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  5. "おとうとはアメリカの女の子に英語でてがみを書いています。"


Translation:My little brother is writing a letter to a girl in the US in English.

June 17, 2017



This was quite a mouthful!


The worst is to stay literal enough for it to be accepted! For example, everyone would just say "an English letter" because it makes the sentence structure much easier, but it's not the same grammatical construction so I'm paranoid about Duolingo not accepting that.


Wouldn't there be pauses in such a long sentence when spoken naturally?


No more than in the English version of it.


Just because it is one sentence doesn't mean you can't pause somewhere, even if there aren't commas. If you do, the most natural place(s) to do so would be at one or more transition points between components of the constituent structure. Think subject, object, and prepositional phrases in English and components in Japanese ending with structural particles such as は, が, を, に, で, ... or non-final verb forms at the end of a clause (V-te, V-i: 書いて, 書き... though NOT as here in front of a helping verb, because that wouldn't be clause final), but not の when used simply to make a modifier of the preceding (pro)noun.

However, unless you really have trouble getting out more than a few words at a time or the person you're speaking to has trouble understanding, you will probably choose just one or two potential break points. Although it may be easier for language learners, speech that is too chopped up can be more difficult for fluent speakers to follow the total meaning of.

おとうとは / アメリカの女の子に / 英語で (/) てがみを書いています。

My younger brother / is writing a letter (/) in English / to an American girl.


Probably not (no more than in a typical English sentence). It's all one sentence.


Yes, but much more natural in English would be to break this into multiple sentences. Like: My little brother's writing a letter in English. It's for a girl in America.

So much more readable.


I hate tíos sentence so much because since the first time I saw it I completely understand it but doulingo is being soooo picky about it and won't give me a correct answer until I write exactly what it wants


Man, here's a lingot just because I feel your pain. Same thing with me.




I wrote "my little brother is writing letters in English to an American girl" and Duo rejected it. Reported.


"my younger brother is writing an American girl a letter in English" is what I wrote. similar to yours. can someone explain why this syntax is wrong?


It's not wrong, but whereas simple pronoun indirect objects are most frequently put in that position before the direct object, the more complex an indirect object is, the more likely it is to be placed after the direct object, preceded by 'to.' Otherwise, it may sound a little more awkward or difficult to understand. E.g.: I gave my sister-in-law who has been living in Boston (for ten years) a book.


That should be okay. I don't know if Duo is still rejecting it. Bear in mind, however, that your sentence contains three differences from the current default version (LITTLE brother, letterS, & American girl). I report many alternatives myself, and have had many accepted, usually quite some time afterwards. I know it frustrates us, but entering all possible combinations of all acceptable, alternative elements is a daunting task, that probably has practical limits.


There are so many right ways to get this translation wrong.


'My little brother writes letters in English to an American girl' would this not be correct? I thought ています could be in the moment or something that is done constantly / as a routine?


This is like peak stress level when it comes up in timed practice as a listening "write what you hear" question.


I dropped the "to" by reordering the sentence a little - "My little brother is writing a girl in the US a letter in English". This version of the sentence was rejected despite being totally natural English. I will report.


I don't find that natural English at all, but I gather that "to write X" (vs "to write to X") is a common enough American usage. Either way it shouldn't be marked "wrong", they could just note that they expected a "to" in there. It's supposed to be a Japanese course, not an English one.


got marked wrong for putting USA instead of US. LOL


"My younger brother is writing an American girl a letter in English." Clarity issues aside, there's no reason that shouldn't work. Reported.

The more complex the sentences get, the more you'll be getting correct answers counted wrong.


That face when you write the correct translation on your first try, but accidentally write it in past tense and get the whole thing wrong by one word



That was really fun to solve! More like this!


My answer "my little brother is writing English letters to a girl in america" got rejected- so annoying!


"English letters" is a bit of an odd way of expressing it, I'm not surprised at that. But it also rejects "writing letters in English"!


So many natural ways to say this in English. How do I pick the exact solely accepted solution from all the possibilities? I can't remember the only one accepted phrase for every question on here.


Doing this sentence on the phone app, and all the tiles were already in place since it can't fit on the screen XD


What a shame I couldn't practice the sentence on the phone with everything being placed automatically in the correct places :( wasted challenge


There is no much use in this one when all you have to do is insert the last five words.


I like that big question it force us to think more about Japanese sentences


Does it have to be "is writing" or would "writes" work as well? Usually I put "My younger brother writes a letter to a girl in America in English" but it always marks me wrong. Is that a valid translation or am I wrong?


why is 'letters' wrong and only 'a letter' accepted lol


There are so many English tiles for this sentence that you can't see them all.


I wrote the sentence exactly as above, and it was appointed as mistaken


Wow, this hardly accepts an valid English alternatives. All the "natural" ways of expressing it "a letter in English to the/an American girl/girl in/from America/the US" seem to be rejected. Putting "in English" at the end feels quite awkward.


I got it wrong, but it doesn't let me compare my answer to the correct one.


When a question is marked wrong, a correct answer will appear at the bottom.

Also after you complete a lesson there will be a "Review" button at the bottom that shows your answer in comparison to the correct answer.


Wow, I never knew about the review button! Maybe I just never paid enough attention!


The Japanese sentence doesn't specify that the girl is IN the US, just that she is an American. Also, "writing a letter in English" would seem to be a better construction.




I have something wrong but the red area is so large i cant see any print out of the correct wording. There is no physical space! So i cant continue.

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