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  5. "The girl reads the newspaper…

"The girl reads the newspaper."

Translation:Das Mädchen liest die Zeitung.

December 28, 2012



I am begining to understand that certain articles can have masculine and feminine properties, but i haven't been taught yet how to tell whether or not the noun is feminine.


me either! and is really difficult, can someone explain this to us please?


I've seen some native speakers post elsewhere that words ending in '-ung' or '-tung' are often feminine - this has helped me.


You simply have to learn the noun's gender along with the definition of new words. There is no way of telling whether a noun is masculine or feminine. Sometimes they are obvious (ex, "man" is going to be masculine) but most times its rather random. "Zeitung" (newspaper) for example is feminine.


You simply have to learn the words gender.


Use always the nouns with the article and you will learn the gender easier.


Why is Madchen considered neutral when it means girl? Why isn't it feminine?


-chen means a small version (ex: Brötchen - a hard roll aka small bread) and it automatically makes a word neutral


These are properties of a language, in this case the German language. Ex: The nose: In French is masculine "le nez" In Spanish is femenine "la nariz". In English, no gender.


Why can't it be "Das Mädchen liest eine Zeitung"?

  • die Zeitung = the newspaper

  • eine Zeitung = a newspaper


Thank you. I actually knew this but I focused on choosing which one was correct (They offered both 'die' and 'eine', making both correct sentences) but the question was to translate the phrase they gave, so only one of them worked.


That would be "a newspaper" not "the newspaper"


For those who are confused about gender, what everyone else is saying is true. You do have to learn the noun's gender as well as the translation, but they aren't all random. For instance, all words that end in "ung" are feminine (Die Zeitung, die Bedienung, die Rechnung) . In this lesson, Mädchen is neuter. Why? Because any noun that ends in "chen" is neuter (Das Mädchen, das Brötchen, das Hähnchen).


der Sprung, der Kuchen :)

Admittedly, in those word, -ung and -chen are not suffixes, but it does make things a little trickier because you have to know when a sequence of letters is used as a suffix and when it's part of the stem.


Why "liest" and not "lesen"?


Das Mädchen liest die Zeitung = The girl reads/is reading the newspaper

Die Mädchen lesen die Zeitung = The girls read/are reading the newspaper




Why can't I use "die" instead of "das" in front of "Madchen"?


Because "Mädchen" is neuter.


but it refers only to girls, correct?


Correct. But the grammatical gender of a word is not necessarily related to the natural gender of the thing the word refers to.


Liest not lesen ?


Yes. Because it's just one girl.

  • das Mädchen liest = the girl is reading
  • die Mädchen lesen = the girls are reading


Would love it to be a little easier and slightly different, simple like as the word gets bigger for more than one. I.e lese...I, me,one Add the n, lesen, two, u And finally liest meaning the rest. The fact that the words are same numbet of characters and complete different in some respects. Its not possible to create a formula to follow. It really is just stick in and use learn the words. No easy short cuts.


Great idea! Danke


When is "sie" used?


sie means "she" (subject) or "her" (direct object) or "they" (subject) or "them" (direct object).


Thank you so much!


sie means she when the "s" is in lower case but Sie means they when the "S" is higher case. The higher case Sie can also mean formal "you"


Sie means they when the "S" is higher case

No. "they" is also lower-case sie -- just like "she". The words are written completely identically.


I had there 2 times writen something and i licted one thing and it was bad


I’m sorry; that report is too vague.

Can you please show us a screenshot of what you mean? (Upload it to a website such as imgur and tell us the URL.)


Why isn't das used for newspaper


Why isn't das used for newspaper

"newspaper" isn't a German word.

Grammatical gender is attached to words, not to ideas or concepts.

The German word for a newspaper is Zeitung. The word "Zeitung" is grammatically feminine.

Grammatical gender is basically arbitrary. You simply have to learn it.


Its "the newspaper "so it should be den zeitung..... why is the answer die zeitung which means "a newspaper "


Its "the newspaper "so it should be den zeitung

Er, what? Why?

First, Zeitung is a noun, so it has to be capitalised.

Second, Zeitung is feminine -- but den is either masculine accusative or plural dative, but never feminine.

Here, the newspaper is the direct object of the verb "reads", so you need the accusative case -- and feminine accusative is die. Thus die Zeitung for "the newspaper".

die zeitung which means "a newspaper "

"a newspaper" is eine Zeitung.


Why is it Das Mädchen liest die Zeitung when Die is used for neuter while Das is used for feminine? Das Mädchen is neuter so it would make sense that it's neuter but in this answer it isn't (?)


Why is it Das Mädchen liest die Zeitung when Die is used for neuter while Das is used for feminine?

It's the other way around: das for neuter, die for feminine.

Hence das Mädchen (neuter), die Zeitung (feminine).


omg I mixed it up in my notes. tysm for the fast response.


wasn’t "das" meant to be used before neutral nouns like newspaper?


wasn’t "das" meant to be used before neutral nouns


like newspaper?

Er, what? "newspaper" is an English word. You wouldn't use it in a German sentence anyway.

And Zeitung is feminine, not neuter.


Wasn't there a rule for "the" regarding words like newspaper? Where all similar class words are die?


So u do get die for die madchen? When its more than one? I thought das for das madchen always stayed das? Thanks for all the help above u guys! :)


So u do get die for die madchen? When its more than one?

Yes. (But watch the spelling: it's Mädchen with Mä- and not ma-. Or Maedchen if you can't type the ä.)

I thought das for das madchen always stayed das?

No. All nouns take die in the plural.


Could u have das madchen lesen???


Could u have das madchen lesen?



So do i have this right...? Lese for me, I Liest for the person, one of Lesen for the persons, more than one?


So do i have this right...?
Lese for me, I
Liest for the person, one of
Lesen for the persons, more than one?



I have failed at least 5 times here! How do I learn the difference?


How do I learn the difference?

The difference between what and what?


Why not lesen .?

Why do you think it could be lesen?

das Mädchen is one person.

When the subject is one person (he/she/it), the verb in German will end in ............. (fill in the blank).


What's the differnt liest and lesen? :(


Why can't we say "Das Madchen liest DER Zeitung" ? I know it's feminime, but because it's after lesen, why is Zeitung still nominative ?


Okay thanks, but I read just before that when it was accusative der > den and die > der ?


why should we use Das besides Madchen ? is it feminein to using Die ?


My German teacher put it to me like this: Mäd means maid, which is what girls were called long ago. The chen part means little. Anything that has chen in it is automatically neuter, and uses das.


Why is it, "Das Mädchen liest die Zeitung" and not "Das Mädchen liest 'Das' Zeitung"


"Zeitung" is feminine.


One isMadchen,many are "Mädchen"?


No. One is Mädchen, many are also Mädchen.

If there is a definite article before them, then you can tell the difference by the article: das Mädchen (the girl), die Mädchen (the girls).


Das madchen ist in ordinung?


Das madchen is not correct, nor is ordinung.

It's Mädchen with capital M and with ä. (And in Ordnung.)


Why das madchen instead die madchen?


Both are wrong -- Mädchen has to be capitalised and has to have an ä, not an a. (Or write Maedchen if you can't write Mädchen. But don't just leave the dots off entirely.)

das Mädchen is "the girl".

die Mädchen would be "the girls" -- plural.

The noun Mädchen is grammatically neuter, not feminine.


But there is no die here?


People will say its cause im english but id love to see the results of someome who knew no language which they prefer or pick up easier. Not sure how ud do it but it gotta be English over a european language. We just add letters, i.e. read reading reads. We dont have completely sepetate words. How people can say it easier to grasp ill never know. Ill keep trying though.


my keyboard has no umlaut


If you use the US-International keyboard layout, you can use an umlaut by typing " before the vowel you want to add the umlaut to.


Not working... :(


You can write -e after the letters that should have umlauts.

"Mädchen" → "Maedchen" "Schröder" → "Schroeder" "Mütter" → "Muetter"

Due to the umlaut being the only diacritic in the language, it doesn't matter if you write the vowels with any other diacritic at all: ú ü ū û, even ũ.


Why is "die" used for females only?


Its not that the person doing the action is a female, but that the thing thats receiving the action. Zeitung is a feminine word.


this is a grammar rule ! it is also used for plural !


It is used for females and plurals.

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