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Please don't give false advice if you don't know exactly what you're talking about.
In German every noun has a gender, namely one of masculine, feminine or neuter. The respective definite articles in nominative (singular) for each are:
Der - masculine.
Die - feminine.
Das - neuter.
In general it is impossible to correctly guess the gender of a noun. You either know it or you don't.
Although "Mann" (man) is masculine ("der Mann") and "Frau" (woman) is feminine ("die Frau"), there are nouns like "Mädchen" (girl) that don't appear to make any sense for the beginner learning German. "Mädchen", namely, is neuter ("das Mädchen").
On top of the genders nouns have, they can appear in various - what's called - cases (or declinations).
In this particular sentence at hand, "der Junge" is the subject of the sentence, "den Apfel" is the object of the sentence. Subjects are always in nominative case, objects are always in one of the other three cases "genitive", "dative" or "accusative". Here, "Apfel" is in accusative. It is the accusative object of the sentence.
Apfel is a masculine noun; the article it appears with has to match the case it is in (here: accusative). So, the nominative "der Apfel" becomes "den Apfel" in accusative.
In most cases the case an object appears in is determined by the verb (predicate) of the sentence. For instance, whatever you "eat" ("essen") in German has to appear in accusative.
Below are examples of accusative objects in all three genders and the definite articles used with them.
Der Junge isst den Apfel. - masculine
Der Junge isst die Banane. - feminine
Der Junge isst das Sandwich. - neuter
You'll notice that the article is only different to its nominative counterpart for the masculine noun, i.e. "der" (nominative) becomes "den" in accusative. "Die" and "das" are unchanged between nominative and accusative.
It's not common, but it can be correct. There's a standard order in German, roughly "subject verbs object to/for recipient", that's followed when you don't want to emphasize any noun in particular.
When you want to emphasize one of those nouns, you break that order and put it the noun you want to emphasize at the beginning of the sentence. So "Den Apfel isst der Junge" denotes the exact same thing, but with emphasis on the apple, rather than the boy.
Because it's in the accusative case (because Apfel is the direct object). Der Apfel ist rot, but Er sieht DEN Apfel. I think that's what this unit is teaching.
I think "der Junge" is best translated "the Youth" ie an older boy. Boy in general is der Knabe. Junge would be about 12 to 18 years.
Thank you. I learned German over 40 years ago and I guess "Knabe" has become obsolete in the interim. I appreciate the clarification.
I tottaly respect your opinion, but after living in Germany for several months, and having my B2- Zertifikat ... I think that it most certainly can have the meaning of kid.
Ok, help me out with my English then, after all it is my second language. If I refer to "the kid" it could be both a girl or a boy, right?
However, "der Junge" is strictly "the boy." there is just no way "der Junge" could mean "the girl."
If I'm missing something in English about the meaning of "kid," please let me know, I'm curious.
Btw, my first language is German.
I don't mean to insult you. Yes, your opinion. Would you "das Kind" is the only translation for Kid? Clearly no, being an incredibly smart person, you're English seems quite wonderful, you realize that there are many fine points to a translation and that there isn't a 1 to 1 equivalence for words. For example, "Ach, Du! Junge!" or "Ach, Du! Kind!" Or "Ach, Du! Bub" or ... Shall I go on? They can and often do mean the same if not functionally similar things. I don't mean to argue that "der Junge" is the best translation for "Kid" but just as words in German have multiple meanings so too do English words, and I do opine that "Kid" is an acceptable translation for "der Junge."
No. Der Junge has a specific meaning referring to the gender of a person, specifically a young boy. And Das Mädchen is for girl. If you are talking about a particular boy, you could either say "Das Kind" OR "Der Junge". But you can't translate "Der Junge" to "kid" because that is NOT the meaning of the word.