"Das Mittagessen ist salzig."
Translation:The lunch is salty.
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"The lunch is salty" is correct. In that sentence, the noun "lunch" refers to an object, not an activity.
You use the definite article "the" when the noun refers to an object. You omit the definite article when the noun refers to an activity.
Here is an excerpt from the University of Toronto website for writing English as a second language:
Special cases in the use of the definite article
Place/object of activity nouns:
Certain nouns refer to either a place/object or to an activity. When they refer to an activity, do not use the definite article:
- I go to bed at 11 o'clock.
- She went to school for many years.
- Many families eat dinner together.
- I shower before breakfast.
- They are at church.
- She is in class.
- Don't jump on the bed.
- The school was too small.
- The dinner was delicious.
- The breakfast was delicious.
- The church is very old.
- The class is in Room 102.
Mittagessen in my head means dinner. I dont know anyone who eats dinner in the abend. In Norway the word for dinner is middag. Meaning midday. I know many people who have dinner somewhere between 1300 and 1500. In the old days this is how people ate, except maybe in warmer areas, where they might eat dinner later. My father, who is a retired german teacher, said that Mittagessen means dinner. Comments?
Interesting tganks for sharing. In the uk well the english part it was common for my grandparents to have in the order of breakfast first thing a large breakfast and a xooked lunch (like a sunday roast but we would say sometines dinner then between 4and 5pm would be tea time where a light meal would be served smaller than lunchtime meal and by 8pm would be supper ie a small snack. I believe that the expression brealfast like a king lunch like a queen and dine like a pauper. This is for people not familiar the largest meal at breakfast slightly smaller meal at lunchtime the reason some people say dinner as supper was dropped from society not sure when (I'll have to check) and as the largest main meal at lunchtime, it was called dinner.. an example as a infant aged 5 in the 1970s at school the whistle would blow at lunch to be told its dinnertime.. bit confusing isnt it
Well.. I think sometimes when you translate from one language to another, and you don't want your translated sentence to sound awkward, it's okay to make allowances for the dropping of the definite (and sometimes indefinite) articles. I've read that German uses far more use of definite and indefinite articles than English.
I believe you are wrong, ledinich. In English you wouldn't say "the Monday" but as far as German goes, it is very common to say "der Montag". http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/German/Grammar/Nouns I couldn't find the proper explanation to that, but if one of the native german speakers can join this discussion and explain this, I would be very greatful.
More and more I am growing to hate the text to speech program. Half the time I cannot understand the words it is pronouncing and have to use context and guesses.
As important as that may be when you are using the language with native speakers, if I am trying to learn it, I want to be able to understand it.
The TTS program is frustrating the hell out of me.
Yes, you are correct in this. I had a long discussion with a language instructor who is a German native that explained that the hard ig is southern and the "ich" sound is more if a northern thing. If I recall correctly, he explained that the hard ig would be proper way to pronounce it though.