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  5. "Was gibst du diesem Hund?"

"Was gibst du diesem Hund?"

Translation:What are you giving to this dog?

September 18, 2017



Keine gute Idee. Schokolade ist für Hunde gefährlich.


So "diesem" can be either "this" or "that"?


It's nearly always "this".

Pearson using "that" as a translation in this sentence sounds wrong to my ears.


Probably bad English, but i would say "what are you giving to the dog" or "what are you giving to that dog". I wouldnt use "this" unless i am showing/holding someone the dog.


I have to agree with James-I would only use 'that' in this sentence. So could this sentence also be translated as 'to that dog' or would that use a different word than 'diesem'?


to that dog = dem Hund

to this dog = diesem Hund


But wouldn't dem Hund be just [to] the dog?


But wouldn't dem Hund be just [to] the dog?

No. der, die, das (in any of their forms) mean both "the" or "that", and are often also used for "this".

English split up that word into two separate words "the" (originally from the masculine form) and "that" (originally from the neuter form), but in German, the same word still has both meanings.


Yes, though it is closer in meaning and use to this. (that often corresponds to das / der / die and in writing to the otherwise old-fashioned jenes.)


Dem/diesem Hund. den/diesen Hunden


"What are you giving this dog?" is grammatically correct and means the same as "What are you giving to this dog?" Can you please add it as an acceptable answer?


"What are you giving this dog?" is already one of the accepted translations.

If it was marked wrong for you, I don't know what might have happened -- a link to a screenshot would be helpful.


It was marked incorrect for me: "What are you giving this dog"


It was marked incorrect for me: "What are you giving this dog"

Show us a screenshot, please -- upload it to a website somewhere (e.g. imgur) and tell us the URL of the image.


"What do you give to this dog" wrong?


How would I say: "What did you give this dog?" in German


Was hast du diesem Hund gegeben?


Was gibt ihr diesem hund. Not accepted. Strange


The verb and the subject do not match. "you [many people] give" is ihr gebt, with no vowel change in the verb geben like there is for du gibst or er/sie/es gibt.

Also, Hund should be capitalised.


Is it wrong to say “that dog” instead of “this dog”?


Is it wrong to say “that dog” instead of “this dog”?

As a translation of diesem Hund, yes -- dieser Hund is one that is close; it's "this dog", not "that dog" (further away).


I thought 'diesem' could mean either 'this' or 'that', but 'What are you giving that dog?' was not accepted.


I thought 'diesem' could mean either 'this' or 'that'

It can't.

der, die, das can mean either "this" or that".

dieser, diese, dieses are only "this".


Hm. Leo disagrees with you, and Leo is my German bible... https://dict.leo.org/german-english/diese


LEO is indeed very useful, but I wouldn't use it as a bible -- there's a lot of good stuff in it (and even more good tidbits to be found in the forum discussions there), but some of it I wouldn't necessarily trust.

Of course, without being fluent in both languages, it's nearly impossible to know which bits are less useful....


Yeah, well, fair enough, maybe Bible is going too far. Do you know of a better online German dictionary/ language handbook though?


Do you know of a better online German dictionary/ language handbook though?

No; I don't know of any dictionary that's 100% reliable.

I use LEO most of the time as well, sometimes supplementing with dict.cc, pons.eu, and/or Wiktionary.

Sometimes Linguee can be helpful as well, but I've found that overall, the quality is lower, since it gives you lots of quotes from websites, not all of which are written by educated native speakers, so the quality of the language there is not always what you would expect from a professionally-created dictionary.


Nice! It accepts "Was giebst du diesem Hund." Good older German form, before the "ei" became "i". :-)


Can somebody please explain to me whem to use diesem?? Is this masculine dative? (Also if u respond i can see it but i cant reply for some reason i can only see through email notifications sorry)


Yes, "diesem" is the Dative form for masculine singular nouns, but it is also the Dative form for neuter singular nouns.



Geben trigger accusative, right? Why is this dative?


Geben trigger accusative, right?

geben generally takes two objects:

  • a direct object (the thing which changes hands), in the accusative case
  • an indirect object (the recipient), in the dative case

You give something (DO) to someone (IO).

Why is this dative?

Please be more precise -- what do you mean with "this"?


What's wrong with what are you giving (to) this dog?


What's wrong with what are you giving (to) this dog?

Nothing. Both "What are you giving this dog?" and "What are you giving to this dog?" are accepted translations.

Do you have a screenshot of either of those being rejected in a translation exercise?


Are questions always dative?


Are questions always dative?


For that matter, no sentence is "dative".

Cases apply to parts of a sentence, to indicate their role in the sentence (e.g. subject of a verb or complement of a particular preposition).

Those cases don't change depending on whether the sentence is positive or negative, a statement or a question, present tense or past, or anything else. (Unlike in some languages -- for example, some Slavic languages turn accusative case to genitive in a negative sentence, and I'm told that cases work differently in the past tense than in the present in languages such as Hindi or Georgian.)

In this sentence, was is in the accusative case as the direct object (the gift), du is in the nominative case as the subject (the giver), and diesem Hund is in the dative case as the indirect object (the recipient).

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