"We need a fire."

Translation:Wir brauchen ein Feuer.

June 4, 2018

6 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Apsa25
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Is fire countable in English and German?

June 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/stepintime
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I think in this sentence "fire" is supposed to mean something like a campfire, so it's countable. A group trekking through the wilderness might light several fires: one in front of each tent.

I think the difference is made between fire as a "material" (hot stuff, plasma, whatever you like to call it) vs. fire as a specific mass of burning things (a campfire, a house on fire).

If someone needs fire as a "material" e.g. to light a cigarette, you'll use "fire" in an uncountable way: "He needs fire." / "Er braucht Feuer." ("Do you have a light?" = "Haben Sie Feuer?") In the same way you'd say, "He needs wood" / "Er braucht Holz" (as a material).

Similarly: "The first town house was destroyed by fire in 1567" / "Das erste Rathaus wurde 1567 durch Feuer zerstört", "Fire can be extinguished with water" / "Feuer kann mit Wasser gelöscht werden"

If you're talking about a specific fire ("a heap of burning things"), you'll say, "The fire destroyed the house" / "Das Feuer zerstörte das Haus", "Someone has to watch over the (camp)fire" / "Jemand muss das Feuer bewachen", "The fire went out" / "Das Feuer ist ausgegangen", ...

Note that the event of a fire is "der Brand" in German: "In 1567, the town hall was destroyed in a fire." = "Das Rathaus wurde 1567 durch einen / bei einem Brand zerstört."

June 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Apsa25
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Danke für diese Erklärung :)

June 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/keystonepride

"Yes. Perfect distraction."

October 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/DarrioBarrio

Why is it ein and not einen.isnt Feuer masculine?

July 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/stepintime
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No, "das Feuer" is neuter.

July 9, 2018
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