"The button is big, but not round."
Translation:Der Knopf ist groß, aber nicht rund.
The subordinate phrase 'corrects' that which is negated in the first phrase.
It is NOT x, sondern y. (It is NOT x but, rather, y.) E.g.,
Person A: My dad is tall.
Person B: Your dad is not tall, sondern short.
Person A: I need a big, round button.
Person B: This button is big, aber not round.
With 'aber,' you don't need a negation in the first phrase. The subordinate phrase doesn't have to 'correct' the first part.
I hope this helps. :0)
I've discovered that doch is the same as jo in Norwegian! They both mean, on the contrary. But doch seems to have more uses.
In this sentence, it's a conjunction, so that's what I'm going to try to explain.
If this sentence had been, "The button is not square, DOCH it is round!" doch would have worked.
Probably an over simplification, but... if the information in the last part of the sentence contradicts/negates/corrects the first part, then doch works. Yippee!
It's a lot like sondern. The difference is that when doch is used as a conjunction, you need a complete stand-alone phrase after. E.g., The button isn't square, doch it is round.
Whereas sondern can be followed by a partial. E.g., The button isn't square, sondern round.
Also, if someone says to you, "You're coming to my party tonight, aren't you?" And you have no intention of going, you can say, "Doch! ____" Fill in the rest of the sentence. :0)
Since Duo scans your sentence for errors from left to right, if you use the wrong article and there is a synonym with that gender in the database, Duo will correct the noun rather than the article. That is to say that if you answered ‘
die Knopf […]’ instead of ‘der Knopf […]’, Duo is likely to offer ‘die Taste […]’ rather than ‘der Knopf […]’ as a solution. ‘Taste’ generally refers to a key (on a keyboard), but it can refer to certain types of buttons, which is why it is in the database for ‘button’.
Althought I am not a native German speaker, I think that "nicht" doesn't come after adjectives, but always before them. Examples:
- Das Kleid ist nicht fertig.
- Mein Gesicht ist nicht rund.
You can learn about the position of nicht (and kein if you want) at this page: https://deutsch.lingolia.com/en/grammar/sentence-structure/negation
“Kein” (without l: “klein” means “small”) is a determiner, that means it basically works like an adjective: it modifies a noun (it is the same as the English “no” in “there is no door”). It's used when you want to “negate” a noun or to negate an entire sentence whenever the focus of a sentence is a noun (which in practical terms means whenever a sentence has a direct object). In this case you are negating “round”, an adjective, so you cannot use “kein”, you have to use “nicht”.