Translation:The woman, the man, the boy and the girl
A simple explanation is that that's just the way it is. Sometimes the gender of a German noun seems to "make sense" based on the meaning of the word, but this is rare.
A more useful explanation is that "Mädchen" has the ending -chen, and all words with -chen also have das as their article.
A more complete explanation is as follows. The -chen part of "Mädchen" is actually a diminutive ending, meaning it changes the meaning of the word into a smaller version of itself. Without going too deep into the etymology, "Mädchen" is basically "Magd" + "-chen". "Magd" means maid, so "Mädchen" is sort of like "little maid". The modern spelling and the fact that "Mädchen" just means girl nowadays are the result of changes in the language over time. More to the point, the gender of German words formed from multiple parts is usually based on the last part, and the "-chen" ending always gives a word neuter gender – which basically just means it becomes a "das" word.
There are two types of English speakers in this world: those that use an oxford comma, and those that are wrong. It's a matter of consistency, especially in a list - a comma separates each subject and omitting the oxford comma implies the last two subjects are one. Example: I like peanut butter and jelly, ham, turkey and banana sandwiches - without an oxford comma, I stated I like a sandwich of turkey and banana, opposed to two separate sandwiches consisting of turkey and banana respectively.
Frau and Mann mean "wife" and "husband", respectively, only in a possessive context.
For example, meine Frau is "my wife", and Hast du einen Mann? is "Do you have a husband?"
Here, though, there is no such possessive context and so die Frau can only mean "the woman", and similarly for Mann.
If you want to refer to a husband or wife without specifying whose they are, then you have to use Ehemann, Ehefrau.
Will the man, woman, boy, and girl German words (Mann, Frau, Junge, Maedchen) always be capitalized?
Yes, of course. They are nouns, and all nouns are capitalized in German.
You may wish to review the tips and notes for the very first lesson unit, where this fact is mentioned: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Basics-1/tips-and-notes
Please always read the tips and notes for a new lesson unit before starting that unit.
You can find them on the website https://www.duolingo.com/ by clicking on the lightbulb icon after selecting the unit:
You may instead see a button marked "tips"; if so, click on that instead.
it is telling me i am wrong
Then you probably made a mistake -- perhaps a small typo that you didn't see even when you read through your answer again.
In cases such as this, please copy and paste your entire answer (do not re-type it!) into a comment.
Or even better: make a screenshot, upload it to a website (e.g. imgur) and tell us the URL to the image.
Then we can help you find the mistake and learn from it.
It's all about emphasis and context. When you say "Der Ball ist besser" (That ball is better) while vocally emphasizing der and perhaps even pointing to a specific ball with your finger, you're expressing the same meaning as that in English.
You can also interpret the meaning from context; in written language, this may be your only option. Let's say you're reading a story in which a girl has a ball and an apple and asks her sister which is better. If her sister replies, "Der Ball ist besser", the meaning of der is probably closer to the meaning of the. Now let's say the girl has a softball and a baseball but asks the same question. If her sister replies, "Der Ball ist besser", the meaning of der is probably closer to the meaning of that. You would know that because saying "The ball is better" generally wouldn't make sense.
Yes and no.
Yes, they're all forms of the definite article.
But no in the sense that you can't just choose whichever one you want.
It's a very little bit like "a" and "an" in English: there's no difference in meaning between the two, but you can't just pick whichever one you want: "a orange" and "an book" are simply wrong. You have to choose the correct one.
In German, which one to choose depends on the grammatical gender of the noun -- masculine, feminine, or neuter.
The grammatical gender is not, in general, logical and simply something you have to memorise.
man is also a German word.
When a typo results in something that is a real word, Duo doesn't know whether you intentionally used the wrong word or whether it was a typo, so it counts it as a full error.
If a single-letter typo resulted in something that is not a real word, e.g. if you misspell Mann as Msnn, it will probably be accepted with a typo warning rather than considered an error.
Also, remember to capitalise nouns in German: man is a word in German but mann is not; the correct spelling is Mann with a capital M.
"Frau" rhymes with the English word "how". You can click on the speaker button at the top of this page to hear it again. You can also listen to example pronunciations at the following sites by clicking on the speaker button or play button:
I translated properly "The women,the man, the boy and the girl"
That is not a correct answer.
die Frau is "the woman" with AN, not "the women" with EN.
In other words, die Frau refers to just one woman, not to several women at once.
Lingots for you for quoting your answer so that others can explain your mistake to you.
Nobody can tell you because nobody can see your answer or the error message, unless you tell us. Please always quote your entire sentence if you have a question about why something was not accepted.
Or even better, make a screenshot showing your answer and the error message, upload it to a website somewhere, and add the URL of the image to your comment.
Nobody can see what you wrote, so references such as "here" or "this" or "my answer" are not helpful. Please always quote your entire answer when you have a question about why something was not accepted.
Even better: take a screenshot, upload it to a website somewhere (e.g. imgur, Instagram), and put the URL to the image into your comment.
give me credits
Duolingo programming staff do not read these comment forums. Volunteer course developers or moderators have no access to scoring and cannot grant points or repair streaks or anything.
it says it is wrong
Then it's probably wrong -- you may have made a small typing mistake. (For example, it's very common for people to type "women" instead of "woman", or to leave out the word "and" or add one too many.)
It would be helpful if you (a) reported your sentence as "my translation should be accepted" and (b) take a screenshot showing the question, your answer, and the error message, upload the screenshot to a website (e.g. imgur), and tell us the URL to the image.
If you did report "my translation should be accepted", then this might be what you actually typed:
The women, the man, the boy, and the girl.
(It's the only report from around the time of your comment that I can see.)
That sentence would be rejected for translating Frau as "women" instead of as "woman".
I don't want to type in English when learning German. I want to type in German.
You're unfortunately in the minority.
Duolingo is heavily data-driven, and they've found that the more exercises they have that make the learner actively type in their target language, the more casual learners they lose with those "difficult" exercises.
So Duolingo leans heavily on passive recognition and has very little active production -- unfortunately for "real learners".
There's not a lot you can do, but some options include:
- Use the website or a tablet (not a phone with a small screen); this seems to increase the chance of being able to turn word-bank exercises into real typing exercises
- strengthening more; I think at higher crown levels, you're a little more likely to get translation exercises into your target language
- once you have a pretty good grasp of your target language, try the reverse tree: i.e. pretend that you're German and want to learn English and then sign up for the course https://www.duolingo.com/enroll/en/de/Learn-English . Since Duo prefers translation from the target language into the teaching language, that will give you more translation exercises from English into German. (But of course the lesson notes and sentence discussions will also all be in German.)
Duo doesn't like giving users many options.
It picks the options for them, after trying many different things with different groups (A/B tests) and seeing which version "performs" better.
So if you want a course that you can customise to your expectations, I'm afraid you've come to the wrong place.
If you're unsure of the gender, can you guess it or just use das/ein?
Well, sure you can guess or just always use das/ein -- it's just likely to be wrong. Like how you can just guess the past tense of a verb in English and guess that the opposite of "I didn't sing" is "I sought" (like how "I didn't bring" has the opposite "I brought").
Would the genders change the sentence
Sometimes. For example, der Leiter is "the leader" but die Leiter is "the ladder".
Most of the time, though, it's simply wrong. Like saying "I taked" instead of "I took" -- "taked" is not a word, but it can't be confused with anything than the past tense of "take". Similarly, if you said Ich lese eine Buch instead of the correct Ich lese ein Buch for "I am reading a book", it would be wrong but understandable.
Why das madchen
It isn't das madchen; it's das Mädchen with capital M and with ä, not a. (If you can't type an ä, write ae: Maedchen. a and ä are not the same letter.)
And it's das Mädchen in the singular because Mädchen is a neuter word; die Mädchen would be the plural (= the girls), since it has the plural article die before it.
If your answer is "wronf" then it will be marked wrong.
Please show us a screenshot where we can see exactly what you wrote (the exact answer that was rejected) -- upload it to a website somewhere and tell us the URL.
Typos are easy to make and difficult to spot sometimes, so it's possible that your answer was not as correct as you thought.
--Following text was taken directly off https://www.dummies.com/languages/german/identifying-a-german-words-gender/
Basically, you have three genders in German — masculine, feminine, and neuter — and although English has the same three genders, they play a very different role in German grammar. Gender in English is what’s called natural gender; for instance, boy and girl are examples of masculine and feminine gender words, while computer is an example of a neuter gender word.
In German, most gender is unnatural. So instead of referring to a word’s meaning, gender refers to the word itself. To point out the gender of nouns, you use different gender markers. The three gender markers that mean the (singular) in German are der (masculine), die (feminine), and das (neuter). The plural form of the definite article is die. English has only one gender marker for the definite article of all nouns, namely the.
Look at the words for eating utensils, where you have all three bases covered: der Löffel (the spoon), die Gabel (the fork), and das Messer (the knife). Why should a spoon be masculine, a fork feminine, and a knife neuter? Don’t worry if you don’t see any logical pattern here because there isn’t one.
So how do you know how to form/use genders correctly in German? First, remember that gender is an integral part of each noun; it’s like a piece of the noun’s identity. So when you add new German nouns to your vocab, be sure to learn the article of each noun at the same time. You won’t be able to use a noun correctly if you don’t know its article. The following table breaks down the three definite articles — der, die, and das — by gender, and shows an example for each.
Some categories of nouns are consistently masculine, feminine, or neuter. For instance, noun gender usually follows the gender of people: der Onkel (the uncle) and die Schwester (the sister). In many other cases, the noun categories have to do with the ending of the noun.
There should be a das instead of der mann.
No. der Mann is correct (and Mann has to be capitalised).
as per the hint given
Eh? Did the hint not contain a der?
The topmost hint is not always the correct one. As long as the correct one is in the list of hints somewhere, it's a correct hint.