"She reads a newspaper."
Translation:Sie liest eine Zeitung.
Normally, the marker for the second person singular is -st (e.g. du trink-st). However, if the verb stem (= infinitive minus "-en", e.g. trink-, les-) ends in s, ss, ß or z, only a "t" is used in the second person singular (du lies-t and not *du lies-st).
Also note that the vowel changes in the second and third person singular present tense (e->ie). That's because "lesen" is an irregular ("strong") verb.
lesen (to read): ich lese, du liest, er/sie/es liest, wir lesen, ihr lest, sie lesen
An irregular verb is a verb that does not behave in the manner we would expect it to behave. E.g. "to be" - knowing English, it would be logical to expect "I be, you be, he bes" in the present tense, but instead we have the totally unexpected and abnormal "I am, you are, he is".
The most important group of irregular verbs in German is called "strong verbs". (As a matter of interest, the man who coined this term was Jacob Grimm, who also published the fairy tales). "Strong verbs" exist in English, too. Their vowel changes in the past tense and often also in the past participle:
Ex. English: "to sing - he sang - he has sung" (instead of the expected: to sing - he singed - he has singed)
Ex. German: "singen - er sang - er hat gesungen" (instead of the expected: singen - er singte - er hat gesingt). In German, the vowel of some strong verbs changes not only in the past tense/past participle, but also in the second and third person singular present tense, e.g. it is "lesen - ich lese, du LIEST, er LIEST, wir lesen, ihr lest, sie lesen)" (to read - I read, you read, he reads, etc.).
The vowel changes are not always identical in German and in English. Since you can't really predict the vowel changes, they have to be learnt by heart when you learn the verb. That's incidentally the same for non-native speakers who learn English as a foreign language. Fortunately, the number of strong verbs (and irregular verbs in general) is limited.
For the sake of completeness: There are fixed schemes according to which the vowel changes occur. They are called 'Ablautreihen'. But strong verbs are so rare and the Ablautreihen so complicated that I wouldn't bother memorizing them. I'd recommend to just memorize the conjugation of the most important strong verbs and ignore the rest. http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ablaut#Ablaute_bei_den_deutschen_Verben http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liste_starker_Verben_(deutsche_Sprache)
I was wondering whether to mention the "Ablautreihen", but in the end I decided against it because as you said, they overcomplicate matters and are not really that helpful, IMO :). One could also question whether strong verbs really are a subcategory of irregular verbs, but I decided to keep it as simple as possible.
Because "Apfel" is masculine, and "Zeitung" is feminine. (All nouns ending in the suffix "-ung" are feminine).
Masculine: ein (nominative case) --> einen (accusative case)
Feminine: eine (nominative and accusative cases)
Neuter: ein (nominative and accusative cases)
See this table: https://de.wiktionary.org/wiki/ein#ein_.28Deutsch.29
Well, it's hard to understand. Can you explain a little more clearly?
All verbs ending in -ung are feminine. Here's a more comprehensive explanation: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grammatical_gender_in_German
why isnt "She reads the newspaper." correct?? And they have a different translation here than they do in the actual practice. in the practice its "She reads one newspaper" which isn't grammatically correct and on here the translation is "She reads a newspaper." thoroughly confused teen.