"What food do you like?"
Translation:¿Qué comida les gusta a ustedes?
These are always tricky. I think of sentence in English as: What food is pleasing to them? ... or What food to them is pleasing? The Spanish makes more sense when I give myself that middle step until it becomes more natural for me. ...Now, When we see "les" we know that "they" find it pleasing because "les" is plural. In this sentence, the IT that "they" find pleasing is COMIDA which is singular and that's why we use 'gusta'.
I believe DL constructs sentences with several possible answers. This one I believe could be either singular informal or formal, or plural formal. Constructed correctly it is usually marked correct with an alternative correct answer stated below. I wrote, "Qué comeda a ti te gusta" ... accepted 26/sep/19 (singular informal) with "¿Qué comida les gusta a ustedes?" as an alternative answer. That gives me two out of three or more possible translations.
Actually, for STATEMENTS, I think the leading "A" is for a Prepositional phrase (which is OPTIONAL), then the appropriate Indirect Object Pronoun + the gustar-type verb, then usually the Subject. Neither of the pronouns are the Subject; in this case it is the food.
I think I figured out the order is different because this is a question, not a statement. But it should accept the singular version, since no indication of plural is given, IMO.
My (newer) understanding from a SpanishDict article is that an interrogative sentence has a pretty strict word order: Interrogative + verb + subject (if stated). This is why "Qué" would come first and the subject, "a tí or a ustedes," would come last.
Nevertheless, I forgot and got it wrong!
Thanks, MariaLucilu1, I'll do it your way; it is simpler.
But, Duo gives that construction in one of the TIPS sections before a lesson, showing all the pronouns meaning "To me, to you" etc., before the gustar-type Indirect Objects & verbs. One person explained it would be like personalizing your choice of what pleases you, or like saying, "As for me, I like (whatever)."
I understand how it changes to "What (thing) do you like?" in English. Many times I've seen the order of the sentence begin with "Te gusta," so I question why that would be wrong. The only thing I can figure out is that Duo wanted the plural, perhaps from converting it from a spoken lesson sentence, but there's no indication in the typed ENGLISH sentence that it should be plural.
when you start a new lesson - where it tells you what level you are on, in the top right hand corner is a key symbol - that's for jumping to the next level, there is also the START section and just above that is the TIPS section. If you go into that it'll give a short explanation and some examples of what will be covered in that lesson. Doesn't always tell you everything you need to know, but gives some helpful hints!!
Singular would also be correct. Sometimes Duo gives false signals by showing you a correct answer that is plural when you made a different mistake in your sentence which was singular. Don't assume because they showed an answer in plural = that that was necessarily what was wrong in your answer.
I don't think it had to be plural. I think the most common correct answere was probably plural so their answer bank included "another Correct Answer is:" with the plural example. When you make any mistake in the sentence, they default to this plural example as one that is correct.
The cual vs que usage seems, often, to be a dilemma. In a nicely written post on another question regarding this, information was given on this subject: not to think of que as what and cual as which, but rather to think of que as definition and cual as to selection from a group.
If that information was correct, then why isn't cual used here? Isn't the question asking the listener to select the food they want from possible choices? I'm confused, I guess... the asker is not asking to define food but to select a choice...so I would have used cual.
Maybe someone can more clearly explain?
I got this a bunch of times in a row and all of these were also marked wrong: Te gusta qué comida? A usted le gusta qué comida? Le gusta qué comida? and even all of these: Les gusta qué comida? A ustedes les gusta qué comida? Les gusta qué comida a ustedes? I finally got this accepted: Qué comida les gusta?
Cavycavy, all the sentences you suggested are grammatically solid, so kudos for that! Next time, you might want to keep in mind that question words like qué tend to gravitate towards the beginning of the question in natural speech, and the rest of the terms rearrange to accommodate for that. Or you may wish to continue improving DL's database of correct answers by testing out less straightforward rephrasing. Happy learning!
Cheryl, it is complicated...
- Normally, you'd expect subject-verb-object, so "You · like · the food"
- Except Spanish verb gustar works backwards (it literally means 'to be pleasing'), so 'food' is the subject and 'you' is the object: "La comida · les gusta · a ustedes"
- Except, precisely because the verb is backwards, we reverse the position of the subject and object, so "A ustedes · les gusta · la comida"
- Except in questions we tend to do subject-verb inversion (or, in this case, object-verb inversion), so "¿Les gusta · a ustedes · la comida?"
- Except question words get a free pass from other rules and move to the beginning of the sentence, so (finally) we get "¿Qué comida · les gusta · a ustedes?"
Don't worry, you don't have to think it through every time. Often, many alternative orders will sound equally right.
Phew, I'm glad it came out as entertaining rather than overwhelming.
Yes, Spanish is quite flexible, but sometimes that can be misleading too. For example, the three blocks in this question can be reordered —with more or less natural-sounding results, and different emphases— in every possible way, except for "¿Qué comida · a ustedes · les gusta?", which sounds just wrong.
Nouns require "qué" rather than "cuál". This is quite a nice link on the subject: https://www.realfastspanish.com/vocabulary/que-vs-cual
No, tú is not used in that construction. It uses A ti te gusta.... I THINK it is ordered in the manner they put it, with the subject (food) first because it was a question, maybe. For the statements we've been learning, they put the Clarifying prepositional pronoun with the A in front of it, then Indirect Object, then gustar o encantar verb. This one is terrible, because there was no reference to the "you" being plural, which changes everything.
I am trying to challenge myself by using the keyboard and not referring to the provided words. In this case, I had no idea that you would accept only the Ustedes form of things. Using the keywords is less of a challenge, but is that the path we must take? Or is it that you don't like my word order in " Que comida te gusta?"
"gustar" is a verb which we translate to English "to like" but really means something closer to "is pleasing." "a ustedes" clarifies who the food is pleasing to. "gusta ustedes" is literally "is pleasing to you."
Although it may seem redundant, both "les" and "a ustedes" are necessary because "les" can refer to "they(masculine)," "they(feminine)," or "you(pl., formal)," so we need "a ustedes" to clarify who "les" refers to. Hope that helps!
"usted" is as samd as "you" in English,
"ustedes" is as same as "you guys" in English.
However, usted and ustedes are used when you say to the person who is repectful or who is older than you, or some on you have met right now so you don't know him.
And for GUSTAR,
Yo : (A mi) me gusta
Tu : (A ti) te gusta
El/Ella/Usted : (A el/ella/usted) le gusta
Nosotros : (A nosotros) nos gusta
Vosotros : (A vosotros) os gusta
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedes : (A ellos/ellas/ustedes) les gusta