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Why is accusative used with ein Pinguin in the following sentence?

Man sollte immer einen Pinguin im Haus haben

Immer is an adverb, not a preposition.

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2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Immer is simply an adverb and has no bearing as to case.

With immer, you're saying that one should always have a penguin in the house, without it, you're simply saying one should have a penguin in the house.

Akkusativ is used because haben is not a dative verb, and the penguin is the direct object, therefore it should be in the accusative case. The noun ein Pinguin is masculine, therefore it is declined as such:

Ich habe einen Pinguin

Du hast einen Pinguin

Er/sie/es hat einen Pinguin

etc.

The only difference is the addition of the modal verb sollen. Without it, you have this:

Man hat einen Pinguin

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It does not depend on "immer" but on "sollte ... haben" (should have)

Man sollte einen Pinguin im Haus haben.
Man sollte {wen oder was?} im Haus haben.

"immer" is just a nice add-on:
without "immer":

Man sollte einen Pinguin im Haus haben.
You should have a penguin at home.

with "immer":

Man sollte immer einen Pinguin im Haus haben.
You always should have a penguin at home.

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