yup, and it will be easier if you read the knowledge below every lesson! "the definite article "die" (the) and the indefinite article "eine" (a/an) are used for feminine nouns, "der" and "ein" for masculine nouns, and "das" and "ein" for neuter nouns. For example, it is "die Frau," "der Mann," and "das Kind." However, later you will see that this changes depending on something called the "case of the noun.""
Mann is the normal, nominative, form.
Manne is dative and
ein appears with
Mann, the nominative form only.
In most Western languages you will come across "declinations", which modify a noun depending on what function it serves in a sentence and what and how a verb uses it. The modification typically is visible as different word endings in nouns. Even though English has these declinations as well, many of them are not visible, i.e. the same noun in different declinations is often spelled exactly the same.
In German, however, the declinations of a noun are often very unique and easily distinguishable from one another. This makes it harder to learn, but more easy to identify, if you are familiar with the declinations of a noun. There are four different declinations or "cases" in German and English: Nominative, Genitive, Dative and Accusative.
The declinations of
Mann, along with the definite and indefinite article are as follows:
der/ein Mann (nominative)
des/eines Mannes (genitive)
dem/einem Mann(e) (dative)
den/einen Mann (accusative)
The articles in front of the various declinations of a noun must harmonize with the respective declination, i.e. the articles are declined as well as the nouns they appear with and they must match the declination of the noun. So, you cannot say
ein Manne, since
ein is nominative and
Manne is dative.
The parentheses around the
e indicate that the
e is optional.
Manne is less commonly used. I'd say it's mostly used in a poetic context, whereas
Mann as a dative form is colloquial use.
Here, I found something on Wikipedia on the topic that describes it better (it's in the section
General rules of declension):
Dative forms with the ending -e (dem Gotte, dem Manne) are mostly restricted to formal usage, but widely limited to poetic style. Such forms are not commonly found in modern texts, except in fixed expressions (such as im Stande sein "to be able") and for some certain words (e.g. (dem) Hause, Wege or Tode) which are, however, quite numerous; in these cases, omitting the -e would similarly [be] unusual.
Not sure what you're asking. You learn genders with the nouns and then apply the correct word ending to them as well as any adjectives, pronouns or articles that go with those nouns.
For instance, in nominative singular, the three forms of
ein in the three genders are:
Ein Mann. (masculine)
Eine Frau. (feminine)
Ein Mädchen. (neuter).
Word endings change when nouns appear in different cases and counts.
For instance, in the following sentences, the three nouns from above appear in accusative singular:
einen Mann. - I see a man.
eine Frau. - I see a woman.
ein Mädchen. - I see a girl.
So, in the above you will notice that word endings are different between nominative singular and accusative singular for masculine nouns. For feminine and neuter nouns, however, they are identical between the two cases.
There are two more cases in German, genitive and dative, all with yet another set of different word endings.
In German nouns can be of three different genders: masculine (male), feminine (female) and neuter (neither male nor female).
So, the English "the" has three possible translations, "der", "die" or "das."
"Der" is used with masculine nouns, "die" is used with feminine nouns, "das" is used with neuter nouns.
I've always wondered, is there any indication that German is moving towards the English habit of writing common nouns with initial small letters?
Not in any official way.
People texting might leave out capitalisation -- but they also often leave out punctuation.
What would be wrong with ein mann?
there is nothing inherently wrong with it it's just a convention after all what would be wrong with writing i went to the park yesterday and i met sean meaney there
Shouldn't it be Eine Mann
No. eine is used before feminine nouns (e.g. eine Gabel, eine Person "a fork; a person") while ein is used before masculine nouns (e.g. ein Löffel, ein Mann "a fork; a man") or neuter nouns (e.g. ein Messer, ein Mädchen "a knife; a girl").
You have to learn the grammatical gender of each word; it's not usually possible to guess it.
All debates over what is considered "fluent" aside, at a mere 10-15 minutes a day, I think it would become incredibly difficult to ever become fluent, but if it were possible, my best guess is that it would take you a good 40 years to reach that level at that rate. To help you answer your question, I've pasted some links to resources you may find useful on this topic:
I'm going to include some personal experience for you here so that you can put these numbers and any calculations you might do with them into perspective. According to the chart on the page in the first link above, all it takes to become fluent in a Level I language is 780 hours (5 hours a week over a 3-year period).
I studied the equivalent of four years of Spanish in high school and never got less than an "A" grade in any of my Spanish classes. (In the U.S. school system that is the highest grade you can earn.) I was a good student and in fact, I skipped 3rd year Spanish and was moved into 4th year simply because at the end of 2nd year, I bought the book for 3rd year, and studied it during summer so that I would be well prepared for the following year. I had heard that 3rd year Spanish at my high school was one of the most difficult and I wanted to be prepared.
I add this not to boast, but to let you know I wasn't a poor student or below average. After completing 4th year Spanish at my high school, I had studied Spanish for at least 1200 hours, which is 1.5 times more than what that chart claims you need to be fluent.
After 1200 hours, I can assure you I was nowhere near fluent. Could I "get by" and "hold my own?" Sure, I could, but that doesn't mean you are fluent. In fact, based off of that experience, I would double the numbers provided in that chart for a more accurate estimate of how many hours are needed to become fluent. Keep in mind that the quality of your education, whether self-taught or otherwise, and how quickly you pick up languages will affect how quickly you become fluent.
If you spent 20 hours a week for a year studying German, but all you studied was the present tense verb form and 1,000 words, I don't think many would consider you fluent at the end of that year. Likewise, someone who takes four years of German in high school, but gets a "C" or "D" on every exam probably wouldn't be considered fluent at the end of those four years. It's a combination of ability and commitment that will determine how fluent you become.
Also, I recently came upon a duolingo thread that also touches on this topic. You may find it interesting as well. The link to it is below:
The information I've provided may seem discouraging, but I don't want to discourage you. I just want you to be practical and realistic with your expectations so that you don't lose interest, especially when the lessons start to get more difficult. I understand that learning a foreign language requires a time commitment that not everyone has, but even if you can only devote 10-15 minutes a day, you will be that much closer to fluency than if you didn't spend any time on it at all.
Best wishes to you as you continue to study the German language!
"An" is only used in English with nouns that begin with a vowel sound, like "an owl" or "an hour". Otherwise "a" is used. "A woman", "a man". "A/an" is the indefinite article, equivalent to "ein/eine/ein" in German, that is:
ein Mann - masculine
eine Frau - feminie
ein Mädchen - neuter
The definite pronoun is used when you talk about a certain thing/person, something that is either clear from context or it is mentioned in a previous sentence. Indefinite pronouns are the opposite: You use them to describe things in general.
So the above "a man" can mean the speaker is talking about men in general or about a man he or she doesn't know much about. "A man came into the bar." If the speaker wants to say what he does or describe him in another sentence in more detail, they will say "The man sat down." If the speaker said "A man sat down." you would think they were talking about a different person.
A/an are indefinite articles (adjectives). The is a definite article (adjective). Adjectives modify or describe a person or thing. Indefinite articles modify or describe a non-particular or non-specific noun. A definite article describes or modifies a particular or specific noun. A pronoun is a word that takes the place of one or more nouns. http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/adjectives.htm
Thank you for pasting the link to that page, tedexline. I just finished reading it. I've been speaking English all my life and have done well in my English classes, but I still continue to discover things about my language I never knew before. While most of the page wasn't anything I hadn't learned or seen before, I did learn that
"Fewer than a thousand words" is not correct, but "less than a thousand words" is. I really thought I had the "fewer/less" thing down pat. Now I know.
And the "Royal Order of Adjectives" chart is worth checking out, especially if English is not your native tongue.
Even if English is your native tongue, I think you'll find the section on "Collective Adjectives" useful as well.
The section on "A-Adjectives" was something I had never even been taught before. Very interesting.
One of the best things about this page is that it provides several quizzes you can take, and is just one of many pages on English grammar. If you've hit this checkpoint via a reverse course, and want to perfect your English, I highly recommend you check this site out.