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"Bessere Häuser haben Fenster."

Translation:Better houses have windows.

July 13, 2013

204 Comments


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

So i have a better house. I cant imagine the worse houses


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelG99

No walls, maybe…


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

It was a house to us!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenNew3

Cardboard?! Luxury! Ours were a paper bag, in t'MIDDLE o'road!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Maestro2603

At least you had a bag!


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

Not that one would like a restroom without windows...


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

This sounds like it's leading up to Stein um Stein by Rammstein.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SilvanaPor11

Keine Fenster keine Tür, I listened to that song like three hours ago by the way hahaha


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

You have a good taste of music.... That would be "Du hast ein guter Geschmack von Musik." I guess


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef
Mod
  • 1116

"... einen guten Musikgeschmack". (accusative case!)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michele267

I thought the same


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

You have a good taste of music


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

I once went to a house viewing and 4 of the 5 bedrooms didn't have windows. We didn't take it and went for a besseres Haus :)


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

Duolingo Forums are soooooo funny! LOL :D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/housemd24

If there were men in orange uniforms living inside those ''bedrooms'' it was a prison...!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BananaPie2

So that's why they're not letting me out! I thought they liked me :(


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Summer.Breeze

I'd probably be fine with a windowless house, but no doorless houses. :/


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

Without walls is even worse... so much for privacy. At least you can climb in through the windows without doors.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Summer.Breeze

Totally, wie die Sims! Schrecklich!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VanessaJ101

I don't know. I think that without walls would be much better than with padded ones!


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

Go to a poor country, favelas or something similar.


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

TIL - favela is more than just a map I used to play on Modern Warfare.


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

Some depressing basements don't have windows


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

i guess i have a worse house


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

Ich habe die besten Haus. Neun groß fenster und drei Glaß tür.


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

I hope you don't mind if I correct your sentences ;)

Ich habe das beste Haus. Neun große Fenster und drei Glastüren.


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

There used to be a company in houston that LOVED worse houses XD or rather they'd buy "ugly houses"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PugLove888

Besser Häuse und Fenster = Better Homes and Windows!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/prandall1

They're saying that if you have a better house, then it has windows; not: if your house has windows, then it's a better house.


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

Better houses have Windows, not Mac...


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

The best houses have Linux...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/H.ello

What a 'pute-snob.

LOL


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

No, guys. The best houses have everything.


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

Do you want ants? Because that's how you get ants.


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

And the best houses have iPads.


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

Wow! Just been introduced to this word "bessere" click on it and my choices are "(I) mend one's ways/am..." "mend one's ways" and "(I) reform/am reforming"!!! Then I go to google translate and find out it means "better" Thanks Duo!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V2Blast

It probably interpreted the "bessere" as a conjugation of "besseren" (the verb that has those meanings) instead of an inflection of "besser" (the adjective that means "better").


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef
Mod
  • 1116

it is "bessern" (without the e)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V2Blast

Right you are.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidBock9

Gute Besserung!


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

The dictionary hints often give translations which are technically possible in isolation, but completely wrong for the context. You're usually better off keeping http://pons.eu/ (or similar) open in another tab.


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

At first, I thought I was in the idioms and this was some attempt to translate, "People who live in glass houses..." then I remembered I wasn't. One of the good things about being a native English speaker and learning German is that much of our language is based in German. "Bessere" sound similar to "better" so I managed to guess correctly.


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

Sadly this isn't so. It just seems that way since the words that are similar are so close. Only about 10% (or less) of English is based on Old English which has its roots in Proto-germanic languages. The rest of our words are loaned from French and Latin. While somewhat of a dry read if you aren't really into linguistics, this book is awesome: http://www.amazon.com/Power-Babel-Natural-History-Language/dp/006052085X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1452140600&sr=8-1&keywords=Power+of+babel


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

I'm not sure what you mean by "words that are similar are so close". Anyway, it is true that English is largely dominated by "foreign" words, although they've often been in the language so long, that it's no longer reasonable to call them foreign. I don't know where you found that statistic though, since everywhere I looked, it was singificantly higher than that, here is one example:

Interestingly, although not surprisingly, the share of Germanic words is much higher when only the most common thousand words is taken into consideration; most likely because much of the Latin and Greek vocabulary belongs to technical language.

There's a society of people recreating English as "Anglish" who attempt to raise the share to 100%.


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

What this perhaps doesn't take into account though is that many "French" words in English ultimately have Germanic roots, such as "garden"

Hence, "garden" and "Garten" are similar, even though "garden" counts as "coming from French" and "Garten" doesn't.

(Interestingly, the word "yard" is actually the cognate of "garden", but that isn't half as recognisable.)


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

I also find it astounding that a whole 4% of our words are from proper names...


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

By "words that are similar are so close" I meant to indicate that we should be able to clearly identify words that found their way from German such as swim, and begin, etc. Clearly no one is going to look at jetzt and know that it means now or Leute means people. And yes if you narrow the vocabulary down to very frequent words (1-2K), there will be a higher percentage of German, but by and large we rely on a much larger collection of words. The statistic comes from the book I mentioned. Goes into great depth about word origins. For a taste of what language would look like if we only ever used 1000 words, take a look at this: http://www.amazon.com/Thing-Explainer-Complicated-Stuff-Simple/dp/0544668251/ref=tmm_hrd_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8qid=sr= which interestingly enough he just translated into German.


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

It could mean better oneself, like trying to improve


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

I did the same. Wir brauchen es bessere.


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

Part of the fun of Duolingo is trying and imagine a proper context to the sentences.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/H.ello

"Hey, how do you like it? It's our first."

"Better houses have windows."


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

"I`m starting my house constructor carreer with this house! Looking at it, what do you think could improve it?"

"Better houses have windows."


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

"I just bought a bunch of Macbooks for my new house."

"Cool, but that OS sucks. Better houses have Windows"


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

"But Macbooks don't have iOS, they have OSX!" :)


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

Best houses have roofs


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

And floors! Can you imagine??


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

Wish someone had told me that before I bought my house.


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

But who'll buy it?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Noam14

why can't you write in "window" in sigular? isn't Fenster both for sg. and pl.?


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

In English, you need an article with the singular. "Better houses have window" doesn't work.

It also seems unlikely - A better house has only one window?

The mix of singular and plural - houses (plural) and window (singular) is also awkward, because it implies that there are several houses but only one window, but it's occasionally done.


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

Sounds very logical! ;)


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

You are saver for non-native english speaker


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/av223119

The best ones have Linux.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JaredLong9

Germans have some low standards for their houses


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

The best houses have linux


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

Why is it "Bessere" and not just "Besser"?


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

Because it is describing "Häuser", which is a plural noun in the nominative case with no article.

Most adjectives take an ending depending on a) the gender of the noun (masculine, feminine, neuter or plural), b) the case of the noun and c) whether the noun has an article.

See http://www.learn-german-smarter.com/learn-german-adjective-endings/


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

I used to rent a small apartment in my 1st year which was in a basement, and it had really tiny windows just above the ground. No natural light whatsoever. Awful experience. Believe me when I say this sentence might make some sense. xD


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

Wow, I totally overanalyzed this one. "Better houses" seemed like a weird thing to say, so I went with "reformatories". My next guesses would've been "prisons", "rehabilitation centres", and "healing centres".

Though to be fair, the hint was "mend one's ways".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V2Blast

It probably interpreted the "bessere" as a conjugation of "besseren" (the verb that has that meaning) instead of an inflection of "besser" (the adjective that means "better").

Also, as a general rule, it'd have to be a compound word if was meant to all be one noun.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelG99

Wow, that's an interesting take on that one… Perhaps the "better houses" you were thinking of might have bars across the windows as well. :)


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

How do I know that "Fenster" is a plural noun here? there is no article and it seems that the form does not change in Plural!


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

Nouns without articles are always either plural (such as Fenster) or uncountable (such as Wasser). Nouns that don't change form are also always either Masculine or Neuter, meaning the definite article will be different.

Hope this helps :)


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

Could it be homes instead of houses?


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

Good thing my house has windows.


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

the common sense of some sentenses here never gonna stop suprising me...


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

Why it's not "Fenstern"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

The plural of "Fenster" is "Fenster" (i.e., itself). Don't add the "-n" except in the dative plural.


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

Mac getting trolled xD


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

There's no arguing with that.


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

"Bessere Häuser" - is it not nominative and there shouldn't it be "Besseren Häuser" ??


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

Yes, it's nominative. You would use "besseren" with an article like "die" ("Die besseren Häuser haben Fenster"), but with no article the correct ending is just "-e."


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

Die besten Häuser haben Vorhänge.


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

Could it be "the best houses"?


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

No, that would be "Die besten Häuser haben Fenster."

http://www.canoo.net/inflection/gut:A


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

Are we supposed to be born with that info???


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

No, that's why we take these lessons.


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

Translation: Better houses have windows. so "window" should be in plural


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

why is bessere Hauser and not besseren Hauser .It is plural doch?


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

The strong plural adjectives take -e in the nominative/accusative; the weak ones take -en.

http://gregreflects.blogspot.com/2015/02/how-to-memorize-german-cases.html


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

Apparently when there's no article, the noun's case is placed on the adjective. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_adjectives#Strong_inflection

eg: Der kleine Hund. Ein kleiner Hund. (to distinguish from neuter eg ein kleines Haus) Kleiner Hund


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hasanali19

Can I write the word "besser" with the umlate ß like "beßer"? What about the word "Wasser"? Also, waht is the different in pronounciation between the double s (ss) and the umlate (ß)?


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

"Besser" is always double-ss. ss - short vocal in front; ß, long vocal in front. Example: Spaß (fun) Switzerland has no " ß" anymore. They write "Spass".


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

The ß is the old way but the new way only has szet after the long vowels i.e. groooße


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

Just a little note:

Beßer has never been a correct way to write besser. I can't remember the traditional rules but I think one would use ß instead of ss at the end of a word (Schloß/Schloss) or word segment (Eßtisch/Esstisch) or before a t (ißt/isst), on top of long vowels and diphthongs (like today). There may be more rules but it's not important nowadays.


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

The double letters often shorten the preceding vowel i.e. "das Wetter" you pronounce the "e" quickly before the "tt"


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

ß has nothing to do with umlauts. "Umlaut" is a type of ablaut that happens in German, and is represented by the diacritic called an "umlaut" that developed from e. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umlaut_(linguistics)

ß on the other hand is a ligature that developed from ſs and ſz, (ſ is "long s". See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_s). See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ß


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

Got it wrong... What I said: The best houses have windows corrected: The best houses have got windows. Don't see the problem.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

I agree--this does mean the same thing. On the other hand, this is kind of colloquial and idiomatic. Literally, "have got windows" means that, at some point in the past, the houses "got" (i.e., received) windows, which of course isn't what the sentence is going for.

I do agree with you, though. Your sentence does mean exactly the same thing as the original (even if idiomatically). But I see where Duo is coming from. Bottom line: I'd say report it.

EDIT: Never mind, looks like I completely misunderstood you. Strange that it would correct to "have got." I would have expected it to change "the best" to "better." Weird.


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

Why is it 'haben' and not 'hat'?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TrioLinguist
  • ich habe
  • du hast
  • er/sie/es hat
  • wir haben
  • ihr habt
  • sie;Sie haben

The subject "Bessere Häuser" fits into the third person plural, as in "they have windows".

Saying "Bessere Häuser hat Fenster" would be like saying "Better houses has windows", which is grammatically wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelG99

Interessant… is "Fenster" where the English word "defenestration" comes from?


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

Well, not exactly. They do, however, both derive from the same Latin root fenestra.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelG99

Thanks, that's effectively what I was asking. Do you know how frequent it is for German words to have Latin origins? I didn't think there would be many – except, of course, words that have made their way into German from English or the Romance languages. But I really don't know. :)


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

There are a good many that are so deeply engraved into the language that most people have no idea that they have Latin roots, for example Teppich meaning carpet (tapis in French). More examples include Brief, Mauer, Käse, Uhr, Pferd, Schule, etc.

There are however, far more that are clearly Latin in origin, but are nevertheless completely German, like Auto, which is probably one of the most well known German words thanks to Volkswagen ads, on top of that there is of course, Intelligenz, Elektrizität (Blitzfeuererregung!!!), Grammatik, Sofa, Musik, Information, aktiv, direkt, etc.

There are also plenty of words that come straight from French, some retaining French Pronunciation, for example, Mode, Chance, salopp, Restaurant, Cousin, Dusche, Niveau, Portemonnaie, Zigarette, Soße, etc.

There are also some Latin words that German gets via English, for example, Computer, Party, Internet, Foto, etc.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelG99

Dankeschön, sehr nützlich.


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

Would this sentence mean that there are houses with no windows, and the houses with windows are better. Or would it be used in a situation where one person would say "this house has windows" and someone else would tell him, "yeah, but better houses have windows"


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

Said an estate agent who rents caves.


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

Must be a rubbish estate agent. They won't be able to sell their properties if they actually say anything true :)


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

Bessere Häuser haben Äpfeln.


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

The nominative plural of Apfel is Äpfel, you'd only use Äpfeln in the dative plural, for example: "zwischen Äpfeln und Menschen besteht ein Unterschied".


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

Just to clarify, haben takes a direct object (accusative), not nominative. However, the accusative plural of Apfel is still Äpfel, so you are essentially correct.


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

Sie haben ein Fehler gemacht: kein Unterschid besteht zwischen Äpfeln und Menschen; sie sind genauso gleich :)


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

I would like to take this opportunity to clarify something in english, which is not my native language.

How could something be "Better houses", why is not "The best houses"? I am not talking about the translation, but about the meaning of the word "better", which seams to be the same in german. I thought that better was always used in comparison with something. I would understand it in a sentence like «The houses that have windows are better than...». But what is its signification here?

Thank you very much!


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

It is correct, but it's somewhat abstract without context. It is basically implying what your last sentence is saying. If you said, "This house isn't very good. Better houses have windows," then it would make more sense, but it's still odd to think about because even primitive makeshift shelters often have windows. A more feasible example would be something like "Good books are worth reading. Better books are worth reading again." "Better" is comparative, but since Duo is giving us mostly short fragments to teach grammar rather than full sentences in context, it's not meant to make perfect sense on its own. "Best" is superlative, meaning nothing is better, whereas better is just relative to something else which may be good or bad, so they're not interchangeable. The same goes for the German.


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

Why is it not besseren Häuse? Since Häuse is plural


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

Because it's nominative and isn't accompanied by die or meine/deine/keine. See the "Comparative forms of gut" chart here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Estera1994

Can anyone explain me when we have to use besser, bessere, beste, besten etc? Does it depend on genre or number?


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

It depends on gender (masculine, feminine, neuter or plural), case and the presence of the articles. This is a good explanation: http://www.learn-german-smarter.com/learn-german-adjective-endings/


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

The worst houses are called jails


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

Nobody thought about the hobbits? :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/A757092

I just wanted to add a related fact.

At one stage the city of Edinburgh had a tax on sunlight, designed to tax big houses with large windows. To get around the tax, a number of houses were built without windows.

So there are some very nice old expensive houses in Edinburgh without windows.


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

Gute - Bessere - Beste.


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

What kind of house doesn't have windows


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

I prefer Linux.


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

So... this implies snails have worse houses?


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

Good houses have doors, better houses have windows!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dick706865

Great discussion, this. In England we had a window tax in medieval times. Do the Germans still have one?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Minervas37

No.

And as far as I know only parts of the germany we know today have had this tax.


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

I translated it as: "better houses have window" and it didn't accept it while telling me I should have used the plural form (windows). the question is how do I deffierentiate windows plural form from singular?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef
Mod
  • 1116

This is easy: singular words that don't denote an uncountable entity (such as "water" or "wood") must have an article with them, in German as well as in English. A sentence like "better houses have window" is grammatically wrong and doesn't exist. It needs to be "better houses have a window", and "bessere Häuser haben ein Fenster" in German, if you want to talk about single windows.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef
Mod
  • 1116

This is different from Persian, where "yek" is not mandatory in these situations.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Maestro2603

The real indicator here is the "haben" which infers a plural noun.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

No, that only shows that "Häuser" is plural. It would be perfectly valid to say "Bessere Häuser haben ein Fenster," with singular "Fenster."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chen247935

Insert "I guess" meme


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

Ha ha! I don't think I'll ever need to say that!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Carrotsand2

I guess there's no need to buy a better house!


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

Some examples are pretty dumb


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

That's how it is in Soviet Russia


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/michael99725

Why häuser and not es


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef
Mod
  • 1116

In principle, there are five ways to form the plural in German (sometimes they are accompanied by changing a vowel to an umlaut):
- -er ending e.g. das Haus - die Häuser
- -(e)n ending e.g. die Suppe - die Suppen
- no change in the ending e.g. der Vater - die Väter, das Fenster - die Fenster
- -e ending e.g. der Baum - die Bäume, der Teich - die Teiche
- (e)s ending.

As already said by Copernicus, the latter appears only in words loaned from foreign languages (mostly English or French). And there are some words taken from mostly Latin or Greek that preserve the Latin resp. greek plural endings.

There are some rules of thumb, but in principle you have to learn the way to form the plural together with the word (that's why you can find it in dictionaries). You can't derive that.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef
Mod
  • 1116

The plural of "Haus" is "Häuser", if that's your question.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

There's often not clear logic as to which ending a plural noun should get. German has a number of ways to form plurals, and you often can't tell which one a word will take just by looking at the word.

With that said, "-s" is one of the less common plural endings, usually used for loanwords. So if you have to guess a plural ending, "-s" should probably not be your first choice.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lisamnusa1

Why is "Häuser " used in this instance?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef
Mod
  • 1116

because "Häuser" is the translation og "houses".


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

The best houses have Linux!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Minervas37

Fortunately, this ambiguity does not exist in German, because we do not translate the OS "Windows".

(Please delete the other two identical posts from you here.)


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

The best houses have Linux!


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

The best houses have Linux!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mohsen273558

Sadly Duo uses many useless sentences in his lessons.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/markfive.36

And worse submarines have screen-doors.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MartinaGil6

why isn't it correct: "better houses have window"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

"Fenster" can be singular or plural. In this case, it must be plural because there's no article. One window would be "Besser Häuser haben ein Fenster." (We also need the article in English: "Better houses have a window"; just "... have window" is ungrammatical.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MartinaGil6

there are lots of examples here on Duolingo where singular nouns have no article.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

There are some nouns--uncountable nouns--that can't take an indefinite article. These are often substances like "milk" or "sugar" where we are referring to an amount of the substance instead of one individual unit (so "a sugar" doesn't make sense). Other uncountable nouns include some abstract concepts ("information," "privacy") and some other nouns that don't look at an individual unit ("furniture," "traffic").

Apart from these, you need an article if you're talking about the singular. "... haben Fenster" will be understood as multiple windows because there is no article.

EDIT: One notable exception in German is occupations: "Ich bin Lehrer" instead of "Ich bin ein Lehrer." Maybe these are what you were thinking of?


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

So, really, @MartinaGil6 's statement was wrong, since these are uncountablenot singular — nouns, then?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-Copernicus-

I assume that MartinaGil6 was referring to uncountable nouns (which would indeed not be singular), but I don't know for sure. But, yes, a singular, countable noun would usually need an article, whereas an uncountable noun wouldn't.


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

Of all the many silly sentences in deutsche Duo, this one takes the cake!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sy1973

This sentence makes little sense....most houses have windows, despite being bad or good houses....


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

Houses in Costa Rica don't even have walls. It's not like they're poor, but that is their style.


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

I prefer Linux.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sandesh169

And others have Mac!


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

So as better Computers~


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

Is this a comment on German houses?


[deactivated user]

    Linguee is the one we were always taught to use.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gunce1

    I think windowless house is good idea because you neednt clean windows. Nobody cant look into your private.


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

    Best houses have more


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

    Can "Bessere" mean like, You better do this?


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

    When hovered over "Bessere", the translation that appears is "mend one's ways" or "reform" etc.. It should be corrected I guess..


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/crw128

    I wrote down better house have fences because it sounded more logical. I can't imagine a house without windows.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jamaicarose2

    I wrote "the better houses have windows". Was marked wrong. But that is how most people around here (California) would say it, adding the article.


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

    How comes I can't put "better buildings have windows"?? If it's meant to be wrong, when can I put "buildings" the 2nd choice we were given on Duo?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V2Blast

    "Haus" can only mean "house" (or "home"), not "building".


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

    The word for Building is "das Gebäude" or "der Bau" (the one we've learnt).


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

    Sincerely, even in english I can't stand with the loss of the article before "better houses"...


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

    In English, you don't always need an article with the plural.


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

    "You don't always need" does not mean the sentence is is wrong without that. "The better houses..." should be accepted. What is the difference with or without that?


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

    That's a different question. I responded to raul_soler, who (if I understand correctly) thought that, in English, there had to be an article before "better houses."

    I am a native English speaker. Whether the German sentence can translate as either "The better houses . . . " or "Better houses . . . " is a question for a native German speaker.


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

    Your question has already been answered. See discussion above.


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

    This sounded dumb to me......why would there be houses in Germany with no windows......so I contacted a person in Germany who helps me understand strange things like this. He said there is a saying in Germany....."Better houses have windows".....which means......Build it right from the beginning and there will be more time to enjoy later.

    Considering how many people wrote in about this, perhaps Duo should consider explaining what this means.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Maestro2603

    This should be the number one post. Thanks for the research.

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