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"De appel"

Translation:The apple

3 years ago

11 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/PlasmaArc

What makes it "de" instead of "het"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ataltane
ataltane
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I think de is for masculine and feminine nouns while het is for neuters. So I guess appel is masculine or feminine.

(As I understand it, masc. and fem. have partly merged, and the distinction between them isn't crucial - leaving m/f versus neuter as the important distinction).

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Brijsven
Brijsven
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Correct ^_^

Appel as in the fruit is of masculine gender.

  • de appel - "the apple" [fruit/food]

However there is a form of appel that is neuter:

  • het appel - "the appeal"

This form is often found within Judicial/Legal contexts and 'protests':

  • de jury van appel - "the appeal jury" [judicial/legal]

  • een appel voor hands - "an appeal for hands" [sport/voetbal]

  • Die hond is onder appel. - "That dog is well-trained." [idiom]

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ataltane
ataltane
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Cool, thanks for that. Would the average native speaker know that 'de appel' is masculine rather than feminine? I mean, does it make any grammatical difference when it refers to inanimate objects?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Brijsven
Brijsven
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This Dutch course that Duo is offering highlights Standard Dutch -- as used around Holland. There are many dialects. In Belgium, and some dialects in the southern part of The Netherlands, differentiation between masculine and feminine gendered words is still exercised.

In Standard Dutch, and many dialects, there has been a reduction to two grammatical gender groups for nouns: common gender (masculine feminine) and neuter gender.

However since there are only two definite articles used (i.e de, het) -- determining whether a noun is masculine or feminine is not that important these days. The primary area where one might see differentiation, and the practice of recognizing three grammatical genders is in pronouns. See below for examples:

de appel (masculine) - the apple

de taart (feminine) - the cake

het horloge (neuter) - the watch


  • Hoeveel kost deze appel? -- Hij kost twee euro.

"How much does this apple cost?" -- "It costs two euros."

  • Hoeveel kost deze taart? -- Zij kost vier euro.

"How much does this cake cost?" -- "It costs four euros."

  • Hoeveel kost dit horloge? -- Het kost dertig euro.

"How much does this watch cost?" -- "It costs thirty euros."


In Standard Dutch and many dialects you can quite commonly see Hij used even if a noun is technically feminine:

  • Hoeveel kost deze appel? -- Hij kost twee euro.

  • Hoeveel kost deze taart? -- Hij kost vier euro.


3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ataltane
ataltane
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Makes sense. thanks for the info.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Kira595704
Kira595704
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Yes, that's correct. In Germany, we have der for masculine, die for feminine and das for neuters. In about 95% of the cases, the Dutch people use het where we use das and the other way around.

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Brijsven
Brijsven
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Appel is a noun that falls within the common-gender. All common-gender nouns use de in the definite form -- while all neuter-gender nouns use het in the definite form.

All plurals use de in the definite form.

Click here for more information.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Liz61

I want to know the same thing but the replies don't make any sense

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Brijsven
Brijsven
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See my response to PlasmaArc above ^_^

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mark238888

There isn't any sure way to tell if it should be 'de' of 'het'. You have to learn for every single object of it should be 'de' of 'het'. We Dutch do it on a basis of feeling I guess. And many get it wrong still. Don't worry too much if you don't get the hang of it, foreigners who have lived here for decades still get it wrong all the time, and people will understand :) Dutch is hard enough to learn anyways haha. Veel succes met leren (good luck with studying)!

4 months ago