"The giraffe is an animal"

Translation:Η καμηλοπάρδαλη είναι ζώο

September 26, 2016

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Is ζώο countable? Why isn't it είναι ένα ζώο?


There is written "an animal". So the translation could be also "ένα ζώο". But it's not acceped! Why?


The beginning sounds like the word for camel. Is a giraffe (believed to be) some kind of camel? If so, what is the meaning of the second part of the (the part that comes after camel)?


The second part of the word is πάρδαλις (masculine πάρδαλος) that means panther. But why name the giraffe as "panther-camel"? Well, most panther species are spotted (regardless of us thinkng of panthers as black in our minds) and the word παρδαλός-παρδαλή-παρδαλό came to mean "spotted" among other things. So we came to have γατόπαρδος=cheetah (spotted cat), καμηλοπάρδαλη==giraffe (spotted camel), λεοπάρδαλη=leopard (spotted lion) etc ;)


I figured it was camel-leopard. Leopards have spots.


Does modern Greek have accent rules? By Ancient Greek standards, here one would expect καμηλοπαρδάλη, since the last syllable is long. But that's clearly not the case here…


Interesting notice really! But the Ancient Greek word is καμηλοπάρδαλις: http://www.lexigram.gr/lex/arch/%CE%BA%CE%B1%CE%BC%CE%B7%CE%BB%CE%BF%CF%80%E1%BD%B1%CF%81%CE%B4%CE%B1%CE%BB%CE%B9%CF%82#Hist1 , with ι in the end that was either long or short in Ancient Greek. These nouns changed the suffix to -η without any change in accent. Even the suffix το -ις was used till the last decades in katharevousa, all these words transcribed to the suffix -ι first in a mixed language used in newspapers mostly and finaly, the last 40 years definitely to the Modern Greek suffixes. Some old books use them, including literature books of the end of the 19th c. Also in the link you can notice the change in declension suffixes.


Modern Greek has the rule that the accent must occur on the ultima, the penult, or the antepenult—and any clitic is included here, which is why "ο δάσκαλος" changes to "ο δάσκαλός μου." But I'm not familiar with any rules relating to syllable length.


Shouldn't both answers be correct - with and without ένα before ζώο???


Doesn't "Ο καμηλοπάρδαλη" mean the giraffe?


It is feminine: η καμηλοπάρδαλη.


Not even one of the phrases have final punctuation? The translation phrase or the original phrase?

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