https://www.duolingo.com/FutureOfDenmark

Can anyone tell how to use en and et in Danish

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That might be sounds stupid,but i am still cant understand how to take a right choice.I thought that et is for something not real and and not living.But no.There are a lot of examples and i am confused. Same with adjectives.I got that when word in plural it is adding -e,like a smukke piger. But when it is singular form,is it just word or adding -t

9 months ago

6 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Fire-ergens
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WARNING: long and detailed explanation of Danish noun declension!

Danish has two genders: common and neuter. To make it more simple we will just call the words belonging to each gender -et words and -en words, okay?

Now, let's look at some simple words: pige, kvinde, hus, svar.

  • pige and kvinde are both -en words, so: en pige, en kvinde, and: pigen, kvinden.

  • hus and svar are both -et gender words, so: et hus, et svar, and: huset, svaret.

Do you see the pattern beginning to emerge? When you want to say a [...] you use et [...] for -et words and en [...] for -en words. Simple right? Now we come to the point where you can use a very handy trick: when you want to say the [...] you first put [...] and at the end of the word you will simply put -et or -en, depending on whether [...] is an -en or an -et word. When the word already has a -e at the end, you just simply put the -e of -et and -en 'on top of it'. Alright?

So, let's work this out:

  • A woman: woman = kvinde. We want to have 'a woman' however, so we will say "en kvinde", simple. Now, we want to write down "the woman". Kvinde is an -en word so we will write kvinde, and we will put -en at the end of the word, so it will become kvindeen. But wait! That doesn't work! We want only one -e, so we remove that extra one. So now it is "kvinden": the woman.

  • We will do the same thing with 'hus'. So, we want ;'a house'. Hus is an -et word, so: et hus. Now we want 'the house'. We write down "hus" and we will put -et at the end so it becomes "huset".

Alright, so now it is time for adjectives. Adjectives do not have gender, but they do change depending on whether a word is an -et word, an -en word or is plural. Now, let's get an adjective, shall we? Lets just use a color. So, we will use "rød" for this example.

So, adjectives are a bit more complicated, but once you get used to it, it isn't that hard.

So, let's just figure out how to say some things. The simplest thing to start with would be the plural. For this we will use 'hus' and 'kvinde' again.

  • The plural of kvinde is kvinder. The plural of hus is huse.

  • We want to say "red houses" and "red women". For that we will first write down rød; this is the base adjective. But, because we are using it to describe multiple things we will need to add something: -e. So we say "røde". Now, add in the plural word and you get "røde huse" and "røde kvinder".

Next it is time to say "a red woman" and "a red house". For this we will need to make some changes to the adjective as well.

  • To say [a] [adjective] [noun] we first want to know the gender of the noun. Hus is -et and kvinde is -en. You know the drill. So: en kvinde and et hus. We want an adjective between those two words so let's add that: en rød kvinde and et rød hus. But wait! We will need to adjust the adjective. If you want to say a [adjective] [-et word] we will need to add a -t to the adjective, so we will get: "et rødt hus": a red house. If you want to say a [adjective] [-en word] we won't need to add anything at all, it will just be "en rød kvinde".

So, how do we say "the red house" or "the red woman"? This is fortunately, not that difficult. Even better: we can use the exact same declensin for "the red houses" and "the red women"!

  • As you remember, huset is the house and kvinden is the woman. Hopwever, if we want to say the [adjective] woman or the [adjective] house, we will not use that. Instead, we will take the base form: hus and kvinde. The first thing we want to do is to write either of these words: det (for -et words) or den (for -en words). Next, we want the plural form of the adjective (it may sound weird, but it will make sense later on). Next we put the base form of the noun there. So we will get: "det røde hus" and "den røde kvinde".

  • If we want to say "the red houses" or "the red women", we will want to do a similar thing. However, here we will use "de" instead of "det" er "den". Also, we will use the plural form of the noun: so kvinder and huse. So, we use the exact same method as illustrated above, but we change the det/den to de and use the plural form. We will get: "de røde huse" and "de røde kvinder".

As you might have noticed, when you want to say the [adjective] [noun], you will use the same form of the adjective, it doesn't matter if it is singular or plural or wether it is an -et word or an -en word. You will alwaysuse adjective +-e. Of course, there are some irregular adjectives and you will have to memorize them, unfortunately. You might have noticed I didn't explain how to make nouns plural, but this explanation should suffice for the time being. If you are wondering how you can figure out what is an -en word and what is an -et word, I cannot give you any solid explanation, except that the more Danish you learn, the more you will develop this instinct that will help you identify a word's gender. It can take quite a while and you will need to put in effort, but just keep going and you will succeed.

I hope this helped.

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jegviltaledansk

Very good explanation! Cheers!!

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/chriss2401

Great job

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jileha
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Danish nouns have two different genders, the so-called common one (used with articles den, en) plus the neuter one (used with articles det, et). You pretty much need to learn the gender with the new vocabulary. The gender also affects the adjective inflections, but they also change depending whether you use a definite (den, det, de) or an indefinite article (en, et, -).

I would recommend you go back to the earlier lessons and read all the grammar notes carefully and maybe copy down the examples they give on a piece of paper so you have some reference available when you do the exercises. They do a much better job of explaining the different genders in Danish, the use of adjectives and what kind of inflections there are and how to use them.

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cazzadeathgirl

I've had to just "learn it" since I take Danish lessons as a foreigner, everything is taught in Danish (even if i don't understand something, the teacher explains in another way) Its much easier if you hear it around you every day, you just learn it by heart after a while.

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LMAO_XD

Use Babbel.

9 months ago
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