That's why I put "The spider isn't talking"… – and it ranks as OK!
No difference in meaning.
δεν is the older form. It is still used before vowels and before some consonants (π τ κ μπ ντ γκ ψ ξ τσ τζ), while the shorter form δε is used before other consonants (β δ γ μ ν λ ρ φ θ χ and any I might have forgotten).
It's a bit like English "an" which got shortened into "a" before consonants -- there's no difference in meaning there, either.
This sentence should be δε μιλάει by current spelling standards, as μ is not one of the consonants where the ν remains. But it's a bit difficult to change the course at this point.
Thank you. DL is just starting to show me δε and I was a little lost. But in English, the a/an difference is simple: before a word starting with a consonant, 'a,' before a vowel, 'an.' I don't see any obvious rule with δε/δεν. One of those things we have to just learn?
I think what Austin_Texas wanted to say is that the pattern when to use δεν resp. δε is not logical.
I think the logic behind it is that you use δεν before vowels and before plosive consonants (b (represented by μπ), d (represented by ντ), g, k, ks (represented by ξ) p, ps (represented by ψ), t and ts (represented by τσ)).
Correct me if I'm wrong, it's just a guess.
So it's δεν before vowels, stops (plosives) and affricates, but δε before fricatives and sonorants? That isn't such a complex rule. An affricate is "really" a stop consonant opened into a fricative, so it makes sense that the τσ and τζ follow the pattern for stops. It is interesting that the vowels follow the pattern of the stop consonants, though.
What about γ when it's pronounced as [j]? I can't think of any verb that begins with γ right now, but surely some exist? Would you negate it with δε or with δεν?
The alternative form δεν (den) is used when the following letter is a vowel or a plosive consonant (κ, ξ, π, τ, ψ, γκ, ντ, μπ). δεν and δε are used with indicative verb forms, but μην and μη are used with subjunctive verbs. It may sometimes be used to emphasise a statement.
It seems possible the use here is deliberate (emphasis).
δεν threw me off at first, because Attic Greek (ancient) likes to balance sentences with μεν...δε which is not translated or translatable and the δε is never a negative. Currently, I'm trying to get used to when modern Greek adds a letter to the end with the common words δε and καφέ. The explanation from mizinamo is helpful and can be gotten from a standard grammar, but sometimes the inductive method of just trying to get a feel for when to add a letter to the end can be useful for a beginner. I don't yet have a feel for when to add the letter.
Roughly "on the one hand ... on the other hand".
It's still used in Modern Greek (as a deliberate loan from Ancient Greek).
For example, οι μεν άντρες είναι πολλοί, οι δε γυναίκες είναι λίγες "the men are many but the women are few / the men (on the one hand) are many; the women (on the other hand) are few".
Am I missing something with the vocabulary? In Animals 1, we learn mouse, dog, cat, turtle, horse, elephant, duck, bird, etc etc and then in Animals 2 we are suddenly asked to translate sentences containing pelicans and spiders! Is there supplementary vocab somewhere I should be looking at first?
I answered "the spider don't speak" and got rong!
Yes. That is not a correct sentence.
Duolingo can't actually speak English, Greek, or any other language.
It can only compare words -- is the sentence that a learner typed in on the list of accepted translations or not?
If it isn't, then it's marked wrong. Even if a native speaker would have understood you.
I think i will sonn spend more time with english than Greek
That's a very good idea, especially if you still struggle with such basics as which verb endings to use on "do".