"The man is not eating pasta."
Translation:Der Mann isst keine Nudeln.
I just came across "the man does not eat pasta" to which the answer "der Mann isst Nudeln nicht" was incorrect, the answer was "der Mann isst keine Nudeln." How is it those two sentences are considered completely different in the first context, yet the same here?
Can I get away with saying "Der Mann isst keine Pasta" or should I stick with "Der Mann isst keine Nudeln"? Or is they're a difference in noodles if I do this?
"Nudeln" is a slightly more general term. We normally use 'Pasta' only to refer to Italian kinds of noodles. If you are sitting in an Italian restaurant, they are equivalent. But you wouldn't normally refer to spaetzle as 'Pasta'. But you asked whether you can get away with 'Pasta'. Yes, you can. Nobody will tar and feather you for using it. It's not actually wrong and you will be understood.
It's exactly like English. All pasta is noodles but not all noodles are pasta
That's not like English at all! Pasta and noodles are two completely different things word wise. I've never heard any english speaker calling pasta "noodles". Ever.
We call pasta noodles all the time. English is our only language. "We are having noodles for dinner"
You were confused in some things: A) There's no continuous aspect in german, that is: - "I eat" = "Ich esse", or - "I am eating" = "Ich esse", but - "I am eating" can not be said like "Ich bin essen". That does not exist in german. (You always use the present tense itself to mean both "i eat" or "i am eating".)
Since there isn't this continuos aspect, your try should be "Der Mann isst nicht Nudeln" (because you're not trying infinitive "essen" anymore), but this is also wrong, because of the negation. For this, I found this helpful page:
http://www.nthuleen.com/teach/grammar/negationexpl.html Which I also copied and pasted below (that's not mine):
Handout: Negation with Nicht and Kein
Use kein (and its inflected forms keine/keinen):
• to negate a noun preceded by ein/eine/einen: - Ist das eine Lampe? - Nein, das ist keine Lampe.
• to negate a noun preceded by no article at all (although it may be preceded by an adjective): - Finde ich Bücher hier? - Nein, Sie finden keine Bücher hier. - Finde ich gute Bücher hier? - Nein, Sie finden keine guten Bücher hier.
• to negate a noun preceded by a definite article (der/die/das) or a possessive pronoun (mein/dein/etc): - Ist das dein Buch? - Nein, das ist nicht mein Buch. - Ist er der Lehrer? - Nein, er ist nicht der Lehrer. (Er ist kein Lehrer would mean that he’s not a teacher at all.)
• to negate entire thoughts, verbs, adjectives, and elements of the sentence other than nouns: - Verstehst du? - Nein, ich verstehe nicht. - Spielst du gern Tennis? - Nein, ich spiele nicht gern Tennis. - Ist die Uhr alt? - Nein, sie ist nicht alt.
Hope that helps!
But in this sentence they say Der Mann so why cant we use nicht. We have a verb and the noun is preceded by a definite article
You are so awesome, chiults! Thank you, I have been puzzling over the kein vs. nicht for weeks!
I came up with "Der Mann essen keine Nudeln". Also wrong, also don't know why.
Conjugation, my friend! When not referring to multiple people in the third person, you would use "isst" as opposed to "essen". "Der Mann isst keine Nudeln." and "Die Männer essen keine Nudeln."
Der Mann isst nicht Nudeln is in my opinion also a correct answer because it is a statement about what he is currently not eating Der Mann ist keine Nudeln means that he does not eat pasta ever so the sentence to be translated is not clear Keine is the short form for nicht eine
I agree with Penelope15; I think it is closer to the English, because the continuous form of the verb suggests only that he is not eating pasta now, but does at other times, whereas "Der Mann isst keine Nudeln" to me would be better translated as he does not ever eat pasta - he eats no pasta. A different thing altogether!
I agree with christian that you can't bring English grammar into this. Maybe it sounds better to you because you are trying to replace "not" with "nicht" as English doesn't have something similar to "kein". The meaning of German sentences is more based on context which can be complicated if you only have one sentence. If I read a sentence like "Nudeln isst der Mann nicht" I would actually think the opposite of what you are saying as to me it could mean that he never eats pasta.
I'm sorry, everyone! I really didn't mean to say that following English grammar should also explain or parallel German grammar and structures - of course not! But as a native English speaker, I am aware of the subtleties in meaning in the original English sentence, and was wondering why my attempt to put those same shades of meaning into my German translation was wrong. On this point it seems that Lenkvist has tried to explain it for me, and it seems the explanations of negatives in Duolingo German need development. I had thought from them that using "kein" was roughly equivalent to English use of "no", but I did not understand how a different word order can also give a different emphasis to the meaning of a sentence. It has not yet been covered in the lessons I've done.Thank you all for your suggestions!
Hmmm, correct me if I am wrong but from what I was studying we use nicht when you make an affirmative with definite article, such as "Der Mann isst die Nudeln". When we use the indefinite article or no article in the sentence we should be using kein.
I thought kein was "not" and keine was "not a". Yet the translation of the man does not eat pasta uses keine .
Why is it keine Nudeln and not keinen Nudeln? I'm so confused over when to use keinen/einen!
Not sure about that. "Der Mann isst keine Pasta" sounds more natural to me.
I agree with christian. 'Isst nicht Pasta' is not wrong, but 'isst keine Pasta' is more idiomatic.
I agree with you. I think "Der Mann isst keine Nudeln" sounds more like "The man does not eat pasta" (like it's his habit not to eat pasta) rather than "The man is not eating pasta" (like just at this moment he is not eating pasta). It may be more idiomatic to use "keine," but it depends on the context. The contexts I can think of in which one would say "The man is not eating pasta" (i.e. "The man is not eating pasta, but rather rice") it would be make more sense to say "Der Mann isst nicht Pasta."
Christian-as a fluent German speaker, I can say that nicht is totally acceptable and that the idea that English grammar doesn't apply to German is completely inane.
I don't think christian meant that English and German are totally incomparable. I think he meant that you have to be careful with taking concepts from one language's grammar to explain another.
Thank you, Lenkvist - see my reply above as well. My point in using an explanation from English grammar was not to say how it should explain a German structure, but just to say that if a particular construction in one language has a particular meaning or emphasis, then in making a true translation to another language you surely have to try to translate the subtle meaning or emphasis as well. You're right in that you have to be careful to understand from context just what is being expressed.
@penelope: christian and myself are both native speakers of German and we agree that 'Isst keine Pasta' is clearly preferable here. Christian's observation that you can't use closeness to English grammar as an argument for or against constructions in German is a valid point.
I bow to both your & Christian's & Penelope's German skills! But please see my replies above. I would still like to understand how "Der Mann isst keine Nudeln" is a better translation of "The man is not eating pasta" than "Der Mann isst nicht Nudeln"! Perhaps I need to study more!
I'm not sure where the debate is here. I would assume that because it is referring to a noun - that it must be of 'kein' origin right?
If the sentence was simply Der Mann isst nicht - then this would be correct as there's no noun yes?
Yes, "Der Mann isst nicht" is fine. "Der Mann isst nicht Nudeln" isn't strictly wrong either, it's just something that'd give you away as a non-native speaker. Everybody says "Der Mann isst keine Nudeln".
So if I want to say more like a habit "I don't drink alcohol", is it "Ich trinke Alkohol nicht"
No: "Ich trinke keinen Alkohol". EDIT: It isn't wrong either but "Ich trinke keinen Alkohol" is more idiomatic.
Then if I want to so I am just not drinking it right now is it "Ich trinke Alkohol nicht"? How do I differentiate between the two contexts?
"Ich trinke keinen Alkohol" can refer to both. If you want to make clear that you're just talking about the present moment, you could say something like 'Heute trinke ich keinen Alkohol', 'Ich möchte keinen Alkohol' (e.g. when making an order), etc. Please also note that I changed my comment above.