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  5. "Die Katze isst die Maus."

"Die Katze isst die Maus."

Translation:The cat is eating the mouse.

March 31, 2013

88 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jenseits

Leute essen, Tiere fressen.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FrederickEason

This is true, however "essen" is not entirely incorrect in this usage, as a cat is a pet and pets are often spoken of in a familiar, person-like manner.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CraigTedma

Well, for an advanced German class, that might be something useful to teach. But for the level of German being taught here by Duolingo, using "essen" instead of "fressen" with the cat, is way more likely to cause confusion than help people trying to learn basic German. Pretty poor example for teaching, IMO.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KynaEldred

I don't recall ever reading in "TIPS" this information about pets being spoken in a familiar/personlike manner therefore use essen. A bit confusing for many I would imagine.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pandoora

the verb should be "Frisst" instead of "isst" because the subject is an animal not a person.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

Technically yes, but "essen" isn't wrong here. Especially if it's about pets, then it's not too uncommon to actually use "essen". But I agree that "fressen" is still better.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/germanrach

so could this also mean "the mouse eats the cat"?


[deactivated user]

    Technically yes, but it's an unlikely interpretation.


    [deactivated user]

      so if i say Die Maus isst die Katze, what would a german understand?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SirDippingSauce

      They would think "The mouse eats the cat" I think.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Freakshow2015

      They WOULD understand it but you might be placed in a asylum.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Leslux

      Context and voice stress will clear up any confusion. However, if inverted word order can cause confusion, Germans will use standard word order - subject verb blah blah


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TheKinglyWe

      this is an important question...is there a different article i could use like "dem" maus or "den" maus to make it more obvious about who's doing the eating???


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

      No, it's always "die" in the accusative case. But native speakers would hardly ever missunderstand this sentence. The inverse word order (OVS) usually is only used in contrast situations (Was ist mit der Katze? Wer isst die Katze? - Die Katze? Oh! Die Katze! Ja, die Katze isst die Maus, natürlich.)... ;)


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ziggurism

      Not with the current word choice, since both words are feminine which is the same in nominative and accusative. But if you know that the cat is a male cat you have the option to use the word "der Kater". Like the english word "tom" or "tomcat". Then consider the sentences "der Kater frisst die Maus" versus "den Kater frisst die Maus". Now you have the choice to switch subject and object while keeping the same word order.

      You could use "der Nager" (the rodent) instead of "die Maus" for even less ambiguity.

      "Der Kater frisst den Nager" versus "Den Kater frisst der Nager"


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SephyTheLark

      Wir essen, tiere fressen


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

      You can also use "essen" with animals, sometimes. Especially if they're pets.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/begleyju

      Is it not necessary to use the accusative "den," when is subject/object relationship is obvious?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Librasulus

      Both of the nouns are "female", using "die" for nominative, which stays the same in accusative form. "Den" is used in accusative form for masculine nouns that use "der".


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/begleyju

      I realized that after word. Thanks!


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Defnup

      Thanks. That wasnt a joke i have read so far about mouse and cat fressen.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TeaCat6

      Frissen=animal eating, essen=human eating. Should be "Die Katze frisst die Maus". Essen would be understood and correct in a sense, but not 100% correct.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

      It is 100% correct. It's just less used, and only in certain situations.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pepecx

      Karuna92;

      Der=The "Die" is by plural or singular. Plural= The girls/Die Mädchen Singular="Das" Mädchen

      Singular="Die"Frau/The woman Plural="Die"Frauen/The women

      Always use: "Der" by he "Die" by she "Das" by it

      By plural you always use "Die" Die Mädchen/The girls Die Frauen/The women Die Männer/The men Die Buben/The boys Die Tiere/The animals,...


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lcrp

      This lesson addresses the difference between "freßen," used for animals, vs "eßen," used for people. Based on that premise, this example is INCORRECT!


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stacy.Atchison

      Yeah with the Die, Der, and Das things will eventually just start to work themselves out in your head. Just like you know "an couch" sounds wrong and "a couch" sounds right, you will slowly start hearing the same things in german. You will go to write "Das Mann" and be like "That totally sounds wrong" then go to write "Der Mann" and be like yes that sounds right!


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LightScaryRobo

      Shouldn't this be frisst?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El_Lutzo

      See the other answers.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/srehrmann

      Why is "die katze frisst die maus" wrong?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El_Lutzo

      It isn't. Should also be accepted.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ziggurism

      because the job was to translate into english, and that's not english


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/uP35FSXz

      Why not "frisst" die Maus


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El_Lutzo

      See the other answers.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/uP35FSXz

      Why do they put "isst" die Maus sometimes and then later "frisst" die Maus. I don't understand it. How is a beginner supposed to learn when they don't explain when to use "isst" and when to use "frisst" if it is an animal all the time?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El_Lutzo

      For pets it could also be "essen". That's a special case.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dBHP5tlO

      animals == fressen people == essen


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El_Lutzo

      True in general. For pets it could also be "essen".


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Radar487817

      "The cat is eating the mouse." How does the reader know it is a pet cat and not a feral cat. I think Frisst is better.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/katebarnhart85

      Why isst instead of frisst?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aminatta.

      Too creepy for a cat


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BrianCoon2

      So...why is it saying 'isst' when Duo has just informed us that animals 'FRisst'? Or is this simply a hearing test that's only meant to further confuse? I have read the previous comments and am left wondering how on earth someone is meant to know if an animal is in fact a pet! Yet one response says BOTH answers should be correct? Yet I don't recall this 'pet' ambiguity ever being explained! Yes, it says 'isst' but that goes against what the lesson is teaching, so I use 'frisst' which is technically correct but incorrect. Perhaps unnecessarily pedantic?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jrgunder

      If isst is correct, then this was a trick question, since the lesson tips specify frißt should be used with animals, and do not suggest any exceptions. I heard isst, but wrote frisst because often the voices are not clear and first or last letters are swallowed and not audible.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fred236114

      There is no evidence in this sentence to suggest the cat is a pet therefore isst is wrong and we should fall back to Leute essen, Tiere fressen. Duo is wrong.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/carlacracovia

      Die Katze isn't a female cat or it stands for cats generally?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ro_ha86

      There is the German word "der Kater" for a male cat. But if the gender is unknown, "die Katze" is used.


      [deactivated user]

        It's both.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PremBist

        Are there any rules to use Das, Die & Der for animals? Because in this exercise we use 'Das' for horse and 'Die' for mouse.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cannon_heath

        The end-game and only certain method is to just memerize. Though i believe the suffix of the noun may drop hints


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El_Lutzo

        Rule of thumb for animals: -e is female, -er is male, otherwise it is neuter. BUT: many exceptions!


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/littleman..

        Iam really confused why do we say die Katze whereas Der Hund....when did cat become female and dig become male


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

        It's something you have to memorize with every noun. There is no rule. Every German noun is just inherently masculine, feminine, or neuter. A little help: Usually, if a noun ends in -e, it's feminine. Not always, but at least in 80% of the cases it is.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chrisreene

        'The cat's eating' is the same as 'The cat is eating' but I was marked as incorrect for this 'mistake'. I'd hope that contractions will be allowed in the future. Thanks.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/selteneauster

        Is "Maus" the same translation for "rat" and "mouse"?


        [deactivated user]

          No.

          • the rat = die Ratte

          • the mouse = die Maus


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GinnyMontejo

          "katze" is a femenine word therefore you say "die Katze" but what happens when you are talking about a male cat? For example in Spanish you can say "gata" for female cat and "gato" for a male one.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

          A male cat is called "der Kater". But the feminine word Katze is also used in general for cats, even if you don't know if it's a male or a female.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GinnyMontejo

          oh ok danke!!. Is it the same for all cases like this? for example dogs (der hound), is there also another word for the female version?


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

          Sometimes yes, but it depends. "Der Hund" can be both, "der Rüde" is a strictly male dog, and for a female dog I can only think of "die Hündin". Often, but not always, you can add -in to derive the female form of an animal (though sometimes you have to make the main vowel an umlaut).


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NanakoAC

          How would i say the cat ate the mouse? (past tense)


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

          That's a bit more difficult in German. There are 2 main past tenses, the "Präteritum" (preterite/imperfect) and the "Perfekt" (past perfect), which are "Die Katze aß die Maus." and "Die Katze hat die Maus gegessen.", respectively. Note that "essen" is an irregular (strong) verb.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ashleyareu

          Although it may sound similar technically "cat eats mouse" and "cat is eating mouse" is different due to the verb forms. Is there any distinguishing arrangement for this?


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

          Not really. In German we use the same verb form for "eats" and "is eating" (isst). So this German sentence can have both translations. Only colloquially you can say "The Katze ist die Maus am Essen." with "ist am Essen" meaning 'is eating'. But I don't think that the course will teach this form, as it's not (yet) standard.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El_Lutzo

          That sentence is VERY colloquial and only really used in some areas of Germany. If you want to translate the continous form in German, add the word "gerade" (at the moment): "Die Katze isst gerade die Maus."


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/uP35FSXz

          Thank you Frederick Eason for explaining that


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mounal15

          For a moment there I thought thatthe CAT was the MOUSE.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DaisyDisco

          Another example of the word for humans eating (iss) applied to an animal. What am I supposed to be learning from this?


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stephane293248

          Essen ist hier falsch.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TebogoKenna

          We were taught that for animals we use frisst and not isst. This is completely confusing


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Joyce_B1

          I do not know if the cat is a pet, so "frisst" seems to be the most sensible answer. Just saying...


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AliT.Firefly

          Delicately, I take it ... (Or, given I had it as dictation, did you mean 'Die Katze IST die Maus'. Deep!)


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RosyZuppin

          I don't agree about using "essen" instead of "fressen" for a pet ... eventhoug pets are more likely "persons"


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/karuna92

          I cannot understand when to use 'Der', 'Den' and 'Die' :( Help please


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Leslux

          Sometimes there seems to be no rhyme or reason and it is hard for English speakers to wrap our heads around. DuoLingo is good for giving you the practice and repetition you need and eventually, if you stick with it, the der die das will just come naturally and the wrong article will start to sound just wrong.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AbbeyDexter

          I have this problem to. So, Der- Masculine Die- Deminine Das- Neutral. I don't think there's an outright way to find the gender of the word, so what I do is when it first pops up I look at the gender of the word and write it down or try to remember it. Also, only nouns have genders.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/karaann1204

          Most of the the time Der and Den are used in masculine ways.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Germy_Man

          Can I depend on that ..... It takes a time i think


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MICKIMAUS

          Shouldn't either isst or frisst be considered correct? If not why not?


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El_Lutzo

          Both should be possible for this sentence.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aminatta.

          Too creeeeeepyyyy


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/varunrichharia

          Why is pferd (horse) a neuter while cat a feminine word??


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

          There is no reason. That's just how German works. You'll have to learn all the genders for each noun. If it helps, nouns ending in -e are feminine most of the time (but not always).

          Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.