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  5. "Sie trägt keinen Rock, sonde…

"Sie trägt keinen Rock, sondern einen Mantel."

Translation:She is not wearing a skirt, but a coat.

October 17, 2015



I hope this coat of hers is a long coat...


Is this sentence strange to Germans? I mean, wouldn't you question if she is wearing pants or something instead of the skirt?


It's a classic Duoism. There are many other fun ones out there for us to enjoy.


Duo is full of weird, hilarious sentences (search around a bit on Twitter), but I actually thought of a reasonable explanation pretty quickly: it looked like a skirt but that's actually just the bottom of a long coat.


there's also /r/shitduolingosays on reddit


And a twitter account.


I saw just a while. Made my day!


We swim because we are fish... The vegetables doesnt like vegetarians... Yeah me and my friend have numerous duolinguo inside jokes


Please tell us more, they cure depression


I want a girl with a short skirt, and a looooooooooonnnnnggggg jacket


Came here looking for Cake. Was not disappointed. Have an upvote.


And in this case, no skirt. +1 for cake


I need to meet this mädchen


Dude, the word "mädchen", implies to a female child. I know what you meant though, better say "Frau" instead.


Wouldn't that imply you're a pedo?


That's an awkward coat check.


Can't it be carrying also? "She is not carrying a skirt but a coat"


I've reported it.


Could it be "She is not wearing a skirt but rather a coat"? Hovering offers 'but rather' as a translation but maybe it doesn't work in this case? I wanted to report it but as I'm not 100% sure I thought I'd try to get some feedback here... [Also, my G-E dictionary lists only "but" for sondern, so that gave me pause.]


That sounds acceptable to me. "but rather", "but instead" could also be translations of "sondern".

  • 1558

mizinamo: why is it "einen" Mantel when a few sentences ago in the same lesson, it was "ein" Mantel - i.e., when do we use "einen" and when "ein"?


when do we use "einen" and when "ein"?

Use einen in the accusative case -- for example, when it's the direct object of a verb: sie trägt einen Mantel

Use ein in the nominative case -- for example, when it's the subject (ein Mantel liegt auf dem Tisch) or the predicate after the verb "to be" (das ist ein Mantel)

  • 1558

Thank you so much; really helpful explanation


I believe "sondern" means "but" but the kind of but that means "but rather". If you know what I mean. Its not the same as "aber". I thing duolingo throws in the "rather" to show us it's different.


can you tell me how to report mistakes or suggestions...


When you have just answered a question (either correctly or incorrectly), then - at least in the website version of Duolingo - there will be a "Report a Problem" button at the bottom left.

Choose that and then check the appropriate option, e.g. "My answer should have been accepted" or "The 'correct' solution contains an error" or "Audio is bad" or whatever.


Yes. Yes I can.

On the mobile app, once you have submitted an answer, there should be a little flag button in the lower right hand corner of the screen. Click that, and then type in your problem and hit submit.


"She is wearing not a skirt, but a coat" - Why is this incorrect?


I think it's correct - so probably a missing alternative. I would recommend reporting it so that it can be added.


The sentence structure is grammatically incorrect here. There are 2 possibilities that I'm aware of. Either, "She is wearing no skirt..." or, "She is not wearing a skirt...". These are the grammatically correct sentences in English. Hope this helps :-)


It can only be one or the other right?


Yes. "nicht ... sondern ..." (or here "kein ... sondern ...") is "not ... but (instead) ..." - specifically excluding the first possibility and stating that it is the second word.


Why is it einen here rather than ein? There is a sentence in the same exercise which is: Es ist kein Buch, sondern ein Mantel. I'm sure I knew threason for the differnce but can't remember for the life of me. Surely both sentences are in the same case.


Surely both sentences are in the same case.

No, they are not.

tragen "to wear" is a transitive verb -- one that takes a direct object in the accusative case.

She wears a coat. The coat is worn by her.

sein "to be" is not a transitive verb, and it does not take a direct object.

Instead, it's a linking verb that links a subject to a predicate that says something about the subject.

In German, such predicates are in the nominative case, not the accusative case.

It is a coat. (You can't say: The coat is been by it.)

Thus Es ist ein Mantel but Sie trägt einen Mantel.


A great explanation, Thanks


This sentence reminds me how plenty of people get confused about the outfit of the main heroine of the anime movie Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. She is in fact wearing no skirt but a coat and somewhat confusingly colored pants. If you were to explain that in German this exact sentence might come in handy.

[deactivated user]

    I don't know how to get this sentence pronunciation right. I even used the recording and Duolingo got it wrong.


    I feel like there is a better way to say this in English but cannot think of it at the moment. Despite something that we would rarely need to say, the English translation is terrible


    That was the ninth time I got this exercise in this lesson. Maybe time to look at the algorithm?


    Why does it have to have but in it? Why can't it just be rather? She wears no skirt, rather a coat. < not accepted because no but


    For me, it's better to learn this grammar by making up some other sentences that do make sense like "Du bist kein Professor, sondern ein Betrüger (impostor)"


    Du bist kein Professor, sondern ein Betrüger!

    Nominative case here - ist does not take an object!


    Whoops, didn't even notice that. Thank you very much!


    Duolingo is driving me up the wall. It's instead, then its but? Hopping one foot to the other. This is probably the most difficult part of German I have encountered so far with regards to conjunctions


    How about "She's not carrying a skirt, but a coat?" It seems to me the sentence could very well mean that. It wouldn't be as funny as the translation about what she's wearing, but it would make good sense. But this translation is not accepted. Why not?


    Not sure why it is einen Mantel rather than ein Mantel.


    Mantel is masculine, and it's the direct object of the verb tragen (to wear), so it has to be in the accusative case.

    Thus you need the masculinen accusative form einen before it.


    This whole lesson has conjunktivitis


    "She isn't wearing a skirt, but a coat" was accepted.

    "She doesn't wear a skirt instead of a coat" was rejected.
    "She isn't wearing a skirt instead of a coat" was rejected.



    "She doesn't wear a skirt instead of a coat" was rejected.

    Indeed. That means something else.


    But and Instead mean the same thing more or less. The only major difference is that But is positive and Instead is negative. When you use Doesnt or Isnt in conjuction with Instead it comes out a double negative, which is a positive in English, unlike other languages.


    The pronunciation on this one
    sounds almost as if the lady
    just burned her tongue with a
    cup of boiling hot coffee.



    Funny sentences stand out thus helps you remember the language easier


    I did my own version of this sentence to practice

    Er trägt keine Hose, sondern einen Mantel


    Why is there no EIN before Rock, or does KEINEN just mean "not a" Or why not "Sie trägt ein Rock nicht" Can someone explain this?


    You got it - "kein" is essentially "nicht ein". (Here, it's "keinen", masculine accusative form.)

    Usually, "nicht ein" gets turned into "kein".


    Would "but instead a coat" be correct?


    How can someone be confused between a skirt and a coat? Does this happen often in Germany? Or just a software idiosyncracy?


    Some girls like to wrap their jacket/coat around their waist so that they won't lose their jacket/coat, and it can be mistaken as a skirt.


    How do you say "she does not wear skirt"?


    In English, you would say it "She does not wear a skirt." or "She does not wear skirts."

    At least in my English, you can't use "wear skirt" in the singular without a determiner such as "a" before "skirt".

    German doesn't distinguish between "she does not wear" (simple present) and "she is not wearing" (present continuous), so the German translation would be the same in either case.


    My bad I meant "skirts" and thanks. Btw: happy streak year ! :)


    "She does not wear skirts" = Sie trägt keine Röcke.


    Duo, you're almost making me think the two are mutually exclusive...


    "But rather" sounds so awkward in English. And not just in this sentence. I would say "She is not wearing a skirt, rather a coat."


    Can you say 'She is wearing a coat , rather than a skirt'?


    That is a correct English sentence but it's a rather free translation.

    In general, try to stick to something as close as possible to the original.

    Your sentence would be better as a translation of Sie trägt einen Mantel anstelle eines Rocks or perhaps Sie trägt einen Mantel und keinen Rock.


    Difference between kein and nicht?


    kein is kind of like nicht + ein, i.e. "not a" or "not any" -- English "no" sometimes has this combined meaning as well: "She has no coat" = "She does not have a coat".


    Shouldn't "She doesn't carry a skirt, but a coat" be right as well?


    i wrote : she is not wearing a skirt, but is wearing a coat. if the meaning is correct, why did DUO say that it was wrong? plz, if someone knows why this happened, let me know.


    der Rock has (a probably oldish?) second meaning: [2] Cut, Frack, Sakko, Blazer Source: https://de.wiktionary.org/wiki/Rock


    I put "she is not wearing skirt but a coat". It went wrong!


    Yes. It should be "wearing a skirt", not "wearing skirt".


    It might be basics at this point, but why is it "einen Mantel" and not "ein Mantel", like in the book example?


    It's the direct object of trägt, so it's in the accusative case -- and since Mantel is masculine, the accusative case looks different from the nominative case, and you need einen Mantel, not ein Mantel.


    Would it be wrong to say, "She is not wearing a skirt, but rather she is wearing a coat,"?


    I’d say yes; the German sentence doesn’t repeat the verb here.


    Thank you for the clarification.


    Why is it einen not ein is "Mantel" the subject of the sentence


    No. Mantel is the direct object of the verb tragen. Sie trägt keinen Mantel.


    why use "sondern" instead of "aber"


    Because you are replacing an incorrect option with the correct one. German has a special word for this “but rather, but actually, but instead” meaning of “but”.

    If you used aber, it would mean “on the other hand”, as in ”She is not wearing a skirt, but on the other hand, she is wearing a coat.”


    i need help with something. is it ein mantel or einen mantel? because i've seen many times different exercises where i had to use ein Mantel


    Why does this sentence use "einen mantel", but another sentence in this lesson uses "ein mantel"?


    This sentence does not use einen mantel -- it uses einen Mantel. Note the capitalisation.

    ein Mantel is the nominative case, einen Mantel is the accusative case.

    So you would say, for example, Ich habe einen Mantel. (the coat is the direct object of "have", so is in the accusative case) but Das ist ein Mantel. (the verb "to be" links a subject to a predicate in the nominative case).


    The English translation seems awkward. One would most likely say "She is not wearing a skirt but she is wearing a coat."


    why didn't i like my present simple version of this sentence? "She doesn't wear a skirt but a coat."


    Why is "einen" in front of both subjects?


    Since neither are the subject, but rather a direct object affected by the subject, it changes the sentence's case to accusative. Rock and Mantel are both 'der' words, and that changes 'ein' into 'einen'


    'She is not wearing a skirt, only a coat' Should be accepted, surely?


    'She is not wearing a skirt, only a coat' Should be accepted, surely?

    Eh? No. "only" is not an appropriate translation for sondern at all.


    What's wrong with, "She does not wear a skirt, but a coat." ?


    when i'm doing lessons i don't understand when it says a sentence that has " ein mantel" but in this one it says " einen mantel" . Why is that , can someone explain ?.


    Here, the coat is the direct object of the verb tragen -- it is the thing which is worn.

    So you need the accusative case -- which, since Mantel is masculine, is einen Mantel.


    So you say einen Mantel when it's worn?


    So you say einen Mantel when it's worn?

    Whenever it's "affected" or "targeted" by any verb -- when it's worn, owned, bought, sold, seen, etc.: Ich trage einen Mantel. Du hast einen Mantel. Er kauft einen Mantel. Wir verkaufen einen Mantel. Ihr seht einen Mantel. "I am wearing a coat. You have a coat. He is buying a coat. We are selling a coat. You see a coat."


    Oh, Ok Thank You


    why keinen rock and keinen mantel


    "Sie trägt keinen Rock, sondern ein Mantel" is incorrect but there are other questions like: Das ist kein Buch, sondern ein Mantel.

    I don't get the difference between these. Can someone explain this?


    tragen "to wear" is a transitive verb -- it has a subject (in the nominative case) and a direct object (in the accusative case, e.g. keinen Rock, einen Mantel).

    sein "to be" is not a transitive verb. It does not have a direct object. It's a copula or linking verb that joins a subject (in the nominative case) to a predicate that says something about the subject, and that predicate is also in the nominative case (e.g. kein Buch, ein Mantel).


    Hi Mizinamo could you pleaae expand upon your answer. I am a native English speaker and I can't follow what you are saying. For instance where does sein come into the above?


    where does sein come into the above?

    In the sentence Das ist kein Buch, the word ist (is) is a form of the verb sein (to be).


    Thank you that does help, a little bit. I really struggle with German grammar.


    Shouldn't "She does not wear a skirt, but instead she wears a coat" also be considered correct? It was marked incorrect. The given English translation seems incomplete, since I've been led to believe that "sondern" means "rather", not merely "but."


    She does not wears a skirt, but a coat.... This should be okay


    She does not wears

    That is not correct English.

    The helping verb "does" already has the -s ending to agree with "she"; the main verb "wear" thus appears in the infinitive form, without -s.


    So...no skirt, but only a coat..like totally wierd dude


    Why is the translation " she doesn't wear skirt but a coat " incorrect?


    Why is the translation " she doesn't wear skirt but a coat " incorrect?

    "skirt" is countable and needs a determiner before it in the singular. It has to be "She doesn't wear a skirt but ...".


    I answered correctly but it told i was wrong?!


    I answered correctly but it told i was wrong?!

    Show us, please: upload your screenshot to a website and tell us the URL.

    Or at least quote your entire sentence.


    Why is it einen Mantel tho, is the phrase in accusative form?


    sentences aren't in any particular case -- parts of sentences are.

    In this case, einen Mantel is in the accusative case because it's the direct object of the transitive verb tragen.


    "She isn't wearing a skirt, but a coat." accepted.
    "She is wearing not a skirt but a coat." accepted.

    "She doesn't wear a skirt instead of a coat." rejected.
    "She isn't wearing a skirt instead of a coat." rejected.
    "She wears no skirt rather one coat." rejected.
    "She wears no skirt but instead a coat." rejected.
    "She wears not a skirt but rather one coat." rejected.



    How do you destinguish "She" from "They" in this sentence?


    By the verb form.

    • sie trägt "she wears"
    • sie tragen "they wear"


    Duo lingo says ""dress" is wrong. I know there are different words for "dress" and "skirt" in German, but what is the difference between them? I always thought they were just different words for the same thing (also "frock")


    A skirt (Rock) starts at the waist (like trousers/pants).

    A dress (Kleid) starts higher up, at or near the shoulders.

    Try doing an image search for "skirt" and for "dress" to get some prototypical examples.


    I wrote she do not wear a skirt and I got marked wrong


    Yes, that English sentence is wrong.

    With "he, she, it", the verb has an -s at the end in the simple present tense.

    However, "do" becomes, not "dos", but "does".

    So you would have to write: She does not wear a skirt.


    Yes, I changed it to "she does not" and I passed it.


    Sounds weird in American. A closer translation might be "except"


    The english translations of sentences using sondern all sound weird...I would say "She's actually wearing a coat, not a skirt." The duolingo translation sounds forced and somewhat archaic to me.


    I think it translate more easily into "She brings no skirt, but (she brings) a coat"


    tragen is not "bring", though. It's "carry" or "wear".


    sorry, messing up with my portuguese expressions x-x when we say "bring" it's implied that she's wearing or carrying

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