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  5. "Peter eats his apple."

"Peter eats his apple."

Translation:पीटर अपना सेब खाता है ।

July 24, 2018



Would "पीटर उसका सेब खाता है" be a strange or incorrect way to phrase this?


I have the same doubt. Shouldn't अपना be the only acceptable answer, as Peter is eating his own apple..? I actually typed in उसका mindlessly and I was surprised to find that the answer is accepted.

  • 1389

The English sentence doesn't make it clear that Peter is eating his own apple. The context could be something like 'Paul brings an apple to school. Peter eats his apple'. In this case, उसका सेब is appropriate.


Okay, I overlooked that possibility. This does make sense.


Why not uska than apna??


Uska would be his [someone's], apna means his [own]. It resolves an ambiguity that we can in English only with more words; instead we usually rely on context and sanity.


I'm a beginner in Hindi (and not so good in English), but I felt it's very similar to Japanese "jibun".

If it's the case, the add of "own" to "my", "your" or "his/her/its" (and plurals) is only a didatic way to express it in English for lack of words. In a real world translation, it's not needed, in my opinion.

If we can call "I", "you", "he/she/it" as "absolute" 1st, 2nd and 3rd person, then "apna" would be a "relative 1st person (my)", relative to the context of "apna" is referring to. In this sense, I think "own" transforms for example, "absolute his" to "his own", a "relative my" of 3rd person.

For example, 1) Peter apna seb khata he -> I'm talking about Peter, the context is Peter, so, "apna" is "my" for Peter. Since there's no "relative 'my'" in one word in English, we could just translate as "Peter eats his apple", as suggested by Duolingo.

2) Tumhara apna seb khata he -> I'm talking about you, so, "apna" is "my" for you. Since there's no "relative 'my'" in one word in English, we could just translate as "You eat your apple".

Besides, I don't know yet if Hindi has a "relative you". In Japanese, it's "aite".


Yeah thanks all for the comments it helped me a lot ttthhhhaaannnkkk yyyyyoooooouuuuu......


Hi! Can I not use “ka” to indicate possession here? Why? I suppose I would be writing then Peter ka seb And then “seb” becomes the subject of the sentence? Is this why I must phrase it with apna?


Peter ka seb khata hai, is not a meaningful Hindi sentence. It can't be translated but if i had to, it would be - Peter's apple is eaten (by ???).

To make your sentence meaningful, you could add another name at the beginning.
Ram Peter ka seb khata hai. = Ram eats Peter's apple.

Now coming back to the original sentence.
Peter seb khata hai. = Peter eats an apple.
Peter apna seb khata hai = Peter eats his (own) apple.


Ah, I see. बहुत धन्यवाद!


So you could theoretically drop the hai off the end of this?

  • 1389

No. The है marks the verb खाना as being in the present tense and can't be dropped.

This is similar to how 'is' is used in the present continuous tense in English. Eg: You can't drop the 'is' from 'Peter is eating'.

The only exception is for negative sentences containing नहीं. In that case, है becomes optional. 'पीटर अपना सब नहीं खाता' (Peter doesn't eat his apple) is correct.


Thanks for these helpful comments, everyone!


Why can't we use "apne seb" instead of "apna seb"? What's the difference between apne and apna?


Apna is the word used if the object is masculine and sigular. Apne is used when the object is masculine and plural. Here 'apple' is masculine singular, so we have to use apna. If you use apne then it'll be understood as, 'Peter eats his apples.'


Peter eat that apple

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