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  5. "Πόσο μικρό είναι το λουλούδι…

"Πόσο μικρό είναι το λουλούδι;"

Translation:How small is the flower?

September 13, 2016



Are πώς and πόςο related to each other, like being the same in a different case, or are they completely different words?


All of these question words that begin with ‘π’ are related. That beginning letter comes from the same Indo-European root that gave rise to ‘qu’ in Latin, ‘wh’ in English, and the common beginning of question words in many other Indo-European languages.


That's very interesting, thanks


They are different. Πώς is the "how" in the meaning of the way you do something. Πόσο is more like "how much" showing amount or degree. P.e. Πώς μαγειρεύεις; =how do you cook? (In what way, how you do it) but πόσο καλά μαγειρεύεις;= how well do you cook?


Does πόσο have gender? If so, and λουλούδι is neuter, why is this not πόσα? I am finding interrogative pronouns a bit confusing. If ποιανού /ής / ού is the genitive case, what is the nominative? I don't seem to be able to find their declensions.


There are two πόσο. The first one is the interrogative pronoun "how many" and as a pronoun applies to nouns. This one has genders. It's πόσος-πόση-πόσο.
For example: Πόση σοκολάτα θες;=how much chocolate do you want? Or πόσα λουλούδια έχεις=How many flowers have you got? Or πόσο αλεύρι χρειάζεσαι=How much flour do you need? This version of πόσος is gendered and conjugated normally.
The other version is the adverb πόσο=How (much). This one applies to verbs and is the version we have in the above sentence. Πόσο όμορφος είναι!=how beautiful he is! (Here how applies to is) ποσο μικρό είναι το λουλόυδι;=How (small the flower) is? This version as an adverb is not conjugated and is non gendered (because verbs are not gendered ;) )


Fantastic. That makes it completely clear. And I presume that ποιανού is the genitive case of ποιος -α-ο?


Yes, it's ποιου or ποιανού, ποιας or ποιανής for feminine and neuter is like the masculine.


and which is used the most in both cases? ποιου or ποιανού? and ποιας or ποιανής?


I'd say ποιανής & ποιανού are a bit more common.


Thanks! This is a great explanation!


If I want to say "how small ARE the flowers?", will it be "Πόσα μικρά είναι τα λουλούδια;"?

  • 108

It would still be 'Πόσο... ' and then as you wrote it. You should use the adjective πόσος/πόση/πόσο in agreement with what follows to say 'how many', otherwise use πόσο + adjective / adverb, without agreement, e.g. how beautiful = πόσο όμορφος, how quickly = πόσο γρήγορα.


So will it be ¨Πόσο μικρό είναι τα λουλούδια;" ?

  • 108

It would be Πόσο μικρά είναι τα λουλούδια; because Τα λουλούδια είναι μικρά. Here πόσο acts as an adverb,how, not as the adjective that shows quantity itself.


In English, an adverb can modify a verb, another adverb, or an adjective, and an adjective modifies a noun or pronoun. Are the roles of adverbs and adjectives like this in Greek? In this case in the English sentence, I think "how" is an adverb that modifies the adjective "small" not the verb "is" or "are". In the Greek sentence can πόσο as an adverb modify the adjective μικρό?


Thx for the distinction adverb/adjective. I was aware of πόλυ /πολλά etc


Is this used only as a true question in Greek? Or (like in English) can it also act as a rhetorical question? (i.e. the speaker knows how small the flower is, but is drawing the listener's attention to it.)


Troll1995 Thank you so much for your further explanations

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