"She does not have to eat it."

Translation:Sie muss es nicht essen.

January 17, 2013



Does the suggested answer not mean: "She must not eat it."?

January 17, 2013


I've been misled by this false friend too! In English, when we negate "must", we mean that you absolutely MUST NOT do something, because "must" = very definite positive compulsion; however, in German, negating "muessen" changes it from "having to do something" just to "not having to do it". It helps to use the "have to do" translation first in your head in order to see the difference.

October 10, 2013



January 17, 2013


So, how would you say "She must not eat it"?

January 17, 2013


"Sie darf es nicht essen"

January 17, 2013


Thanks! Just to cover them all (☺), what would Sie soll es nicht essen be, then?

February 4, 2015


"Sollen" can have different translations into English. One of them is "she's not supposed to eat it".

February 4, 2015


I took a German audio course (not sure if I can say which was it here at duolingo) and its lessons deal with this matter and I remember a close example to this exercise. It was something like: how to you say "X does not have to Y" and the "audio teacher" explicitly said that one should use "Sie braucht es nicht zu..." instead of "sie muss es nicht..." The latter really sounds like "She must not..." instead of "she doesn't have to..."

I don't know whether there are any variations of this in German speaking countries but I would side the German course I took.

February 18, 2015


Yes! "She does not have to eat it" (in the sense, it is not required of her) is commonly expressed as: "Sie braucht es nicht zu essen". "Sie muss es nicht essen" is also OK

November 2, 2015


Hello. What is wrong in "Sie muss nicht es essen?"

February 9, 2017


Why was "Sie muss nicht es essen" marked wrong?

March 28, 2018


'Sie bracht das nicht zu essen' is incorrect, why?

May 30, 2017


But "Sie darf das nicht essen." would be totally perfect.. still you loose a heart, because the owl wants it to be "Sie darf es nicht essen"..

March 30, 2013


For English speakers it is better to remember these translations for "müssen" and "dürfen":

ich muss - I have to (=I must)

ich muss nicht - I do not have to (but I may, if I want)

ich darf - I am allowed

ich darf nicht - I am not allowed (=I must not)

As you can see - the similarity between English "must" and German "mussen" is confusing and they do no match exactly with each other. They are false friends :)

October 6, 2014


Thank you for this explanation!

January 1, 2015


See the comment above -- "Sie darf das nicht essen" would be "she must not eat that"; the sentence asks for "she doesn't have to eat that".

August 26, 2014


I think because it's "eat it" rather than "eat that"

October 4, 2013


What is the point of discussing a sentence if one is not allowed to debate the correctness of the model answer?

February 2, 2014


No idea what you're talking about. Polite and focused discussions about the sentences are welcome and encouraged.

February 2, 2014


There was a notice in bold and red letters that said something to the effect of "stop the clutter, don't comment, read the discussions below" If I have misinterpreted it then I apologise.

February 2, 2014


It means that you should read the other comments before you post and make sure that you either have something to ask that hasn't already been answered or something of value to contribute. (Where "something of value" basically means "don't post random stuff that hasn't anything to do with the sentence or the language"). Questions about the sentences, grammatical constructions, the language, idiomatic use, the culture, or if you simply don't understand why a solution is correct/incorrect are highly welcome! If you have a question about a phrase that hasn't already been answered, by all means ask! :)

February 2, 2014
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