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"I suoi gatti mangiano il topo."

Translation:His cats eat the mouse.

January 11, 2013

107 Comments


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

Poor mouse eaten by multiple cats

February 17, 2014

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

Well, fianlly Jery got what he deserved :P

July 5, 2014

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

Don't be mean to poor Jerry!

March 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hector290697

Oh wow. I like your Kindergarten Cop pic. Good times.

February 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hector290697

My childhood traumatized.

Grazie! XD

February 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mark342100

Ok, so what is the plural for mouse? I thought that "cats" would eat "the mice"

February 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

the mouse = il topo
the mice = i topi

But that's not the point of these sentences.

February 24, 2019

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

And over and over again! (as Present Simple is used for habitual action)

February 21, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/die7fox

Without any context, how are we supposed to know whether "suoi" is your, her, or his? Or am I missing something in the sentence that indicates what it's supposed to mean?

January 11, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/moonspinner12

In more complex sentences, there may be another clue as to the gender, but without context (for example, this sentence in the exercise) there is no way to know. I think the "translation" here reverts to the masculine form as we often do in English, but "Her cats eat the mouse" is also a correct translation. The third person singular as "you", in my experience, is used as the polite form more in addressing strangers e.g. when greeting them, asking directions, conducting business, etc. rather than in a sentence like this one.

January 15, 2013

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

This is the second time in this lesson that I have been marked wrong his instead of hers. Wouldn't it be proper to suggest to Dolingo accept as correct "his", "hers", and "his or hers" in these instances?

April 15, 2018

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

It's "her" not "hers" in this sentence so that's probably why Duo didn't accept it.

April 16, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

"His/hers" is the possessive pronoun. "His/her" is the possessive adjective. Their usage is very different.

April 16, 2018

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

Suo, sua, suoi etc always adjust their shape to the object. Gatti in this case. Not to the subject.

From looking at "suo, sua or suoi" we can not know whether the subject is female, male or plural femal/male.

Well, that's just a difference of English and Italian. An Italian might be confused about English: from the word "her" or "his" he can never know the gender or number of the object.

October 8, 2013

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

In English her is always female and his is always masculine. English does not allocate gender to inanimate objects.

March 31, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hud214

unless your a ship!

March 6, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kim838241

So their cats eat the mouse could also be correct?

November 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

"Their cats" would be i loro gatti.

November 14, 2017

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

What if it's "their" as in the singular third person (e.g. "somebody left their jacket on the chair")?

November 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

i suoi gatti.

In Italian, the possessive agrees with the thing possessed. It encodes the gender of, in this case, the cats and not whose cats they are.

November 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lorenz153439

So suoi is for plural male objects?

December 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Well, it works for the subject and the object in the sentence, but yes. If the noun in question is plural and masculine (not male), then "his/her/hers" in English would be "(i) suoi" in Italian.

December 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Joslyn955928

I'm still trying to learn the difference between suo, sua, suoi etc. Why could this sentence not begin with Il suo instead of i suoi? Is it because the subject is plural (i gatti)?

May 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Whether it's subject or object makes no difference. Possessives, just like all other adjectives, must agree in gender and number with the nouns they modify. So yes, it's i suoi because gatti is masculine plural. It has nothing to do with whose cats they are.

IO
il mio - my singular masculine thing
i miei - my plural masculine (or mixed/unknown) things
la mia - my singular feminine thing
le mie - my plural feminine things

TU
il tuo
i tuoi
la tua
le tue

LUI/LEI
il suo
i suoi
la sua
le sue

NOI
il nostro
i nostri
la nostra
le nostre

VOI
il vostro
i vostri
la vostra
le vostre

LORO
il loro
i loro
la loro
le loro

May 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/123charlie123

i think suoi, sua, and suo etc refer to the third person ie- ''her'' and ''his''. whereas you would use tuoi, tuo, or tua, refer to the 2nd person ie- ''your''.

January 12, 2013

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

Nearly right: The polite form uses the 3 person >>> suo etc can mean "your"

January 12, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pizza7

If you hover the cursor over 'suoi', one solution is also 'your'. Why was this not accepted? Is it a mistake?

January 24, 2013

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

I though "your" would be accepted as well, but I just looked it up and the S would be capitalized for the formal 2nd person. "I Suoi..."

June 1, 2013

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

If there's no gender given I just assume the phrase is masculine. I'm not sure if this is the right approach but it seems to be working so far.

April 13, 2014

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

If the gender is not stated, I just alternate between genders however I feel like. If we don't know the context, either is correct.

November 28, 2016

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

In this case it doesn't matter. Both his or her is accepted

November 16, 2018

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

gatti and gatte, both multiple cats? male cats and female cats?

June 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DeanG6

It's a really big mouse, so his cats can share.

January 29, 2015

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

When the word topo was first introduced, it said it meant mouse or rat. I have been using rat because it is quicker to type and it has always been accepted. Now, suddenly it has refused to accept rat as correct and marked it wrong, accepting only mouse. No fair! Can topo mean rat or not?

January 31, 2013

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

Hello, As far as I know, mouse is trnslated as Topo and Rat is translated as Ratto.

November 16, 2013

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

Laughs...a mouse is not a rat

October 17, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hud214

no, but a baboon can be a monkey.

October 18, 2015

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

Can't it's an Ape

January 3, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lautaro-

Poor mouse...

April 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Schatzie14

Yes, the poor mouse had to teach us a huge lesson, I finally placed " I topo" right, until "another under certain conditions" comes along. Thanks to all who helped me to patently understand when to place or not to place the definitive article

April 17, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/atutxa
  • 1767

Why "his" is not accepted? Men have also cats!!!

October 15, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

The official translation is "His cats eat the mouse." You must have hit a glitch or made a typo.

October 16, 2014

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

I don't see how "their" is not an appropriate option, seeing as gender is not specified

February 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/I-AM-THE-LEGION

Is Duo taunting them (about eating mouse) or just telling us?

May 5, 2019

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

why is it her?? i don't understand help please

September 24, 2013

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

Since 'suoi' agrees with 'gatti' (the thing being possessed rather than the person doing the possessing as in English) the gender of the person who owns the cats is unknown, so it can be 'his cats' or 'her cats'. :)

September 24, 2013

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

It is either his, hers or its.

May 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doctora80

I ,in Italian,s plural i

October 29, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doctora80

no indication that is "her"

October 29, 2013

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

Why cannot be "their" someone can explain me? Thnks

February 24, 2014

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

'Suoi' is for 3rd person singular (his or her) only.

February 24, 2014

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

"Their" in English is also used for third person singular.

November 1, 2018

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

Tuoi is the familiar form of "you", but suoi is the polite. So either word should be marked correct

March 14, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lautaro-

Poor mouse...

April 26, 2014

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

I'm confused by suoi. Is it used for a specific gender or...? I'm confused.

May 2, 2014

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

why is "mouse grey/gray" an option for topo? does anyone say that?

June 28, 2014

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

Your cats was not accepted, but isn't that polite?

July 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Duo will capitalize Suo, Sue, Lei, etc if it's meant to be "you(r), formal."

July 26, 2014

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

thanks

August 2, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RosieSmith2

It wouldn't accept mouse, apparently I was supposed to type "the rat"!?

January 18, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Strange. Did you report it?

January 19, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/acgacg3563

They told me mouse was wrong...they said i was supposed to write rat???

May 4, 2015

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

How many cats to eat a mouse?

May 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JuAraujo02

i have this big problem with the "suoi"and "tuoi"... I am Brazilian, and we have a really really bad habit to make them kind of the same thing... Portuguese people don't do that, but we do... and since i grew up like this, most of the time, i can not 'see' a diference between the worlds and it makes me answer the wrong way sometimes....

July 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gene10111

I clearly heared "toppo"

March 1, 2016

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

Il Suo is masculine and la sua is feminine, am i right?

May 4, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Yes, but it does not agree with the owner. I can be talking about a woman and say "il suo gatto" because it must agree with "gatto".

May 4, 2016

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

Can you say 'suoi gatti...' rather than 'i 'suoi gatti...'?

October 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Only if it's in the predicate, not if it's in the subject or an isolated noun phrase.

i suoi gatti = her cats
i suoi gatti sono neri = her cats are black
sono (i) suoi gatti = they are her cats

These rules apply in all cases, regardless of number or gender or person. The only exception is singular family members never get the article in the possessive.

mia madre = my mother

There is a subtle distinction to be made in using the article or not, they're not perfectly interchangeable. One way means "this is mine, not his" and the other way means "this, not something else, is mine".

October 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hogwarts123321

How are you supposed to know that it is your, his, or her?

January 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Real-world conversations have a lot more context than single-sentence lessons.

January 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sofie647274

poor mousie

February 8, 2017

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

I suoi = his / le sue = her. So the translation shouldn't be "His cats eat the mouse"?

February 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

No.

In Italian, the possessive agrees with the thing(s) possessed, not with who possesses it.

il suo gatto can mean either his (male) cat or her (male) cat.
i suoi gatti can mean either his cats or her cats.
la sua gatta can mean either his (female) cat or her (female) cat.
le sue gatte can mean either his (female) cats or her (female) cats.

Masculine is the default, so "gatti" can mean all male cats, a mix of male and female cats, or an unknown composition of cats.

February 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/valdez.jse

Why do i have to start with I ? Why not just suoi?

April 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

That's just how Italian grammar works. They use the definite article with the possessive.

April 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/annabelle683385

What is the difrence between La and Il ? And how can you tell?

June 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

The rules for the indefinite articles are here:
http://www.oneworlditaliano.com/english/italian-grammar/italian-definite-articles.htm

There are exceptions, but most of the time, you can tell from how a noun ends whether it's masculine or feminine:
-o masculine singular
-i masculine plural
-a feminine singular
-e feminine plural

June 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Olivia252402

Is it 'gatti' rather than 'gatte' in this instance because the noun has to agree with the pronoun?

June 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

It's the number and gender of the noun that determines the form that associated articles, possessives, adjectives, and pronouns take.

It's "gatti" because either it's multiple male cats or a mix or we don't know. It would be "gatte" if we knew all the cats were female.

It's "i suoi" because "gatti" is masculine plural. If it were "gatte", it would be "le sue". If it were only one cat and the cat was male or unknown, it would be "il suo gatto". If it were only one cat and it was female, it would be "la sua gatta".

June 28, 2017

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

Why is "i" needed at the start?

July 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

That's just how Italian grammar works. It requires the definite article with the possessive in the subject (except for singular family members).

July 14, 2017

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

I think "your cats" should be accepted as there is no way to know without context if it's a formal or familiar "suoi"

August 30, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

If it's spoken, I agree. If it's written, then the S would be capitalized.

August 30, 2017

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

Thank you so much for this it's actually really helpful!

August 30, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alistair59349

More poor audio and on first introduction to a word combination totally new to the learner. So I get it wrong not surprisingly. Suoi not previously encountered and mangiano completely new to me. Combine that with poor sound - FAIL. Stop being so annoyingly difficult and at least fix the audio please.

October 8, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kim838241

What about ‘their cats eat the mouse?”

November 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

That would be "i loro gatti".

November 16, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gm5vX

Suo vs sua vs suoi?

November 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Possessives agree with what is possessed, not with who possesses it.

il suo = singular masculine
i suoi = plural masculine/mixed
la sua = singular feminine
le sue = plural feminine

November 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doug306845

How do you know when to use mangiano, mangia, mangiamo or mangiate?

April 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doug306845

Is there a rule that tells you when to use " mangiano as opposed to mangiste, mangiamo, or mangia?"

April 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Yes, there is a rule for regular verbs. (For irregular verbs, you just have to memorize their special forms, but the good news is that most verbs are regular or semi-regular.)

To start, you need to know the infinitive form. In this case, it's mangiare. To conjugate it, you remove the infinitive ending -are and use the suffix appropriate to the person:

MANGI-ARE
io mangi-o
tu mang-i (the stem already ends with i, so there's no need for an extra i)
lui/lei mangi-a
noi mang-iamo (the stem already ends with i, so there's no need for an extra i)
voi mangi-ate
loro mangi-ano

April 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John529553

Why is it eat instead of eats?

May 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

One cat eats.
Many cats eat.

I eat
you eat
he eats
we eat
you eat
they eat

May 14, 2018

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

i just realized that the speaker said "toppo" for the mouse, is that the correct pronounciation?

August 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ex3mity

Anche il mio però lui lo preferisce alla griglia e con poco sale, è viziato

August 21, 2018

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

why can't we use the singular they

October 28, 2018

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

Shouldn't "her cats eats the mouse" be accepted?

November 16, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Yes, although it is relevant how the question was presented and how you're meant to answer. If it's free-writing, then either "his cats" or "her cats" should work. If it's multiple choice, however, then if both options are available then both should be selected.

November 16, 2018

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

Her cats eat the mouse should be correct.

August 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SEAN659386

this section is/has been the most difficult and confusing section so far..grrr

October 16, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Can you say exactly what has you confused?

October 16, 2019

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

Why is "her" not accepted? It is correct.

October 22, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

If you wrote "Her cats eat the mouse" and it was marked wrong, please flag it and report "My answer should be accepted."

If it was a multiple-choice question, you need to select all of the right answers, not just one of them.

October 22, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marchella308422

How do you say, 'their' cats....? How do you say 'her' cats...?

November 22, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2113

Their cats: i loro gatti
Her cats: i suoi gatti

Possessive adjectives and pronouns work just like any other adjectives. They must agree in gender and number with the thing that is possessed, which is reflected in the end of the word. The first part of the word says broadly whose it is.

IO
il mio (my singular masculine thing)
i miei (my plural masculine things)
la mia (my singular feminine thing)
le mie (my plural feminine things)
It does not matter who "I" am.

TU (singular "you", addressing exactly one person)
il tuo (your singular masculine thing)
i tuoi (your plural masculine things)
la tua (your singular feminine thing)
le tue (your plural feminine things)
It does not matter who "you" are.

LUI/LEI
il suo (his/her singular masculine thing)
i suoi (his/her plural masculine things)
la sua (his/her singular feminine thing)
le sue (his/her plural feminine things)
Again, the gender of the possessive reflects the gender of the thing, not whose it is.

NOI
il nostro (our singular masculine thing)
i nostri (our plural masculine things)
la nostra (our singular feminine thing)
le nostre (our plural feminine things)

VOI (plural "you/y'all", addressing two or more people)
il vostro (y'all's singular masculine thing)
i vostri (y'all's plural masculine things)
la vostra (y'all's singular feminine thing)
le vostre (y'all's plural feminine things)

LORO
il loro (their singular masculine thing)
i loro (their plural masculine things)
la loro (their singular feminine thing)
le loro (their plural feminine things)
"Loro" is the exception here in that the possessive form does not change, but the article still shows agreement.

November 22, 2019
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