Translation:These cakes, you are not eating them?
there are multiple ways of saying this, the question is how consistent can duo be, because from what it seems, it tends to confuse things from one lesson to the next.
- are you not eating them?
- aren't you going to eat them?
- won't you eat them?
- don't you eat them?
- wouldn't you eat them?
- wouldn't you be eating them?
Although this is a little-used English word order, it IS correct. The point of this unusual sentence is probably to help SSL students recognize a common Spanish syntactical order of words in a sentence. I find it very helpful to learn this order so that, when I read Spanish, I don't need to pause to rearrange the word order to conform to one I'm more comfortable with. Instead, it's easier to sail through, which is good because the best way to build comprehension is to increase speed.
And either way, it's actually quite common unlike what most people think.
"Sir, this wallet, is this yours?" "This amount of money, I, I-I cannot accept it" "This dress, wow, s-so beautiful" "That guy, he seems familiar"
It's not very manifested because we can't immediately point the "big pause" on the commas on texts except on real life but they're actually not that unusual.
They are working here on a very specific grammar rule. In Spanish you normally do not have direct object (estos pasteles in this case) and direct object pronoun (los in this case) in the same sentence unless the direct object is precede the verb.
This is done to draw attention to the direct object. The normal order would be:
¿Ustedes no comen estos pasteles? or
¿No comen ustedes estos pasteles?
Getting a little frustrated with the "woman's" pronunciation (I know -- it's machine generated). As with so many others, it's impossible to hear "estos" at full speed...it sounds like "esos". I just listened to it at full speed, and at slow speed, several times each. No way to hear the "t" at full speed. It's at the point where I listen to everything that she says at low speed, with the expectation of the full speed being lacking.
It's awkward. As an English teacher, I tell my students when a sentence sounds clunky. Even when the sentence is correct. I think they appreciate my tips. Another example of an awkward, though correct statement, is, " The boyfriend of my sister is very tall. " The smoother version of that is, "My sister's boyfriend is very tall."
Did you precede it with "These cakes," or not? If not, it is probably why Duo has rejected your translation as it is also a part that needs to be translated. But I will also consider that there are missing translations if you did translate these cakes.
I know it sounds ridiculous in English but the Spanish version is grammatically correct structure which is what Duo is trying to teach here (but such instruction through translations is not the best).
In Spanish, you can only use both the direct object (estos pasteles) and direct object pronoun (los) if the direct object comes before the verb. It is to give emphasis to the object. In English we really do not have that concept although in Speech it is sometimes used that way. We would rather say:
Aren't you eating these cakes? or
Are you not eating these cakes?
But these cakes should be mentioned somewhere or otherwise the translation is incomplete: before the question like Duo did or as part of the question.
Yes, my full answer was:
“These cakes, are you not eating them?”
I accept that the sentence is grammatically correct in Spanish, and I understand that the order of the wording in Spanish has to be exact.
However, since this was a translation from Spanish to English, it would seem that “... are you not eating them?” and “... you are not eating them?”
would both be correct.
In English, both ways are awkwardly worded, but both ways have the same meaning.
Thanks for your reply.
The most literal yet colloquial English interpretation uses English present progressive tense "aren't you eating them." When people switch to English future tense (won't you eat them), they are not wrong because context dictates word choice when there is no possible way to translate in a word-for-word way. I personally prefer to switch from English simple present tense to English present progressive tense because these tenses are both present tenses. To me, interpreting Spanish present tense as English future tense seems like an unnecessary stretching of the rubber band.
Linda from NJ sounds right. The correct way to ask this question in English is, " are you not eating them " or "aren't you eating them". The contraction "aren't" is short for are not. What duo gave was a statement. It could have been made a question by intonation at the end. But since it wasn't a listening exercise & you couldn't hear anyone raise the pitch at then end to make it a question, Duo is wrong.
The exact translation given as correct sounds ridiculous in English. One would say, "Aren't you going to eat these cakes?" or "You're not eating these cakes?" Wow! I got marked wrong for not typing "These cakes, you are not eating them?" which sounds like something an alien or a robot would say in a bad sci-fi story.
Sometimes, I just let some "odd" things pass without comment until it gets to the point when I think that's enough. So this reaction is not specifically about this sentence.
There have been a number of sentences following the same pattern. My knowledge of Spanish does not allow me to say if this is how a first language Spanish-speaker would say this, but I have my doubts. But I can say for certain that no first language English speaker would only utter such a sentence unless he's forced to do so under torture.
But there must be a reason why the creators of these lessons want students to become familiar with such contorted sentences. I just can't figure out what reason that might be. DL - zero points.
The reason for this sentence construction is because Duo is trying to teach direct object pronouns in this particular lesson. By forming the sentences this way, it is very obvious what the subject is so that the student can pick the best direct object pronoun and Duo can know if they understand them properly.
I get so frustrated with the way that this lady reader swallows the last syllable that I make errors. Please get a reader with a better voice intonation. She varies amplitude poorly. The man is excellent. I wind up listening 4 or 5 times. Example Me(silent G) el. Really not good.
First and foremost, this lesson is about direct object pronouns - lo/la/los/las. Therefore, this lesson sentence is structured in a way that allows the Spanish learner to know what direct object is being discussed so that the learner can determine if it is masculine or feminine, and then proceed to use the correct masculine or feminine direct object pronoun. Therefore, in this case, this sentence structure is used as a teaching aide.
Nevertheless, for all those saying this sentence translation is terrible English and that no one would ever say it this way, I beg to differ, as have others in the comments. There are many, many situations in which someone will clearly state the direct object in order to emphasize it or clearly identify it, and then follow it with a comment. Duo is not teaching a course in writing formal English. It is primarily a course to teach translations into everyday spoken language. And, English speakers do talk like this all the time.
As for this lesson sentence, the scenario I imagine is a mother notices that the snack cakes she bought have not been eaten and is wondering if the kids don't like them. Since the kids are moving all over the kitchen and everyone is engaged in various things and haven't been talking with each other, she wants to be clear what she's about to talk about. So, instead of asking "Why aren't you eating the cakes", she makes them the focus of her verbal exchange by first saying, "Estos pasteles," and, once they know the topic, then she asks, "ustedes no los comen?" in order to elicit a response from the kids.
Other Examples -
Example 1: I'm in the kitchen and am putting away the groceries. My spouse comes in the room. I point to the fruit on the counter and say, "Those bananas, do you want me to leave them all on the counter?"
Example 2: A Spanish teacher is in front of the class. They have an apple in their hand. They say, "This apple, can you say you want it in Spanish?" (As in this Duo lesson, the teacher may want to see if the students know how to use the direct object pronoun. Or the teacher might simply use this technique to get the kids to stop chatting and to focus intently on something in order to get their attention before starting the class.)
Example 3: A shopper is at a jewelry counter with a store clerk. They tap on the glass and say, "That watch with the Mickey Mouse hands, can I see it?"
Example 4: A person is at the tire repair shop. They need to tell the mechanic why they are there. They walk around the car and point to a tire and say, "This tire, it has a leak. Can you fix it?"
Example 5: A kid is at the animal shelter. A volunteer comes up and asks if they can get a dog out for them to see. The kid points and says, "Yes. That dog with the black spots, I want to see it, please."
Example 6: A couple meet at the movie theater and one of them has already bought tickets. The second person takes a ticket and sees the name of the movie. They exclaim, "That movie? Oh, no, I don't want to see it!"
There is no "estes". This link to a Duo forum discussion explains it all:
I'm not sure I understand your question. Estos pasteles = "These cakes", and ESTOS must be used because pasteles is masculine and plural.
I'm learning as you are and I can't find the word ESTES (without the accent mark) in Spanish; I found ESTE, which = East, no 'S' on the end. I have used three dictionaries, and I only find "ESTÉS" with the accent.
From SpanishDict . com: estés ≈ you are The word estés is the present subjunctive form of estar in the second person singular. See the full estar conjugation.