https://www.duolingo.com/duracel84

"Mangiate un pesce."

February 27, 2013

14 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Elena18

I was brought up in Texas. We'd say "ya'll".

March 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/TheGandalf

Isn't fish used as a non-count noun? I translated it without the article "a", but it said that was necessary. I was under the impression it could also be a non-count noun, like milk.

March 14, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/duracel84

I understand "mangiate" as an imperatif...like a "must". ???

February 27, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/f.formica
Mod
  • 2097

It can be both.

February 28, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/jesslc

On the imperative: "Mangiate un pesce!" can also mean the imperative form of the sentence - (You (plural) eat a fish!) However typically the imperative would be indicated by putting an exclamation mark at the end since there is no other way to tell in written language, as the imperative form is identical to the non-imperative sentence.

Also according to my home page, imperative forms of the verb are covered much further down the track (after the second shortcut test), so if you are seeing this sentence in the section "Food" like me, it's fair to say that they are not looking for the imperative.

May 31, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/TheGandalf

Wait a second, I'm confused. Does this mean the same thing as "Tu mangi un pesce." or is this more for imperative, like "Eat a fish!"?

April 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/OhaiiGloria

'voi' is the plural for 'tu'. If that is what you were asking...

April 15, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/scarabetta

I'm confused, too. If someone says "mangiate un pesce" is probably more in the "eat a fish!" sense. I'm not comfortable with the answer.

April 16, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/MDL421

I agree. Despite fearing that it would be counted wrong, I tried it without the pronoun, and it dissed me.

May 17, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/jesslc

a) Mangi un pesce and Tu mangi un pesce - You (singular) eat a fish / You (singular) are eating a fish

b) Mangiate un pesce and Voi mangiate un pesce - You (plural) eat a fish / You (plural) are eating a fish

In a) we have one person eating a fish. In b) "you" refers to more than one person. ie 2 more people eating a fish together (They must be sharing the fish).

On the imperative:

Yes, "Mangiate un pesce!" can also mean the imperative form of the sentence - Eat a fish! (when talking to 2 or more people). However typically the imperative would be indicated by putting an exclamation mark at the end (since there is no other way to tell in written language, as the imperative form is identical to the non-imperative sentence).

Also according to my home page, imperative forms of the verb are covered much further down the track (after the second shortcut test), so if you are seeing this sentence in the section "Food" like me, it's fair to say that they are not looking for the imperative.

Hope that helps :)

May 31, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/TheGandalf

Molte grazie! Are you saying that when the subject is omitted, as in "Mangi un pesce." it means "You eat a fish." but when the subject is included, as in "Tu mangi un pesce." it means "You ARE EATING a fish."?

June 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/jesslc

Oops... That's not what I meant to say although I can see why you might read my post that way.

You (singular) eat a fish and You (singular) are eating a fish are exactly the same in Italian - The normal way to write/say this would be Mangi un pesce. English has two ways of expressing the present tense (you eat and you are eating) - Italian doesn't have this distinction(*see below). It's simply Mangi un pesce (for the singular informal "you")

Similarly Mangiate un pesce - corresponds to both You (pl) eat a fish and You (pl) are eating a fish.

Tu mangi un pesce and Mangi un pesce are identical in Italian except for one thing - you have bothered to include the subject pronoun ("tu") in the first sentence. Normally in Italian you don't include the subject pronoun in the sentence because you can usually tell who the subject is from how the verb is conjugated. Beginners learning Italian typically include it a lot more than a Italian person would... (particularly if they come from a language like English where subject pronouns are not optional).

So when would you include the subject pronoun if you were an Italian:

1) If it is not clear from the rest of the sentence OR from the context who is the subject of the verb then you include the subject pronoun. (and context typically includes both verbal and non verbal context)

2) If you want to put the emphasis on the subject in that sentence. For example: Mangi un pesce - You eat a fish (no particular emphasis). Tu mangi un pesce - YOU eat a fish (emphasis on "you"). Think of it as maybe someone asked: Who is eating the fish again? YOU are eating the fish (Tu mangi un pesce). In this situation you include the Tu.

This is a weird example to use - and it probably wouldn't come up very often. But including the io in a sentence for emphasis is more common - Who is reading the book? Io leggo il libro. I am reading the book - with the emphasis on I - which makes the meaning of the sentence something like: I am the one who is reading the book (not someone else). (obviously that's not the literal translation... since you didn't actually say the bit about not someone else - but that is what is implied)

English changes the emphasis in a sentence by tonal cues (I think that is the right name for it; basically you say the word you want to emphasis a little louder than the other words in the sentence) rather than written ones so this is a little tricky to explain in writing, but hopefully I've done it well enough :)

Italian also uses tonal cues for emphasis, but you can't use tone to emphasize the subject when the subject is implied from the verb ending... I suppose that's why they include the subject pronoun when they want to emphasize it.

(*)My memory is getting rusty here, but I think it's not strictly true to say that Italian doesn't have the distinction between you eat and you are eating - they have a distinction that looks a bit like "you are eating" but it's a different distinction and they don't use it like English does. It's something you only learn when you get a lot further on in Italian classes, I don't know if Duolingo even covers it (checked my home screen - actually they do but it's near the end). So for all intents and purposes you can treat "you eat" and "you are eating" as the same - and just use "mangi" for singular, "mangiate" for plural.

June 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/jesslc

By the way, I'm not a native speaker of Italian so take what I say about native speaker usage with a pinch of salt.

I studied Italian for 3 years at university (7-8 years ago). I don't remember hardly any Italian vocabulary, but it's amazing how much of the grammar and usage stuff I was taught has come back to me. (Of course there is the possibility my uni taught incorrect or out of date Italian - but for the most part the Italian lecturers were native speakers of Italian so chances are it's right). I've been to Italy once.

I also have a degree in linguistics which helps with the other half of it - understanding English well enough to know whether the issue is because Italian is confusing (or confusing for English speakers) or because you need to know something/s about English first to help you get it.

June 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Hongki_Cha

Can this phrase also mean "Eat a fish" to a person in a polite way? Thanks in advance

July 19, 2013
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