"He has a key."

Translation:Er hat einen Schlüssel.

February 2, 2013

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Can someone please explain when do we use ein/eine/einen? Really confused. :/


Ein changes its ending according to the gender and case of the noun it describes. Here, Schlüssel is masculine (it's der Schlüssel) and accusative (it's the direct object of hat), so it's einen Schlüssel.

If it had been, for example, "A key is black", it would still be masculine (gender never changes) but would now be nominative (it is the subject of the sentence), so it would ein Schlüssel).

If it had been "She hits him with a key", that would be dative (with = mit which always takes the dative) which is einem Schlüssel.

The full table of ending changes for ein is here in the Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_articles#The_Indefinite_Article


How do I know what gender a word is? (Other than obvious ones like Frau, Mann, or Kind)


In Marfh 2017, my immersion German instructor in Munich told all 10 of us this the first day: "For every noun, learn its gender and its plural form." She was so right. There is no dependable pattern, only guidelines with tons of exceptions (even a funny little song). Three years later and I still struggle!


Unfortunately, some words are not obvious. For example, Das Mädchen (the girl). There are some patterns in word endings that can tell you the gender in German, but unfortunately, word gender generally has to memorized and a dictionary is your best friend for that.


so helpful. thanks!


And not one of those changes contributes any meaning to the sentence...


Brilliant, thank you for this! Still helpful, five years later!


This is really helpful thank you


I am a german native speaker and must say: "einen" & "ein" is both correct.


It would be great if when you click on a word it tells you the gender as well as the meaning. Thanks :)


I am confused by ein or einen. What is the rule?


Ein is used in nominative for neutral and masculine words (das/der); feminine words (die) use eine. In the accusative case, you get ein/einen/eine for das/der/die, respectively. "Der" is also replaced by "den" in the accusative case, e.g. "Ich sehe den Park".

See the notes for this lesson for a better and more thorough explanation: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Accusative-Case/tips-and-notes


In this exercise you have two sentences: he has a key and it is a key. The first uses einen and the second uses ein...why?


In the sentence "It is a key," the key is the subject of the sentence (bacause "it" and "key" are the same thing). In "He has a key," the key is a direct object, not the subject.


Schlüssel is plural and singular too?


Not Schlüsseln for plural?


Their is another sentence where it uses "ein": Es ist ein Schüssel.


Is "Taste" and "Schlüssel" really interchangeable?


No it is not.


gorn61 is right.

The principle has to do with what is happening in the sentence and to whom or what (and the gender of that 'whom or what'. (It has nothing to do with the verb tense.)

I had to go back to some English grammar principles because I was soooo confused. I am still confused, but at least I have an understanding of why things change. I used these sites to help me.




Would it make a difference if I wrote "Schlüßel" instead of "Schlüssel"?


What does Yasuo do after he hits two Steel Tempests? "He has a key".


Why is "er hat einen Schlüßel" incorrect?

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