"Matěj maso nemá."

Translation:Matěj does not have meat.

September 10, 2017

This discussion is locked.


I think "Matěj has no meat" should be accepted.


No, "Matěj has no meat" means "Matěj nemá ŽÁDNÉ maso"


Well, yes, that too, but the mapping is most definitely not one-to-one.

The primary translation "Matěj has not got meat" sounds rather stiff. I didn't check whether "Matěj doesn't have meat" is accepted (I assume it would and I think it should), but I think on, at least, a colloquial level of style "Matěj has no meat" would be considered equivalent to "Matěj has not got meat", since the former implies the latter, at least without any context to judge whether he doesn't have the specific meat or no meat at all; without context also "žádné" is a bit superfluous.

I stand by my opinion, that "Matěj has no meat" should be accepted.


I'm still only learning Czech, so I can't judge this sentence, but in English "Matěj has no meat" (negation links to the noun) is not equivalent to "Matěj has not got meat" (negation links to the verb).


I'm reacting to your multiple negations question: Both.

Simple "ne-" acts similarly to English

"to není neobvyklé" = "it is not unusual"

Fun begins when we want to translate sentences with words like "any", "each", "none", "never", "no one" or "nowhere"

"nic nevím" = "I do not know anything"

The wildest possible example could be "Nikdy jsem nikde nikoho neviděl". Literally it would be "I have not never seen no one nowhere", but it has to be understood "I have never seen anyone. Anywhere."


It is same in czech "Matěj nemá maso" (negation links to the verb)

"Matěj nemá žádné maso" (negation links to the object)

The only difference is that czech uses multiple negations in sentences.


In english can be in one sentence only one negation (that is what i was taught in the school) In czech you can put multiple negations in one sentence.

They do not cancel each other out. And i don't think that they strengthen each other. It's just the way how to express negative statement in slavic languages.

For example: Nikdy to nikomu neříkej.= Never say it to anybody (which literally translated to czech is Nikdy to někomu říkej.)


I am not convinced by your point. Czech and English are languages that work in a different way and to what the negation links, does in this case not make any difference semantically. I'd even go as far as arguing that "Matěj nemá žádné maso" in fact is a quite far reaching translation of "Matěj does not have meat", rather translating it as "Matěj does not have any meat".

Maybe to rephrase it in yet another language, for emphasis. I think that "Matěj maso nemá" maps to German "Matěj hat kein Fleisch", to which "Matěj has no meat" maps as well, whereas "Matěj nemá žádné maso" would map to German "Matěj hat gar kein Fleisch", which is semantically different.


Yes, they are indeed syntactically different. But without a context to embed them in, they are semantically equivalent.


And what about "Matej has not meat"? Is it wrong?


That is archaic English. "Have" as a main verb (not the auxiliar have) with the meaning of possession is negated using "do" in modern English. That example you gave would nowadays be: "He who doesn't have Christmas in his heart is never gonna find it under a tree". Way less poetic, don't you think? :)


"He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree". May be "has not" is incorrect American English, but not British?


Does Matěj have meat? No, he has not/hasn't.
Of course, the exercise does not allow the context.


I would never never never say "Matej has not got meat." If I wanted to talk about Matej not having meat, I would say "Matej has no meat" or "Matej doesn't have meat." And those people who are saying that "Matej has no meat" is not the same in practical speech as "Matej doesn't have meat" are not correct in my experience. There is no difference in meaning or emphasis or emotional content between the two.


I agree that English 'I do not have meat' and I' have no meat' mean the same thing. On the other hand, each of those has a different literal translation into Czech.

The particular Czech sentence in this exercise happens to use the form that means 'does not have' rather than 'has no'. So I think the DL team is within their rights to insist on that English phrase, especially since there is a different Czech phrase available if the other is meant.

In deciding how to translate a sentence -- and especially when teaching a language to foreigners -- semantic equivalence is not the only criterion to apply. For example, when I introduce myself, I might say any of the following:
1. I am Bill. 2. My name is Bill. 3. I am called Bill.
But are these three really all the "same"?


This was a very interesting discussion. I am not an expert in either language, but it seems to me that "Matěj does not have meat" (or, I think, in BrE, "Matěj has not got meat") is a pretty clear translation of the Czech sentence. Sometimes, simple just works.


Ok, I got this right but don't grasp the "maso" before the verb vs. after the verb. So Matej nema maso is not accepted?


Matěj nemá maso. is accepted.

The difference is what is the new information, what is stressed. In "Matěj maso nemá." you are informing that he does not have it, the meat has already been within the context of the discussion. "Matěj DOES NOT HAVE the meat." See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Topic_and_comment


Does this sentence emphasize the fact that MEAT is what Matěj doesn't have rather than anything else by putting the verb last?


Please always read the existing discussion before posting; often, you will find the answer, as is the case here.


Has no meat, has not got meat, does not have meat. The first is my choice of the three equivalent translations. Because it omits does or got, which are used for emphasis in English.
The thing is, English can use not or no here, where German and Russian would use no, and French and Italian use not. Looks like Czech uses not, until emphasis is wanted.
So long as Duo uses translation, not immersion, we must expect these issues for the mother language to arise from time to time.

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