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  5. "我爷爷会说英语。"


Translation:My grandfather can speak English.

November 26, 2017



My grandfather speaks English


会 implies can/is able to/know how to. Your sentence would be translated as 我爷爷说英语


I think the normal interpretation of the English sentence "My grandfather speaks English" is that is can/knows how to speak English.
It would be different in the sentence "My grandpa is speaking English." 我爷爷在说英语 (hope this is correct grammar)


Correct. He speaks English=he has the ability (he can speak). He is speaking English=he's talking now and using English. In this sentence can is optional and the meaning is essentially identical.


@Semeltin - By that definition "can" shoukd always be omitted from English sentences. We should just assume that because someone can do something they always will.


In english, "My grandfather speaks English." means "My grandfather know how to speak English". so it is definitely more proper. Can speak is more for 我爷爷可以说英语。


Semeltin says it all, but my replying in German (my second certification in a foreign language) has triggered the reaction "Er spricht Deutsch!"


Rejected by the Doggedly Literal Dragon Lord.


This is "paternal grandfather." In our family, everybody has a different title, with aunts and uncles etc. assigned names and numbers depending on whether they are on the husband's father's side, wife's father's side etc.


Yet "my paternal grandfather can speak English" wasn't accepted. Reported.


It should be accepted perhaps, but we would almost never say that.


Are you saying Chinese distinguishes between paternal and maternal uncles, aunts, and grandparents as in Arabic ??


Yes, Chinese has different worda for every type of relation: mother's side, father's side, older, younger, married in, etc. 爷爷 is paternal grandfather. 姥爷 is materal grandfather. There are actually 5 different ways to say "aunt". In a strict interpretation, 阿姨 means mother's younger sister. It is also the word for someone who takes care of young children, like "nanny" in English.


"My grandad" should be accepted as a synonym


my grandfather knows how to speak English


Can 会 be "will", in case grandpa is going to be speaking English this time, instead of the other language he knows, in his birthday part, let's say ?


Duplingo mkst always uses 会 to mean "will," but 要 can also mean "will." I was taught that 要 is appropriate for future events that will be the result of the subjects actions/agency, whereas 会 appropriate for future events that occur on their own, without someone's influence.

I think that 要 makes more sense as "will" for a future action if this will be a special exception to how Grandpa normally speaks. But if you are describing a habitual action (let's say Grandpa lives in Miami: he speaks English with me, but Spanish with most people on his street), in that case I think 会 would fit better for the "will" in a habitual action that will continue in the future.


No "的"? I'm getting confused.


It's optional for things here: e.g., 我家—not in Hanping Lite, but recognized often enough in Duolingo exercises.

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