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  5. "Ich spreche kein Englisch."

"Ich spreche kein Englisch."

Translation:I don't speak English.

April 19, 2013



Do you have to use kein in this sentense? Would it be correct to say: "Ich spreche nicht Englisch" ?


Nicht refers moreso to your current condition; in this case, changing the sentence to "Ich spreche Englisch nicht" would change the meaning to "I am not speaking English right now". Wheras Keine, in this context, is used for more permanent, longlasting conditions, so this sentence means "I cannot/will not speak English at all". TLDR; though they can be very literally translated to mean the same thing, they have very different connotations.


Great explanation, that cleared the different meaning to me. Have a Lingot :)


Just let me know what TLDR means


TL;DR means "too long;don't read". It's used generally at the end of long answers in order to give a short and concise summary of the main points that the answer was trying to get across.


actually, it's "too long; didn't read" and it was first used as a sarcastic answer to long posts, comments etc. :D


But isn't "kein" used to negate nouns? I got what you meant, but what I want in this case is negate the verb, that is, "sprechen"; therefore grammatically saying and at the sight of Duolingo's tips "nicht" seems much more correct.


If you negate the verb, you are saying that you do something else other than speak (ie speak is the wrong verb and is negated). The German sentence means that you do speak some language, just not German (the noun).


You meant English ;-). Your explanation is great!


Are the words kein/keine cognates of the Dutch word geen?


We using "keine" for womans and we using "kein" for mans


You mean the grammatical gender of the nouns (female and male). For nouns with the neuter gender it's kein too.


I wrote "I am not speaking English" and its wrong?


"I am not speaking English" would mean that you are currently not in the act of speaking English. German translation would be "Ich spreche (gerade) nicht Englisch".

"I do not speak English" means that you do not have the ability to speak English, and the German for that is "Ich spreche kein Englisch"


When you put it like that, it does make sense ! tnx :)


Or, "I speak no English."


So "i can not speak english" should be right too? But Duo doesn't accept it.


amoussa is right in that there is a clear, common reading of this sentence, and that's: "I do not speak English (in general)." However, I think we should also accept the continuous present (I am not speaking English) as BoraVasovic suggests. In standard cases, both kinds of present tense are ok: "Ich gehe zum Strand." = "I am going to the beach." ~ "I go to the beach." The fact that it's about speaking a language may make this an exception though. If anyone has a compelling argument either way, please chime in!


You are literally saying 'I speak NO German', which suggests that you have no knowledge of German. I think amoussa is right that the continuous present is incorrect here.


I have to agree that the present continious is a valid translation. There’s a common joke starring a tourist with a heavy accent. "I don't know English." "I'm not speaking English; I'm speaking German" Translated as: „Ich kann kein Englisch.‟ „Ich spreche kein Englisch. Ich spreche Deutsch.‟


Danke sehr myra


Is "Englisch" really a noun or is it an adjective and the word language is skipped, but implied?


Thanks, christian! So how do you say "English custom?"


Why is "I can't speak English" not accepted?


Since Englisch is neuter shouldn't it be keines?


No it wouldn't. It would if this was an indefinite article. The word "Keon" is made of two parts - "K" - which in this case is just an extra letter used to negate the next part, which is "ein". And, ein is an indefinite article, unlike for example "der". So, if we have a neuter nominative or accusative case, we use ein, or in this case, kein.


Surely this also means "I cannot speak English"!


That would be "Ich kann nicht Englisch sprechen"


That is a bit different. Saying "I cannot speak English" would be "Ich kann kein Englisch sprechen".


Does every language go with 'das' like das Englisch?


Why wouldn't it be, Ich spreche Englisch nicht" Or "Ich spreche nicht Englisch"


Generally, I told it to my english teacher at t the end of the school tests. Then, I must to use the Duo to study english now , because my old teacher hate me and I have no time to study english in a group of young female students. I must to work hard. My work and my Duo - all that I have now. Cool story, isn't it? And now , I can say the same in German to Duo. I am scared.


What's the difference between keine - keinen - kein ? :)


"Kein" is used when negating a noun, whereas "nicht" is used when negating other types of words. The ending of "kein" changes depending on the gender and the case of the noun you are negating, in the same way "ein" does. So, you would say, "Das ist kein Buch" (neuter, nominative), "Ich trinke keine Milch" (feminine, accusative) and "Du isst keinen Fisch" (masculine, accusative).


"I spreche English nicht", no?


Why not' Ich spreche nicht Englisch?


Why is it 'kein'? What is the gender of 'Englisch'?


The gender is neutral.


nein das ist nicht richtig alle deutsch kann english. Ich glaube so.


What a contradictory sentence. "I do not speak english." Would "I don't speak english." also be ok? I've asked around and from what I've heard, contractions don't have a place in German, you just use the two words that you're trying to shorten. Please correct me if I'm wrong.


"I don't speak English" is of course acceptable. There are lots and lots of contractions in German, not just in english. Some common ones are: "in & dem" which makes im, "bei & dem" which makes beim, "zu and dem", which makes zum, and zur, which is made by "zu and der". And there are many more. Thanks.


Thanks! That really helps.


Ja, sie ist ordnung.


The audio said "keine Englisch"!


Nope, Duo speaks American, not English… ;)


Is English a noun here? If it is then what's the gender?


Yes, Englisch is a noun in this sentence. das Englisch


Same type of questions are coming


I seriously copied the word spreche because every i time i get one of these listening exercises with this stupid word i mispell it


Do not speak and don't speak that's the same.how do you think?is there a mistake?


The sentence mean "i speak English" Where is written "not" In german?


The sentence means "I don't speak English". kein is negating the noun Englisch.


I thought you don't speak english duolingo?

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