Clarify Vechime Usage
In the tips and notes for Properties, it says "This word [vechime] refers to the age of an object (as in length of age). It is not to be confused with the age of a person or a thing."
I'm confused about the difference between the age of an object and the age of a thing, and also about what "length of age" means. Does anyone have any insight in what they're trying to say?
I did notice that when translating the adjective "old" you use "vechi" for objects and "bătrân" for people.
The most common uses of [vechime]. These examples cover 99% of the possible contexts of this word.
Pământul are o vechime de 4 miliarde de ani. (The Earth is 4 billion years old) - the age of an object
Ea are o vechime în muncă de 26 de ani. (She has been employed for 26 years) - the length of a job, office, position
Parlamentar cu vechime. (Long-term member of parliament) - like in the previous example it refers to the length of the job
Amară era soarta femeilor în vechime. (Bitter was the fate of women in the old days / ancient times)
The word [vechi] is used in many contexts with slightly different meanings. If you refer to a person with [vechi], it can be interpreted as 'outdated'
As you observed, if you're speaking about an elderly person, you can use [bătrân]. This is used mostly for living things: cal bătrân (old horse), copac bătrân (old tree), Femeia bătrână or simply Bătrâna (The old woman). If you want to be polite and avoid calling someone old, directly, you can say about them that they are 'în vârstă'. Avansat în vârstă - advanced in age
The course notes are inaccurate in that case. Most likely they wanted to say the following (I'm using bold to mark the differences):
"This word [vechime] refers to the age of an object (as in length of time). It is not to be confused with the age of a person or a living thing."
To the authors: if you are reading this, please correct the notes. Thanks.