Elefanten or Elefant?

I'm sort of new to this, and although I thought I was going quite well, I stumbled across something that is really confusing me. I'm hoping someone out there far more educated on the German language can help me understand this a little better.

If I was to translate "She has an elephant", I would have said "Sie hat einen Elefant", yet a number of questions on this site suggest that it is actually "Sie hat einen Elefanten", which I would have taken as "She has an elephants"... Am I missing something here? Thanks in advance!

June 11, 2012


It's because in all non-nominative forms, Elefant is Elefanten.


June 11, 2012

This doesn't clear things up. Duolingo says both Elefant and Elefanten are acceptable in the accusative. I've seen it multiple times at this point on the site.

January 17, 2013

Vielen dank! That's really helpful. Pretty tricky language this one!

June 11, 2012

An elephant drinks = Ein Elefant trinkt.

Elefant is subject ie nominative case thus "Ein Elefant"

She has an elephant = Sie hat einen Elefanten.

Elefant is object ie accusative case thus "einen Elefanten"

As correctly stated before : "in all non-nominative forms, Elefant is Elefanten." In the wiki page you can see all cases in the table on the right for singular plural.

June 11, 2012
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