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"His or hers?"

Translation:Al său sau al ei?

1 year ago

12 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/sparkphy
sparkphy
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Why is "a lui sau a ei?" wrong?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/potestasity
potestasity
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It's not, report it.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/peterchic

Can you explain? 'a' is fem. singular. So how is it correct to say "a lui" to represent 'his'? Shouldn't it be "al lui"

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pereskia
pereskia
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The 'a' is feminine but refers to the owned thing not the owner. 'A lui' is his feminine stuff. 'Al' liu is his masculine stuff.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/peterchic

Thank you! Great explanation. I understand it now. But in this example, how are we supposed to determine what gender the 'owned thing' is?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pereskia
pereskia
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The english do not contain that information, so both should be possible translations. You should have the same for his and hers since both refereres to the same thing.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RobBeckett

...and why is "al său sau a sa" wrong? Are "sa" and "ei" interchangeable?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mjf92
mjf92
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No, "al său" refers to something masculine and "a sa" to something feminine. So "his beer" would be "berea sa", not "berea său". Some correct answers here could be "al său sau al ei", "a sa sau a ei", "ai săi sau ai ei" or "ale sale sau ale ei".

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RobBeckett

Thank you. Listing possible correct answers is very helpful to me.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mjf92
mjf92
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You're welcome. I believe other correct answers would be "al lui sau al ei", "a lui sau a ei", "ai lui sau ai ei" and "ale lui sau ale ei" or even "al lui sau al său", "a lui sau a sa", "ai lui sau ai săi" and "ale lui sau ale sale". As someone on another thread points out "său, sa, săi and sale" refer to the gender and number of the noun but do not tell you to whom the noun belongs: it could be "his" or "her". "Lui" and "ei" refer to the person but do not tell you the gender of the noun, so "lui" always means "his" and "ei" always means "hers". I hope that makes things slightly clearer and I haven't overcomplicated things!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnaAbovyan

Thanks, that's really helpful. All else being equal, when should I use "său, sa, săi and sale" instead of gender-specific counterparts? I had a hunch that maybe these are only used with living things, but that does not seem to be true.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SnekpitTom
SnekpitTom
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According to my Romanian better half, they are used mostly interchangeably, possibly with some preference to ”lui/ei” due to not having to consider the gender of the owned object but simply the gender of the owner, the latter often being part of the sentence already. Also makes it easier to learn for us :)

1 year ago