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"What was your walk like?"

Translation:Kia estis via promeno?

August 14, 2015

20 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SariniLynn

Kial "kia" ne "kiel"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

Because you're asking "what was it like" - asking not after the method of your walk (kiel? by bus, by car?) but asking for an adjective to describe your walk (tiring, exhilarating, refreshing).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hulten

I'm not sure whether to agree. "What was your walk like?" means the same thing as "How was your walk?". I am very inclined to translate this last sentence with "Kiel estis via promeno?".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vortarulo

Many fluent Esperantists (me included) make the same error and use kiel in all cases, even when an answer with an adjective is expected. If you expect the answer to be something like bona, longa, elĉerpiga, interesa, plena je pluvo, enuiga etc., then you have to use Kia?. Think of kiel like a synonym for kiamaniere (in what manner).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hulten

Thank you, Vortarulo. This is a clear explanation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PatriciaJH

The point is to focus on the difference between "kia" and "kiel."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SariniLynn

WHICH, as I look at more sentences, seems to have to do with the part of speech. Kia seems to be used to describe nouns, and kiel for... well, everything else. So we have "Kia stultulo vi estas!" [NOUN] and "Kia estis via promeno?" [NOUN], but "Kiel vi fartas?" [VERB] and "Kiel verda estis mia valo." [ADJECTIVE].

In other words, the "answer" to kia is an adjective, and the answer to kiel is an adverb...

This theory is based only on observation, but so far it has held up for me...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mizinamo

But note that "Kiel stultulo vi estas!" is also grammatical, though it means not "What a stupid person you are!" but "You are like a stupid person!", using the 'like, similar to, in the manner of' meaning of 'kiel' rather than the question meaning.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PatriciaJH

I think that in "Kiel verda estis mia valo," "kiel" modifies verda, which would make it an adverb, although the whole thing -- "kiel verda" serves as an adjective?

Oh hey, look here, it does indeed always serve as an adverb: http://donh.best.vwh.net/Esperanto/correlatives.html


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FredCapp

Ah Patricia found the pages written by my old teacher from when I lived in California.

God rest Don Harlow, he was a wonderful person and a very skilled Esperantist. I learned more from him than I knew.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FredCapp

Oni povas ankaŭ demandi de iun: Kia estis via tago?

Lacema, longa, elĉerpema, ktp.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TreyEHarris

Two weirdnesses of English that I think impinge upon this seem, to me, to be lost in all this back-and-forth:

  1. A strong cognitive barrier is set up by the concordance (or lack thereof) of two set phrases: How are you?Kiel vi fartas? This use of “how is”, also found in constructions like “how’s your leg?”, “how’s the homework coming?”, etc., encompass a non-copulative verb of seeming (feeling, etc.) into the “how”. This is highly idiosyncratic but is such a basic part of English that L1 speakers don’t realize how strange it is.

  2. English is somewhat sloppy with its use of adverbs versus adjectives in response to questions. Questions phrased like “How are you?” should “properly” be answered with an adverb (well, badly) but in colloquial usage are more frequently answered with an adjective (good, bad). We only tend to see the distinction at all when it’s divorced from the context: “Q: ‘How are you?’ A: ‘I’m good.’” comes across very differently (“glad to hear it!”) from an unprompted “I’m good!” (“oh, really? What did you do now?”)

These two factors conspire to make English speakers not realize that “How was your walk?” is not at all like, “How was your recipe developed?”


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OldBen44

I suppose 'kia' requires a description of the walk rather than enquiring whether it was enjoyable.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FredCapp

I've always taken it as a general "what was your walk like/How was…" to which one may answer with whichever set of adjectives one may choose. "It was enjoyable/miserable/beset by children/fraught with butterflies/etc."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OldBen44

What I meant was that it might refer to the act of walking: was he swaggering, tiptoeing, limping...?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FredCapp

Ah, that's more of a "kiel" question. See the longish conversation starting with SariniLynn's question (currently at the top of the page.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OldBen44

Ha jes, kompreneble vi pravas. Tio klarigas la aferon!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BGXCB

"Kia estis via promeno?" A walk, what else would it be?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/salivanto

The answer to a question with "kia" will frequently end in -a.

.. bona, longa, laciga...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BGXCB

Jes, estis sxerco

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