"Er kommt aus der Schweiz."

Translation:He comes from Switzerland.

December 10, 2014

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Why "der" is needed in the sentence?


Usually countries don't have articles. But there are a few exceptions. These exceptions occur when the country isn't of the neuter gender. To name a few: die Schweiz (fem.), die Türkei (fem.), der Libanon (masc.), die Niederlande (plural), die USA (plural).

It's "aus der Schweiz" because "aus" triggers the dative, therefore changing die to der.


And then because of 'aus' die changes to der because dative, right?


So if the country was Lebanon, which is masculine, the translation would include the article "dem"? as in "aus dem Libanon"? Am I understanding this right?


That's right :)


Auch die Ukraine (fem.)


Would this necessary mean someone who was born/grew up in Switzerland, or could it also mean a someone who has travelled through?


It can mean both, but I would say it usually presumes that the person has spent some time in the country. So not just traveling through without a stop, that would be "Er kommt durch die Schweiz." (durch = through)


I think the distinction that needs to be made here for English speakers is between someone being from a country and someone who has traveled to the present location from Switzerland. I am guessing the German "Er kommt aus der Schweiz" is more commonly used to mean the former. If so, the translation given by Duo is not precisely on point.


Is it simply random that Switzerland has a gender (f.), but many other countries don't have genders? Any reason why Switzerland is feminine?


For some countries it's "just because" (der Iran, die Türkei, die Nederlanden, der Libanon), for some countries it makes sense (die USA, because it's a lot of small countries (states) inside, also die Schweiz, the same reasoning: it's a federation of smaller countries, in this case kantons).

Edit: even more clarification: "die Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika" (die USA), "die schweizer Eidgenössenschaft" (literally "the swiss federation", die Schweiz)


Die Niederlande is plural because it used to be a lot of small countries like the USA. It means: the low countries. It is the same in English (the Netherlands) and French (les Pays-Bas).


what about aus dem iran?


Iran is another country which is an exception (countries usually don't have an article, or they are denoted with (das) if reaaaaaly necessary, cf. https://de.wiktionary.org/wiki/Deutschland ), Iran has an article, and it's der, cf. https://de.wiktionary.org/wiki/Iran


That's me: born is Switzerland but my parents and nationality are spaniard.


How does use of "kommen" differ from "sein"? I.e., how does "Er kommt aus der Schweiz" differ from "Er ist aus der Schweiz"? Thanks


The context is similar in both the sentences.

"Er ist aus der Schweiz" - "He is from Switzerland" "Er kommt aus der Schweiz" - "He comes from Switzerland"

In general English (as far as I know), the first one is used to describe a person who is a citizen of Switzerland, or whose homeland is Switzerland. The 2nd one is used to describe a person who has come from Switzerland, which means, he stayed in Switzerland for a period and came from there.

I hope I am right and have explained it. Others can correct me, if I am wrong


How is Schweiz in Dative?


aus requires the dative case.

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