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"Is it worse to have a bad father or not to have a father at all?"

Translation:Je horší mít špatného otce nebo otce nemít vůbec?

January 5, 2018

11 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Praha2017

Is this word order acceptable: 'Je horší mít špatného otce nebo vůbec nemít otce'?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sir_dejf

"Je horsi mit spatneho otce, nebo otce vubec nemit." Is much better...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidMills574753

Why isn't there a "to" in this sentence? Thanks.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladaFu

You mean in the Czech one? The infinitive plays the role of the subject. What is worse? "mít špatného otce" is worse.

There is no reason to insert any further pronoun like "to", we already have a subject. In Czech, that is, English works differently.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidMills574753

So, to get this straight, from what you are saying, the Czech translation of a sentence like "It is sunny today" would have "to" in it in the absence of any other subject word?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AgnusOinas

No, "It is sunny" translates to "Je slunečno" and the subject is an unexpressed "ono". It is not necessary for every sentence to have an overt (expressed) subject in Czech.

But if there already is a subject, such as the infinitive "mít", as VladaFu was saying, we really don't add a second subject ("to"). Generally, infinitives can functions as subjects in Czech:

  • It is good to learn. - Je dobré se učit. (literally "to learn is good")
  • It is healthy to sleep 8 hours a day. - Spát 8 hodin denně je zdravé.

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladaFu

It is sunny today. - Dnes je slunečno.

However, it is a different sentence and there is some implicit "it" potentially present in the sentence equivalent to the English it. It is a sentence very different to "Je horší mít špatného otce". We can actually say "Ono je dnes slunečno.".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zWIyO

Je horší mít spatného otce než vůbec nemít otce? Proč je tady chyba?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladaFu

or - nebo

than, rather than - než


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zWIyO

Oh, I see. Thanx a lot.

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