"Buch" is neuter (Das Buch) and "einen" is the accusative case which only affects masculine nouns.
i thought einen was for feminine nouns? ö correct me if i'm wrong, please!
No. Einen belongs to masculine nouns. It is the indefinite article when the noun is used as an direct object (called Akkusativ in German).
Ein Mann liest ein Buch (Mann is subject (Nominativ) hence ein)
Sie hat einen Mann (Mann is direct object ein --> einen)
Well,its a bit confusing because the case and gender matters. Ill try to make it simple. I'll write how the ending of ein and der form changes.
1.Nominative - (the usual subject in a sentence) Mas-Neu-Fem(order) - ein -ein-eine, der-das-die
2.Accusative - (the object in a sentence) Mas-Neu-Fem(order) - einen-ein-eine,den-das-die
3.Dative - (the indirect object in a sentence) Mas-Neu-Fem(order) - Einem-einem-einer,dem-dem-der
4.Genitive -( sentence showing possesion) Mas-Neu-Fem(order) - Eines-eines-einer,des-des-der
Now the explanation for cases:- 1.The nominative one is just the case for subject in a sentence. I hope that wont be difficult to understand.
2.Accusative is used for the object in a sentence. In english the word order is subject verb object. And changing the word order changes the meaning of the sentence in most cases.
But in German , the word order can be changed. It is with the help of the cases. If the article used for the object is of different form which is not used for subject, one would be able to identify the object.
So Accusative case is used for object.
3.Dative is used when a sentence have indirect object. Consider the below sentence , 'boy' threw a 'ball' to a 'dog'
So clearly boy is the subject.
Object is ball.(just ask 'what' to verb to get the object of sentence) threw what? - ball
So the dog is the indirect object here. We use dative case for dog here to denote it is an indirect object.
- Genitive is used to denote possession.
Eg Lady's bag / Bag of the lady.
In English the 'of' preposition helps to understand whose object is the bag. In German the genitive case is used for 'lady' to make it understandable .
If any mistake is there in my explanation, experts,please correct it. Im also a beginner in learning German.
I shared it here hoping some will get helped by this.
Im confused. Yes I'm a bigginer and thought ein was a and einen was an. Einen Apfel?? An apple or no.
Nah! Go to the 1st table on this German Wikipedia page for the conjugation table of ein. https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artikel_(Wortart)#Formen_der_deutschen_Artikel
That confuses me too, which is why it sometimes take me longer to finish it.
What do you mean only affects masculine nouns? Where did you get it? In the table of indefinite articles, neutral is the same as masculine.
In German, only masculine (singular) words have a different form for the accusative case compared to the nominative case.
Neuter, feminine, and plural words look the same in the nominative and accusative.
I’m not sure which “the table of indefinite articles” you saw, but the masculine and neuter indefinite articles only look the same in the nominative, genitive, and dative cases — not in the accusative.
Wait!! can you say Das Apfel or do you have to say Der Apfel because its masculine?
It's der Apfel when it is the subject and den Apfel when it is the direct object. das Apfel is not possible.
das Apfel is possible when its in genetive case, though!
Edit: As per karlchen123, Yes, its des Apfels in genetive case. My bad.
@abhinav4848 That wouldn't necessarily work, because ANYONE can change Wikipedia if they have an account.
Wait, so i should know this, but das = neuter, die =fem and der = masc?
Yes. "Du liest ein Buch" can mean both "you read a book" and "you are reading a book."
Im confused. In english "you read (pronounced "red")" implies a past action, but isn't "Du liest" a present action ?
Du liest ein buch - You are reading a book or You are reading one book or You read a book. can someone explain me on the above.
all of them are correct, you cant distinct whether "you are reading" or "you are read". For the "one or a", i think there's no difference between them in that word. correct me if i'm wrong.
Is this past tense or present? I want to think its a stern command to read a book now.
Present. Commands use a different conjugation and sentence structure, called the 'imperative mood'.
I am having so much trouble understanding all the different accusative case words and how to use them.
Do you mean the declensions for accusative case? If not, I have no idea what "accusative case words" are. The only difference between nominative and accusative definite articles is the masculine case where accusative is den and nominative is der. Also, the indefinite article for masculine accusative case simply has the -en suffix.
The comments have some good explanations, so please read them if you haven't already. Duolingo also has lesson tips pages too, if you use the web version and scroll down before starting the exercises. The first lesson teaches you that nouns have gender and you need to match other words to the gender. That's all you need to understand ein Buch in this sentence. Then the lesson on 'accusative case' tells you when to use einen.
Well, there are two things affecting the ending of "ein" - grammatical gender as well as case.
Each noun (if you didn't know this already) has a grammatical gender - feminine, masculine, or neuter. The definite (words like "the" - die, der, das, den, dem) and indefinite (words like "a" - ein, einen, eine, einem) articles in front of a word change due to the grammatical gender.
Each noun is also assigned a "case" in German, depending on its function in a sentence. There are four cases - nominative, accusative, dative, and genitive. In English these aren't as important, but they change the articles in German.
In nominative case, where the noun is the subject of the sentence (the noun doing the action of the sentence), the articles are as follows:
Masculine - der, Feminine - die, Neuter - das, Plural - die
Masculine - ein, Feminine - eine, Neuter - ein, Plural - (k)eine (you can't have "a" before a plural noun in German, just like in English)
In accusative case, where the noun is the direct object of the sentence (the noun that the action of the sentence is being done to), the articles are like this:
Masculine - den, Feminine - die, Neuter - das, Plural - die
Masculine - einen, Feminine - eine, Neuter - ein, Plural - (k)eine
Dative case has to do with the indirect object of the sentence, which is harder to explain, and you won't need this this early on in the lessons, but here are the articles:
Masculine - dem, Feminine - der, Neuter - dem, Plural - den
Masculine - einem, Feminine - einer, Neuter - einem, Plural (k)einen
Genitive case isn't nearly as common, and is kind of like a possessive case. You can read more about it in the wikipedia article I'm linking.
Maybe this was overkill, but I hope it helps!
Unfortunately not, most of the time :( You just need to remember it when you learn the word!
The verb is lesen, yes. But it's not du lest.
Some verbs change -e- to -i- or -ie- in the du and er, sie, es forms; this is one of them.
So we say du liest and er liest.
Two other common verbs that do this are geben "to give" and essen "to eat": we say du gibst and er gibt, du isst and er isst.
But the ihr form has the regular vowel -e-: ihr lest; ihr gebt; ihr esst.
Is there no distinction between the present tenses 'I eat' and 'I am eating' in German?
There is no distinction. Both "I eat" and "I'm eating" translate to "ich esse".
I would use it for example when someone calls while I am eating dinner. I would say Ich esse gerade. Kann ich dich später zurückrufen? (I am eating (right now). Can I call you back later?)
Ihr translates better into "you all." So it is plural while Du is singular
What's a subject, and what's a direct object in "The man eats an apple"? I'm confused, and my English lessons have clearly slipped. I don't even know what the dative is (indirect object).
"Man" is the subject. The man is who is doing the action. "Apple" is the direct object. It is receiving the action (being eaten).
Why isn't it "You are reading a book"? What's the difference between "you read" and "you are reading"?
There is no difference. Both are grammatically correct translations.
There is a present participle case for all verbs, including lesen "lesend." But no one would say "Du bist ein Buch lesend."
The present participles in German are used when forming adjectives and adverbs. - http://german.about.com/library/bladj_particip03.htm
The conjugation. It's like asking what the difference is between "am" and "are" in English: the answer is that they match together with different pronouns: "I am", "you are".
In German, liest matches with du (and some others). But lesen matches with wir (and some others). You can see the full list on sites like Canoo.net.
You just need to decide what sounds best based on the context. Usually that will be "a/an".
Because Buch is a neuter noun, not a feminine noun. Why is it neuter? No idea. There usually isn't a reason beyond "that's just how the language developed".
Is there a way to do only those tasks? I find them the ones i learn the most from.
It could never be "eine Buch" because das Buch is neuter.
If you are using the PC version, make sure to always read the Tips and Notes.
While not wrong, I think that this translation should encourage "You are reading a book" over "You read a book" since "read" in English can be in either the past or the present tense.
Ouch, that's hard work! Even harder when they are the opposite in my mother tongue :).
You're welcome! It becomes somewhat second-nature though, so don't be put off! :)
Because when you learn the substantive, you learn the article ¸der", ¸die" or ¸das" that goes with it… really, there's no simpler way.
Most of the words that end on an 'e' are feminine' but there are a lot of exceptions. I also think that most fruits are feminine. And i think most animals are masculine. But those aren't really rules theyr'e just guidelines :)
Some endings can sometimes show the grammatical gender of words. For example words ending with -ung, -heit/kein, -schaft, -tion are always feminine and words endings with -chen are neuters, even "das Mädchen" = "the girl".
Otherwise, you've got to learn the genders of nouns by heart...
Most of the words ending with "er" are masculine. All the words ending with "ung" are femenine. There are some rules.
Ihr is for when you say you but are talking to multiple people. Du is for when you say you but are talking to one person
In the akkusativ the article "der" becomes "den" and the other articles are not changed.
I searched this sentence on Google Translate and it doesn't say "You are reading a book" it say "You read a book". I honestly can't wait to be able to learn Japanese.
How do you know the difference between the 3 if them? Im in 9th grade and im so lost...
I keep getting questions like this wrong for switching the "i" and "e". How am I so posed to know where the i and e go short of memorizing each word? Is there a rule like in English like I before E except . . . ?
They are pronounced differently. 'ie' is pronounced like the e ib 'be'. 'ei' is pronounced like the y in 'by'.
Some verbs in German have a vowel shift (you have to learn which ones). There, the stem vowel changes for the 2nd and 3rd person singular for e --> i/ie and for a --> ä.
For a more detailed explanation on verb conjugation you can read this text: http://yourdailygerman.wordpress.com/2012/02/03/german-conjugation-online-course/
Ein is used in the nominative case (for the subject of the sentence) for 'der' and 'das' words, while 'eine' is used in that case for 'die' words.
In the accusative case (the direct object of a sentence), ein is used for das words, eine for die words, and einen for der words.
Hope this helps!
I don:t understand why they mark things wrong is you say the instead of a, can someone please explain?
i said you reads a book so it could say i got a typo but it said incorrect you used the wrong word please leave a thumbs down because this comment is lame unless you like it
Watch me go to Germany and end up saying something stupid and have everyone there stare at me like I just offended them all that has to do with WW1 or 2.
Pronunciation of buch is like boo. Please tell me whats the correct Pronunciation of buch and if boo then whats the ch means
The ch is pronounced like the spanish 'J'... Like PAJA, JUEGO. English does not have this sound, it is produced at the back near the throat and it is fricative, voiceless. Like when you try to.expell mucus from your throat. Lol
There is no simple pattern. You just have to memorize which noun is what.
That said, you can tell that "Buch" is neutral with this sentence because it is the direct object (accusative case) and 'ein' is used rather than 'eine' (for feminine words) or 'einen' (for masculine words).
ein goes with both neuter and masculine nouns. einen is for accusative masculine only, I think.
- 'ein' goes for neuter and masculine nouns in nominative (subject) case and accusative (direct object) case
- 'einen' goes for masculine nouns in accusative (subject) case and also plural nouns in dative case (indirect object) case