"Er ist der bessere Mann."

Translation:He is the better man.

March 29, 2013

47 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/DTipps
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Can anyone explain the endings of these adjectives? Why is this "bessere" instead of "besser"? Normally an E is added when a noun is feminine or plural (in nominative at least), what are the rules for adjectives?

January 16, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/arrowgun99

adjectives following der/die/das have -e endings. (Atleast in the nominative case)

Der gute Mann. Ein guter Mann.

February 1, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/chetlin
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Except in plural where it would be "die besseren Männer".
What's nice is that after a definite article, the only endings possible, in all cases, are either -e or -en. So that makes it a little easier.

April 12, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Adler_Deng

Whether all the adjectives following der/die/das are attached -e only? Like der gute Man, die gute Frau, das gute Mädchen? And what about the plural?

December 15, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/arrowgun99

der gute Mann, die gute Frau, das gute Mädchen

die guten Männer, die guten Frauen, die guten Mädchen

December 28, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Adler_Deng

Ja, alles klar, vielen Dank~

January 6, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/UliMolina
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check it out http://www.nthuleen.com/teach/grammar/adjektivendungenexpl.html in special the last flow diagram. Very useful

February 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/JackBond
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Some people work better using the flow chart to determine the rules. Personally, I work better remembering the actual flat charts for each case and making mnemonics to remember them. At the very least it doesn't hurt to visualize where differences come into play.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_declension#Attributive_adjectives

For instance, once I identify weak or mixed inflections, it's makes it really easy to know that everything plural, genitive, or dative ends in -en.

November 29, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/lishushan

why can‘t it be "He is the better husband"

March 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Mauersegler
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You are right!

August 17, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/arisplus
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"ich kann nicht einen besseren Mann findennnn"

May 25, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Shareida
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Duo giving relationship advice.

December 23, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/alvpinero
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It's an odd translation, isn't it? "The best man" is not accepted.

March 29, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Hohenems
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The translation is fine. "besser" = better, not best.

March 29, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/alvpinero
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Thank you for answering Hohenems. Yes I got the translation of besser, what I meant is "the better man" sounds a bit strange... I am not a native English speaker, so maybe I am wrong.

March 29, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Hohenems
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It isn't strange. To try to put it into a scenario for you, after a boxing match, the loser might say in a post-fight interview "Today, Rocky was the better man, but I demand a rematch!". If one man is of higher quality than the other, he is the better man of the two. It's okay in English to assign "better" to a human. "Better man" is also a well known line from a famous poem "Gunga Din" by Kipling:

"Tho' I've belted you and flayed you, By the livin' Gawd that made you, You're a better man than I am, Gunga Din!"

If it helps, here's a Pearl Jam song called "Better Man".
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_4BObpNQqNo
If it doesn't help...well...just enjoy the music. ;)

March 29, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreRhineDavis

It's actually rather simple. When you're comparing just two things, you use the comparative. ("My apple is bigger than yours"). When you're comparing more than two things, you use the superlative ("My apple is the biggest in the world").

With the comparative, when you're comparing an arbitrary thing against a standard, you use the indefinite article ("This is a bigger apple than yours"), whereas when you're comparing and contrasting two specific things against each other, you use the definite article ("Mine is the bigger apple, yours is the smaller apple").

With the superlative though, it always takes the definite article. Sentences like "This is a biggest apple" are just ungrammatical.

So if you're comparing two specific men against each other, it makes total sense to point one out and say "He is the better man".

December 13, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/nadgerz
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Boxing, Kipling and Pearl Jam in one explanation! This is probably not only a first, but also deserves a prize. Well played Sir!

May 25, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/RhysJohnson92

The explanation is thorough but you deserve lingots just for the Pearl Jam reference.

April 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/alvpinero
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Now I see it. You can get a totally different perspective putting things into his context :D

Thanks for your help!

March 29, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Hohenems
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No problem! :)

March 30, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/jaye16
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Have been hoping I'd come across this again to give you a well deserved lingot.

December 28, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Yvonne Enter
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Thank you for the music!

January 4, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/beaker606

Ok, why is it "der"? In the accusative case, doesn't "der" switch to "den"?

May 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/JoeOcher
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the sentence is nominative (ask Who or what ...? for nominative, "who or what is better?" answer "the man")

this link should help: http://duolingo.com/#/comment/246046

May 7, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreRhineDavis

The verb "sein" (to be) is special, in that both the subject and the "object" stay in the nominative case. It used to be the same in English: He is I, I am he.

December 13, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/jaye16
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Technically it still is in English. But it's being misused so often it will one day be standard. That's normal for languages they evolve.

December 28, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/AGreatUserName
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It already is standard. "It is I!" is archaic. The exact same change happened in French. C'est moi (not "C'est je).

August 3, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/margaux016
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I am french and i never heard the expression "c'est je". If ever it existed (and i really doubt it) then it comes from the most remote Middle-Age, when the french language was still being built.

January 9, 2016

[deactivated user]

    one of the dictionary hints for "bessere" is "mends one's ways". What does this mean? or is it wrong?

    May 16, 2014

    https://www.duolingo.com/Zzzzz...
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    The verb sich bessern means 'to become better'.

    September 29, 2014

    https://www.duolingo.com/Larkspire
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    Endings occasionally make Duo's dictionary think that adjectives and adverbs are verbs.

    November 20, 2014

    https://www.duolingo.com/Perseph1955
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    There, as a verb: "to better." "I'm learning German to better myself."

    July 19, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/luka034

    Question: Why is this sentence translated as "He is the better man", instead of "He is better man"? Superlative form is "the best", and the comparative form is "better", without the article, right?

    January 16, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/JackBond
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    While superlative adjectives do generally require "the", comparative adjectives do not have any rules about articles.

    "He is the better man"
    "This is a better sandwich"
    "These are better hammers"

    In this case, the sentence is short for "He is the better man, out of these two." The last part is understood by context and the use of "better".

    January 17, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/GeoSchribs

    Er ist der bessere Mann für das Geschäft.

    July 21, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/LoadsOfToa

    He is the alpha male puts on fedora

    February 5, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/codeholic

    That really sounded like "Ihr".

    November 3, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/Hohenems
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    It has recently been discovered that some (unfortunate) users are getting different sounding audio once in a while depending on some unknown factor(s). I seem to be one of the unfortunate users, but I hear "er" here. See the three links at the end of this post if you're interested...

    If it is just a question of not picking up the differences between the two words, fear not, a lot of people seem to have issues with "er" v.s. "ihr". Until you get the hang of it, try to remember to look at the rest of the sentence, especially the verbs. In this case, if it had been "ihr" and not "er", the verb that followed would have had to have been "seid" and not "ist". Also, you probably wouldn't say to multiple people that they are "der bessere Mann", but "die besseren Männer" (although sometimes Duo accepts and expects some weird stuff).

    Links for those interested:

    http://www.duolingo.com/comment/821339
    http://www.duolingo.com/event/294563354
    http://www.duolingo.com/comment/499592

    The post by backtoschool in the last link hopefully provides the proof to those that have no audio issues.

    November 3, 2013

    https://www.duolingo.com/Gottesanbeterin

    wie ist es im Vergleich zu?

    February 10, 2014

    https://www.duolingo.com/hogthehedge
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    He is the better man, but not the best man at the wedding..

    September 19, 2015

    https://www.duolingo.com/udayanbose

    Pearl Jam - Better man

    April 8, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/Poole2

    Du bist ein besser Mann als ich, Gunga Din.

    January 22, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/JackBond
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    ein besserer Mann*

    January 22, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Ubeeric

    Is deciding between der, die, das mostly a matter of memorization except for the obvious male & female cases. I keep messing up

    September 18, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/Zane38724

    No way. He is "a" better man. Or, He is "the" best man. "The better"? Nope!

    December 7, 2018

    https://www.duolingo.com/Fatma119077

    Why “the better man “not “the best man“, Warum“ der bessere Mann“ nicht “Dieser Mann ist der Beste“?

    December 10, 2018
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