Hi, joadventuregirl. "Schmuck" is used for something unpleasant in Yiddish. It's downright derogatory. I'm just going by what I've heard in films, but it seems to be used for someone who is useless, i.e. just a decoration - but wataya tells us "Schmuck" is not used that way in German.
Thanks, Zacwill. That's interesting. I wonder if the connection is about wearing something decorative: in past times smocks in England were intricately made with lots of tucks and embroidery, at least ones I've seen photos of. English "smock" - German "Schmuck". There's also a German word "Schminken" meaning "cosmetics" which may also be a cognate.
You probably used the wrong gender article -- the word Schmuck is masculine so it is der Schmuck.
If you used das Schmuck or die Schmuck instead, that would be wrong.
Unfortunately, Duolingo is not always very smart about corrections -- in particular, if the article doesn't match the noun, but there is an accepted alternative that does use that article it will suggest that, rather than correcting the article.
So you say for anything masculine, we must write der infront.
I understand Die is for feminine.
But isnt DAS neutral?
We usually call the grammatical gender "neuter", not "neutral", but yes.
Das meaning THAT? (No gender)
all nouns in German have a gender: either masculine, feminine, or neuter. There's no such thing as "no gender".
Then why not das?
Because Schmuck has masculine grammatical gender.
Grammatical gender generally has nothing to do with anything in real life.
Forks aren't male or female but the German word Gabel meaning "fork" is feminine.
I would say "jewellery" in English is uncountable singular. "The jewellery is in the box" could mean one piece, or many pieces. But I wouldn't say 'the jewellery are in the box', or 'the jewelleries are in the box'.
It works similarly in German: Der Schmuck can refer to one piece or many pieces. There's no commonly-used plural form. If you wanted to be specific, you could say "three pieces of jewellery" in English, or drei Stücke Schmuck in German.
What happened is that old English used to have se, seo, þæt as the masculine, feminine, and neuter definite articles, but then later lost grammatical gender and decided to use þæt (now spelled that) as a demonstrative and se (now the) as the definite article.
German has kept all three separate genders, and has also kept four cases, while English lost cases entirely on nouns and has only two cases for pronouns (e.g. he versus him).
Wait now. 2 questions ago i was asked to select die, der or das Schmuck for The jewelery. I selected Der and was marked wrong (die was desired). Now, this question asks to translate The Jewelery and the only possible choice is Der? Thats really bait and switch. Makes it impossible to learn.