benötigt die Dienste eines Präparators!
        Meiner bescheidenen Meinung nach.


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

        This is a course for beginning and intermediate learners. I would say that questions of style, such as the possible use of archaic forms, can be safely left for more advanced learners.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/danny99percent

        I think i just want to argue that I'm right. Possibly


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sanyi78672

        Tge dative should be before the accusative, bylat!


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

        Normally, yes. Unless one wants to emphasize that it is the lamp which is being shown. This sentence serves to illustrate that the inflection of articles allows components of the sentence to be shifted around.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sanyi78672

        Ah man, this language drives me mad. I've been learning it for a while. And I just always find myself again and again stuck to the wall by its grammar.

        My teacher said it's a "stiff structure", and now here you are saying it isn't. Im confused. Could you tell me where did you learn german?


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

        There are certain aspects that are "stiff". The one that seems most invariable to me is that in a declarative statement, the verb takes the second position and auxiliary verbs (if any) go to the end. After that, there are "rules"--and here we must remember that "the exception proves the rule"--that are flexible, unless they are not.

        I've tried to learn and study German for many years using various courses and speaking with friends who know German. None really seemed to work except DuoLingo (I started in August 2013). I think the consistency is the key: I've missed no more than 30 days total during that time. (Boy, oh boy, was I aggravated when I realized I mis-remembered things and dropped a 1,000+ day streak.)


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rita540340

        My translation is not incorrect.


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

        My translation is not incorrect.

        What did you write? What was your entire answer?


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

        "She shows a child the lamp" was accepted.

        בס״ד


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RudolphPas2

        Worst aspect of Duolingo is the female speaker. Yes I've read all the business about the audio compression etc, still, roughly half of my mistakes are because I miss hear what she says; here she clearly says "einen" - and even though I know damn well it should be "einem" - at the speed I work the exercises I've submitted the wrong answer before my brain says "Whoa! Wrong!" Saumensch!


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/starlight55971

        Don't know that anyone reads these to correct spoken part of Duo but the male speaker clearly says Die zeigt on normal speed.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Spinksie2308

        Why is he pronouncing "Kind" like "find"??


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

        I have the exact correct answer and it was marked wrong.


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

        Unlikely. But if you would be so kind as to post a screenshot of this wrongly-marked, exactly-correct answer, I'm sure the moderators would be happy to address it. Here's a how-to on uploading a screenshot.


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

        "She shows a child the lamp." accpeted.

        בס״ד


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TMania1

        I listened closely to her twice, and I'd swear she is saying EINEN....not EINEM!!


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

        She shows the child a lamp! Really simple.


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

        She shows the child a lamp!

        No. She shows a child the lamp.


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

        She is showing a lamp to a kid is marked wrong. Bs.


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

        She is showing a lamp to a kid is marked wrong.

        Of course.

        die Lampe is not "a lamp"; it's "the lamp".


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JK-Quinn

        Hopefully she isn't shining it in their eyes...


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Waterip0

        That wouldn't be bright..


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/karen3388008

        More examples why the german grammer needs prepositions to complete the sentence. Just like icing on top of the cupcake! Not everyone is a cupcake, you cannot please everyone... LOL

        Link with Examples: https://www.vistawide.com/german/grammar/german_cases_dative.htm


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WilliamDan417938

        Here Duolingo is teaching bad German grammar. Unless there is a pronoun the order is indirect object before the direct object.


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

        Unless there is a pronoun the order is indirect object before the direct object.

        Usually but not always.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NicholasPa38063

        Despite this screwed up sentence, in German the indirect object precedes the direct object when both are nouns. Exceptions are very rare, and this sentence does not qualify.


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

        She shows the child a lamp should be correct too.


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

        Please read all of the comments before posting your own.

        Why your sentence is wrong has been explained multiple times already.

        Just search for "she shows the child a lamp" on this page.


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

        What's wrong with "She shows the child a lamp"? It was marked as incorrect!


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

        What's wrong with "She shows the child a lamp"? It was marked as incorrect!

        That question has already been answered several times on this page.

        Search for "the child a lamp".


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

        Idle:

        ... wrong with "She shows the child ...

        "She shows a child the lamp" is correct.
        You have your articles mixed up!
        (you can't say "... shows the child a lamp ..."
        in this particular drill.)

        Great question! Thanks for asking.
        בס״ד


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

        Why is "she shows the child a lamp" incorrect?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

        Please read carefully. The German sentence has "einem Kind" ("a child") and "die Lampe" ("the lamp").


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ghaith415370

        What the wrong of duo with children these days!


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

        If its so sensitive about the cases when I use einen instead of einem at least have lessons on what they mean, it also annoys me that it is so specific when i cant even hear what it says from the voice recording.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Clankie73

        ja, This gal said einen not einem.

        Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.