"Sie ist kein Mädchen."

Translation:She is not a girl.

July 3, 2013



The first thing I thought of was "I am no man." -Eowyn, The Lord of the Rings

May 24, 2015


"Ich bin kein Mann!" Plunges sword into Witch-king's mouth

September 2, 2018


Tolkien often uses archaic English for the older (as in thousands of years) or nobler characters - Theoden's speech reads like translated Anglo-Saxon poetry. frequently these older forms are closer to German.

November 19, 2018


Only the Rohirrim use this kind of archaic speech, and all their names are translated as compounds of Anglo-Saxon words. Elves and noble Men can speak Sindarin.

January 19, 2019


I put "She is no girl," rather than "she is not a girl." Both are acceptable in english and mean basically the same thing. I think the former should be an acceptable answer. Take, for example, Lyle Lovett's "She's No Lady": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4o3m1FwhusY

July 30, 2013


why isn't it (sie ist nicht ein Madchen) ?

September 11, 2013


Nicht usually use to at after the verb for instance " Sie ist nich - she does not eat , but kein use to before noun - Sie ist keine Frau-she is not a woman

October 19, 2013


nb: "isst"

March 30, 2016


Omg thank you. So helpful

June 8, 2017


But in sentence it is kein not keine

September 26, 2018


Mädchen is neuter gender, keine is used for femenie words

October 5, 2018


I was wondering the same thing. My guess is that the 'a' is implied with the use of the word 'kein'.

September 28, 2013


I tend to think of the word 'kein' as consisting of the parts 'k' and 'ein'. This way you will not forget that the 'ein' is implied. This works quite well for me and hope it's useful to others.

I'm not a native german, so I'm not sure if 'kein' always implies 'ein'

October 31, 2013


You are right.. I love how you explain it thank you :))

Kein: how to use it : http://bit.ly/2rcK3fy

: )

May 14, 2015


Nice gtaphics Mate

June 12, 2017


kein does not always imply ein -- for example, uncountable nouns can also take kein, e.g. ich trinke kein Wasser "I do not drink any water" but ich trinke Wasser "I drink water" rather than ?ich trinke ein Wasser "?I drink a water".

But it's a good mnemonic nonetheless!

January 16, 2018


Very good notice

October 17, 2015


why can it not read, They are not girls, She implies that the subject is femail.

October 11, 2013


female does not imply girl. they could be talking about a 60 year old lady for all we know :)

January 20, 2014


The subject is singular, as shown by the use of "ist".

November 16, 2013


I wrote that same translation today ("she is no girl") four years after this comment by junpnakamura, and it was accepted.

November 9, 2017


"She is no girl" means more that she doesn't conform to the female stereotype. "She's not a girl" would imply that the she is a woman.

November 8, 2015


Irrelevant, I could flip those 2 around and your statement would hold true. Grammatically, "She is no girl" is as correct as "She is not a girl"

December 29, 2016


or could imply that she may look like a woman, but she isn't a woman(?)

September 24, 2017


Enjoy a Lingot! You made sense of this sentence! :D LOL

January 3, 2019


Excellent explanation, Valerie_Troy. As a native English speaker, I think this is spot on!

March 11, 2019


"she doesn't eat girls" that's the first translation in my mind

November 7, 2015


Ist = is. Isst = eat. Don't confuse them ;)

April 12, 2016


Mädchen is girl. I think that I use keine in front of Mädchen instead of kein. Why kein?

December 20, 2016


It's because the gender of the word Mädchen is neutral...das Mädchen

February 20, 2017


Correct. All diminutives (-chen) are neutral in German.

June 18, 2017


Thanks, I didn't know that!

August 17, 2018


How is Mädchen neutral? It means girl, which is feminine?

October 13, 2018


Strange indeed! Genders of nouns don't necessarily correspond to the meanings of the words themselves; they're often pretty arbitrary and don't make much sense.

As mentioned above, "Mädchen" is neuter because the diminutive suffix "-chen" always makes a noun neuter. In the case of "Mädchen," the original word was "Magd" ("maid"), which is indeed feminine.

October 13, 2018


Okay, I'm lost. What's the difference between kein, keine, keinen, and keiner? I've looked this up before, but I'm not a grammer expert, and I don't know my nouns from my verbs.

May 15, 2017


German nouns start with a Capital letters even if they in the middle of the sentence..

As u know;

Nouns have 3 genders:

Masculine [Mann=man]

Feminine [Frau=woman]

Neuter [Hemd=Shirt]

And There are 4 cases:

Nominative,Accusative, Dative, Genitive..

Now let's talk about kein : )

kein, keine, keinen, keiner, keinem Which one should we use ?!!!!!

It's depending on noun's gender and case

This table image shows it in a sample way: https://1drv.ms/i/s!AinGyxp5tdorpVNn4Zwzjq2nbT5M

Direct link : http://bit.ly/2rcK3fy

Hope it help : )..

May 16, 2017


Okay, thanks.

May 17, 2017


you're welcome : )

May 18, 2017


It was really helpful. Thanks

January 16, 2019


If you have problems distinguishing nouns from verbs, nouns are always words you can grammatically put "the" or "a(n)" in front of (not always in the sentence), whereas verbs are things you "do", it describes an action, verbs also have different conjugations depending on person perspective, amount, and time.

I see a lamp. > "See" is a verb, "lamp" is noun. He sees people. > "Sees" is a verb, "people" is a noun. They saw two cars. > "Saw" is a verb, "cars" is a noun. You used the saw. > "Used" is a verb, "saw" is a noun. She uses the car. > "Use" is a verb, "car" is a noun. We are using two lamps. > "Using" is a verb, but so is "are", "lamps" is a noun.

-See, sees and saw all stem from the verb "To see". -Used, uses and using all stem from the verb "To use" -Are is a conjugation of the verb "to be" -If a word is plural, only the "the" tactic will work, as you can't put "a(n)" in front of a plural word. - Saw and saw are homonyms, they have two different meanings. One describes the observation of sight, the other is a tool. One is always a verb, the other is always a noun.

Hope this helped and wasn't confusing.

June 11, 2019


What is wrong with translating "She is not a girl" as "Sie ist ein Mädchen nicht"?

August 25, 2014


We use "nicht" when negating a noun with DEFINITE article: "du brauchst DAS Mädchen nicht", and not with indefinite article: "du brauchst (k)ein Mädchen".

February 23, 2015


How would I say "she is not THE girl?"

February 22, 2017


Sie ist nicht das Mädchen

June 27, 2018


Okay I SERIOUSLY DON'T UNDERSTAND THE GRAMMAR FOR KEIN/KEINE/KEINNEN.... I'm getting pretty frustrated right now...

December 27, 2017


Do you know the grammer of ein it's the same : ) just add k befor it.

December 27, 2017


It's basically a negative article, if that helps you understand it better. It works the exact same as ein, eine, and einen, just in negative form.

Kein for masculine and neuter words. Keine for feminine and plural words. Keinen for masculine direct object. (And also, Keiner for nobody or no one!)

If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask.

June 11, 2019


Wouldn't it be more correct 'es ist kein Mädchen' and not 'sie ...'? Since it is 'das Mädchen'.

November 7, 2015


No, I don't think you use "Es" for people.

Also, having a "Das" article has nothing to do with having an "Es" pronoun. They aren't related.

June 11, 2019


After a birth the doctor or each other could say: "Es ist kein Mädchen, es ist ein Junge."

May 8, 2016


Am just wondering why "Sie ist kein ein Mädchen" or is it too much direct translation

June 7, 2017


I can actually answer this one, despite sucking at German! "Kein" and "keine" don't just mean "not" they mean "not a" so "Sie ist kein ein Mädchen" would kind of be like saying "She is not a a girl"

June 8, 2017


Hahaa..Gut.where is your faith.you made it this far

June 11, 2017


Try look at kein as k+ein so you'll not need to add another ein to it. ; )

June 8, 2017


I thought if the noun has a femine article then it should be keine. Why ist it kein

August 30, 2017


Your thought is correct : ) But Mädchen is Neuter so it'skein

August 30, 2017


oh I thought since girl is a woman as a child that the word for girl would be a femine noun

August 31, 2017


Grammatical gender and real-life gender are not necessarily related.

In German, forks are grammatically feminine and girls grammatically neuter.

August 31, 2017


The suffix 'chen' makes a noun neuter: der Mann, das Männchen.

September 3, 2017


Why "she is not girl" is wrong???

March 28, 2015


You need the article in the English sentence: she is not a girl. There are some idiomatic forms where you can leave out the article, such as "he is not man enough", but one could argue that "man" is used as an adjective there.

April 29, 2015


Thank you for easy and pretty explaining. I was wandering cause I am arabic and not so perfect in English , now I can test the beauty of languages.

October 21, 2015


Kein means "not a"

March 19, 2019


This is a really weird sentence because she means girl/woman. LOL

April 3, 2015


Yeah, so she's not a girl, she's a woman. Not so weird.

July 26, 2015


Would "sie isst kein Mädchen" sound any different ? I'm thinking about a fairytale witch.

September 25, 2015


According to Duolingo's tips and notes "ist" and "isst" sound exactly the same. I answered "Sie isst kein Mädchen" on this listening exercise and got it correct since it is grammatically correct. Sometimes it's funny to play a little with Duo.

August 12, 2019


How do you tell they from she

October 22, 2015


Sie ist … = She is …

Sie sind … = [Formal] You/They are …

Und Sie sind … = And [formal] you are …

Und sie sind … = And they are …

October 22, 2015


How to say 'They are not girls? Sie sind?

January 11, 2016


Sie sind keine Mädchen

August 26, 2018


C'mon, when do i know it's " they" or "she", they all look the same to me...

August 23, 2016


"sie ist" means she is. "Sie sind " means : they are. For example: Sie sind keine Mädchen mehr, sie sind jetzt erwachsen (adult). And said to a group of girls it would be: "You are not any longer girls, you are adult now."

August 24, 2016


I dont understand the difference between Keine, Kein, Kinen and nicht! When should I use each?

February 7, 2017


Nicht means "not" and kein/keine/keinen/keiner/keines means "not a". Which one to use depends on the gender of the noun and the case of the noun (what function it has in the sentence, if it's the subject or the object...). It's exactly the same with ein but with a k in front. This table should help:


February 7, 2017


why kein and not keine ?

April 6, 2017


Because Ist instead of Sind and the Mädchen is singular

June 29, 2017


Specifically, because Mädchen is neuter singular.

keine Frau would be correct for feminine singular, for example.

June 29, 2017


Remind me why is a girl not feminine in German :\

April 27, 2017


Because the suffix -chen makes neuter nouns.

April 29, 2017


Danke! good to know.

April 29, 2017


This might be stupid better be right, if its a he then the sentence should be "he is not a girl" instead of "she is not a girl"

July 25, 2017


On the other hand, if she is a woman, then "She is not a girl" is correct.

July 25, 2017


Sie is she and them?

August 16, 2017


Yes. sie can be "she" or "her", "they" or "them".

You can tell the difference between "she" and "they" -- as a subject -- because the verb form will be different, e.g. sie ist "she is" versus sie sind "they are".

You can often not tell the difference between "her" and "them" as objects -- ich sehe sie could be either "I see her" or "I see them".

August 16, 2017


Why it's not 'keine'? Ain't a girl a "female"?!

October 1, 2017


Girls are female, but the German word for "girl" is neuter.

(Just as tables have four legs but no letters, but the word for "table" has five letters but no legs. The word "long" is not long and the word "monosyllabic" is not monosyllabic.)

The grammatical gender of a word is not necessarily related to the natural gender of the object that it refers to.

das Mädchen has neuter grammatical gender even though girls are female. die Person is a feminine word but can refer to any person, whether male or female. der Apfel is masculine even though apples aren't male.

October 1, 2017


Isn't "kein" for masculine and singular subjects?

October 28, 2017


It's for masculine singular and neuter singular.

The word Mädchen is grammatically neuter. das Mädchen.

October 28, 2017


I said sie ist keine Mädchen... I used the feminine of kein... WHY AM I WRONG???

December 27, 2017


Check the previous commitmens

December 27, 2017


Wouldn't it be "Sie ist nicht Madchen" or what ever

January 16, 2018


How is 'sie ist keine Madchen' not correct and sie keine frau' is correct?

January 22, 2018


Because the word Frau is grammatically feminine and the word Mädchen is grammatically neuter.

So Frau needs the feminine form keine before it and Mädchen the neuter form kein.

January 23, 2018


why kein and not nicht?

February 8, 2018


kein is sort of like a combination of nicht ein "not a".

She is not a girl = Sie ist kein Mädchen.

February 8, 2018


I said, "They are not a girl," because if a person is not a girl calling them 'she' wouldn't make much sense at all. It said it was wrong despite that being not only correct in English but technically another way to say it in German as well.

February 21, 2018


Women (= female adults) are "she" but they are not girls (= female children).

Also, I'm not sure what you mean with "technically another way to say it in German as well". (Unless you're mixing up sie ist "she is" with sie sind "they are".)

February 22, 2018


Why "sie" and not "es" since "Mädchen" is neuter?

March 2, 2018


Pronouns generally refer back to something mentioned before. Perhaps you had been talking about "Julia" who is female, so you refer to her as sie, and then go on to say that she is not a girl (any more, but a woman already).

March 5, 2018


I thought it should be keine because madchen is feminine.

March 27, 2018


There is no German word madchen.

The word Mädchen (with capital M and with ä) is not feminine but neuter.

March 27, 2018


And what she is?

July 5, 2018


An adult woman.

July 5, 2018


Can you use nicht instead of kein or keine

July 16, 2018


In English, people use "is not" most often and just to state the fact that something is not something. Rarely do you hear someone say "is no", which I personally use to emphasize that something doesn't qualify as something.

For example: He is no gentleman. That is no mere trinket.

July 24, 2018


Doesn't she implies the female gender, therefore the sentence does not make sence since "she is not a girl" then waht is it. Thats the real question

August 17, 2018


She could be a woman -- a girl is a female child, a woman a female adult.

August 17, 2018


Mädchen is akkusativ here and since Mädchen is neuter(das), that's why it is Kein, Am i missing something?

September 10, 2018


Am i missing something?

Yes. Mädchen is nominative here -- there is nothing that would require the accusative case.

"to be" is not a transitive verb that takes a direct object; it is a linking verb (copula) that links a subject to a predicate (something that talks about the subject), and such predicates are (almost always) in the nominative case in German.

September 10, 2018



May 27, 2019


I thought it was "einen madchen", gender neutral noun? Why isn't it "keinen madchen"?

September 12, 2018


It would be "ein," not "einen." Neuter nominative form of "ein" (or "kein") is just "ein" ("kein"). (Conjugation here)

September 12, 2018

November 6, 2018


Why not "sie ist keine mädchen"?

February 6, 2019


Mädchen has to be capitalised, since it's a noun.

And its grammatical gender is neuter, so it has to be kein Mädchen.

February 6, 2019


I thought Kein was masculine and Keine was feminine?

May 1, 2019


"Mädchen" is, rather counterintuitively, neuter in gender. (The "-chen" suffix always forms a neuter noun, regardless of any actual physical gender the original word might have.) The neuter nominative form is "kein," which happens to be the same as for masculine.

May 1, 2019


In this sentence is kein being used in accusative? I know nominative and accusative have same endings for Kein except for masculine, but i'm asking for study purposes.

Danke schön.

May 19, 2019


"Kein Mädchen" is nominative here. "Sein" is what's known as a "linking verb"; these are essentially non-action verbs where the object in the predicate is the same person/thing as the subject and is just renaming or redefining it.

In German, the object after a linking verb (the most common are "sein," "werden," and "bleiben") goes in the nominative case, to match that subject. So "kein Mädchen" is nominative here. (For comparison, this is the same reason you'll see grammar pundits for English argue for saying "It is I" rather than "It is me.")

May 20, 2019


But why it must be an "a" article there?!

July 27, 2019


As opposed to leaving it out? "She is not girl" is not a grammatical English sentence.

July 28, 2019


If 'Frau' uses keine why does 'Madchen' use 'kein'? Does it have anything to do with the ending of Madchen? Can someone explain please.

September 30, 2017


It has something to do with the grammatical gender -- Frau has feminine grammatical gender (die Frau, eine Frau, keine Frau) while Mädchen has neuter grammatical gender (das Mädchen, ein Mädchen, kein Mädchen).

Grammatical gender is not necessarily related to natural gender.

October 1, 2017


Uhhh. Does the pronoun contradict the statement? Or is that just me?

July 6, 2019


Or is that just me?

No, it's not just you. If you would read all of the comments, you would see that several people have asked whether this is a contradiction. And there have been responses showing that "she" need not refer to a child.

July 7, 2019


Wouldn't it be Es rather than Sie as Madchen is a neuter noun instead of feminine?

May 5, 2016


Es and das are unrelated.

June 11, 2019


Shouldn't it be "Sie ist keinen Mädchen" because Mädchen is a neutor word?

December 27, 2016


So much wrong with that.

Keinen is the masculine form.

Keinen is the accusative form.

It's "neuter".

April 29, 2017


Even if it was a masculine word, it still wouldn't be keinen, because the verb "sein" is a linking verb, and doesn't take the accusative case.

June 11, 2019


I guess to use "nicht", it should be like "Sie ist nicht ein Madchen"

March 23, 2017


Real helpful to teach the difference between keine and kein. (Sarcasm!)

August 29, 2017


the subject is female why is the correct word kein and not keine

October 10, 2017


Because the word "Mädchen" has neuter gender, and the choice of kein/keine does not depend on biological/sociological gender but on grammatical gender.

With nouns that refer to humans, nouns for female are often grammatically feminine, but not always.

The other way around, you might say "Er ist keine gute Person", where "keine gute" agree with the feminine noun "Person" and not with the masculine subject "er".

October 10, 2017


She is not girl is wrong??

April 2, 2015


Yes, it should be "she is not a girl".

April 29, 2015


Why not "Sie ist ein mädchen nicht?"

March 21, 2016


why isn't it keine Madchen? K+eine?

September 18, 2014


Μädchen is neuter, so kein. It'd be keine Frau though (if i understand correctly)

November 26, 2014


I was rather confused when I read this. I assumed that maybe it meant: "They are not girls". But it in fact is "She is not a girl". Anyone else think this is a rather confusing question? I think junpnakamura is right, but still.. Weird?

September 30, 2015


"They are…" would be "Sie sind…". What's confusing about "She's not a girl"? She's not a girl, she's a woman, she's a lady.

September 30, 2015


It's confusing to me because I would translate it as "She is not a girls", since Mädchen is plural.

October 12, 2015


Well, you just can't say "She is not a girls" in English, you could say "They are not girls", but even that's the wrong translation because "Sie ist" is "She is", and "Mädchen" is not necessarily plural, and "kein Mädchen" is definitely not plural. That would be "keine Mädchen".

October 12, 2015


I beg your pardon, but i have definitely not understood 8-)

Do you mean that, in this case, "Mädchen" is not plural? So, the sentence "Sie ist kein Madchen" would be wrong?

October 12, 2015


Sorry, let me clarify what I said. In this case "Mädchen" is not plural. But there is nothing wrong with "Sie ist kein Mädchen", because it means "She is not a girl" — there is no plural involved at all.

However, the plural of "Mädchen" is also "Mädchen", which is perhaps why you were confused. More correctly, the plural of "das Mädchen" (the girl) is "die Mädchen" (the girls).

October 12, 2015


No, you shouldn't be sorry... You're right, the problem was I didn't remember that Mädchen is both singular and plural... Shame on my memory 8-))

Thanks a lot for the help!

October 13, 2015

[deactivated user]

    SHE is not a GIRL, that makes no sense wtf

    May 2, 2016


    Is your grandma a girl?

    April 29, 2017


    it's meaning that it might be a woman instead

    August 19, 2017
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