1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Spanish
  4. >
  5. "¿Cuánta agua necesitas?"

"¿Cuánta agua necesitas?"

Translation:How much water do you need?

June 5, 2018

34 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Norman55700

quanta=el agua= confusion


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

its el agua because agua begins with an a


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/joe814027

AGUA IS ONLY MALE IN THE EL AND UN FORMS.


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

I think you are trying to say that the articles used with "agua" are masculine, but the adjectives used to modify "agua" are feminine gender because "agua" is a feminine gender noun.


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

But is it all articles, or just those that end in a? Isn't las aguas correct?

Totally not confusing...not one bit


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DevNull.PT

I think the rule applies to feminine nouns started with "a", in this case you use "el" intead of "la".

Please notice that there are actually some masculine nouns that end with "a" (search for Spanish Nouns with Irregular Gender), but "agua" is not one of them.


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

This rules only applies to Spanish words where the beginning of the word is a stressed á. El agua and un agua are used to prevent word chaining, which is "L (aa) gua" Where vowels chain therefore in a sense you skip the a in agua and say gua which sounds really strange. Go ahead and say "Laa Gua" with a Spanish accent. If you still confused or don't see a difference then work on that accent my friend. Here I would have wrote this sentence as "Cuántas águas necesitas" o "Cuánta água necesitas" Where either I break the word chain or when written with a stress tick indicating the break. When spoken, you would not see this, but written as it is really does get to me.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DevNull.PT

As a Portuguese speaker I have no difficulty in clearly saying "la agua" (yes, I know it is incorrect in Spanish).

In fact, it is one of those words where I always have to review the exercise because, in Portuguese, it is always "a água".


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

Necesitar is the verb to need. Cuanta agua es necesario would be how much water is necessary. Water would be the subject of the sentence in that case whereas 'you' is the subject in 'how much water do YOU need.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DevNull.PT

Correct. Just a small typo, "agua" is a female noun so it is "Cuánta agua es necesaria".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Norman55700

is water masculine then why cuanta istead of cuanto


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

agua is feminine, but it's el agua rather la agua because agua begins with a stressed a sound.


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

So why then is it "el problema" and not "la problema." It seems some of the grammer rules are just arbitrary.


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

Who knows how they first decided. El problema - like several words ending in -ma comes from Greek, and they are masculine. At least Spanish is easier than Latin, where they have 5 categories of nouns, not just 2!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alec851453

Some other gender bending greek based words are el idioma, el boema, el trauma, el tema, el planeta, el clima, el carisma, el coma, el cometa, el fantasma and a bunch more. Mostly ending in ma but a few with ta.


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

I just decided to never learn Latin


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

I translated this as "How much water is necessary?" It said that this is incorrect. Can someone clear up my confusion? Thx


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

Necesitas means you need. How much water is necessary does not specify who needs the water while it clearly states in the question that the second person singular needs the water


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

"Necesitas" is singular second person familiar, so "you" must be included as the subject of the sentence: How much water do you need?/¿Cuánta agua necesitas? If the sentence had been third person singular, "¿Cuánta agua necesita?", then it could have been translated as singular "you" formal: "How much water do you need" or with the null subject (it)" "How much water is necessary?" The reason why is because "necesitar" means "to need." "Is necessary" and "is needed" are interchangeable in some English sentences, but not in all of them.


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

I went with something similar and also got it wrong - "How much water is needed?" The "you" seems to be necessary but I'm not sure why.


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

The difference is between active and passive voice. Active voice has a subject (a person doing something) while passive voice does not - it just states what is being done.

The phrase "How much water is needed" uses the passive voice, and is translated as "¿Cuánta agua se necesita?" or "¿Cuánta agua es necesitada?" Both of these are valid ways to say it, but I would use the first option ("se necesita"). (Note, I'm not a native speaker, and the preferred way to say it may vary from place to place; I'm not sure.)

I would personally translate "How much water is necessary" as "¿Cuánta agua es necesaria?", which also uses the passive voice.

"¿Cuánta agua necesitas?" has an implied subject (i.e. "¿Cuánta agua necesitas ?"), and thus is in the active voice: it has a subject ("You") and the action that subject is doing ("need").


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

well explained. Toma un lingot.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/810480ret

knowing agua is feminine and one says el agua because the la agua is awkward sounding...question then: Cuánta agua has those 2 (a)s and they use that expression so why don't they use "cuánto agua"


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

Got you. /joe814027. I had presumed other words preceding “agua” would be similarly affected.


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

Cuánta - how much Cuántas - how many


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mel221741

How much water is needed? Why not accepted ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kloos366

billones de barriles( how bout that you owl)


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

Therefore this sentence should be ¿Cuánto agua necesitas?


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

Even though the stressed first syllable demands masculine articles, the noun itself is still feminine and takes feminine gender adjectives. Thus, "cuánta agua" (cuanto/a can be an adjective or an adverb) and "el arma pesada" (the heavy weapon). Also, feminine gender nouns that for one reason or another use the masculine article when their number is singular still use the feminine article when their number is plural, as in "las armas pesadas."


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

Well explained again Linda from NJ. I now understand. Toma otro lingot.

agua fria (feminine adjective...because feminine word) El agua (but masculine singular article i.e el even though femine word) Las aguas de Babilonia (but feminine plural article i.e las)

I think the above is correct but do please correct me if I am wrong.

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