1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "The man does not see the stu…

"The man does not see the student."

Translation:Der Mann sieht die Schülerin nicht.

December 25, 2012



When does 'nicht' stand at the end of the sentence? In some examples I see 'nicht' after the verb.


Nicht is an adverb, and so you will always find it either before or after a verb, adjective or fellow adverb. It usually precedes an adverb or an adjective, but likes to settle after conjugated verbs. On the other hand, nicht likes to travel all the way to the end of a sentence at times. This happens most often with declarative sentences. Sie arbeitet nicht. (She is not working.) –> A sentence with just a subject and verb. Er hilft mir nicht. (He doesn't help me.) –> A sentence with a direct object (mir).

Exceptions about the nicht position: It is at the end of a phrase but before perfect participle (have been, have seen...) After the verb sein (Ich bin nicht hässlich) The adverbs go after the nicht (Ich rede nicht laut)

Hope that helps a little?


I have not figured out the logic yet either. If anyone can clarify, I would appreciate it. :)


I put "Der Mann sieht nicht den Student" and it was wrong. Does the "nicht" have to go at the end?


Okay I'm constantly confused by when to use "kein" and when to use "nicht." I have read comments by others who say "use kein when there is an object" so in this case I typed "Der Mann sieht keinen Schüler" and got it wrong. Any further clarification would be nice.


I'm no expert on it myself, but here's an example of how it works:

I do not read (ever) = Use kein

I do not read (the book) = Use nicht

I don't know the terminology, but kein seems to be used for absolute negatives, whereas nicht seems to be used to state you are not doing something currently. Please others correct me if I'm wrong!


That sounds sensible. Danke!


When I was in University I once went to a German club meeting, showing up early, and asked a professor lady about this. She simply said that nicht = not and kein = no.


What is wrong with "Der Mann sieht die Schülerin nicht."? A bug? Seems valid to me.

Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.