1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "The citizen is not a member."

"The citizen is not a member."

Translation:Der Bürger ist kein Mitglied.

January 25, 2013

22 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vaughan95

Why is kein required here, and nicht is incorrect?


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

Because Mitglied is a noun. Unlike in English, kein is used with nouns and nicht is used with things like verbs and adjectives.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/abarr2

so "nicht ein" doesn't work?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aphid5

but can't 'nicht' negate the 'ist' and create the equivalent of isn't?


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

No that construction doesn't exist in German


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Omerzohar1

i think that way it'll be "Der Bürger ist ein Mitglied nicht"


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

Germans don't say that.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Omerzohar1

they don't, but it is valid. but the form used in this sentence is indeed the correct one.


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

If one were to insist on using nicht, the proper construction would be "Der Bürger ist nicht ein Mitglied." (Vgl.: Das ist nicht wahr. Das ist nicht die ganze Wahreit. u.a.)

Aber das sollte man nicht tun.


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

When the article 'a' comes as in here then we should use kein which roughly translates to 'not a'


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

Why is an article not required before "Mitglied?"


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

Kein takes the place of the article. Compare this to the English construction of "the citizen is no member". Just like you can't use "not" alone with a noun in English so you can't use "nicht" with nouns in German. And German unlike English lacks the "not a" construction.


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

Are you asking if you could answer this with "Der Bürger ist kein Mitglieder"?

If so, then no, you can't. Mitglieder is plural. That'd be something akin to "The citizen is not a members." Clearly wrong, right?


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

When to use kein or keine?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/visnja123

depends on a gender of a noun. If noun is male or neutral you use kein, if female keine


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

If it were only so simple. It also depends on the number (plural is keine, regardless of noun gender) and the case (Nominativ, Akkusativ, Dativ, und Genitiv, which could result in keines, keinem, keinen, oder keiner as being the proper inflection).


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

I wrote: Der Bürger ist nicht ein Mitglied. Isn't that also correct?


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

Nein. Use kein where you think you should use "nicht ein".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KevinMP80

Hamburger = der Burger (without Umlaut?)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sam72608

Hamburger comes from the city Hamburg. The food burger makes no sense, since there's not even ham in it but beef.

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