1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Romanian
  4. >
  5. "El este mic, iar eu sunt mar…

"El este mic, iar eu sunt mare."

Translation:He is small, and I am big.

February 9, 2017



What is the differnece between "si" and "iar" - are there times when one should one of these rather than the other?


They are quite the same when they link 2 sentences (our example).
The difference is "si" can be found inside a sentence (as a conjunction) linking two subjects, attributes, complements... and can also be a pronoun or an adverb.


I would like to point out that we, Romanians, are usually referring to the age when we say about a person that it is big or small (despite the fact that we have distinctive adjectives for old (bătrân) and young (tânăr)). If we talk about an object or an animal, then we mean the size of it.


My opinion as a learner: I feel "iar" suggests a slight contradiction sometimes, but it can be used as "and", too. Right? In english you can use the word "while" instead of "and", when it suggests contradiction.


Not necessarily contradiction but difference. "Eu mănânc pâine iar el mănâncă brânză ". Both are used to link two sentences. You use "iar" or "și" when these are somehow related (like the examples above) and you only use "și" when they are not related ("el e mic și eu mănânc pâine ")


First of all allow me to congratulate you all for learning Romanian. It has a really tough grammar and sometimes may feel overwhelming, but if children can learn it then so can you. All you need is enough practice and with it experience.
The hard way to learn Romanian is by learning the rules first. The easy way is the way children learn. First get enough experience listening, reading, so you can feel the language. Then you can learn the rules.
Now, to get to the point, you felt very well about "iar". "Si" and "iar" are logically quite the same, but grammatically they are different. They are both coordinating conjunction but "si" is copulative and "iar" is adversative.


That is helpful encouragement. I was glad to understand that learning the rules can come after experience. That has been my mojo because something either sounds 'right' or 'wrong' depending on how you have learned it in the first place.


So my translation of: He's small but I'm big is not acceptable or even worse absolutely wrong?


It is not a good translation in this case. It would be the translation of "el e mic dar eu sunt mare"


Your translation is correct. I just wanted to point out that if you encounter this type of comparison in a casual discussion, it could refer to age, not necessarily size. Even though I weight about 15kg more and I am taller than my sister, because she is 2 years older than me I would say "sora mea mai mare" ("my bigger sister" in direct translation) when talking about her. It's like G. Orwell's Big Brother - it refers to someone older/wiser, not someone physically bigger.

Learn Romanian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.