"I like chocolate cake."
Translation:Me gusta el pastel de chocolate.
Why do you need the article "el" in front of pastel. Why can't I just say: "Me gusta pastel de chocolate"
You're talking about all chocolate cake in general, and it's the subject of the sentence (Chocolate cake is pleasing to me.), so the article is needed.
It'll be used before nouns after gusta/n. Me gusta el español. (I like Spanish.) Me gustan los perros. (I like dogs.) No te gustan los exámenes. (You don't like exams.) No nos gusta la ensalada. (We don't like salad.)
This makes sense to me, but what I'm having trouble understanding is if we use el/la/los/las with nouns in both a general sense ("I like chocolate cake") AND in a specific sense ("I like THE chocolate cake"), how do we know which way to translate a sentence in English? Can you shed any light on this? Thanks :)
Seems like if you're talking about a specific cake, you'd use the article (me gusta el pastel/the cake is pleasing to me), but if you're talking about cake in general then you wouldn't use the article (me gusta pastel/cake is pleasing to me)?
In Spanish, the definite article is used with nouns in a general sense and with nouns in a specific sense. Out of context, it will be ambiguous.
Thanks, Marcy. Also, here's an explanation of article usage with examples: https://www.spanishdict.com/guide/using-the-definite-article-in-spanish
You use "yo" for the subject, like you would use "I" in English.
In Spanish, you are saying 'The chocolate cake pleases me" so you say "me", not "yo".
Me gusta = It pleases me
el pastel de chocolate = the chocolate cake
I'm at a loss too. why not, Yo gusto el pastel de chocolate. The sentence asked is, I like chocolate cake, not The chocolate cake pleases me. I guess my question is, why not say it in the way a Spanish speaker would think. I would hope to be able to think in Spanish as I'm speaking.
Using the Definite Article in Spanish:
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If the question doesn't specify "the" cake, the the answer shouldn't require it.