I am going to my grandfather's house the Christmas and he lives in Pennsylvania.
I wanted to put "It is a northern city" but Duo can be so picky I didn't dare!
I was wandering if that were an option myself. It makes sense and sounds well enough for me. My guess is that it's much like the "map's slang" 'up north' as discussed in the other comments above. I would love someone to beg to differ and enlighten us both.
- 'to the north' - should it be accepted or not and why? *
To me, "to the north" suggests a relative position, as in toward the north or north of here. "In the north" tells me that it is actually situated in a northern location.
It's because we're not actually talking about the city's location, but are describing a fact about the city. If the sentence was just, "It is a city" (Es una cuidad) you probably would have used "ser" without even thinking about it.
However, if the sentence was instead, "The city is in the North" (La ciudad está en el norte) then you would have to use "estar." Now we aren't describing the city, but are talking about the location of the city.
I would assume so. Duolingo is sort of like a google translate machine when it comes to checking the translation so the answer would work to answer the question properly.
This doesn't really make sense in English.. The only way I could see someone saying this is if they finished it with "...the north side of the island." - "Es una ciudad en el lado norte de la isla." In which case, "en" could mean either "in" or "on".
ah, thanks, that's exactly the sort of "on the north side of..." thing i had in mind. seems obvious now haha.
It is correct and quite common. I'm not sure I'd call it "slang," but I'd consider it informal English. It comes from the fact that most maps have north at the top.
We'll also say "It's a city down south." On the east coast of the US, we'll say "It's a city out west." On the west coast we'll say, "It's a city back east."
Christophe, I am giving out lingots today for the New Year, so you get one for your cool reply. ¡Feliz Año Nuevo 2017! Bonne Année!
"It is a city up north" is this bad English since I hear it all the time and think it means the same thing.
It's not "standard English". By standard English, I mean the English used in business, or journalistic/newspaper writing, or in a textbook, or by a newscaster on a national network. Nor English taught in an English class is school . It is a colloquial use.
Duo is trying to teach standard English.
Here's why: Es does not translate to 'there'. There = ahí | Es = he/she/it is Ciudad does not translate to town. Town = Pueblo | Ciudad = City En does translate to 'on', however, in this context it does not make sense. Context is everything.
I put 'a city up north' which was marked wrong. But I swear I had 'I live up north' = 'Vivo en el norte' earlier in this lesson. How come one is wrong but not the other?
"yo vivo en el norte" is I live up north (according to Duolingo), but "Es una ciudad en el Norte," Which I put "It is a city up North" Duolingo counted it as wrong. WHAT? Why is en el Norte up north when you live there and in the north when a city is there?
Although the Spanish preposition en is often translated as "on" in English, it does not always have that meaning. That's the case here. We wouldn't use the phrase "on the north" unless we were referring to the northern part of some place and that would require a special context to sound natural. Otherwise, an English speaker would want to know on the north what, the north shore, the north side of the country, etc.
Think about it this way. If you use the phrase "in the north," north is a noun representing a place. That makes sense. If you use the phrase "on the north," north is an adjective. That doesn't make sense without an accompanying noun.
I always know that I'll find GOT fans on posts like this beforehand hahah