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"The girl is not eating the soup."

Translation:Das Mädchen isst die Suppe nicht.

January 28, 2013



Is there any difference between " Das Mädchen isst die Suppe nicht." and "Das Mädchen isst nicht die Suppe." ?


I would like an answer to this as I was under the assumption that the "nicht" should go after the conjugated verb and adverbs of time, so why in this case does it go right at the end of the sentence?

Could someone please explain this to me.


Nicht has to come in the endings when it's negating the verb. It comes before when it negates an adjective in the phrase.


  • You are not very tall - Du bist nicht sehr groß. What you are NOT? Very tall. Negation on the adjective (or adverb + adjective, like in the example): NICHT.

  • I am not eating the soup - Ich esse die Suppe nicht. What am I NOT doing? Eating. In that case, the negation is on the verb, as you are not eating. The action of "eat" is not happening. NEGATION IN THE END.

  • I am eating the soup, but not the bread. - Ich esse die Suppe, aber nicht das Brot. What am I NOT doing? Eating the bread. You can't negate the verb "eating", as you are indeed eating, so you are negating the noun "bread". SPECIAL CASE - NEGATION BEFORE THE NOUN. Attention here, because it is used only on these cases, when it's a complement for the previous phrase. Nicht before a noun is grammatically wrong.

And, of course, there is still "kein", which is used to negate nouns. It is used to negate things that are not countable or specific:

  • Ich esse keine Suppe. I do not eat soup. Which soup? Anyone. It's not a specific soup, I just don't eat them. If it was specific, it would be "Ich esse diese Suppe nicht". Kein + (e) = declination for feminine on accusative.

  • Ich mag kein Gemüse. I do not like vegetables. Which vegetables? Any. I just don't like them. Kein = declination for neuter on accusative.

  • Kein Hund trinkt Milch. Any dog drinks milk. The phrase itself shows that: ANY dog. Not specific. If there was a specific one who doesn't drink, it'd be "Dieser Hund trinkt keine Milch". Obs : note that the "keine" appeared before the "milk" because of the same rule said before: negation of a noun.

That's it, if there's something wrong, feel free to correct me.


Thank you so much for this great explanation :) Here you are some lingots for you :)


Thank you so much for the explanation, clarifies a lot of things. I just have one doubt- if I say, "Das ist keine katze" , it would mean that is not a cat. And here I would point to a specific cat and say that's not a cat, a cat is both specific and countable here. Could you please clarify? Thank you.


Yes there is. Only the first one is correct


Not according to Duolingo, they list both as correct answers.


Not now. Duo only accepts nicht at the end of the sentence. (in the multiple choice example)

Mar 14/15


I'm wondering that as well.


are you sure "Das Mädchen isst nicht die Suppe." is correct? Because I thought "nicht" had to go right after the verb..


It is right after the verb in your example.

I could be wrong obviously, but wouldn't it literally translate to "The girl eats not the soup" and "The girl eats the soup not" (which are both acceptable, though antiquated ways of saying the sentence in English)


Yes, the sentence would literally translate to 'The girl eats not the soup' which makes little or no sense in English.


Hello folks, why does the nicht go after the Suppe, in this case? I was under the impression that the nicht should follow the verb. Is there a reason for it following the noun which is actioned?


The girl is eating the soup, not! lol.


This is interesting- the owl heard 'Das Mädchen isst keine Suppe' is "keine" another form of "does not"? and if so, why does this phrase not require "die Suppe?"


Ah, good catch. "Keine Suppe" means "no soup". "Keine die Suppe" would be wrong, because "keine" includes the article. It even changes with gender: "keinen Apfel". "keine" is uses like "eine", the "k" makes it negative, similar to "none" and "one".


Ah, that makes much more sense now- Danke Matthias!


I see it now and I have made an effort to learn the noun's gender. Thanks for the advice.


Differ from "eats no soup"?


'no soup' is indefinite, no soup at all. But 'isst die Suppe nicht' means, she's not eating this soup.


It's not clear to me why das is the definite article for Madchen in this case.


All words ending in -chen or -lein are neuter and use "das" in singular and "die" in plural form. It doesn't matter if the object described is male or female. "Das Männchen" - the little man - is also a neuter as a word, not masculine.


Because Mädchen is neutral. You use Die Mädchen to know if it's more than one girl.


Can someone please explain how I got this wrong I wrote die Mädchen isst nicht Suppe???


It should be Das, not Die, and you missed the article for Suppe. :) Also, nicht should go after Suppe, though I think Duolingo accepts it even though it's placed before and not after.


"Das Mädchen isst keine Suppe." is also right

What is the difference between "nicht" and "keine" ?


Can I say : "Das Mädchen isst nicht die Suppe"?


In English one says, " The girl is having the soup." In what sense does German employ 'eating,' soup?


Probably the same way as English speakers. Sometimes, you say the person is having soup. Just as often, you describe the person as eating soup.

More specifically, if someone had ordered soup and was therefore was having it, if they chose to not actually eat the soup, virtually all English speakers would say she was not eating it since she already had it.


Ich verstehe, Herr! Dankeschone!


How do you know wether it is esse or isst?


Esse is used with ich. Ich esse die Suppe. Isst is used with du and er/sie/es. Er isst die Suppe.

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