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  5. "A mouse does not read the ne…

"A mouse does not read the newspaper."

Translation:En mus læser ikke avis.

April 30, 2015

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why not "avisen"?


Because the Danish construction is a mouse reads no newspaper - see my fuller explanation below.


It is "avisen" not "avis


No it's not 'avisen'. The Danish construction is a mouse reads no newspaper - see my fuller explanation below.


Avisen, not avis. This is incorrect. Tried to report but wouldn't allow me to.


I try to do it too. At least, they should explain...


It is not avisen. Avis is correct in this case, because danish doesn't follow the same rules as english. It does however follow the same rules as german, so the translation would be "A mouse reads no newspaper"


En mus læser ikke avis is correct - it's following the same rules as German. We think of ikke as not, but here it's functioning like the German kein(e), which is the negative article (not a). Think of En mus læser ikke avis as A mouse reads no newspaper - a rare construction in English, but not unknown (as Obi Wan Kenobi says in Star Wars when they first see the Death Star: "That's no moon!").
I read a newspaper = Ich lese eine zeitung = jeg læser en avis
I don't read a newspaper = Ich lese keine zeitung = jeg læser ikke avis


So, assuming mice were able to read newspapers, how would we differenciate in Danish between a mouse that did not read any newspapers vs a mouse that does not read a specific newspaper? Or is there no distinction in Danish and "ikke avis" requires more context to determine which is which?


unlikely, because the definite article is also used in German: Eine Maus liest nicht die Zeitung. Accordingly, in Danish there should be a suffix definite article: The mouse does not read the newspaper - En mus læser ikke avisen.


Oh well, it's not only very likely, it is exactly as @scalambra said.

It is perfect in German to say Eine Maus liest nicht die Zeitung. or Eine Maus liest nicht Zeitung. or Eine Maus liest keine Zeitung. meaning A mouse does not read the newspaper. Depending on where in Germany you are one or another may be preferred.

If you mean to not read this distinct newspaper you should be more specific: Eine Maus liest nicht diese Zeitung.

[deactivated user]

    No. When you say "I read the newspaper", you're not necessarily referring to a specific newspaper, but rather the act of reading a newspaper in general.

    In Danish, this is expressed as "Jeg læser avis" (lit. "I read newspaper")

    [deactivated user]

      I think you would say "I read/I am reading a newspaper" if you do not refer to specific newspaper. If you are referring to specific newspaper i.e. the one you bought this morning then it is "the newspaper". Is it not? I think either English or Danish needs to be updated.


      Avisen seems better, isn't it?


      Explanation at top of thread. It literally translates as 'a mouse reads no newspaper'


      Yes, the literal translation. So, it seems to me that this is a Danish idiom - the way they would say the sentence which we would say with 'the' in English. Therefore, it would have made everything easier for everyone if someone had just said that this is an idiom - instead of insisting that it is correct the way it is and we should think of it as "a rare construction in English."

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