Translation:The girl drinks the coffee, the milk or the tea.
I believe it's the difference between the indefinite and definite form - you use the ua ending for the definite form - "THE coffee" - and cafea for the indefinite form - "A coffee" or just "coffee".
I just suddenly realised that maybe you meant what words use the ending rather than what the ending means...
In that case, it depends on the noun and its declension. There are a number of different endings for different types of nouns, and it's a complex matter. There are rules, but there are also lots of exceptions as well.
https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Appendix:Romanian_nouns is a decent place to start but grammar is a complex topic.
I would read this article: https://www.romania-insider.com/romanian-language-lesson-definite-and-indefinite-article-in-romanian
I definitely needed that to start understanding articles in Romanian. Turns out there are 2 male forms, 3 female forms and 1 exception. And that is just for the indefinite article singular!
Both make sense; "Which of these beverages does the girl drink?" "The girl drinks the tea, the coffee and the milk, but not the juice or the lemonade."
The simple fact is that if you wanted to say what you've suggested, you need to use the indefinite article, not the definite article. So the sentence would be instead: "Fata bea cafea, lapte sau ceai."
Why "girl" can`t drink the coffee, I mean why only "the girl" can do this?
In this respect it is similar to English (in others, not). You can't say correctly: "girl drinks coffee". Only "a girl" or "the girl" or "some girl".
It's the ending of "Fata" - the a means it's the definite form - "The girl". To say just "girl" you'd have to use the indefinite form "Fată" but that probably wouldn't be any more correct in Romanian than it is in English. I would imagine you would need to use "O fată" for "A girl".
Why does it have to include the in front of each item listed when in English, we don't do that?
Technically there's a subtle difference between the two.
This sentence uses the definite form of coffee, milk and tea - meaning this specific coffee, milk and tea. What you are suggesting would be the indefinite form - just general coffee, milk and tea. The difference is subtle, but it's important and in this case, the sentence is clear, it's using the definite form, so it needs to use "the" in front of all three drinks.
As a native English and Romanian speaker, I can see that the Romanian sentence uses the definite article for all three beverages, but in English it's awkward to translate this so literally. I believe that "The girl drinks the coffee, milk, or tea" has exactly the same meaning. The definite article is implied in the rest of the list. As such that should be an accepted answer.
I agree with you, colloquially, that's what we do tend to do here, and generally speaking, someone would get your meaning... But (for once on here) I'd probably vote for being more pedantic - I came across this sentence while learning about definite articles and in that context, it probably does need to be a bit stricter. I'd put it along with the way that many Romanian sources don't bother with diacritics (e.g. online, newspapers etc) - and in most cases that's okay, you can kind of figure it out by context - but there's still a difference between fată and față, or tati and tați, if you see what I mean? YMMV though. :)
"Bea" is 3rd person singular present tense (that is, "he/she drinks") and "beau" is 1st person singular present tense ("I drink") or 3rd person plural present tense ("they drink").
The full present tense conjugation of "a bea" (that is, "to drink") is as follows:
eu beau (I drink - 1st person singular)
tu bei (you (singular) drink - 2nd person singular)
el/ea bea (he/she drinks - 3rd person singular)
noi bem (we drink - 1st person plural)
voi beţi (you (plural) drink - 2nd person plural)
ei/ele beau (they drink (all male or mixed groups/all female groups) - 3rd person plural)
why "laptele" and not lapte??? Please someone explain it to me! I'm a native spanish speaker
It's the definite article rather than indefinite.
Lapte - Milk Laptele - The Milk
I don't speak Spanish but I believe it's the difference between, for example, un gato and el gato - but where Spanish uses el (in the same way we use "the" in English) to identify the definite article, Romanian uses endings.
Fata - definite article - the girl Fatâ - indefinite article - girl (o fată - a girl)