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

How to know?( German)

How to know the difference between beetle and beetles in german for example : der junge hat kafer

how can i tell the difference

i am sorry i dont have the german keyboard i know there should be two dots on the A

July 24, 2019

21 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Janet240859

As you wouldn't say "the boy has beetle" but you would say "the boy has beetles", you can tell from the context.

In the example you have given, you would have to say "the boy has a beetle" - der Junge hat einen Käfer

More broadly, it's usually clear from the context in real life, but less so in the short Duolingo Exercises. When translating from German to English, if both singular or plural could be correct, Duolingo usually accepts both versions as correct.

We have the same issue in English (one sheep, two sheep) and can even have the same word for a noun or a verb (one fish, two fish, I fish, you fish) but most of us never even notice it when we speak or read - it's generally very obvious with practice in real-life situations.

July 24, 2019

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

yeah i thought so my self, I asked this question because i thought there might be some other way that i don't know about since i am new to the language Thank you.

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrew41404

I think since it already has an umlaut the singular and plural versions are the same like deer, or sheep. Someone please correct me if im wrong.

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Claudia936294

I think the Umlaut is less an indication than the ending er. Several (but not all!) words ending on er are the same for singular and plural. Der Lehrer - die Lehrer, das Fenster, die Fenster,

Mehr Beispiele sind hier: https://deutsch-werden.de/de/deutsche-woerter-die-im-pluralform-und-singularform-gleich-beliben-aber-deren-artikel-sich-aendert

July 25, 2019

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

thank you sir you have got a point

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John12457

I think Der Käfer means The beetle, and Die Käfer means The Beetles.

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John12457

Different form of 'Die' are used for plural and singular nouns.

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John12457

I hope I'm right, otherwise I've been looking at it the wrong way all this time.

July 24, 2019

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

yeah i know that but sometimes its not saying die or der so thats why i asked.

July 24, 2019

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

Only the plural can be used without any article. (in proper German, some people with slavic back ground drop articles because they are used to that from these languages)

Another hint is looking at the verb.

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John12457

I'd try to help you more, but I just finished the animal skill last night. I still need a lot of practice.

July 24, 2019

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

thank you john i have also finished the animal skill last night and now i am trying to learn plurals good luck man

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John12457

Same to you.

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Heike333145

You would say "der Junge hat Käfer" only in the plural (beetles).

For the singular, you need the indefinite article: "Der Junge hat einen Käfer."

This presence/absence of the indefinite article is the same in English:

The boy has beetles. Der Junge hat Käfer. (Plural: No article in both languages)

The boy has a beetle. Der Junge hat einen Käfer. (Singular: Indefinite article in both languages)

July 24, 2019

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

MVP of the day Thank you Heike

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Heike333145

You are welcome! :-)

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/u.wu

I took a look at the animals skill again, and I think you might have to use the context to figure it out.

July 24, 2019

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

Yeah thats what i thought as well but i was also thinking that might be some other way to figure it out that i dont know yet Thanks.

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alpha3099

To add to what everyone already stated, this looks very daunting to the learner when looking at the multiple ways to tell plural and how to create them. However, it starts to become natural the same way English does. What is vastly understated, is that while the vast majority of English nouns simply add an -s to the end, there are several ways to pluralize nouns in English, at least 18 that I know of. This is actually more than in German. Eventually your brain will just understand, and just by looking at a word, you will be able to figure out what is plural and not just by recognizing the pattern, much in same way you subconsciously know that if it is a game animal hunted for food, in English the plural is probably the same as singular (fish - fish. Deer - deer. Sheep - sheep. Cod - cod. Trout - trout.). You will eventually see the patterns with practice.

July 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Claudia936294

For the German keybord (if you install it) the ü is next to "p". [ on an English keyboard.

The ö is next to the letter "L" - ; on an English keyboard

And _ä_is next to "ö", that is ' on a English keyboard

ß is next to "0" (zero), that is "-" on an English keyboard

I would suggest to paste little papers on the keyword, if you want to learn that by heart.

July 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sea-mist

die Käfer (the beetles) Der Junge hat die Käfer. Die is not just feminine for words but also plural words

der Käfer (the beetle) Der Junge hat der Käfer

ein(en) Käfer (a beetle) Der Junge hat einen Käfer.

July 27, 2019
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