"Die Familie besitzt keinen Wein."

Translation:The family does not have any wine.

3 years ago

32 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/glubitz

So does this mean anything different from "haben" or are they interchangeable?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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"besitzen" is "to possess" or "to own".

So they're similar but not fully interchangeable.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MiltonManor

Does a spirit 'besitzt' someone's body, like it 'possess' one in English?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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Hm, theoretically I suppose so.

But I'd use Besitz ergreifen (to grab possession), I think - Der Geist hat von Hans Besitz ergriffen "The spirit possessed Hans".

And Hans ist von einem bösen Geist besessen "Hans is possessed by an evil spirit". (With Zustandspassiv - passive formed with sein rather than werden - to show the state rather than action.)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrew-Macdonald

Duolingo says another meaning of it is "to own". Is it simpler to think of it meaning that?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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"possess" and "own" mean pretty much the same thing, I'd say. Pick whichever of them you like to match besitzen.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gabe692041
Gabe692041
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Could this also translate as The family does not own wine?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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Yes, I would say so.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gabe692041
Gabe692041
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Thanks

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CatMcCat
CatMcCat
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I think the concept of "owning" wine (similar to "owning" money) sounds very weird in English. You might own a winery or a vineyard or a wine shop, but not necessarily wine. I'm thinking it has something to do with the transitory nature of certain things. You "have" wine or money, but then you drink the wine or spend the money. It comes and goes. I think of "own" as more a case of something you have for a long time. You "own" a house, or a car, or furniture (You also "have" them.) But you "have" food (or wine, or money.)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NoOneLovesMe

Actually this is okay to own a wine collection in English so a family owning wine would be perfectly acceptable. Some people own wine for centuries. And most vineries? Are owned by families so it would make sense.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AmbassadorTigger
AmbassadorTigger
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I'm not sure I agree (or disagree) with this sense of own, but nonetheless some people do keep wine for a very long time.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BridgetEA

You make a good point about our usage in English, but if besitzt sounds the most natural in this sentence/context, to the German ear. It'll just have to be another thing to internalize. I'd be curious if it the English usage of 'have' in this kind of context would sound similarly weird to a German if we used 'habe' here instead of 'besitzt'.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/metinsenturk

we are saying ".. any wine" b/c wine is not countable right? i.e., if the sentence would say "Die Familie besitzt keinen Tisch", and the translation will be the family does not have a table. Is this correct?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jamusk
jamusk
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Why "besitzt" and no "besitzen" since "Die Familie" it's plural?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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It is not plural but feminine.

The plural would be "die Familien".

Also, German doesn't do the "plural verb for a singular noun representing multiple people" thing that some varieties of English do - so it is "die Polizei hat..., die Mannschaft hat ..., das Land hat ..., die Regierung hat ..." etc. and not "...haben...".

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jamusk
jamusk
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Thank you for the answer! You're right, it does make sense... even in my language it's the same: "La familia tiene..." ("die Familie hat...") and "Las familias tienen..." ("die Familien haben...")

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Haesselmaas
Haesselmaas
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Why keinEN? That would make it dative and looking at the sentence, shouldn't it be akkusative?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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"keinen" could be dative plural, but here it is masculine accusative singular - the endings (and articles) are identical. (And "Wein" cannot be dative plural, which would be "Weinen".)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Haesselmaas
Haesselmaas
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Ok, I get why it's akkusative, but why masculine? Does it refer to "Wein"?

Also: so it's not just the indefinite article that changes in akk./dat./gen.? What are the endings for nouns?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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Yes, it refers to the wine -- "der Wein" is masculine.

Most nouns don't change endings much for cases, except that nearly all have -(e)n in the dative plural.

Masculine weak nouns add -(e)n in all cases except the nominative singular.

Masculine and neuter nouns often add -(e)s in the genitive singular.

And of course, most nouns have a different form in the plural than in the singular - usually by changing the ending, but sometimes by changing the inside vowel (like foot-feet) or by changing the vowel and adding an ending.

But other than that, in general, the main ending changes are in adjectives and articles, rather than in nouns.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/martofunes

Häuser..

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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What about it? That's a plural that's formed by changing the vowel and adding an ending.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/HeidiBerry5

Good example

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/harthacanute

Totally unrelated, but when was Catalan a course on Duolingo? I'm curious

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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For quite a while, but it's only available from Spanish as the teaching language.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/harthacanute

Thanks!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SchonBaume

Why Keinen?

10 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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Masculine accusative singular.

10 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Casey740111

Das ist in ordung. Bier ist besser soweiso!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KaarinKolb

"The family does not possess, own any wine." would be a better translation

8 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ericsonn0

One would not say this in English.
One could say, ''The family does not possess or own any wine.'' But then the meaning is, to me, very different.

I do not know sufficient German language to be 100% sure but: Surely*, like in English; if one wanted both, ''possess'' and ''own'' in one German sentence, then each verb would have to have its own word. That is, some form of''besitzt, besitzt''., sort of thing!?!

*Don't call me Shirley!

3 months ago
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