"Εγώ είμαι η Ελένη."

Translation:I am Eleni.

9/7/2016, 9:52:34 PM

79 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/czczczczcz
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What does the definite article do here?

9/7/2016, 9:52:34 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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It shows that you're not just an Eleni, but the Eleni, the one clear from context :)

In English, proper nouns are definite by default, but in Greek, they're usually accompanied by the definite article.

Similarly with "God" (ο Θεός), for example, or "Earth" (η Γη).

9/8/2016, 8:23:32 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/D_..
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Welcome to the Greek course! The article is exactly where it should be, be patient, you will see it (in)numerous times throughout the course! Proper nouns in Greek can be preceded by the definite article. :)

9/7/2016, 10:03:30 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/czczczczcz
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Oh, don't worry. I wasn't implying there was a mistake. I just hadn't seen anything like that in any other language so I was curious as to its purpose, but mizinamo cleared that up.

9/8/2016, 9:22:02 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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If you speak a lot to native German speakers, especially from the south, you may find the definite article used with proper nouns :)

It's colloquial, though, and possibly considered slightly sub-standard. (But people don't always speak Standard Written German, of course: sub-standard need not mean "bad", just not something you'd use in an academic paper or the like.)

Hast du den Klaus gesehen? - Ja, der steht dort drüben bei der Maria.

9/8/2016, 9:37:04 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Ilona-Helena
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@mizinamo. Many Thanks! Vielen Dank!

9/20/2018, 12:54:07 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/AlexVelasc14

I think that in Catalan proper nouns are also preceded by definite articles. Ex: I am Alex - Eu soc l'Alex.

10/28/2016, 12:17:25 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/jgierbo2
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Yep, and in Portuguese and Spanish coloquially

11/25/2016, 12:33:53 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/Loeffer
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Brazilian talking here.

According to my experience , the use of article depends on the region mostly and is not mandatory. Where I live it is more common not to use the article unless for specify the way Alex explained. However, in other regions the use of article is very common for any situation, like "eu sou o Rafael, esse é o João".

In any case, no, it's not mandatory and you're not wrong if you don't use it, but I guess you may sound weird depending on where you are.

5/1/2018, 1:33:28 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/AlexPedrotti
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In Portuguese is not common. You may use the definite article to "explain" what Alex you're talking about. "Eu sou o Alex da padaria" or "Eu sou a Maria do Duolingo".

2/5/2017, 11:03:14 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/ThePersephonies
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It is common in Portuguese, actually. One can't say '(Eu) sou Joana', one ALWAYS says '(Eu) sou A Joana'. Not only is it common, it's wrong not to use it.

5/17/2017, 8:50:13 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/msanzv
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"Eu" is Portuguese, the Catalan word would be "Jo soc l'Alex" ;)

1/10/2017, 3:51:12 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Gerardpb2

In Catalan it's: - Jo sóc l'Alex - Jo sóc el Marc - Jo sóc la Laura

8/31/2017, 8:19:42 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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They almost always are, aren't they?

9/8/2016, 8:22:11 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/CostelloMusic98

Εγώ είμαι η Ελένη. (I am Eleni, the name is preceded by the definite article). Με λένε Ελένη. (My name is Eleni, the name is in the accusative case and it is not preceded by the definite article). Right?

1/5/2017, 11:45:09 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/troll1995
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Right! :)

1/5/2017, 11:49:12 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/helenb8642

I love the coincidence of this sentence popping up, since I'm a Helen, and Eleni is my name in Greek. (Though it's honestly not that big of a coincidence, since "Eleni" is a very popular name in Greece.....)

10/17/2016, 10:03:03 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/totanbhatt

I know Greece through Helen aka Έλενη. Regards

7/2/2018, 6:08:37 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/helennymo

I am Eleni too and I love it!

8/9/2018, 9:05:27 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/elenismail

Hi! I was wondering if there was a way to work on the pronunciation of these words. I'm having a hard time understanding the sounds. Obviously, I have Eleni right. -Eleni

9/22/2016, 4:14:33 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/SariahLily
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I find it helps to hover over each word separately multiple times, to hear each word in isolation, and alternate that with playing the entire phrase to hear how they sound together.

5/6/2017, 3:56:31 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/AllaTurca3rdMvmt

In the audio, I can't hear the "η" at all. Is my ear not fine-tuned enough, or is Greek one of those languages where words next to each other get slurred together?

9/18/2016, 12:32:44 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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My experience is that it is partly a matter of experience. The better one gets at a language (able to deal with it ever faster, which is a part of fluency), the more one has learned to hear its sounds and distinguish them readily. If a speaker goes faster than your pace, however, sounds may seem to be slurred, because your cognition isn't able to keep up with your ear. And then, there can be real slurring, in which even a native speaker would not actually hear all the (theoretical) sounds. And the degree that this last occurs can be a matter of which language, which dialect, and which people. For some are more frenetic than others.

9/18/2016, 8:59:32 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrysiCh.
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The "η" is there, it's just slurred together with the "ε" from "Ελένη". It's funny that being a native speaker, I hadn't realised until now that we do such thing, but apparently we do! I think that if the first letter of the word following the article was a consonant, the sound of "η" would be more distinct probably.

9/19/2016, 11:56:34 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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I think there's a difference between eliding sounds (which is what you describe - all the sounds are there but one slides into the next, often quickly), and actual slurring (which is skipping over sounds that the dictionaries say are there in correct pronunciations). And I think natives hearing their own language can hear elisions much more readily than anyone else who is not fully fluent. (They also tend to supply the lack better when actual slurring occurs.) Successive vowels are particularly subject to elision, especially when they are short or naturally light in emphasis, because they glide so well into each other.

I think this is one thing that, on DL, makes it so useful to listen to the faster audio as much as possible, and to practice lessons with the timer going. It is important at first, just to get everything right. But if one actually wants to speak to someone else, it will be trying for both if their paces don't match well. Practicing fast promotes fluency. The drawback on DL is that this also requires one to type fast enough, and that's not a language skill.

9/20/2016, 8:20:14 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrysiCh.
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So, I had to look it up, but I think I got it straight now (well, kind of!). Apparently we were both wrong. As it seems, elision and slurring are almost the same thing, their only difference being that the first is happening according to rules (e.g. από την --> απ'την or σιτάρι-->στάρι) both in writting and pronunciation, whereas the second is not (as you mentioned), it's only found in speech and usually it's a matter of local dialects, especially in rural areas (e.g. σκυλί-->σκλί, δικό μου-->δικό μ). In both cases though, the sound is omitted completely. What we have in the pronunciation of the sentence above, appears to be a synizesis, where two consecutive vowels from different syllables are pronounced together in one syllable, (e.g. μία [μί - α] --> μια [μια], έννοια [έν-νοι-α] --> έννοια [έν-νοια]). The funny part is that we were taught these phonetic rules in primary school, though I doubt whether anyone remembers them, let alone be able to identify them when they come across one or another in speech or in writting. I believe that, like you said, the more fluent you become in a language, these sound changes come naturally and you don't need to think about them, like you don't need to think a grammatical rule to make a sentence.

9/20/2016, 8:37:19 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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Oh, ok! I'd prefer to say we were both somewhat right, within a certain degree of approximation. :) I've never gone this far into analysis of the thing, but there are obviously levels and categories beyond any I have heard of. I'm with you, though, in doubting if any except experts find a practical use for such distinctions. Natives just talk, and mostly pay attention only when something gets too garbled to be understood (by them). Learners, then, just need to expect to be left behind sometimes, and to feel their way through the small stuff, because that's where consistency in practice breaks down most often.

I've heard that travelers trying to make their way speaking only a foreign language for the first time, even if they're reasonably fluent, can find themselves at the end of the day absolutely exhausted from the effort of having to pay attention so closely to every detail whenever they converse.

9/21/2016, 4:49:25 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/mr.squiggle

Yes there is quite a bit of simplification in modern spoken Greek with vowel sounds especially.

For instance, /πεινάω/ (I am hungry) has been simplified over time to remove the /α/ so that it is now more commonly /πεινώ/ instead.

9/18/2016, 8:28:20 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrysiCh.
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I'm sorry to contradict you, but the truth is that it's quite the opposite concerning the example you gave. The verb was originally "πεινῶ" in ancient Greek and it didn't have a second type (πεινάω). In modern Greek it followed the rule of other contracted verbs (known as "συνηρημένα") like "ἀγαπάω/ἀγαπῶ"[anc.gr]-->"αγαπάω/αγαπώ" [mod.gr] (I love), so now it has two types (πεινάω/πεινώ) but the second one is in fact the oldest.

9/19/2016, 11:39:27 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/MohamedLahmer

Ego (Εγώ) means "I" ! wow !

6/1/2017, 6:26:13 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/lhwebster
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Sometimes that you should note is that in Greek we use articles before names, cities, countries, etc. too. In English you would never say something like " The Chris" but in GREEK you will say ' Ο Χρήστος' you would never say 'The Greece' but in Greek you will say " Η Ελλάδα" wouldn't you, because its the Greek language. Its the way of identifying them is by their definite article. Cheers!!!!

4/7/2017, 6:02:34 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/AlidaMarcela1

İ was wondering if i write my name ''alida'' with greek letters, it shoud be with letter ''ί'' or with ''ή''? İ know that there is a rule for letter ''σ''. İt is 'σ' inside the word and ''ς'' at the end of the word.

11/22/2016, 9:32:16 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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I believe that the trend for foreign names is to use "simple" letters, i.e. always ι for the /i/ sound and ο for the /o/ sound.

It used to be the fashion to look at the spelling and/or etymology of the origin word and use e.g. η or υ or ω, but from what I've heard, this is no longer common. So a name such as "Amy" would be Έιμι (as in Amy Winehouse, https://el.wikipedia.org/wiki/%CE%88%CE%B9%CE%BC%CE%B9_%CE%93%CE%BF%CF%85%CE%AC%CE%B9%CE%BD%CF%87%CE%B1%CE%BF%CF%85%CE%B6 ) rather than Έιμη (which would make her name declinable like a Greek feminine noun) or Έιμυ (which would represent the Latin letter Y with a Greek letter upsilon).

So "Alida" would be Αλίντα.

As another example, my family name "Newton" is Νεύτων for Isaac Newton (since that name was borrowed/created a long time ago, it got a "classical" look) but Νιούτον for Helmut Newton (since that name was borrowed much more recently, it gets the default modern treatment).

11/23/2016, 4:09:17 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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My sister-in-law's name is Alida, and she pronounces the i with the long English i sound, which is somewhat foreign to Greek phonetics. So I was wondering if using the pair άι (with the accent on the α so as to override the common αι diphthong) might not be a better way to spell the sound, yielding Αλάιντα.

11/25/2016, 6:45:01 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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If you use that pronunciation, then I agree that your spelling is best.

11/25/2016, 7:02:33 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/Airsoft246
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need help pronouncing "I am". I'm hearing "ayvo yma", is that right? does the second word sound like "ymy" since the ι is at the end?

12/19/2016, 11:14:19 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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είμαι sounds more or less like the middle of "HE met" -- the "h[e me]t" bit.

The first vowel is like the "e" of "he" and the second is that of "e" in "met". Word stress on the first syllable.

Remember that αι together makes the same sound as ε.

12/19/2016, 12:08:43 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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Εγω has the hard gamma in it. The first approximation English speakers hear and think is our own hard g, such as in "golf". But the hard gamma is softer and not plosive, so it may sound slurred at first. Nevertheless, we could write its sound in English-like phonetics as something like "eh-goh". Just don't expect the g to sound too hard - it has more air in it. And make sure you hear the epsilon right. Americans are very used to mispronouncing their e's, but epsilon is just like the "e" in effort. When used casually in Greek, though, it can edge a bit closer to "ay". I think we are (I am) quite predisposed to hear it that way too, but it's really an in-between. Vowels glide into each other, which is why there are so many kinds in so many different languages. Nobody uses anything like all of them.

Είμαι should ideally be something like "ee-meh" (that's "ee" as in "bee"). Sometimes in fluent speech it moves a little towards our short "i" (as in "bit"). The epsilon-sound there (though spelled "αι") can also move towards "ay" sometimes.

Don't be thrown by these somewhat shifting vowel sounds. Nobody could fluently speak words in any language if they adhered to absolutely strict rules. The mouth needs physically to move from one position to the next fluidly, so it doesn't always treat the sound production quite the same way. That's similar to what the body does when it walks on different kinds of surfaces, say bare concrete, as opposed to earth on a forest path, as opposed to uneven and irregular patches of ice. One's balance always needs to adjust, so the actual foot and leg movements aren't the same. Neither with speaking motions of the mouth.

12/19/2016, 6:20:54 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/LiliamPatt
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It sounds like Portuguese, "Eu",

2/14/2017, 6:01:49 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/RodenbornElena

wow. This is actually pretty much my name.

4/27/2017, 7:41:27 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrmeda805992
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This is similar to Catalan! We would talk about people with the article in front of their name, "Jo sóc l'Andròmeda" ; la is the article that is followed by the name!

1/12/2019, 3:00:48 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/RyanOkushi
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How common of a name is Eleni, in Greek? Never heard of it before in other languages. Never even heard it in real life.

9/7/2016, 10:55:50 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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We have had more than one Eleni in my Greek Orthodox parish alone (in the US), and we're ethnically only about 20% Greek. (At least one Eleni is American.) So it seems fairly common to me. And the name goes way back. Think "Eleni of Troy". (She was Greek, kidnapped by Paris.) :)

9/8/2016, 3:25:08 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/RyanOkushi
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Oh! Right. The overly beautiful Helen of Troy.

9/8/2016, 7:33:14 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/helenb8642

It's very popular! Plus the name Eleni translated to English is the name Helen.... (Subtracting the fact that the direct translation and name meaning means "torch light".) Ironically, it's also my name!

10/17/2016, 10:09:46 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/RyanOkushi
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Cool! Thanks for the information, Helen. :P

10/18/2016, 7:55:16 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Jason342532

As you pointed out, it's more "anglicized" version is Helen. It is one of the most common names in Greek. Popularized after St. Helen (Eleni), the mother of St. Constantine.

11/11/2016, 12:20:45 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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Pretty common, in my experience.

The English equivalent of the name would be Helen. (Which in my experience is not as common.)

9/8/2016, 8:21:53 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/RyanOkushi
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Hmmm. I don't hear the name "Helen" very often, although one of my great aunts has the name.

9/8/2016, 7:32:15 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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Name popularity comes and goes. Among Americans, Helen was more so a couple or three generations ago. I have an aunt Helen myself. Then again, I had a great-great-aunt Isabel, which name fell off in use during most of my life, but I understand it's been making a bit of a comeback in the last 10-20 years. Give Helen a while. After 3000 years, I expect it's got some life in it yet.

9/8/2016, 11:57:00 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/RyanOkushi
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If the human race still exists, that is. :/

With global warming progressing at the current rate, there's almost no chance of humans living on Earth in 3000 years.

9/9/2016, 12:21:39 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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:) I was trying to say that since it's already been used for 3000 years, it stands as good a chance as anything to stick around as long as we do.

9/9/2016, 12:57:17 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Eleni
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Extremely common! Type "Eleni" into the search for friends here in Duolingo and watch a long list come up :)

I have found I can never use straight up "Eleni" as my user name anywhere, ever. As it has always been already taken.

9/30/2017, 4:22:43 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/RyanOkushi
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Cool, Eleni!

9/30/2017, 11:19:57 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/wrongstar
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The most common, I think.

9/20/2016, 3:58:57 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/Hypatiaserena

The second most common after Maria, actually!

9/23/2016, 7:58:13 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/RyanOkushi
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Hmmm. Cool!

9/21/2016, 1:55:33 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/travelsketches
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can this also mean 'I am a Greek?'

12/30/2016, 1:43:33 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
Mod
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No; Έλλην, Ελληνίς (the old words) have an eta in the middle, not an epsilon -- and two lambdas rather than one.

The modern words are Έλληνας, Ελληνίδα.

(First male, then female, in both cases.)

12/30/2016, 2:05:22 PM

[deactivated user]

    Does Latin Ego come from "εγώ"?

    1/26/2017, 12:37:23 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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    They both come from the same ancestor (which also turned into English "I").

    1/26/2017, 4:46:17 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/SelmaS87

    Why is "I am the Eleni" incorrect?

    4/7/2017, 2:05:45 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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    Because Greek uses the definite article even with proper nouns, but English does not.

    We just say "I am Eleni" even if Greeks (have to) say Εγώ είμαι η Ελένη.

    4/7/2017, 4:20:14 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/VikingBoat
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    Because we're not studying English, but Greek, I must say that it's necessary to absorb Greek as it is.

    4/7/2017, 4:23:53 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/SelmaS87

    Is Eleni a name then? Like people would name their child Eleni?

    4/10/2017, 3:41:34 PM

    https://www.duolingo.com/troll1995
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    Eleni is a female name. It means "shiny, radiant". In English it came to be "Helen".

    4/10/2017, 3:59:19 PM

    https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51
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    Yes. The English equivalent is "Helen". The name is at least as old as Helen of Troy: around 1500 B.C.

    4/11/2017, 6:12:45 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/Sandy346449

    Phonetically my answer is correct and should be accepted. The same question keeps coming back and there is no way to move forward.

    7/12/2017, 7:57:46 PM

    https://www.duolingo.com/IamJustintime
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    Did English get the Word 'Ego' as in 'He has a big ego' from Εγώ?

    9/23/2017, 2:22:32 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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    No -- the English word ego is from Latin.

    However, Latin egō and Greek εγώ are related; they both come from the same ancestor.

    9/23/2017, 4:31:59 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/IamJustintime
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    Wow! That's very interesting! It seems as if all languages are interconnected in one way or another. And thank you for replying so quickly! :D

    9/23/2017, 4:45:03 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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    Nearly all European languages are descended from a common ancestor (which is also the ancestor of many languages of north India and some in between, such as Persian).

    Whether other languages in the world, from Arabic to Chinese, are related to these Indo-European languages is something we can't answer -- if there is a common ancestor, it would be so far back in the past that we can't follow the various sound changes back far enough with enough reliability.

    Though there are quite a few proposals for connecting more and more languages together!

    9/23/2017, 4:53:12 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
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    It seems as if all languages are interconnected in one way or another.

    All the languages in the world, no. At least, not that we can demonstrate. But the majority of the languages spoken in Europe, definitely.

    • Greek is a Hellenic language.
    • English, German, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, etc. are Germanic languages.
    • French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, etc. are Romance (Latin-derived) languages.

    These three family groups, among others, are related to each other via an ancestor language we've un-creatively named Proto-Indo-European.

    10/7/2017, 1:43:03 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/vjgvardanyan

    a question : do you also say me lene i Eleni or you skip article in this case ?

    1/16/2018, 11:24:27 PM

    https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
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    You skip the article, because your name is the word "Eleni", not the person Eleni.

    η Ελένη is the person bearing that name

    Ελένη is the word itself, the name itself

    Thus Εγώ είμαι η Ελένη (I am [the person] Eleni) but Με λένε Ελένη (They call me [by the name] Eleni).

    1/17/2018, 4:51:10 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/Arkadios200
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    I’m Bruce Dickinson. Yes, THE Bruce Dickinson.

    6/21/2018, 7:31:32 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/RyanSlatte5

    I would understand if it asked to put this with the formality if i was translating written, but it is asking you to put what you hear. The formality is written-only as well...

    9/28/2018, 7:16:01 AM

    https://www.duolingo.com/April20046

    Wow this is hard

    10/6/2018, 8:37:51 AM
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