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  5. "Metteranno la loro mano qua."

"Metteranno la loro mano qua."

Translation:They are going to put their hands here.

February 1, 2014

61 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soglio

In English, this would be a bad sentence because it means "they" share a single hand. Is that mixing of singular and plural acceptable in Italian, or is this a bad sentence either way?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaoloArman2

I'm not sure what you mean. In italian that is correct and it means that each one of them will put his own hand in the same place.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soglio

Thanks. In English you'd want to say it the way you did - each one (singular) will put his (or her) hand (also singular) here - or "They are going to put their hands (plural) here."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soglio

Thanks for the explanation. I asked not to criticize the Italian sentence, but to clarify in my own head how the grammar might work. Rules of grammar vary among languages - one reason I'm having some trouble wrapping my mind around Italian conjugations - and I was curious about how this might work in Italian.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lefay11

I also wondered why it wasn't "le mani" since the answer in English is "hands" plural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PATRICKPIZ1

because each will only use one hand.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Revilo_N

In many languages (Italian, German, Esperanto come to my mind, but not in english) it is fine to use the singular in such a case, when each "item" (used in plural) use or has a single item (used in singular).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laurenz861073

How is it fine in German? I'd use the plural there, too.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/The___Idler

Und ich prophezeie euch, sie werden ihre Hand dort hinlegen?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laurenz861073

Nie gehört. Was soll das genau heißen?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/The___Idler

Ich weiß es auch nicht genau. Ein Versuch Revilo's Aussage etwas Leben einzuhauchen, ein faule Art "jeder von ihnen wird seine Hand dort hinlegen" zu sagen, ein Statement, dass sich die Grammatik nicht um jeden Vogelschiß kümmern soll. Auf jeden Fall kann ich mit dem Singular leben, auch wenn mir der Plural besser gefällt. Und wahrscheinlich hätte ich besser meine zehn Tippfingerchen in Zaum halten sollen.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Justinnnnnnnnn

Fixed as of March 12, 2015


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AdamMansbr1

It accepted "they will put their hands here" from me 24/8/2017


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Grinne22752

Not today, March 19...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LindaB_Duolingo

What a long discussion! So what have we learned?

Italians put their hand up, Brits put up their hands.

Soglio is an editorial weasel, and Paolo has the patience of a saint.

The PC debate continues - HIS hand (meaning his or her) is sexist/it isn't, and anybody who says so is a makebate; - we can use 'their hand' to mean his or her/we HAVE to use his/his or her

... and that even the English can't agree on how to speak English.

Wow. What a lot of energy you chaps* have. :)

*[chaps/chapesses, I should say.]


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Germanlehrerlsu

LindaB_Duolingo: I've got to hand it to you; your summary is hands down the clearest so far and definitely deserves a hand - or if that's more than just one user's opinion, namely mine, then of course you're deserving of hands. Question: If two or more blackjack dealers are dealing out cards to a group of players are they dealing a hand of cards or hands of cards? If everyone in the audience is clapping do the performers receive a hand of applause or hands of applause? Seriously, thanks for your post.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LindaB_Duolingo

You're a bit of a handful, aren't you? :) :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Germanlehrerlsu

I confess...sadly the result of poor handling as a child.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LindaB_Duolingo

Time someone took you in hand ... :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Germanlehrerlsu

A handsome offer for sure...:-)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VenksIzod

This is getting out of hand.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Verbenaceae

Performers (if worthy) usually get a "round of applause".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rcpjenn

What's a "makebate?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sedona2007

makebate = a person who makes trouble or invites quarrels. I had to look it up, too. I fear I may be one! LOL


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Josomers

Not good English !


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soglio

People have been arguing this point since the first creature crawled out of the primeval sea and began to speak. Grammar isn't written on the walls of the universe; nevertheless, at least in In my line of work, it's as bad to have people think you're ungrammatical as it is to be ungrammatical.

Thus, we have strategies that I call "editorial weasel maneuvers." In this case, casting the entire sentence into the plural - "They are going to put their hands here" - which in this case also makes more sense than suggesting all of them share one hand - avoids protracted arguments such as we find ourselves embroiled in here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LindaB_Duolingo

Hi, Soglio

Editorial weasel maneuvers. Love it.

I often do the same thing when I am unsure of a spelling, and don't have time to check - I use another word. And when I'm not happy about a point of grammar or punctuation, and too tired to climb into the web - I just cheat and say it another way. Sigh. There, I've admitted it. I'm a fellow weasel. :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eluzie

a mi piace le 'editorial weasel maneuvers'!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mikeforbes

A nice English translation would be "Each of them will put their hand here." Please not the lack of sexism in 'their'.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soglio

The best way to avoid both sexism and singular/plural conflict is simply to recast in the plural: "All of them put their hands here."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LynnSerafi

Actually, even that is incorrect, lol. As soon as you say "each" the subject is simgular and you cannot say "they". It would end up being "Each of them will put his or her hand there." But hardly any of us native English speakers talk like that!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/53choc

The sentence is out of context and therefore it is trickier to understand. Think of people in a line needing to put one hand in a particular position, one after the other, to gain entry or receive something, then it all makes sense.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/xyphax

Even if the sentence were put into context, the English translation is incorrect, and Soglio, above, is right about the correct translation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/birtles1010

don't be ridiculous - I am english and in english if you use a plural part of the verb then the accompanying noun must also be in the plural - it's supposed to be a correct translation into english - and unless there really is just 1 hand between 'them' - maybe all but 1 hand is amputated - then the translation 'hand' is incorrect


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaoloArman2

just to learn English here, I am italian. What about these sentences:

1) The soldiers in the firing squad were ready to pull the trigger with their finger.

2) The soldiers in the firing squad were ready to pull the trigger with their fingers.

If I got what you say, only the 2) is correct. Right ?

In italian the 1) with the singular "finger" is preferable.

1) I soldati del plotone d'esecuzione erano pronti a premere il grilletto con il loro dito


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/birtles1010

As a general rule 'their' is plural and if it's plural unless there really is only 1 finger - eg every single finger but 1 in the scenario has been chopped off, and 1 trigger - then you use the plural to match the plural 'their'. eg you have 10 soldiers so 10 triggers & 100 fingers, the soldiers pull the triggers with their fingers. If you were to prefix the sentence with eg EVERY soldier then it would all become singular - every soldier was ready to pull the trigger with his finger Hope this is helpful


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PaoloArman2

Yep. I got it, very clear. Thanks. Take into account that in Italian you can use the singular. The hypothesis of a firing squad in which 9 members out of 10 have a chopped off finger is deemed odd and should have been made clear. Without such a specification, it's implied that each one of them pulls the trigger with his own finger. Hence in italian you can use the singular.

Maybe that English duolingo's sentence has been conceived by an italian under the influence of their (*) own language.

(*) this "their" here is a singular their like this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Singular_they


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/birtles1010

I looked at the wikipedia link - singular 'they' It's the sort of thing that you don't notice if it's your native tongue!

1.Everyone returned to their seats - Everyone (in this case a single noun like la gente') but there is more than 1 seat involved so 'seats' 2.Somebody left their umbrella - just 1 single umbrella left not an umbrella per person - so 'collect it' not 'collect them' 1, 3&4 current UK usage to be honest as many people would use 'his' as would use 'their' tho 'they may be grammatically incorrect 5.A journalist with many sources - if there were just 1 single source then it would be 'source' but there's more than 1 source so plural 'sources'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soglio

Actually, the best English sentence would be (3) The soldiers in the firing squad were ready to pull the triggers with their fingers.

More than one soldier, therefore more than one finger. Unless they share a single gun, more than one trigger. Thus, "soldiers," "triggers," and "fingers" are all plural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fran975881

They are going to put their hands where??? Buy me dinner first....


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/stuart.hol2

As a native English speaker, i might be going against the grain but there isn't a huge difference in reality. While it might not be perfect grammar, a phrase such as "when the teacher asked a question they put their hand up" would be perfectly understandable as meaning that several (if not all) of the students raised one hand to answer the question. Similarly, if someone said "when the teacher asked a question they put their hands up" most people would assume that it meant the same thing rather than several (if not all all) of the students put both their hands up. Contexts are important, but I'm trying to learn Italian and not trying to speak the Queen's English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Germanlehrerlsu

I've got to hand it to everyone who's taken the time to post comments on this one sentence and while I doubt there'll be any clear consensus on just what the correct ENGLISH should be, I think everyone who's had a hand in this, deserves a big hand.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Germanlehrerlsu

Stuart.hol2: I agree and would only like to add that if the cops ever tell you to put your hands up you'd better put 'em BOTH up since they don't take to folks asking questions.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rjjacob

This is an obscure but literary way of saying in English, "They will sign here." Is the same meaning present in Italian?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Melascpeo

Or, They'll each put a hand here?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MeroeOMER

My oh my! Sometimes, after reading these discussions I am all but on the floor laughing or screaming, sure in the knowledge (and somewhat relieved!) that I am not the pedant I thought I was. Gratitude abounds... International Pedants Association?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/conor.grey

Why isn't place accepted as a translation?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rjjacob

Regardless of all the commentary, DL gives a singular "mano" but a plural "hands". This needs to be reconciled.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

We can't disregard the commentary here. The commentary explains why a sentence including the singular "mano" translates to a sentence that uses the plural "hands".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MichaelWat541241

Why is "They are to put their hand here" marked incorrect?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Germanlehrerlsu

MichaelWat....That would imply an obligation not a future action, i.e., this is what they need to do, not what they're going to do.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nmm70

why not simply 'they put their hands here'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

Because this sentence is in the future tense.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jeffrey855877

There is a difference in English between "They are going to" and "they will". Duo doesn't seem to realize that, and is using phrasal future when the exercises are simple future.

"They are going to put their hands here" or "They are about to put their hands here".
Stanno per mettere la loro mano qua


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jae633849

There is a difference between those two tenses in English, but there isn't a difference in Italian. The 'going to' future of 'mettere' is in fact translated into Italian as 'metteranno' in this sentence (as I'm sure your level-25 self knows!). So when we're translating from Italian to English, Duo has to accept either English translation, as the use of one or the other would have to depend on the context (which we don't have here).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Grinne22752

I said "they will put their hands there" and it was wrong. It should be "they are going to put their hands there"...surely that means the same thing? If anything, "vanno mettere" would mean they are going..


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chel451498

Your problem might not have been will they put or are they going to put, but where those hands end up. Qua is here, not there.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Frankie7012

This isn't it. "il loro mano qua" ??

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