"Why aren't your bears here?"

Translation:Proč tady nejsou tví medvědi?

October 9, 2017

This discussion is locked.


grammatically this sentence is great, sure. Culturally, I'm trying to understand the origin for it and the context in which it can be used, as part of a common conversation in the street in Prague.


Your 3 year old that drags her bears everywhere (teddy bears) showed up without them. Thus the question.


But is the bear then still animate?


Sure, it is animate even when the animal is a toy, in a painting, in a photograph, whatever.


In this Write This in Czech exercise, the correct answer given was "Proč tví medvědi nejsou tu?" My answer was considered incorrect, apparently because I used "tady" instead of "tu" (which was underlined).

However, the correct answer shown above uses "tady."

Now, my FULL answer was "Proč tví medvědi tady nejsou." So... was I wrong because I didn't use "tu" or because I used "tady" in the wrong place in the sentence? Any help appreciated!


Just got this one back again because I had it wrong the first time. So, as an experiment, I just replaced "tady" with "tu," without changing the word order -- and this time my answer was considered correct!

So, since "tu" was accepted in the Write This in Czech exercise that didn't like "tady," can I assume that EITHER "tu" or "tady" can be used in this sentence?

And if I can safely make that assumption, I'm guessing that my first answer was wrong because of the WORD ORDER, not because of the WORD..

If there's no problem with the WORD ORDER of my initial answer, I'd like to "report" it.

So If someone would clarify what was really wrong in the first answer, that would be great!


The sentence "Proč tví medvědi nejsou tady?" is perfectly fine, imho it's better than the one using "tu" (if the sentence with "tu" is accepted, please, report also the sentence with "tady").

However, in these two sentences, you're strongly emphasizing the adverbial of place (the location) and it is not as common. You'd use it for example in a situation when there was a map and you said: "Why are the bears not here (but there)? Proč nejsou ti medvědi tady (ale tam)?"; having a choice of two+ locations.

In a declarative statement, if you wanted to emphasize "tady", you'd put it first and for a neutral statement, question or emphasizing other words, it would behave as a clitic sticking to the 2nd position, but being the last of the clitics (or one of the last) if there were more in one sentence. "Proč jsem si jich tady nevšiml? Why didn't I notice them here?"

In the main translation, "tady" is the only clitic in a sentence, so it's placed second.


Thanks for your very helpful reply... it will just take me a while to digest it!

UPDATE -- Sadly, your very helpful reply wasn't fully "digested," since I just got this wrong AGAIN! However, having now reread your answer, I think I'll be ready for it the next time around. "Tady" is a clitic!!! Didn't realize this...


In my case, I did "proč nejsou tady/tu tvoji medvědi" and none of them was accepted!

I thought clitics are those like 're or 'm in English so I'm a bit confused but for now I'll just remember that tady wants to be at the second position then.

Thank you @Jamie08MD for your explanation and @BoneheadBass for lighting up the question!


I'm so frustrated! I used the right words but in the wrong order -- I think. The "correct answer" tried to give me words that fit my word order; but in in order to do so Duolingo had to resort to words that I've never seen before. It would be much more helpful if the "correct answer" would show me what is the proper order for the words I'm learning now.


I feel your pain... I really do! :-) It's always very helpful to paste your actual answer into your comment. Without that, it's hard to identify the problem for you.


I wish I could remember which word arrangements I tried before I finally stumbled on the right combo through sheer luck (because the "corrections" I was getting, being completely different translations, were no help at all.) The point is that by the time I did manage to get it right, I'd lost track of all the attempts that didn't work and felt I knew even less than when I started.

It might have been "Proč tví medvědi nejsou tady?".


"Proč tví medvědi nejsou tady?" is among the accepted forms.

Be aware that the mobile app has bugs and sometimes rejects valid answers. We cannot do anything at all about that.


I wasn't using the mobile app.

Unfortunately, I didn't enter the discussion after my first failed attempt, or even my second. With no help from the corrections, I lost track of which word order combinations I'd tried and which I hadn't. Maybe my first attempt was "Proč tví medvědi tady nejsou?"

By the time I was done with the exercise, not only had I learned nothing new but I was losing my grasp on what I thought I had begun to learn.


With words like "tady" and "tam", you are safest if you try putting them in the second slot, just subject to being pushed to the right by any stronger clitics (like "se" and "ho") that may be present.


Is in that case the difference between "tví" and "tvoji" the animate/inanimate thing?


No, in nominative plural, the animate forms are both "tví" and "tvoji". The inanimate forms are "tvé" and "tvoje" (same as feminine).

You can use the short and long form interchangeably here. In some other cases, for example "tvá" vs. "tvoje" (nominative singular feminine), the short form in more formal, the longer one more casual.


Is "proč tví medvědi tady nejsou" incorrect? I am having trouble placing the adverb "tady" :(


This is exactly the sentence I wrote, and I can thus confirm that it is perfectly valid.

A general rule of thumb I've come to adopt is to always put 'tady' in front of the verb. I'm sure it's more specific than this, but at least for now it works pretty well for me…

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