"הציפור שייכת לאברהם."
Translation:The bird belongs to Abraham.
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Well, ציפורה is used only as a woman's name. It's not used for a bird.
And ציפור is grammatically feminine, but is also the only word for "bird". So, both male and female birds are equally called ציפור and regardless of their biological gender, they are always grammatically feminine, so any verb or adjective connected to ציפור will always be feminine.
I'd say הציפור שייכת לאברהם or הציפור היא של אברהם are both ok in daily conversation. I think pretty much the same. הציפור של אברהם can also be ok. In reading it's ambiguous, but when you say it in conversation, with tone and context, it would be understood. I'm almost tempted to take back what I said about it being archaic. Maybe I overthought it now... :-) maybe someone else would like to comment.
In the previous lesson I had to translate Is the food yours? and I tried ?האוכל הוא שלך and then ?האוכל שייך לך which were both rejected. The only accepted answer was ?האוכל שלך, which I thought was ambiguous (at least in reading) for the same reason you mentioned in your comment above. Are my translations fine? If so, which of the three questions would a native speaker be most likely to ask?
All three sounds equally correct and natural to me. Not sure what I'd use. Actually it's hard for me to imagine the scenario of saying exactly "Is the food yours?" - close variants like "Is this food yours?" or "is it your food?" are more likely, and they might change what would be the exact Hebrew phrase.
I agree with almog, all forms sound okay to me. למי זה שייך? = של מי זה?
the only problem with your הציפור של אברהם is that there is no predicate. it might not be a mistake, but if someone said it to me, I would expect there to be one... its just like "avraham's bird". like, ok, but what about it? :p
but you can say, for example הציפור הזאת של אברהם or זאת הציפור של אברהם. once you give more information (its THIS bird youre talking about), it makes your sentence more clear.
It's a funny thing why European languages say "Abraham" and "Jakob" although they do have the consonant /v/. I believe it's because they inherited spelling and pronunciation of Biblical names from classic Latin (or was it Greek?) translation of the Bible, which collpased some Hebrew consonants because classic Romans (Greeks?) didn't have them. Same with ש of שמעון, שלמה and many other names, which became "s".