"Hledám svoji ženu."

Translation:I am looking for my wife.

September 11, 2017

13 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/ingmar65536
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first: why was "I look for my wife" considered wrong here?

But more important: When and why is "svuj" etc used instead of "muj", "tvuj", "jeho", "nas" etc?

I supposed it meant "my own" etc, but that translation wasn't accepted either.

September 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/kacenka9
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I believe the author of the translation could not imagine a situation where 'já hledám svoji ženu' would not be something I am currently doing thus 'am looking'.

As for 'svůj, svá' vs. "můj, tvůj, jeho, etc.'. This is a tough one for native speakers, so do not feel too bad.

In general, if the object belongs to the subject of the sentence, 'svůj' should be used. John is looking for his wife. In English you cannot be sure, if the wife is John's or if John is looking for Ben;s wife. In Czech if John is looking for John's wife, it would be 'SVOU'. If John is looking for Ben's wife, it would be "JEHO'.

This rule has a bunch of exception. I am putting on my coat. If for some reason I need to point out that the coat is really mine, because Jane has the same one, I can say "oblékám si MŮJ kabát'. If I do not need to point it out, I can simply say that 'oblékám si SVŮJ kabát'. So you see why native speakers struggle at times as well. Welcome to the club!

September 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Mrkvicka4

I would argue that there is no real ambiguity of who's wife John is looking for in the sentence "John is looking for his wife"; if the sentence is alone, then John can only be looking for his own wife as no other person has been introduced and, therefore, cannot be the "owner" of the wife. If another person has been introduced, then the preceding sentence(s) will clarify the ownership. "You see that person over there? John is looking for his wife." - here it wouldn't make sense if John was looking for his own wife.

A somewhat gray area could be found in the following conversation: "Have you seen Ben?", "No, but John is looking for his wife, maybe she knows where Ben is". Here it could actually be possible that John is looking for his own wife; it could be common knowledge that John's wife was among the last persons to see or talk to Ben (and, thus, would be a logical person to ask), it could be common knowledge that John's wife often hangs out with Ben (so finding her would likely mean finding Ben), or maybe John's wife is known to be so good at finding people that she would be the one everyone want to ask for help. However, unless there is a clear, preferably outspoken, reason why John's wife would be the person to find Ben, the sentence can only mean that John is looking for Ben's wife. Without the extra knowledge that John's wife is the best person to find Ben, it would be highly illogical for John to look for his own wife when Ben's wife is far more likely to know where her husband is.

As for the real reason I came to this discussion: I, too, would argue that "I am looking for" and "I look for" is interchangeable here and that "I look for my wife" should be accepted. I wouldn't say "I look for my wife" unless it is something I'm currently doing.

November 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/VladaFu
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Frank his ill. John his looking for his wife.

We cannot assume no preceding sentence here. We always assume such a sentence could be there.

July 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ingmar65536
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Ah, ok... I get it, maybe... Thanks a lot! Does it matter too whether a verb with se is used in the sentence, I can imagine that when se is used, svůj would be the logical possesive pronoun. Just my logics, maybe it's nonsense in reality

September 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/kacenka9
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I do not think it makes a difference. I am going to sit on my chair. Posadím se na svou-mou židli. I can choose here if I need to point out is is mine and not yours or simply sitting on my chair. The verb does not seem to influence it one way or another.

September 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/CassieMALI

Excellent description of the svou dilemma thank you

October 3, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/skywalker735
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Ahh it is pretty similar with danish "sin/sit/sine", isn't it?

November 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/endless_sleeper
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Ja, præcis!

July 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pavlovnia
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I have written "I look for my wife", presenting a situation where a person is in a permanent searching for the life partner. Apparently, just as ingmar65536. So why don't you make it one of the acceptable options?

September 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ErinBart

This wouldn't be correct in English either. If I was searching for a wife in the long term or looking for my wife at that moment I would use "looking for" for both. In fact looking for A wife would be better in the future scenario unless you were being poetic about it.

July 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/blublevita
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We learned hledat as "to look for" something. I see no reason why "to search for" is not also a good way to translate hledat. At least one online dictionary provides it as a translation:

search 1. sb sth prohledat koho/co 2. for sb/sth hledat koho/co, pátrat po kom/čem

I reported it, and would appreciate any feedback.

October 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Emma881688
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I learned "hledat" as "to seek," which has the added benefit of reminding the English speaker that "hledat" does not take a preposition, and yet that seems to also be marked as incorrect every time. I'm not sure why that synonym isn't accepted.

February 10, 2018

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