1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Spanish
  4. >
  5. "El gato no lavó nada ayer."

"El gato no lavó nada ayer."

Translation:The cat didn't wash anything yesterday.

March 14, 2018

28 Comments


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

In the cats defense, it was probably tired from learning another language AND cleaning a bathroom.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Barry426988

The cat washed nothing should be accepted as well as the cat did not wash anything. Nada means nothing.


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

In English would you say "the cat washed nothing yesterday"? You could but you would probably say "the cat didn't wash anything yesterday". As you continue studying you'll learn that the word nada can be used this way, it makes no sense to those of us who speak English as a first language so we just have to learn it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jenn974412

I would say the cst cat washed anything because cats don't do chores


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jenn974412

I wouldn't say the cat*


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

Nada stands for nothing and anything depending on the context.


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

Yesterday, need to mention 'ayer'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kavalon80

The cat washed nothing yesterday: El gato lavó nada ayer. As opposed to The cat DIDN'T wash ANYTHING yesterday: El gato NO lavó nada ayer. When a double negative is used in Spanish, "nothing" is changed to "everything," "never" is changed to "ever," et cetera.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/smudge899957

Not even is ears? That's very strange for a cat. Better call the vet.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/smudge899957

Not even it's ears!


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

Is this one of the cats that opened the restaurant?


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

I must admit I love these double negatives. I get to say the cat didn't wash nothin' and it's correct!


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

I wonder if it sent its hat to the cleaners


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Claire224354

I once had a grubby little cat that didn't really wash


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

His mama apparently didn't teach him. A friend got a young cat like that, and finally one of the other cats in the house couldn't take it anymore, placed a firm paw on the little guy's head, and showed him how it was done.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Wesley313329

I clearly heard her say the word "labonádayer," but I can't find it in the dictionary.


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

I guess you've figured out why by now.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/StevePatto3

I put "the cat didn't wash at all yesterday" which I thought was a better and more natural translation, given literal translations from one language to another do not always make sense


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

Your sentence is fine, but it is not a correct translation of the sentence given. Yours seems to suggest he didn't wash himself, but in the original, he didn't wash anyTHING.


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

Wondering: "The cat did not wash at all yesterday" was not accepted.


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

That's because "nada" means "nothing", so "el gato no lavó nada" is "the cat didn't wash anything" (or "the cat washed nothing"--Spanish uses double negatives, but English can't), just as "el gato lavó todo" would be "the cat washed everything".

I'm not a native Spanish speaker, but it looks like "at all" is "en absoluto", so I think "the cat didn't wash at all" would be "el gato no se lavó en absoluto". In that sense, it sounds like we're talking about the cat washing himself, so I used lavarse rather than just lavar.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/victoria754477

The cat didnt wash at all yesterday....


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

victoria, please see uPOhtSEd's comment and sassfb's response, currently immediately above your comment.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MichaelEld11

Since didn't is a contraction of "did not" and you separated the "n't" into its own word selection block, why not just put the word "not" there instead? The apostrophe in the contraction actually represents the missing character o.


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

Because Duolingo has to choose one correct answer (usually out of many possibilities) to display for the sentence, and the word bank has to contain tiles that allow you to form this answer.

For this exercise, the primary correct answer (the one displayed at the top of this page) is "The cat didn't wash anything yesterday", so the word bank contains the tiles necessary to form that sentence. The sentence one can form from the word bank should be the same as the correct answer Duolingo has chosen to display for a given exercise.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MichaelEld11

And tell me how that would make a difference between using the word "not" instead of using "n't"? Let me spell it out a little more clearly for you. The contraction "didn't" as 2 word blocks put together has the same exact meaning as "did" and "not" put together in 2 sequential word blocks. They are both grammatically correct. The contraction spelled out with the apostrophe replace by the character "o" is "didnot" .


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

I think we all understand the difference between "did not" and "didn't." But here's the thing: Most questions have several acceptable answers. Some have literally hundreds. It would take up too much space (and programming time) to display them all. So, Duo shows us only one of the many options. And, as sassfb points out, "the sentence one can form from the word bank should be the same as the correct answer Duo has chosen to display for the current exercise."

So the question remains: Why would Duo want to use an English contraction in the first place? Perhaps Duo wants to remind us that English often uses contractions when Spanish does not.

If you find the word tiles annoying, you might prefer typing your own answers from scratch.

Learn Spanish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.