"An important class."
Translation:Una clase importante.
Because class is feminine:
La clase - the class.
Una clase - a class.
Please be mindful that not all nouns follow the ending in -a is feminine and ending in -e/o is masculine, there are many exceptions.
The only real option is to learn each noun's gender individually, rather than relying on an unreliable general rule.
DonConquistador - Nonsense, memorizing genders is good advice. Genders must be memorized.
Do you think native Spanish speakers go by rules? No, they pay no attention to rules. They just know the genders.
If you are in a Spanish area and trying to speak Spanish, you can't stop in the middle of a sentence and calculate the gender of a word from rules. You have to know, and that comes from memorizing.
In Spanish translation exercises, it is fine to apply rules to unfamiliar words to figure out a gender, but that is just a route to eventually knowing the genders by heart.
Note that you shouldn't try to pound Spanish words, genders and phrases into your mind. Don't try to memorize. You learn by exposure and repetition. Do exercises, read stories, and if you can, listen and speak, and it will come.
I would add to this, to use the article with it. El casa and La casa should sound very different so remembering La casa should help to determine 'casa' gender. And I'd say easier than French where people have more difficulty with Le and LA not so distinctly different than LA and El. Yet I believe the same advice is valuable to learn genders in French
Every time you encounter a new noun in Spanish, learn it with the article. La falda. El perro. La clase. So if you have to translate "the class", you will know. If you know it is clase, you will know it is la.
You will often run into unfamiliar Spanish words at Duolingo and in Spanish-speaking areas. The -o and -a rules will help, but you will still make tons of mistakes. That is normal and it is OK. You will get the words and their genders right with experience.
There do seem to be some generally applicable "rules" other than just o/a. http://speakspanishfacts.blogspot.com/2013/11/gender-in-spanish-language-words.html Also, -ma endings are mostly masculine.
I think many of us miss the point. We are the one learning Spanish, those born with it accept it as it is and on the other hand no one is going to change it just to accommodate the learners. Languages are like most things we want or need to learn... A little of brain but a lot of work, practice and dedication as for the amount of it or the result, it's an individual factor. Just let's remember 'this' Duo is free. So as much as it may be improved through our feedback we really should be humble about it... May I remember this in the future.
well, theyre technically both right. The order changes on -where- you want to put emphasis on. "Una niña graciosa" (A funny girl) makes the adjective sound more relevant, whereas "Una graciosa niña" kinda puts more emphasis on the fact that she's a girl. However, the first option does sound more natural in most cases so I think that's what you should go for when speaking to a native. Hope this helped lmao
Because importante is an adjective, so it doesn't need de. De would be used for a noun, like "the house of my mother" could be "case de mi madre", because mother/madre is a noun. But "the blue house" would be just, um, crap, how do you say blue in Spanish? Azul? I think it's azul. So "casa azul". (In English, I guess you can, technically say "a house of blue", but it sounds very archaic, nobody would seriously say it that way in normal speech.)
Seriously? I have to memorise every single noun in the whole dictionary to work out if the masculine (e) rule and the feminine (a) rule applies to that particular noun or not. That sounds crazy! I'm sure my brain is not capable of memorising all that. Would people not understand what I meant if I did get the gender wrong, i.e. does it really matter? Non-English nationals get words muddled when they speak English but I can usually umderstand their meaning
Lol, I see you are doing German too. It has three genders, and wonderful noun cases.
There are lots of surprises when learning a new language. One of the benefits of learning another language is to realize that those quirks exist, and eventually to realize that English has just as many weird things about it.
Over in the English from Spanish course people are saying, really?, we have to say the pronoun all the time? We have to say "He wants to go" instead of "Wants to go"? And let's not even begin to talk about English spelling. Nobody can remember all those spellings.
Back to Spanish. I would not advise memorizing every single noun in the dictionary in the next few weeks. Learning a language is a stepwise process. Take it a step at a time. Duolingo is very well structured to introduce words and ideas at the right rate.
And of course you can learn this. Our brains are designed for languages. Even four year olds can speak good Spanish. And so can you. It takes repetition and exposure and it will come.
Why is "a Spanish book" = "Un libro de espanol", while "an important class" = "Un clase importante"? I'm doing a review of a previous class but I run into this sometimes and don't get the difference...sorry no tilda over n - and while I'm at it, why do some masculine nouns use este (this) and some use esto?
I'm just another learner, but:
Why is "a Spanish book" = "Un libro de espanol", while "an important class" = "Un clase importante"?
You haven't stated what your question is about, so I am assuming it is about de
In your first sentence, español is a noun.
In the second sentence, importante is an adjective.
The preposition de is used to indicate a relationship between the noun "libro" and the noun "español" that follows. No preposition is needed between a noun and an adjective.
This method is used frequently to descriptively link two nouns.
un jugo de narañja => an orange juice
un sándwich de queso => a cheese sandwich
el libro de historia => the history book
la clase de español => the Spanish class
why do some masculine nouns use este (this) and some use esto?
No masculine nouns use esto
billb, correct. You have to memorize the gender of each word. For every new word, consider it with the article - like "la clase".
There are 500,000,000 people that speak like this. Spanish has idiosyncrasies. So does English, and every other language too. The quirks are different for each language. Don't like gender in Spanish? Try German where there are three genders, as well as 4 noun cases. Pity people who have to learn English spelling and preposition use.
We learners are not going to change Spanish. But Duolingo can teach us the language. It really comes by itself from exposure and repetition. Our minds are built for it. If you persist, you will learn it.
lucky you, I think....you should think what it's like for those who actually were raised within a language that has different genders for the same things. Yes If you knew so well Martha and suddenly in the new language 'she' becomes Arthur...! But the only thing we have over those who use a gender less language is we understand that how it is, and it's a great help. For me as a French born creature I have to remember that my 'fork girl' (ma fourchette) in Spanish is my 'fork boy' (El tenedor not la tenedor!) Then, in Spanish, like in English the possessive is also gender less ...So they say 'mi hijo, mi hija' (my boy, my girl) in French we have to say 'MON fils , MA fille! because the possessive adjective as to agree with the noun's gender. And so it is with languages... You can also feel for those who are learning so many languages here (they don't have a brain, they have the latest computer in their scull...)