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  5. "Maria is a teacher."

"Maria is a teacher."


June 5, 2017



I've learnt that it's very rude not to add the さん to other peoples' names in the non-colloquial speech...


Agreed, if we're learning keigo, there should be a san attached.


If マリア is our own people (e.g. a family member or a colleague), then we must not add さん after the name. That said マリア is probably the speaker's sister or daughter or close friend, etc.


But you learn the polite form here so a polite adressing should be included.


Well that's just confusing. Why should we assume that without being told that rule?

Thank you for your help Keith!


It depends on where you are and who you're with. In my Japanese family, my host mom called my siblings shortened forms of their names with ちゃん attached to the girls and くん attached the boy. E.g. Kazuto became かっくん.


There is no context in which to assume that marking さん wrong is confusing and misleading especially when you are required to add it to ジョン in the same lesson.


Unless they're your long-time friends. Addressing someone without a honorific is called よびすて, you can find more info here


There should be a "-さん" suffix available to add after "マリア", please and thank you.


Throughout the whole process of learning with examples and translation it has been マリアさん why not now? Guess we've been talking about maria and john so much we are just that close. Looking forward to bening on a first name basis with Tanaka...


Oops sorry. 田中先生


I used が and got this correct, but everyone elae mentions using は. Which is correct?


Both is correct. は is a topic marker and が is a subject marker. So, for example, if somebody asks "What does Maria do for a living?" the answer is マリアは先生です, but if the question is "Who is a teacher?", the answer is マリアが先生です (Maria is a teacher), because you're stressing the word before the が, aka the subject. So basically it depends on the conversation and what you're trying to say. You can read more about it here, here and here


This answered a LOT of my questions, thank you. Have my lingots.


Actually both. が puts more emphasis on Maria.


The best way to explain it は is what is being talked about が is what is doing the action (both work in this case) を is what the action is being done to

In english, this would be 

マライさんは先生です。As for maria, [maria] is a teacher

マライさんが先生です。Maria is a teacher

In the first example, maria is more in the context of the sentence, whereas in the second, you're more putting her forth since she is doing the action of being a teacher, but maria as a subject is still implied in the first since she is still doing the action of being a teacher.

Does that make sense?


why does this end in です instead of ます?


The suffix "ます" Is mainly used for verbs only.


This is missing the option 'san' which is needed after Maria.


Why is it necessary to put a "は" here?


Because we are not saying "teacher Maria" but "Maria is a teacher". Since Maria is the subject we specify the profession after "wa" particle.


I think the confusing part is we don't need to include it when we're talking about ourselves.

[deactivated user]

    It's because when talking about yourself, there is usually only one subject. For example, in the sentence 学生です, there is only one subject, and therefore no need for a は. Sorry if this doesn't make sense, I'm really bad at explaining things.


    lol why does the male speaker say "先生" like he's having an orgasm?


    What is the point of the "wa" marker? What would be the closest equivalent in English?


    It marks the general topic of the sentence. There's no real equivalent, but it means something like 'regarding...', 'talking about...'


    what does ha(ば) mean


    I used か instead of は and i it was correct?. Can someone explain this to me?


    は and が (not か) are both acceptable particles here. が just provides more emphasis.


    I am so confuse about sound of "wa" i dont know where do i use it


    Others in this thread mention it, but it is very rude not to add the さんto Maria's name. The identical sentence referring to John includes さん. Duolingo does not need to perpetuate Japanese sexism.


    What is the difference between "です" and "ます"?


    Where is the さん?


    I added さん after Maria and it counted it as wrong. Would it really be bad to add it? Isn't it respectful?


    Why isnt their さん? I though さん was genderless


    I don't think Duolingo reads these messages. Why, after all this time, have they not fixed the ommission of さん after マリア? Even when speaking informally, one would not leave that out. The correct - or at least accepted - translation should be:


    1. you should be addressing by the last name especially a teacher
    2. there should be a san or some sort of title

    This would come off as very rude The exception of course is if its with certain family or close friends


    What is the proper usage of だ v. です?

    I typed "マリアさんは先生です。" and it marked in incorrect then replaced です with だ.


    They're the same word, だ is just the informal version. This is a known problem in this question that duolingo has had for years


    why was マリアさんは先生です。marked wrong?


    When should we use は after the name? Is it wrong to say マリア 先生 ですfor this sentence?

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