"a coffee" is an informal abbreviation of the standard term; a CUP of coffee. the use of the singular indefinite article is grammatically correct in this phrase as CUP is singular and not plural, unlike the words tea and coffee which are in the plural. the indefinite article a must precede a singular noun. note if we change CUP to CUPS the clause becomes grammatically incorrect as in; "a cups of coffee".
you're right that it's informal; I would say the same about 'a tea' which my family, for example (from England) would say in certain contexts. So then it's a question of whether informal English sentences should count. Because this is English > Romanian, assuming the speaker knows English already, I think it's fine.
"Tea" and "coffee" are mass nouns, not plurals. (You can tell they're not plurals because we say "tea is good" and "coffee is good", not "tea are good" and "coffee are good").
Like many mass nouns, they can be turned into countable nouns in some circumstances. "A coffee" can be a cup of coffee (in another context, it could be a particular variety of coffee - "there's a really good coffee from Ethiopia that a friend introduced me to last week").
It's less common to say "a tea" to refer to a cup of tea, but it's also possible. I can imagine going to a cafe and ordering "a large tea".
I'm really confused, I hovered over "un ceai" and the duo dictionary said the translation was "a cup of tea" but when I typed that in, it told me it was incorrect and it really means "a tea" (which I think sounds perfectly fine in English). Is there a separate, more correct way to say "a cup of tea"?
We have tea a lot with people, and "un ceai" is completely acceptable as far as I can tell. I hear it and have said it many times. "Un ceai" doesn't literally translate to "a cup of tea," but just as you can say in Engish "Would you like a tea?" you can say in Romanian "Vrei un ceai?"
Hey there, Carlismile. Hope your day is pretty good so far:) I was just wondering whether "vrei" actually means "would you like" or is this a rather informal way to express it, much like "do you want (care for) a (cup of) tea?"? If not, how would you say it in a formal context? Thanks in advance!
Hi David! "vrei" would be considered commonplace, so yes, not formal. To make it formal, you can simply use the plural conjugation of the verb for "you want." So "vreti" said even to a single person would be considered formal. You could also use the formal version of you: "Dumneavoastra vreti." This would be the most formal way to address someone (that I know of), as far as I can tell (but I am still learning). I don't hear this amongst peers, but when speaking to the elderly I will hear people speaking more formally. So yes, I think you'd be safe in a formal situation saying "vreti". Hope that is helpful =)
Every sentence has a few perfect answers and many accepted answers. The perfect answers are presented to the user (the app suggestion). The accepted answers are not shown as solutions but are accepted as alternative answers at the user input and are presented as exercises, I observed that tiled exercises and multiple choice questions are presenting these alternative translations. Every sentence has a forum thread. So this is the origin of the ”cup” in this discussion, perhaps it is an accepted answer.
Funny! ”Tea” is a word in Romanian? I'm just near a cup of coffe, and in Romanian we say "Sunt exact lângă o ceașcă de cafea.” We say also ”Vrei o ceașcă de ceai?” or ”Vrei un ceai?” and both are correct, but not equivalent, because ”un ceai” can mean a bottle of tea bought on the street, while when I invite someone to a ”cup of tea” can mean I invite someone to a discussion or a date, because we will be around a table.
My correct translation was " we are drinking a cup of tea or a cup of coffee" ; I know there was no "cup " in Romanian, and therefore it is an idiomatic translation rather than a literal one, nevertheless, why is there be an option to choose between " we drink" and "we are drinking" in the tiles to construct the sentence? "We are drinking" sounds better in English I agree, but to mark the sentence wrong for writing "we drink" doesn't make sense to me.
Corry467713, there is no need to make a wright answer :) But you have a chance, if you take a screenshot and then report your problem to Duolingo, here: https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/requests/new
Still, try to be sure you have a real problem, before that.
This Romanian course is very confusing. It seems to be hit and miss with the present tense. I was marked as incorrect for translating - we are drinking. On another exercise it was the reverse. I put I drink and it was marked as incorrect and I should have put I am drinking. They are the same in Romanian so on what criteria it is based???
So i see we all have the same issue with the tea pronoun... Sucks that duolingo doesnt give you the variety that languages in translation should have. I, for example, wrote it as "some tea" but it corrected me with "one tea", here it says the correct translation is "a tea", and hovering over the word "ceai" it said a cup of tea....
I would be inclined to say that in current context, which is acquiring the absolute basics of a language, their method of "correcting" you has its own purpose: this way of teaching forces you to focus on getting familiar with rather rudimentary, but tremendously essential vocabulary that is appropriate for the level you are at right now.