"Mom and Dad are spouses."
Translation:Panjo kaj paĉjo estas geedzoj.
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I think it's more like an allophone. In the "ideal" pronounciation it really should be two seperate phonems [nj], but Zamenhof predicted that assimilation would occur. Another example is "blanka", where the "n" is pronounced like "ng" in engl. "ring" by many speakers, even though it ideally would just be an ordinary "n".
You can find more about that on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Esperanto_phonology#Assimilation
Edit: didn't see mizinamo's reply which already explains what I was trying to say. Woops.
Strictly speaking, no, it should sound like Spanish "ny" not like "ñ" (in the IPA, like [nj] rather than [ɲ]) -- two separate sounds rather than a single one that is both palatalised and nasal.
In practice, though, many people assimilate sounds (and say "banko" with a "ng" sound, for example, rather than "ban-ko") and so it may end up sounding like "paño".
How would you specify "spouse" in a situation where you do not wish to imply husband or wife? Consider the phrase, "Each guest may bring his/her spouse," which may be found on a formal invitation.
"Ĉiu gasto rajtas venigi sian edzon" would imply that guests are specifically permitted to bring husbands, and doesn't quite convey the right message. This is one of the advantages, I think, of reformative Esperanto, which disambiguates situations like this. People are often critical of gender reform in the language, but one of its long-standing advantages is its ability to disambiguate phrases that may be unclear in other languages.
How would you specify "niece or nephew" in a situation where you do not wish to imply a gender in English? Consider the phrase, "Each guest may bring a niece or a nephew."
We live with that in English, and I think we can live with "sian edzon aŭ edzinon" in Esperanto.
For that matter, wouldn't a modern invitation use something like "partner" or "guest" rather than "spouse"? Requiring people living together to be married is so 20th century, isn't it?
Just because we "live with that in English" doesn't mean there can't be a way; Esperanto is not in any way dependent on English. Besides, I find myself needing to say "spouse" more often than "niece/nephew", in any language. And my example sentence was just an example; if you want to bring up something about "requiring people living together" I think you're missing my point. There are many other cases where a word for "spouse" may be desired.
On a somewhat-related note, now that you've brought up nieces and nephews. Would "genevoj" be an acceptable collective noun to refer to them? In the same way, what about "genepoj" (grandchildren) and "gefiloj" (sons and daughters)? They would seem to make sense, but I have never seen this course use more than just "gepatroj", "gefratoj", and "gekuzoj".
While we're at it, what about "geonkloj"?
Yes, genevoj is fine for "nephews and nieces", as are genepoj for "grandchildren", gefiloj for "(one's/someone's) children = sons and daughters", and geonkloj for "uncles and aunts".
But as far as I know, none of those has a singular in standard Esperanto, so there's no single word for "spouse = wife-or-husband" or "uncle-or-aunt" or "nephew-or-niece" or "male-or-female-cousin" or "sibling = brother-or-sister".
Some people use singular geedzo, gekuzo, gefrato etc. but others object to that.
I think ge- is something like "... of both sexes" rather than "... of either sex" and a single sibling or a single cousin or a single spouse can't be of both sexes.
So if you want to talk about a single nephew or niece, you have to say nevo aŭ nevino, and if you want to talk about a single husband or wife, you have to say edzo aŭ edzino. English happens to have a shortcut "spouse" for the second case; Esperanto has none for either.
From patro "father" and patrino "mother" and the suffixes -ĉj- and -nj- which are used to form male and female nicknames, respectively.
Those two suffixes are a bit special in that they are most often not simply attached to the end of the stem, but usually "eat" part of the stem, as here: it's not patrĉjo (which would be impossible to pronounce for most people anyway) and patrinnjo, but the -tr(in)- gets deleted here to form paĉjo "Daddy, Dad, Pop, Papa, ..." and panjo "Mummy, Mommy, Mom, Mama, ...".
Similarly with names, e.g. Vilĉjo "Bill" from Vilhelmo "William" or Manjo "Molly" from Maria / Mario / Mariino "Mary".
There are no fixed rules for how much of the stem is cut off. PMEG suggests that "usually, one retains roughly one to five letters" (see http://bertilow.com/pmeg/vortfarado/afiksoj/sufiksoj/chj.html and http://bertilow.com/pmeg/vortfarado/afiksoj/sufiksoj/nj.html ).
Often, multiple forms of the same name are possible (e.g. Nikolao could be Nikolĉjo, Nikoĉjo, Nikĉjo, Niĉjo), much as in English you might have Rob, Bob, Bobby from Robert or Liz, Liza, Lizzie, Libby, Beth, Betty, Bettie from Elizabeth.
But for "Mummy" and "Daddy", the forms panjo and paĉjo are pretty standard.
It is only cause it is a specific list. Yes, either order is correct in both languages, but Duo is trying to teach you mom vs dad. So when Duo gives a list of new words, (like X, Y, and Z), the translation needs it to be in the same order to confirm you learned the words.
That is why they give the same new word in different locations of a sentence, throughout an excersize. To get you familiarized with that new word.