"Sappiamo poco di lui."

Translation:We know little about him.

February 23, 2013

This discussion is locked.


"we know a bit about him" should be correct?


"We know a bit about him" could be a subtle way of saying "we know a lot about him"; but if you say "we know little about him", it unambiguously conveys "poco di"



In English, can we also say "we know a little about him"? If YES, then I think this should be reported.


I thought this at first, but there is actually a difference between "a little" and just "little". "A little" is confirming that you know something of him, whereas "we know little of him" is more like a denial.

"What's that guy like?" "we know little of him" vs "What's that guy like?" "we know a little of him." Hope that was helpful :)


Oh, posso comprendere ormai. Mille grazie, signore. :)


Prego! Hai un buono oggi :D


I'm not a native english speaker and my "we know A little about him" was not accepted.. so was I so wrong in English?


I think this is answered already by J__l but...

  1. "Knowing a little about someone" is a positive, maybe you know his name, where he lives, who his family are or where he works, possibly even about what car he drives and what he eats, day to day stuff. It won't extend to where he went to school, what his hobbies are, what he likes to watch on TV, what his favourite music is etc.

  2. "We know little about him" is to to not know very much at all, possibly just his name and where he lives.

Number one could be what you learned from Wikipedia, whereas number two is what a neighbour says about someone who doesn't talk to people in their street much.

I said "we know little of him" which is number 2, I think that should have been correct.

'a little' vs 'little', subtle but important.


Just like in English, in Italian you would need the article: Sappiamo un poco. The difference between "un poco" and "poco" is the same as between "a little" and "little" in English. Like temporalthings said, the former means "we know some things about him" and the latter "we don't know very much."


"We know little of him" is not correct?


I ran into the same problem :(


That was my direct translation too. But on reflection I suppose that is more the way Shakespeare would have said it - too old-fashioned!


I think it should be correct, maybe I'm Shakepearean.


i like the way the 'sappiamo' sounds here


I thought when it came to knowing someone, it was "conosciamo," not "sappiamo"?


To know something about someone is different than knowing someone. "Sappiamo" is the correct term to use because they may know of him but they don't know anything about him. Hope this clears things up


That makes sense now. Grazie!


ok, this is a bit delicate. because in English "we know little" is sometimes a subtle way of saying "we know nothing", and sometimes a way of saying "we know much", depending on the speaker, context etc. is the meaning here the straightforward one of "we know some, but not much", or does this sentence gets different meanings in italian as well?


I don't think that "we know little" ever means "we know much": it can mean "we know nothing" (or more likely, next-to-nothing, or nothing that is particularly useful). It seems to me that "we know little" connotes that the amount we know is less than some optimal amount that would be desirable to know.


Why replace little with few is not correct?


Few refers to a numeric quantity. A few bananas, a few people, etc. It wouldnt make sense in this context. You can have "a little knowledge", but not "a few knowledge".


Would "sappiamo poco circa lui" work as well?


No, "circa" means "about" in the sense of "approximately" or "roughly". In this context you need "di" to mean "of" or "about".


Can this also mean "we know little from him"?


No, this should be "Sappiamo poco da lui"


What's the difference between 'poco' and 'po'? I think we saw 'un po' before and it meant 'a little' so I'm confused...


I think that you can say "un poco" or "un po'" to mean "a bit", just depending on how good it sounds in the sentence. However to mean "little" like in this sentence you can only say "poco", as "po'" can't be used without "un" in front of it. I could be wrong though!


Typo, I meant to put "we know little of him" which is perfectly good English for this


we know less than he?


No, "di" is of, not than, and "poco" is a little, not less (which would, unless I'm mistaken, be "meno").


I put a little bit and didn't accept it. Does anybody know why? Thanks.


Should 'We know A little about him." be accepted as well?


Very much a nuance thing, but I'd say knowing little & knowing a litte about somebody are a mater of degree.


Could it also be translated "We know little over him"?


Is "sappiamo poco su di lui" correct?


How would you say "We know a little about him"?


"un poco" perhaps?


The correct answer is: Conosciamo. Conoscere = to know a person, to be familiar with a person, to be acquainted with/to meet a person. Sapere = to know a fact, to know how to do something.


if it was simply “we know him”, you are correct. Lo conosciamo. but here the thing we know are little THINGS about him, so its sapere. I was confused about this as well, but someone explained it in the comments above.


I gave the exact translation, but it was marked wrong!


To me is sounded like "Sappiamo 'poTHo' di lui" I had no idea what it meant. ugh


How then do you say: we know less than him?


"We know him a little" - is it wrong?


can 'of' not fit here? thanks

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