"Questi sono libri molto vecchi."

Translation:These are very old books.

April 29, 2014

20 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Liz5112

why is "these books are very old" incorrect?

April 29, 2014

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

It's not very literal, and doesn't exactly reflect the same context.

April 29, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JosephsMama88

Still, regardless of it being literal or not, it's still a colloquial way of speaking. The sentence is technically correct.

February 19, 2015

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

I don't actually think they are exactly the same. If you say "these are very old books" you are talking about some undefined objects and you are providing two pieces of information: 1) these (objects) are books 2) these (objects) are very old

That sentence aims to define what the object is. It answer to the questions "what are these?". "These are very old books!"

If you say "these books are very old", it sounds to me that the person you are talking to already knows what they are... they are books (so he/she does already know information #1 ), and you are just going to provide information #2. The sentence answers to the question "how are these books?". "These books are very old".

I can make a better example; let's say that a friend shows you a weird box and says "this is a very old telephone". Your first reaction will probably be "WOW". Your friend has just defined to you what that mysterious object is.

If your friend shows you the box and says "this telephone is very old", your first reaction would probably be "is that a telephone???". Your friend is assuming you already knew that weird object was a telephone. His/her goal was actually to provide you a description of that object, he/she was not going to tell you what that object is, but how it is.

February 19, 2015

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

Report it

January 12, 2015

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

Liz5112; I put "these books are very old" as well. To me it means the same thing.

April 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Norcon4

Why is it "molto" instead of "molti?"

May 25, 2014

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

Molto has two meanings. It can mean many (an adjective), in which case, like all other adjectives, it changes its ending, as in Ci sono molti animali. It can also mean very (an adverb), in which case it does not change its ending, as in Gli animali sono molto belli.

It's a bit confusing, but the way I remember this is by thinking of which word molto is modifying - adjectives don't have gender/number by themselves, so molto doesn't change.

February 19, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tongue-twisted

Ok…. after thinking this over again… I think i have come up with the answer myself: In this case "molto" is used as an adverb (meaning: "very,") and as a result…. it doesn't change its ending in agreement with the word it is describing (here the adjective "vecchi"). Think that should be the reason WHY.

July 9, 2014

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

Get a life DL These books are very old should be allowed We are not United Nations translators!!

January 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/carli1195

Oh come on, 'really' and 'very' are interchangeable surely?

July 9, 2014

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

They are often quite interchangeable (in informal, spoken American English), but I think in this case it's important to note that davvero is a much more direct translation of really.

February 19, 2015

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

Hmm...I think both answers should be usable. Since, many of learners are not native speakers and they might miss that slight difference which was mentioned by dear itastudent. As he explained, both answers are usable (remember, context and meaning differs). In addition, it must be stressed that we are learning Italian, thus these slight differencies should not be put into account. The situation would change if Italian speaker is learning English. Just my 2cents. Peace

June 16, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jetbar46

I agree that "these books are very old" is also a correct translation into English.

January 25, 2016

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

Hi all, isastudent has described the English Grammer perfectly which I found very interesting in the way he explained the difference.(I awarded him a Lingot,) as I also answered "These books are very old" and was marked wrong. (BTW I'm English) But I also think, it is a bit too critical of DL to mark this translation wrong. Can someone write the sentence " These books are very old" in Italian please, so I can see the difference in written Italian. Thanks in advance.

March 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sharkbbb
  • Questi libri sono molto vecchi = These books are very old
  • Questi sono libri molto vecchi = These (ones) are very old books
August 4, 2016

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

"These books are very old" has the same meaning and should be a correct translation. There may be some esoteric grammatical difference, but from a practical standpoint this is correct..

May 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JuniV2

I said "these books are very old"....why is that wrong?

November 24, 2017

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

Stupid phrase - constructed and artificial - give us some useful everyday phrases

April 3, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bill98991

OK, a practical use: "Questi vini sono molto vecchi. Il gusto è molto male."

July 16, 2019
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