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  5. "Die Menschen lesen Bücher."

"Die Menschen lesen Bücher."

Translation:The people are reading books.

June 12, 2013

134 Comments


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

To be exact, "man" and "men" in English can traditionally refer to the human race in general. To while probably inexact to say "men read books", it is not technically incorrect, IMHO.


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

Man/Men = Mann/Männer; People = Mensch/en, don't you think?


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

"Person" and "man" can mean the same thing in English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/2GreyCats

But this is German.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/harmony.st

People or humans. HuMANs


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

Also nobody would say "the humans are..." unless they're not a human


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

"The people are" is also acceptable.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JDjuDD1

Barely acceptable in English. Not commonly used. It is much better to say people are


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Metatron36

The president is dumb. The people are rioting. See? It works


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

This aged pretty well oof


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/2GreyCats

Not true. This sentence refers to a specific group of people--"the people"-- not to people in general. So "The people are reading books" is perfectly acceptable in English.


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

Agreed. I typed ´men´ and it told me it was wrong, but technically the literal translation is ´men´


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

Technically, the literal translation is "people" or "humans".

Men = Männer


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

"People" and "humans" can be synonyms for "men".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/J.C.Fink

In my experience - I am 74 - using "men" when one means "humans" or "people" is becoming less and less common as time goes by. It seems rather sloppy to me; if you say "man" or "men" when you mean "people" you may be misunderstood. When someone hears you say "man" or "men" there is a risk that they might think you meant "man" or "men".


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

That's true, with the exception of using it at the start of a sentence with no article. "Man is doomed" or "Man doesn't live by bread alone" should still be understood. It's probably still best to avoid it because it doesn't feel gender neutral even though it is.


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

But it is Menschen instead of Männer in the record


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sophielane19

Bucher totally sounds like "Boo Yah!" Just saying.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iamhye19

I laughed at this


[deactivated user]

    And sweet (süß) sounds like Zues! : )


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aron89ification

    I thought that was odd and funny, too! But seriously, is that the correct pronunciation?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoseeV64

    You can hear the pronunciation on forvo.com.


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

    I was goin' to say the same


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

    Is it really? I read it as quite like "boo yah", with the understanding that "h" in German is soft. Can someone break it down into simpler sound units for me?


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

    It's close to “boo yah”, except that “ch” is somewhat “stronger” than “y”, close to a “hy” sound, like the first sound in “human” in many accents (unfortunately it can't be broken down any further, it is an elemental sound, specifically a palatal unvoiced fricative). The sound is softer (but still unvoiced, that is like “k” not like “g”) after a consonant, so for example “Mädchen” does sound a lot like “mettyen”. As for the “er” part, it's actually not quite the same as the English “ah” (or German “a” or “ah”), but it is similar. In comparison the German “er” is central (that is between the A in “father” and the one in “fat”, but not quite any of the two exactly) and higher (sort of between “ah” and “uh”).

    Of course this is all true assuming you are a native English speaker, otherwise I could try to put the sounds in perspective based on your mother language.


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

    I've noticed that in the attempt to explain the ever-confusing-for-English-speakers ‘ich’ sound, I completely forgot to touch on the ‘ü’ pronunciation, which of course isn't really the same as ‘oo’, but rather something between ‘oo’ and ‘ee’. The best way to produce the sound is to say ‘ee’ and then round the lips as if to say ‘oo’ but without moving the tongue. In fact this is what the sound is: a rounded high front vowel, i.e. ‘ee’ with rounded lips.

    If the ‘ü’ in a word is short, then you pronounce ‘i’ (as in ‘pit’) with rounded lips.


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

    I think you have to begin doing that as a baby


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

    That's incredibly helpful... I think it's helping me approximate the way it's meant to be said haaha though I'm still not quite there yet. By chance, you also corrected my pronunciation for Mädchen. Heh.

    Danke schön!!


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

    Gern geschehen!


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

    Human -> Der Mensch ,,,,,,,,,,,,,, People -> Die Menschen (plural)


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

    It's difficult to me to differenciate "Mädchen" and "Menschen", when is spoken.


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

    I thought I was the only one.


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

    I was floundering between the two words for 10 minutes because I was almost out of hearts.


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

    Out of hearts? What do you mean?


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

    Lost hearts was the penalty in the old system. Once you made three mistakes (lost three hearts), you had to repeat the lesson.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vicki601227

    Thanks for clearing that up.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/e.marienfeld

    Wouldn't "Leute" be much more appropriate than "Menschen"?


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

    I would tend to agree... but that.s just what I went with in German 102..


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

    Is the 'ch' in Bucher pronounced gutturally like 'challah roll' or dentally like 'Chef'?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/karlchen123

    That usually depends on the vowel before the -ch if it is of the group -a, -o, -u, -au it is like your challah roll (I have no idea how to pronounce challah, but guttural sounds about right).

    If it is in the group of the lighter vowels like -e, -i, -ä, -ö, -ü, -ei, -eu, -äu it is the chef-version. That makes Buch an interesting case. In singular it has an guttural -ch, but because of the vowel shift in plural Bücher has a chef-ch. You can hear the difference here: http://www.dict.cc/?s=Buch vs. http://www.dict.cc/?s=b%C3%BCcher

    That is why I would recommend to you to use the ue-workaround if you want to express an umlaut, but don't have the key on your keyboard. This also works for the other 2 umlauts: ö=oe and ä=ae.


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

    Thanks for the dictionary reference


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

    The "ch" sound you hear in the word "chef" (which is of course a French word) is the same as our "sh" in ship. It is written "sch" in German and is pronounced "dentally" to use your word. Schiff, schnell, zwischen, etc.

    With all due respect, I must disagree with the following statement from Karlche123: "If it is in the group of the lighter vowels like -e, -i, -ä, -ö, -ü, -ei, -eu, -äu it is the chef-version."

    While it is true that the vowels listed above signalize the softer guttural, the "ch" in German is never pronounced like chef unless it is in a borrowed French word.

    The "ch" in Bücher is a soft guttural and is formed at the back of the tongue (tip lowered, back of tongue raised thereby blocking the air flow.) You cannot easily make this sound if your upper and lower molars are touching. You can, though, say "sh" or the German "sch" with molars touching, even though you probably don't normally do it that way.

    There are people, though, in cities like Cologne and Aachen and the surrounding areas who pronounce the ch in some words (but not all) like an "sch" or our "sh". They say typically Büscher instead of Bücher. Also "isch, misch und disch." The best and cutest example of a typical mispronunciation and an exercise for kids (and foreigners) is "grieschische Geschischte" instead of the correct " griechische Geschichte" (A fun one to practice)

    So much concerning the soft guttural. I hope it helps!


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

    I learned it was a very soft back of the tongue "ch." But my teachers were from Nurnburg and Swabia.


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

    It can be palatal, which sounds like alveolar 'sh,' or more guttural, which sounds more like 'k,' depending on dialect.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/solis10

    whats the difference between "Menschen" and "leute"?


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

    They could practically be used the same, but "der Mensch" refers the species to which we belong (man). "Leute" is more literally like the English word "people."

    The distinction would probably only matter if you dealing with philosophy or some like discipline.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/maceman585

    Can't Leute also mean "people"?


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

    Yes, Leute means people in a different way though. Menschen means men or mankind, so it refers our species (rational animal). Many people substitute people for men and person for man used in this sense, because over the centuries man has come be associate more and more exclusively with male men.

    Leute is a people as in the collective noun referring to large group of human beings in one spot. It has no singular form.

    Volk means people in the sense of "a people" an identifiable population e.g. the German people, the American people.

    Most of the distinctions in the way the English word "people" is used only matter in a philosophical context, however.


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

    Why does this awesome answer have only one upvote? And why can't we give out lingots from the mobile app?


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

    So...Leute (a large group of people in one spot) should have been used. Unless the sentence meant to convey that mankind is reading...?


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

    The singular form for 'Die Menschen' would be 'Das Mensch' ?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Khaled.tolba

    About Bucher, I heared the pronunciation "Bu ya" here, and also heared "Bu cha" in another place, wich one is correct?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fai.cnt

    Bu-cha with the soft ch. This is known as the "Ich-Laut." Hard ch is called the "Acht-Laut."


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

    Does anyone know how to tell the difference between "Madchen" and "Menschen"


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

    das Mädchen -the girl die Mädchen-the girls die Menschen-people


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

    I mean in the pronunciation


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

    There is a difference: Mädchen is pronounced "maihd-chen" - the ch is like in the word "sich" . Menschen is the plural of Mensch, the sch sound is like the sh sound in English. Pronounce it "menshen". So the words are different in the vowel pronunciation ,"ä" being sort of between "maid" and "med", and "e" like in men. They also differ in the pronunciation of "ch" and "sch". Go to: http://dict.leo.org/#/search=Mädchen&searchLoc=0&resultOrder=basic&multiwordShowSingle=on Click on the small arrow next to any word to hear excellent pronunciation.


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

    hello. can someone please tell me what is the exact difference between "Leute" and "Menschen" seem like both can be translated to "people"


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

    One difference is that Leute is always plural, a collective term. "Die Menschen" is plural for "der Mensch". Menschen is also the preferred term when speaking of "mankind". In instances where we would say "Man" or "men" in philosophical terms, you would also say "der Mensch" or "Menschen". Also, to differentiate from animals, for example: Say you are out in the middle of nowhere and you suddenly see people, as opposed to rabbits and mountain goats, you might say, "Schau, da laufen Menschen!" (BTW, I think the given sentence is a bit odd - like so many in DL) Maybe it means, humans, as opposed to animals, read books.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lianna499068

    The english translation given makes no sense in english.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vieuxrenard84

    I'm french and I have problems to pronounce correctly words Bücher or Mädchen for exemple, cause in french we doesn't have this "CH" sounds when it's in the middle of the word, do you have some tips cause it sounds wrong.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Happy_-Life

    Why "the persons read books" is not accepted? Please,anybody ,explane me.Thanks.


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

    Persons is only used as a plural in philosophical, legal, or technical ways. In normal speech, people is used as the plural of person.


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

    Would Menschen reffer to "people" as a simple group of humans or to historic groups (like "The Indigenous People", something more anthropolagical)?


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

    The sense of people as in nation or ethnic group is Volk. Menschen is the species that we belong to.


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

    I had finished my German course at Memrise, why don't use 'die Leute'? But as usual German has different word to describe something. Like die Oma und die Großmutter.


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

    It would mean something different with "Leute". There are various good explanations in the comments about the difference between "Leute" and "Menschen" which mostly boil down to: "Leute" is a group of people gathered in one place while "Menschen" focuses more on people as humans rather than animals or, say, martians.

    By the way, English actually has more than one word for "grandmother" like German, actually it has at least three: grandmother, grandma and granny. It's just natural to have different levels of formality in addressing or referring to members of the family and English actually tends to have more variants than German.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MartaVirgi1

    The people Are? Or The people Is?


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

    In this case, based on the meaning of the original German, "people are". You would use "people is" when referring to a group of people belonging to the same country or culture (a Volk), for example: "the German people is honest" or "the indigenous peoples of Australia have many different languages" (yes, in this sense "people" has itself a plural).


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlexanderS317

    I'm getting tired of translating this sentence all the time, Duolingo


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Murdoch20

    Tshould not be marked wrong by omitting THE


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

    I don't think the definite "the" article is necessary (it doesn't accept the solution without it).


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

    What's the difference between Menschen and Leute?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brian851903

    So why is it wrong to say, "the people read books"?

    I thought this sentence could be interpreted as either "the people are reading books" or "the people read books."

    Danke.


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

    In the summary notes it was mentioned that the plurals of masculine and neutral nouns end with -er, Mensch is masculine, so why is the plural ending with -en (as in case of feminine noun). Is it an exceptional case?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rewm
    • 810

    Read the notes carefully, that are just general, typical examples, but exceptions are possible. It says "most masculine or neuter nouns will need the -er ending"


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

    Sorry, did you say there is summary notes? This is news to me. How do i get the summary notes please, that would help things immensely.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rewm
    • 810

    https://www.duolingo.com/skill/de/Plurals

    in each chapter (though not always) there's an introduction that should be read before starting with the lessons.


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

    ... and where I can find it when using the application?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/p.dorbeigi

    *and where can I find ... ? If there are any notes, you can see them beneath the lesson options, where you get to select which lesson you'd want to do. Otherwise, you can read the notes by clicking on "Tips & notes" right between the "Quit" button and the hearts when you take the lesson.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mudi1

    How can one distinguish between 'Menschen' and 'Leute' ?


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

    I'm of the understanding that Leute sind people, und Menschen sind humanity/Man (the race, as opposed to Orcs).

    EDIT: this may just be an english way of looking at things. User "fredy" might have a better idea than me.


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

    +1 for "as opposed to Orcs" =D


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

    You use "die Menschen" for the human race (species) and for men when the meaning is thus "human beings". "Die Leute" is the general term for people. Thereby, you would never say "Hallo, Menschen!", but "Hallo, Leute!".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iamhye19

    If you hover over the word "Menschen" it says "Gender: Masculine". So why the use of "Die" instead of "Der" ?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jcake19

    Isn't it because plural nouns take Die? Der Mensch but Die Menschen :)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iamhye19

    Why the hell I got downvoted for this, it's a legit question. This community is for learning, let's take it easy guys.


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

    i dont get it at all :( .. why we used En in Menschen and Er in Bucher ?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rewm
    • 810

    There are different ways of making plural in German, you just have to learn the correct plural form of each noun.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hawksong1989

    why mankind is incorrect?? I answered: Mankind read books and it turned out to be wrong!!!! WHY??


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/karlchen123

    "mankind" would translate to Menschheit. Menschen is just the plural of human which would translate to "people" for most cases.


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

    „Menschheit“ is little more abstract than the English word mankind. (http://www.duden.de/rechtschreibung/Menschheit) It is something closer to humanity. Although the distinctions aren't exactly the same.

    I would say in this vague case that “mankind” is a possible translation for „Menschen.“ However, “mankind” is an abstract singular so it would be ”Mankind reads books.” It could not be “Mankind read books.,” since “mankind” is singular, nor could be “Mankind is reading books,“ since mankind is abstract.

    However, in context this would be an unusual situation. Perhaps someone wanting to distinguish men from both beasts and separated substances would point out that men read books. Brutes lack the intellectual faculties and separated substance, being purely intellectual, lack materiality. The distinguishing feature, therefore, is that mankind reads books.

    But more likely the context for this sentence is a group of human beings, perhaps in a library, reading books. In which case, “Mankind reads books,” would be an absurd rendering.


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

    Am I correct in thinking that there are -e,-en, and -er plurals?


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

    They can be. But for writing you really just have to memorize the ways that different nouns are plural. One good rule of thumb is the Feminine nouns always change, and usually end in "n" in plural.

    In reading, the easiest way to know what is plural is the verb and the article.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pablo.mell2

    Can't I write "people read bücher"? Or I must always write "the people"?


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

    I got it wrong when I wrote prople instead of the people


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

    I am so glad there is a comment section for Duolingo. You all make it very easy to understand the concepts of the language ! Thank you! :D


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

    Why does the voice pronounce the first e in "lesen" like English "tease"? I always thought a single "e" in German was pronounced like the sound in "maze".


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

    She is pronouncing it like the "a" in "maze"; it is, however, a relatively short e, so you might not notice it.


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

    well when do we add "er" like Bücher and when do we add "en"??


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

    The plurals, unfortunately, must simply be memorized.


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

    again duolingo tells me that the translation for menschen is people (IE of either gender). Last I checked, men was a grammatically correct way of referring to humanity as a whole. PC POLICE


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

    What is the difference between "Menschen" and "Volk" ?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lianna499068

    I dont have umlauts on my phone....how can i get them.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lada482008

    A question: at school we learned that "the people" means "tho whole nation"- specific country. And now I am not sure, if that is the same as "die Menschen" - shouldn't it be better without "the" in english version? As you see, English is not my mother languange and I always struggle with "the, a, an" in sentence....


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

    The people is "das Volk" in German. Mensch is the species that we belong to and Menschen is its plural.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ajaykumarp253138

    people can be men or women so can we write "Women read books ?"as some one mentioned "men read books "


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

    No, because if we write "Women read books" then people think that it's ONLY women reading books and NO men. Same with "Men read books". Whoever said that is wrong.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/R0ok1e

    shouldn't the English translation be "people" rather than "the people"?


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

    I don't think so. The definite article in German suggests that we are in fact talking about a specific group of people (I think). Although German and English can have differences in the way they use the definite article, I don't think this is the case here.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/M.parlange

    I am neither native english nor german speaker, and just a recent beginner with German. So, I am geting a bit confused with so many different explanations. I would be very grateful if someone could simply tell me:

    • der Mensch / die Menschen / Menschen. Some exemple sentences.

    • Same with "People/ the people".

    • What is the difference in meaning between "Die Menschen lesen Bücher" and "People read books"?

    Thank you very much!


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

    "Der Mensch liest." (The human reads)

    "Die Menschen lesen." (The humans read)

    The people = Specific group of people (most of the time)

    People = People as a whole group.

    The difference between 'die menschen lesen Bücher' and 'people read books' is the word 'the'. It's not 'people read books' it's 'the people read books'.


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

    I love learning German


    [deactivated user]

      Why the hell is "People are reading books" wrong???? You don't need to add "The" in English!!!


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

      Yes you do. "People are reading books" would mean people as a whole are reading books, meaning it's a popular thing to do at this time. "The people are reading books" specifies that it's a group of people that are reading books and it's not a thing that a lot of people are doing generally. Same in German.


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

      Why not "den" menschen, like it is in another example?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoseeV64

      It is "die Menschen" because it is the subject of the sentence. Der Mensch = the human being, die Menschen = the people.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nadir759252

      What is the difference between Leute and Menschen in the meaning and usage?


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

      These all seem the same to me. Mensche=human Menschen=people Menscher=person? Please correct me.


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

      Mensch = Human

      Menschen = Humans

      Menscher = Not a word.


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

      To be honest, In my opinion, the term 'Mankind' or any phrase where men refers to all humans is dying. Regardless of what the dictionary says it likely has sexist roots and I approve of society distancing itself from the association.

      P.S I am male so call me a raving feminist do it you won't


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

      how can you say the people


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MargaretGi274614

      Has anyone heard ,Bücher, pronounced like that!

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