"A duck is a bird."

Translation:Eine Ente ist ein Vogel.

March 5, 2013

This discussion is locked.


I'm confused about when to use Ein verses Eine. Any suggestions?


You use ein for der, das and eine for die


Me too! Because I have a big problem deciding whether a statement is nominative,or accusitive!


I have a big problem deciding whether a statement is nominative,or accusitive!

That is indeed a big problem -- because statements are never nominative or accusative or dative or any particular case as a whole.

parts of sentences have cases.

But you don't have "a dative sentence", for example.


Are there any exceptions to this rule?


Yes, it depends on the case. In German, you have four cases, Nominative, Accusative, Dative, and Genative :) A chart can help explain this


Eine is feminine


why not “enien Vogel ” ?

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@fuqingyou : This sentence uses the nominative case: duck = bird. When 'something equals something else' then you know it's nominative. der Vogel, ein Vogel
See this link for the inflection of ein: http://canoo.net/inflection/ein:Art:Indef:SG


Levi I faced a question today, where I was asked to translate "The cat is eating a bird". When I answered, "die Katze isst einen Vogel" it told me I am wrong and that the right answer should be "die Katze isst ein Vogel". Could you explain this case? I think I should have reported it, but alas I did not. Maybe I am just wrong here!

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@varpande : You were right, it should definitely be "Die Katze isst einen Vogel." (or "Die Katze frisst einen Vogel.")


Yes it would be einen because then it would be accusative


'Frisst' is used animals eating which is why you were marked wrong.


Actually the notes say that they'll accept either "frisst" or "isst" for [an animal] eats (presumably because people like to anthropomorphise their pets). It will, however, mark "frisst" wrong for [a human] eats, as that would be an insult.


Thanks! There are a lot of rules to remember with these cases. Ugh!!!


@Levi : Danke! Your link was very helpful!!! :)


it's an inference, not an equality, 'cause "bird" and "duck" aren't interchangeable words. "every duck is a bird" is true, but the inverse, "every bird is a duck", isn't necessarily true.


Just to confirm, "A duck is a bird" should be translated to "Eine Ente ist Ein Vogel“?


I'm not sure how I was supposed to know this.

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I am still completely confused by this! I still don't know why the Accusative wasn't used for Vogel. I put einen Vogel.


New rules. Danke Schön!!


'Sein' never takes the accusative.


I find it interesting that Ente being feminine and Vogel being masculine


It shud be "Eine Ente ist einen Vogel", am i wrong!!!?


Unfortunately yes. 'Ist' only requires the nominative, not the accusation. If the duck had a bird then it would be 'hat' which requires the accusative. Eine Ente hat einen Vogel obwohl eine Ente ist ein Vogel.


"Eine Ente hat einen Vogel obwohl eine Ente ein Vogel ist "


manche menschen haben auch einen vogel

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Thank you. I didn't know this rule!


Please explain difference between der die das den der


Can anyone explain exactly why 'The' and 'A' (amongst many others) actually change? I know the 'Falls' (Wemfall, Wesfall, etc), but am interested in how this case stuff all came about, when in English we have 'the', and it never changes, although it means word order is important. And why do words have to have a gender?! It makes life so difficult! When a new item is invented or discovered, who decides what gender it will be? Is there a committee?! Just wondered!



With regard to your comment about who decides what gender words will take. I often wonder the same thing. I would love to know the history if this. As you say; it must be ongoing!


Is there any phonetic difference between ist and isst? For example, "Eine Ente isst eine Katze" vs "Eine Ente ist eine Katze" but with nouns that mak more sense :)


Is there any phonetic difference between ist and isst?

No, none.


While speaking, how can you distinguish 'isst' from 'ist'? For example, if a person interprets "Hitler ist ein Mann" as "Hitler isst ein Mann", the meaning changes a lot!


Why do you have to use the word Hitler? ._.


Because he isn't Voldemort... he can't send Death Eaters after you so calm down. :)


Because unfortunately the comments section for the German course seems to be crawling with people who haven't figured out that if they go to Germany and pull that Nazi dogwhistle stuff they WILL be punished to the fullest extent of German law, and duolingo as far as I know has no way of reporting such people.


There is no difference in pronunciation. In your particular example you would know as you eat "einen Mann" but you are "ein Mann".


A better example might be "Hilde ist/isst eine Ente." A person by the name of Hilde might be eating a duck, or you might have a pet duck named Hilde. And yes, there would be no difference in pronunciation.


In the real-world would you say the sentence differently to avoid confusion?


I would only if I had a friend named Hilde who likes to eat duck and at the same time a pet of the same name and I sort of managed to talk about both of them on the last five minutes.


Perhaps 'Hilde hat eine Ente, freßen'. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong. Thankyou!


The same problem appears with “hast“ (have) and “hasst“ (hate)


why is it not der ente ist ein vogel


Because it is 'A duck', rather than 'The duck' :) Also if it was 'The duck' it would be 'Die Ente' as it is feminine.


How come Die Ente ist ein Vogel is wrong? The duck (as a species) is a bird?


It is a duck, not the duck. Ist es eine Ente, nicht die Ente.


Is the articel of Vogel der? or das?


I answered "Eine Ente ist ein Vogel" and the site tells me that i'm wrong, and says that the correct answer is "Die Ente ist ein Vogel"

How can that be correct? It's A duck, not THE duck. i don't see how die makes sense here


do u have to put the letters in capital to get it correct


No, but it's good practice if you do so.


it showed "DIe Ente..." they accidently capitalized the i in "Die"


Someone please tell me When you use akkusativ Is it always or just sometimes with some verbes !! Und danke schön


By definition, Akkusativ is when there's something being done to someone i.e., some action being performed.


What is the meaning of Nominative and Accusative?


Shouldn't Bird be considered a neuter noun?


Shouldn't Bird be considered a neuter noun?

There is no "should" with grammatical gender. It's arbitrary.


Why is duck, Ente, female and bird, Vogel, male?

Is there a quick way to look at the shape of a word and determine if male or female, ie does end in vowel equal female word and consonent end of word mean male word?

I do not understand word genders.


Why is duck, Ente, female and bird, Vogel, male?

No reason. Grammatical gender does not follow logic.

Is there a quick way to look at the shape of a word and determine if male or female, ie does end in vowel equal female word and consonent end of word mean male word?

Not in general, unfortunately.

There are some suffixes that will tell you the gender (e.g. -schaft, -heit, -keit, -ung on abstract nouns are feminine) and some tendencies (e.g. words in -e are often feminine), but in general, you just have to look it up in a dictionary and memorise it.


I believe that words ending with 'chen' are neuter. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.


I believe that words ending with 'chen' are neuter.

If it's a suffix, yes. (For example, das Mädchen or das Sternchen.)

If it's part of the word stem, then not necessarily. (For example, der Kuchen.)


There was not an option to choose Ente


What is the nominative and the akusative of Vogel?


What is the nominative and the akusative of Vogel?

They're both Vogel.

Most German nouns don't change much.


One of the answers has a capital i in 'die', as in DIe


Why is it sometime 'ein' before vogel and sometimes 'eine' before vogel?


Why is it sometime 'ein' before vogel and sometimes 'eine' before vogel?

  • It's spelled Vogel with a capital V
  • It's a masculine noun, so you'll never have feminine eine before it


A sentence that refers to being uses the nominative case. But if the word being worked on uses the accusative mode. For example, this sentence simply refers to being:"Das Kind ist ein Junge" .. and this sentence is also clear that the "what do you have" mode is used: "Das Kind isst einen Junge"


"Das Kind isst einen Junge"

You need the accusative case here: Das Kind isst einen Jungen.


Does "Junge" need a "n"? Interesting .. I have not read anything about it yet


Does "Junge" need a "n"?

Yes -- it's a masculine weak noun, so it needs -n in all cases except nominative singular.

I have not read anything about it yet

I don't think the course explains them.

Here are some user-contributed forum posts that talk about them:


Thank you my friend


Why is accusative not valid here? Why ein Vogel instead of einen Vogel?


Why is accusative not valid here?

Why would it be? There is nothing here that would require the accusative case -- no preposition, no transitive verb taking a direct object (you can't say "a bird is being been by a duck"), nothing else.

You need the nominative case on both sides of the verb sein "to be".


How the hell, when I wear 'hat' wrong told to wear 'ist'. When I Write 'ist' Wrong told to write 'hat'


"Eine Ente ist ein Haustier" was marked wrong. Well, I know people that have ducks as pets. Why can't I have a duck as pet?


"Eine Ente ist ein Haustier" was marked wrong.

That's right.

Haustier means "pet", not "bird".

The sentence you are supposed to translate is "A duck is a bird".


If it's der Vogel shouldn't it be einen Vogel? Der - Den - einen


If it's der Vogel

It is.

shouldn't it be einen Vogel?

No, it shouldn't.

einen is masculine accusative, but you need the nominative case on both sides of the verb sein "to be".

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