"You were even then my wife."
Translation:Bylas už tehdy má manželka.
"You were even then my wife" is (IMO) simply a more artful rendering of "You were my wife even then / Even then you were my wife." To me, the meaning is clear from all three of them, and the translation shown above (@ 10 Feb 2020) has the advantage of following the Czech original quite closely.
I am native AmE, and while I wouldn't say that your sentence is necessarily better, it is almost certainly used a lot more often.
Also Amer English native speaker here, and this sentence hit my ear all kinds of wrong. I assumed this meant, "even then (perhaps through a bunch of turmoil or perhaps an unexpectedly long time ago) you were my wife." I've never seen "even then" break up a sentence like this.
Even then, you were my wife. You were my wife even then. You were even my wife then.
All of these sound better to me. However, some punctuation could work wonders on the current sentence and change the game---You were, even then, my wife.
Why can't I use "Bylas má manželka už tehdy"? I am studying the course three months, but still can't get the right word order in sentence - yet it hadn't been explained. It's becoming annoying, expecially, when I read in other resourses, that word order in Czech is almost free. Absolutely not flexible in this course.
Almost free is a drastic exaggeration, and expecting that you can throw it in n factorial ways will get you nowhere.
It is pretty flexible though, which means that each exercise in this course takes much more work and time to set up and maintain than a similar exercise in a course teaching a fixed-order language similar to English.
I hope your other resources have worked out better for you.
"Bylas má manželka už tehdy" is accepted. But we have no current report for that sentence, so we can't tell you why your answer was rejected. That's where the Report button comes in handy... But it's possible that the grading bug is back, although we haven't been seeing it much lately.
Can someone offer some clarification on where the past participle can go? It seems like it doesn't always have to go first, but I keep getting things wrong when I don't happen to put it first. I put Už tehdys byla moje manželka. It seems like už often goes early on in the sentence. I put the s after tehdys because it seems like už tehdy is one unit of meaning. I'm just getting really confused on how to tell what is or isn't a good word order with the past participle.
It is sometimes tricky to exactly determine where the -s may or may not be used when conjunctions are involved. Normally it is appended to words in the first position or to certain words in the clitic cluster. Some words, however, may or may not count as the first position and that is the tricky bit.
Also, in some situations the -s and the full jsi are used to a varying degree. Sometimes the -s is very informal, sometimes, on the other hand, it is very formal. One basically has to study the actual usage.
I would perhaps use "I tehdys byla moje žena." because tehdy is in the first position and you append -s to that word, but I cannot find any similar usage in the corpus. Google shows only one single "I tehdys" in the whole internet.
"I tehdy jsi byla..." is certainly possible.
Yes, the -s appends to the last word in the first position. With the už it is tricky and my answer to Eri168273 applies. There is no point repeating it all. Please read it.
You could maybe have:
"Už tehdys byla má žena."
"Užs tehdy byla má žena."
is dubious and I do not like it.
However, the corpus does not have any of the above. It does not have "Už jsi tehdy..." either. Only 14 cases of "Už tehdy jsi...".