"Oni nie mają kota."

Translation:They do not have a cat.

February 26, 2016

18 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/phroddon

Couldn't we accept "They do not have any cat" as another valid translation ?

February 26, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/soltysik16

That would be more like "Oni nie mają żadnego kota". Of course the meaning is the same, but there is emphasis, both in English and Polish, on "any" ("żadnego") in your sentence.

February 26, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/phroddon

I see, thanks for the explanation !

February 26, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/VaKom

what i would ask here is why the negation of kot in accusative form is "kota" and not "koty" as lesson earlier tought us "ona nie lubi kawy" but i think i got the answer. koty is plural and would be kotow but kawy is still singular. right?

January 22, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

Yes. "kawa" is feminine singular, and Genitive singular of feminine nouns is almost always identical to Nominative/Accusative plural. That's quite confusing for learners at first, although after some time it can become helpful - one form less to remember.

"koty" would be the Genitive if the basic form was "kota". But it's not. Indeed "koty" is plural (Nom/Acc) and Genitive plural is "kotów".

January 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Javerix

So if "kota" is Genitive singular, what would be the basic singular form in Nominative?

March 21, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/alik1989

Kot.

You could have just entered "cat" in Google translate, you know.

March 21, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Prakash487603

Valid translation of this se tence.. is "They do not have a cat".

February 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

That's even the main translation.

February 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/alphalyrae

Could you also say 'oni nie mają kotów' ('they do not have cats') to mean the same thing, like in English?

June 8, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

Well... grammatically it's different, even if it says more or less the same thing.

June 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Aldrost

"they have no cats" - I think this should be also accepted?

September 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

But there was a singular cat in the Polish sentence.

September 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Aldrost

Hmm.. I thought that the meaning of the sentence is about "absence of cats", so I translated it to english as "they have no cats".

I googled about usage of singular/plural words after "no" and it seems both are acceptable. Here are two places where it's talked about it: https://www.englishforums.com/English/SingularPluralNounsAfter/vbqx/post.htm https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/162482/grammar-no-singular-plural-noun-singular-plural-verb https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/138688/plural-or-singular-after-no https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/197798/singular-or-plural-verb-after-no http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/grammar/learnit/learnitv354.shtml

All sources show it's ok, and the last one (which seems somehow more to be trusted) says:

"With countable nouns, no is normally followed by plural forms. It sounds more natural and makes better sense to say: ... Sometimes, no may be followed by singular or plural nouns, depending on whether one is thinking of one or more than one"

What do you think?

September 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/VaKom

it is natural when i say "i do have a cat but they dont have a cat" (dont have one) which refers to a singular animal. almost same meaning if you say they dont have cats but "almost". So what that source says is very accurate imo

January 22, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Marc312527

Why not also accept, 'They don't have the cat'? It's a valid sentence.

September 26, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Aldrost

I think with the it is better translated as Nie mają tego kota.

September 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Jellei

It works. But Aldrost is right in a way, it may make more sense to treat 'the' as 'this' here and translate it as "Nie mają tego kota".

September 27, 2018
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