1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Esperanto
  4. >
  5. "Ĉu ili iam manĝas je tagmezo…

"Ĉu ili iam manĝas je tagmezo?"

Translation:Do they ever eat at noon?

August 19, 2015



Is there any other things we should know about ''je''. What are the contexts/ situations we should use it. Is it possible to clarify that new entry


One of my books said that it can be used to substitute any preposition and that the mark of a beginner is the overuse of 'je'.


Not quite "substitute any preposition." More like "it's the preposition to use when no other preposition is applicable."


Can je tagmezo be replaced by tagmeze ?


Yes; and then you would not need je.


Just for anyone who wants to know why, -e endings denote adverbs.

In this case, it would mean 'eating noonly' (or 'eating in a noon-like manner') instead of 'eating at noon'.


No, they're vampires. Respect their lifestyle.


So "je" refers to time while "ĉe" refers to position?


Not really. "At noon" is translated to "je tagmezo", but "je" does not mean "at".

"Je" doesn't have a specific meaning. It is a preposition that is used when no other preposition makes literal sense. Let's take "ĉe" as an example. It refers to a physical location that one is "at", but one can't physically be "at" a time (or "over", "under", "in", "beside", etc.) so we use "je".

Quoting salivanto from an earlier comment on this same sentence: "Not quite 'substitute any preposition.' More like 'it's the preposition to use when no other preposition is applicable.'"

Also, I've always heard this so I'll pass it on to you: it's better to learn the uses of "je" rather than trying to logic it out. Some Esperanto phrases use a different preposition when it SEEMS that "je" would make more logical sense.


Exactly. There are certainly many cases where je doesn't refer to time - graveda je knabo, trinki je via sano, jxuri je la barbo de Zamenhof....


Thank you! That was informative.


Bonvolu diri al mi la malsimilon inter "kelkfoje", "foje", kaj "iam". Dankon.


Foje =

  • kelkfoje (on a few occasions)
  • unufoje (on one occasion)

Iam = at some time


Probably not when and if they celebrate Ramadan.


why is "je" pronounced like "ie" instead of " ye"? I thought the j always had the y sound.


Listen again. I'm pretty sure he is pronouncing it "ye"


I mean, [i] and [j] actually the same sound if you want to get technical about it. it's just that your brain perceives it differently depending on whether or not it's the nucleus of a syllable


That is not at all true, j is an approximate (a form of consonant) requiring a partial obstruction of air. i is a vowel, fairly closed and frontal. Check out some phonetics to help clear up the differences if neede, its hard to explain in text but the biggest differences are the obstruction and the voicing.


No, @tacit-blue is right. "voiced palatal approximant" and "close front unrounded vowel" are just two different ways to describe the same configuration of mouth & throat. The only difference between [i] and [j] is that [i] appears in the nucleus of a syllable.


Don't flip the position of eat and ever.


"Do they eat at noon sometimes?" is the so called correct answer, but I see a different translation here as "Do they ever eat at noon?" Question: Is this alternate translation included in the software for the answer for this exercise? BTW I find the "Do they ever eat at noon" to be a much better translation than the "correct" answer I see in the program. "Do they eat at noon sometimes" sounds like a non English speaker translation.


I can confirm "ever" is accepted. But i will point out in english "do the eat at noon sometimes" has a different meaning than "do they ever eat at noon". Do they eat at noon sometimes? Yes. -This implies they ate at noon infrequently but more than once. Do they ever eat at noon? Yes. - Only confirms the question, not the frequency. Could be once, regularly, every day....

I would say one of these translations must be wrong, but they are both accepted here.


Sometimes doesn't really imply infrequent without an inflection in response to someone suggesting great frequency. By default sometimes works at any point greater than never, less than always, which could be any N but isn't N is not specific.


Ok i am more confident now. One is wrong, "do they eat at noon sometimes?" Would actually be "Ĉu vi kelkfoje manĝas tagmeze?"

Iam is an undetermined time so translates to ever while kelkfoje is a repeated occurence or "sometimes".


In this comment, it’s remarked that

Iam ni manĝas tagmeze = at some (unspecified) time we are eating at noon. The… sentence doesn't make sense to me.

and unufoje, kelkfoje, or just foje is recommended instead. It feels like the same advice should apply here—but it doesn’t? This sentence as given above with iam wouldn’t be read, “Do they eat at some time at noon?” (which seems nonsensical), even though Ili iam manĝas je tagmezo is read in this nonsensical manner?

It feels like this violates the “just stick Ĉu… on the beginning to make a yes/no question” rule, and I can deal with that using natural-language linguistics—but I’ve been warned many times not to apply natural-language linguistics to Esperanto, and just use the literal rules as written instead.


"It is remarked". Read "Salivanto/Tomaso said".

Yes, I also think the same advice should apply here, but yes - it's easier to accept as a question. I find it easier to imagine it with future tense (both as a statement and a question.)

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