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  5. "Cosa leggono i cinque uomini…

"Cosa leggono i cinque uomini?"

Translation:What do the five men read?

January 10, 2014



Why shouldn't we say "GLI cinque uomini"?? Doesn't "i" refer to uomini???


The reason it is "gli" normally is because "uomini" begins with a vowel. But "uomini" is still masculine plural, so when you put a word like "cinque" (which does not begin with a vowel) in front, you use "i" instead.

So you would say "gli uomini" but "i cinque uomini", "gli elefanti" but "i cinque elefanti".

I hope that helps.


Thanks a lot! It actually helped :)


It helps a lot! Grazie


Thanks, it is a help.


For those who don't have English as their primary language. This is really odd English. We would say 'What are the 5 men reading'


you can say: cosa fanno gli uomini? but you cannot say: cosa fanno gli 5 uomini? actually i dont know which is the rule, but i think it is about the fact that there is a vocal. EX:

gli uccelli, i pappagalli, i pesci, i cani, gli uomini, i letti, gli infermieri, gli autisti, gli esperimenti, gli occhi, i cinesi, gli africani.

as you can se with vocals we use gli, with consonants we use i. yes i think this is the rule :)


Yeah, but my question is "what does ""i"" refer to in this case?". I mean we don't use "i" for cinque, as it's singular itself, right?


"i" is referred to uomini




What is wrong with 'what are the five men reading?'


I wrote What do they read the five men. Can someone tell me what I did wrong? I'm not sure of this. Thanks


Although you were translating literally in the same order as the Italian sentence, in English '--read books' (in the order of verb + object) means it is the books that 'read' applies to, as the object being read. In speech you might say, "What do they read, (with a comma if in writing, then maybe a pause in speech as you clarify who you're referring to) the five men?" Moreover, since the Italian sentence did not include a 'they', Duo's translation 'What do the five men read?' is probably the closest translation. Hope this helps.


I was also confused about this. Thank yoj for clarifying. I still dont understand it, but j get ir more now than I did before.

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