Interesting discussion. The best of learning Hebrew is the level of the discussions.
It introduces the direct object of a verb. אני שותה קפה = I am drinking (a) coffee אני שותה את הקפה = I am drinking the coffee
I would like to add it is pronounced "et" rather that "aht" which means you (f.)
They really should include those in mobile. I only use mobile and found they are indisepensable especially in advanced lessons.
Would this sentence actually be used in everyday conversation? Or would it be אני שותה קפה? I'm thinking of a phone call where I'm asked "What are you doing?" and I say "I'm drinking coffee."
You're right. אני שותה קפה is how you would say "I drink coffee" or "I'm drinking coffee". However, it is also said quite a lot like in this sentence, depends on context. Some examples where I would use the definite article:
It's a specific cup of coffee I'm talking about. ״אני שותה את הקפה ובא״ - meaning something like "I'm just gonna drink the (cup of) coffee and I'm coming"
It's a specific kind of coffee. I drink my coffee without sugar = אני שותה את הקפה שלי בלי סוכר. I drink the Ethiopian coffee = אני שותה את הקפה האתיופי.
I've got everyone's order. Now, are you drinking the coffee of the chocolate?
Is it pronounced "at" or rather "ta" as being conjugated to the following word?? Confused :(
It is pronounced "et". Aní shoté et hakafé.
When conjugated, it changes accordingly: him=אותו (otó), me=אותי (otí), us=אותנו (otánu).
In colloquial speech, however, את ה often becomes ta. So the sentence above would be pronounced colloquially as "aní shoté takafé ".
That's exactly what I heard! I couldn't work out what תקפה was! I thought it was pronounced badly, but it's good to know that's the common pronunciation.
It's even more devilish here, because שותה ends with /e/ which joins the /e/ of את. So even when talking "properly", at a reasonable speed it's hard to distinguish between /shote et hakafe/ and /shote takafe/. Though listening carefully you should hear that in the former the /e/ is longer (two /e/'s).
I wrote this without the full stop, which said I was incorrect; is this normal? Does punctuation Matter? "אני שותֶה את הקפה."