"O gerente trabalha mal."

Translation:The manager works badly.

March 2, 2013

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I think its only "barely" works if mal comes before the verb


That's what I thought. "The manager barely works" = "O gerente mal trabalha", but "O gerente trabalha mal" = The manager is not a good worker. (Although that isn't the literal translation here, it just sounds better to me)


It's clear from the discussion that the sentence means the manager's work is bad. The question is how to translate it, since he "works badly" is simply not idiomatic in English, though there's nothing grammatically wrong with it. Should Duo be made to accept translations that represent what a native English speaker would say to convey the meaning of the Portuguese sentence? That would be good for non-native English speakers who are using the program to improve their English. Examples could be "The manager does poor work" or "The does his job poorly." Other solutions?


Sounded like she said 'mau' not 'mal'


That really is a factual issue with Brazilian Portuguese pronunciation (especially this approximation to the Rio de Janeiro dialect, however robotic it may sound at times): words ending in a vowel + L combination usually turn into diphthongs, so "mal" does end up sounding a lot like "mau" (regular people make the same mistake you just did).

That said, the only possible option here on structural, logical terms is an adverb (since you're qualifying the verb "trabalhar", i.e. how he works), so only "mal" could ever fit the bill for the sentence.


works "badly" is strange ,"poorly" would be more suitable


The manager works "badly", so, why cannot be "bad"?? both words could be accepted


Bad is an adjective (describes nouns) and badly is an adverb (describes verbs, and sometimes adjectives – in this case how he works).

Adverbs can usually be identified in English by the suffix ly (added at the end) such as safely, nicely, wonderfully and of course, usually, But not always as well for instance is also an adverb. Adverbs describe how an action is done or performed. They are careful (describes they; careful people); they cut carefully (describes how they cut).

All that said, I personally would use poor and poorly in many sentences rather than bad and badly. He has poor taste in clothes but, the milk tastes bad. She works poorly but, she feels badly about that.

But also just the negation, he does not work well is often used.


Since you brought it up... 'She feels badly' would really mean that her sense of touch is not working correctly. 'She feels bad' refers to the emotional state. I love semantics! The educational system in America is so poor that I think most Americans couldn't tell you what an adverb is, let alone use them correctly or identify the differences in those sentences. Most non-native English speakers seem to have a far better understanding of grammar and parts of speech than Americans, especially on this site.


The manager barely works should be an acceptable answer.


See here, an explanation by a native Brazilian, danmoller: https://www.duolingo.com/#/comment/228268

That's it. Mostly it means "badly" when placed after the element it relates to. (Cozinha mal).

And "barely" when it's placed before (mal cozinha)


"The manager hardly works" wasn't accepted :'(


I think it is because "hardly works" means he does not work the time is required or is quite difficult to make him work. On the other hand "works badly" means he doesn't work they way it has to be worked, and that's what "trabalha mal" means.

In spanish we have "trabaja mal" and has the same escence than the portuguese one, but "mal trabaja" do means "hardly works". I do not know if you can say "mal trabalha" but I think it would be the correct translation for your answer.



This helped me a bit. If somebody can clarify what I got from this is pretty much mau/bom are opposites of each other and mal/bem are also opposites of each other. Mal is used for badly/barely instead of mau which is used for just the word bad. Again, anyone feel free to chime in and correct! :D


You are correct on pairing bom/mau and bem/mal. The former ones are adjectives and therefore refer to a substantive. The latter ones are adverbs and therefore refer to verbs or adjectives, mal can actually mean bad, as long as it is used as an adverb like this exercise that uses badly


I said the manager works poorly and was marked wrong. I think "poorly" makes more sense here than "badly", though the two words are arguably synonyms.


Does not "boss" work as well for "gerente" ?


"The manager is not up to the job"?


Or the manager "barely" works (compared to what is expected of him or her. I wouldn't say that the manageer works badly, but rather "The manager does not work well.


The manager works and he is bad at it. Your sentence may lead to the interpretation that he doesn't work, which is incorrect


Too much off of the litteral definition, but that should be okay in a real worls translation.


That, in my opinion, is much better English than "the manager works badly".


Badly mean malamente ..Isn't it ? And bad mean mal..


"Malamente" that word does NOT exist in Brazilian Portuguese, the suffix 'mente' is used to make adverbs, 'mal' is already an adverb. Note that 'mau' is an adjective.


It is a spanish word, right?


"Malamente" is a Spanish word, not Portuguese. But "badly" doesn't always translate to "malamente" in Spanish, eg. Las cosas van mal = things are going badly.


The manager works little is also wrong, but 'little' was one of the hints?


Há alguma diferença entre "mal" e "mau"?


mal = adverb

mau = adjective


Entendo. Muito obrigado.


"The manager badly works" was not accepted. Is there something wrong?


= o gerente mal trabalha


So why not, hardly works? The last exercise said mala was hardly


«Mal» is one of those delightful adverbs which have a slightly different meaning depending on their position relative to the verb. Perhaps that's what you ran into?

There were some posts about this elsewhere in this discussion:

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