Translation:Instead of one book, he writes two.
I translated "he writes US two", because of the "NE scrive". Wrong. Why? What's the use of NE?
cristisalceanu - correct me if i'm wrong but i believe "ne" takes the place of the word "books". instead of saying " invece di un libro, lui scrive due libri" which sounds repetitious you use lui ne scrive due, the ne goes back to the books in the other sentence. It is understood to stand for the 'books", in this case.
Something like that :) More about it here: http://blogs.transparent.com/italian/tricky-little-words-%E2%80%9Cne%E2%80%9D/
That link didn't resolve for me. This one did:
Generally, "ne" would be translated as "of them", so "of them he writes two."
It sure does, but I was just showing the how I believe the literal translation of 'ne' fitted in here.
The first part of the sentence is 'invece di un libro' meaning 'instead of one book (or a book)'. It does not say anything about 'scrivere' ( to write). Therefore saying 'instead of writing a book' would be incorrect although the meaning is still essentially the same.
I am not a native English speaker but "rather than one book he writes two of them" sounds correct to me and yet it was not accepted.
Anyone know why it's 'un libro' and not 'uno libro' since it's about 'one' book and not 'a' book?
Yes I was wondering that too .. logically it should be "uno libro", if it's supposed to translate as "one", I'd have thought?
It doesn't quite work like that. When you are talking about "one", like in "the number one", eg "there is one", or "one, two, three, ...", yes, you always use "uno" (well, I think you can use either "un" or "uno", but I'm not sure if there's a rule)
Not so with "one of something", like in "one horse" or "one book". In Italian you'd write "un libro" or "un cavallo" both to say "a book"/"a horse" (used as an article) and "one book"/"one horse" (used as a numeral adjective). Only for masculine singular nouns, mind you. This is common with other romance languages like French or Spanish.
But you still say "uno something" if that something starts with impure "s"
Thanks, that makes sense .. I guess I'm automatically using English language rules/logic and assuming they apply here too, which somehow I really need to stop doing .. :-)
Sure! Happens often when learning a new language. "Why won't this pesky vocabulary/grammar fit the patterns I know from others?". Eventually you just get used to it :-D
Uno (number or article) is used with the same euphonic rule (for instance "uno strumento" but "un treno")
I translated "He is writing not one but two books", and I think that sounds better.
Do not worry too much if you got it wrong. There are at least 3 or 4 correct ways to translate this. Just remember the way DuoLingo wants it so you can move on next time it pops up!
I wrote: "Instead of one book he writes two of them" and was marked correct. I took the "ne" to stand in for "of them" and it worked.