"He likes water."

Translation:Er mag Wasser.

February 4, 2013

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Why does "Er magst Wasser." not work?


In German, the endings of verbs change depending on the person you're talking about. Some remnants of this can still be seen in English: you say "I like" but "he like-s" with an additional "s".

The forms of "mögen" (to like) are:

ich mag (I like)

du mag-st (you [singular, familiar] like)

er/sie/es mag (he/she/it likes)

wir mög-en (we like)

ihr mög-t (you [plural, familiar] like)

sie/Sie mög-en (they/you [singular & plural, formal] like)

In your sentence, you're talking about "er" (he), so you have to choose "mag".

Unfortunately, like all the other modal verbs (e.g. can, must, may), "mögen" does not behave like a normal, regular verb. There is a vowel change in the entire singular (ö->a) and there are no verb endings for "ich" and "er/sie/es". A normal, regular verb looks like this in the present tense:

mach-en (to make, to do)

ich mach-e

du mach-st

er/sie/es mach-t

wir mach-en

ihr mach-t

sie/Sie mach-en


Awesome explanation! Thanx


Awesome explanation Katherle, let me just follow you.


you can also say : er hat Wasser gern

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