English speakers would figure out what you meant, but you'd never say that about being thirsty for water. On the other hand, "thirst" as a noun DOES sound right when you're using it abstractly, e.g. "she left high school with a great thirst for knowledge." I think the reason it feels unnatural to "have thirst" for water is that thirst for water is short-lived, while thirst for knowledge is longer-lived.
That is not so. "He had a great thirst" is a more old-fashioned or literary phrase (found in, say, fairy tales), but still correct.
I'm reading a seventeenth centuary novel named Middlemarch which was written by George Eliot and I find these kinds of sentences in that book very often.
Just a google search for "big thirst" returns quite a lot of usage. I agree that it should be accepted in English.
He has a great thirst for knowledge is perfectly acceptable. But to say he has a great thirst for, say, water would be unnatural for an English speaker to say.
Please can anyone say why it's großen and not große? Is it accusative masculine?
Please look at the table in this site https://deutsch.lingolia.com/en/grammar/adjectives/declension and you will understand.
I would like to ask if this could be translated as "He has a big Thirst". The apparent error is in the word "thirst". Is it fine for the native english speaker?
I think that should be right, as well. I got it marked wrong. "He is very thirsty" sounds better in English, but so does "Er ist sehr durstig" in German...
No one would ever say "He has a big thirst" in English, you would either say something like he is very thirsty, he is quite thirsty etc.
Not so. He has a big (or great) thirst would be a very comfortable sentence in English literature.
I agree with Rather_Dashing. We don't speak English from old literature. We speak modern, spoken English, in which no speaker would naturally say "I have a big thirst" or even "I have thirst" (unless, for the latter, if the speaker is trying to sound old-fashioned and funny).
It is grammatically correct and you would be understood, but I would recommend you just say "very thirsty" as that is what most people would say. Having a "big thirst" might be OK in literature but if you go into a bar with your friends and say "I have a big thirst" you will sound like a foreigner who is learning English (somewhat badly)
I'm as native American as one can get and have been speaking the English language all my life. Correctly it would be: He has a great thirst. But in the German sentence, there is no article present (a). So the translation becomes: He has great thirst. And that's a little awkward and probably grammatically incorrect. But we all understood the meaning, which means we all have a little more work to do.
It's because you're adding in "so" which is more of a...comparison than a quantifier.
I understand the comments for using 'big/great thirst' however I would like to know, does the German language use 'having a great thirst' for things like knowledge, as used in English, or is 'having thirst' used exclusively to describe someone/thing that actually needs a drink?
Originally "Durst haben" of course refers to a lack of liquids. But the expression can be used in a metaphorical sense, particularly for "Wissen" ("knowledge"). But then you'd rather say "wissensdurstig (one word!) sein" than "Wissensdurst haben", though both is grammatically correct.