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  5. "Antallet af tigere er falden…

"Antallet af tigere er faldende i Danmark."

Translation:The number of tigers is falling in Denmark.

October 21, 2014



They are feeding them to the giraffes in the zoo. No, wait, I got the passive wrong.


It's all those Danish bears!


In the opening remarks you said to use past participle only as adjective or adverb and never as progressive form. However, it is just done here!

  • 1536

Yes, it's pretty disturbing.. Can anyone explain that please ?


It isn't a progressive form, even though I have to admit that it looks like one.
Faldende is an adjective to antallet; "Antallet er faldende" has exactly the same grammatical structure as "Blomsten er rød", for instance. To distinguish it a bit from the progressive meaning in English, you can translate it in your head as "The number is a falling one."


Shouldn't "declining" be accepted, as well as decreasing, and why not?


I don't agree with the use of 'amount' here. Tigers come in numbers!


You can just as well have an amount of tigers as a number of tigers. Amount in this context just means that you're talking about a large number of tigers -- so large that it no longer makes sense to talk about it as singular tigers. To be fair, there aren't that many tigers in Denmark. After all, their numbers are dropping.


Is "faldende" here an adjective modifying "antallet"? Would it be the same part of speech if written as "Der er et faldende antal af tigere i Danmark"? Or is this indeed the present participle used as a present continuous verb?


"faldende" is an adjective made from the verb "falde", and here, it used as an adjective and not a present participle. You can indeed say "et faldende antal af tigere", although leaving out "af" would sound more natural.

For all with English as their first language: "kom gående/løbende/springende/..." (arrive walking/running/jumping/whatever) is the one example of a real present participle in natural Danish I can come up with. If you think you see it in any other use, it is probably just an adjective made from the present participle form of a verb.


This particular sentence looks kind of like a present progressive to me. Hmmm...


I wrote "the number of tigers are falling" twice! Makes me question my command of my own native language...

(Although I'm still pretty sure you can say "A number of tigers are falling out of the pen".)


English is pretty weird with mass nouns. I still don't know if it's supposed to be "The audience is happy" or "The audience are happy".

Anyway, in the sentence you gave there's an important difference: with "A number of tigers are falling" you're talking about the tigers themselves falling, so you need plural. "A number of" is used as a numeral here, a grouping adverb, like "many".

On the other hand, if it is "The number of tigers is falling", you're taking "the number" as an actual number and speak about that one falling/shrinking/getting lower. So it should be singular.

Technically you could use both "a number" and "the number" for either meaning, but I think using "a number" for the numeral is a fixed phrase, so that only leaves the second meaning - speaking about the number itself instead of a group of tigers - as a viable option to translate this sentence. Plus, antal is not used to express "a number of". Danes would rather use "en række" - a row, for that.

That said, the Danish sentence is already pretty Danglish by itself. I would simply say "Antallet af tigere falder."


"The audience is happy" vs. "The audience are happy" might be an American/British difference. At least, it always confuses me briefly to hear "Manchester are dominating this game" from a British {football/soccer} announcer—in the U.S., we would always say "Manchester is dominating this game". Similarly, "the audience is happy" sounds much better to my American ears.


English is pretty weird period, but in any case, "The audience is happy" is correct. This is because it refers to a collective noun, which is singular. In fact "The audience are happy" sounds extremely jarringly strange, such as saying "I is very tired" rather than "I am very tired., etc." I can't speak for Great Britain however, so feel free to chime in if there are any regional differences in your area.


They are not mass nouns. They are collective nouns. Whether you make the verb singular or plural depends on whether you view the entity or the individuals making it up - in British English, anyway. E.g. The government has/have shut everything down.


The jellyfish ate them


it was the girl


Blame it on the giraffe.


Is faldende a present participle here?

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