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"His grandmother used to sing."

Translation:उसकी नानी गाती थीं।

July 25, 2018



Both थीं and थी make for a valid translation. The plural verb "गाती थीं" used with the singular noun phrase "उसकी नानी" acts as an honorific plural and is only mandatory when the speaker doesn't want to come off as disrespectful towards the person being referred to.


True. थी should also be allowed.

Moreover उसकी नानी/दादी गाया करती थीं should also be added.


Indeed. Looks like that usage has been avoided altogether in this course as a translation for "used to".


It's implied that, because it is his/her grandmother, there is a plural of respect which is why it's the plural थीं instead of singular थी.


It is used in some cases to denote respect but yea both should be accepted.


Why is उसकी दादी गाती थीं "wrong"??? From the English sentence it is impossible to tell if it´s the paternal or the maternal grandmother, so both दादी and नानी must be accepted, or am I completely wrong?


थी is commonly used to to indicate feminine past tense. थीं is used to denote the same with politeness and respect BOTH TOGETHER in a sentence.


Could pahle be added in this sentence as "uski naani pahle gaati thi" or would it be wrong/unnecessary?


It's a perfectly acceptable sentence in itself, only it won't work as a translation here because पहले is an adverb and the English sentence lacks one.


Thanks for that. What would the actual English translation of the sentence be with pahle added? (His grandmother used to sing before)?


OK thanks. Can you recommend the best way to type Devanagari script into my comments other than pasting in from Google translate?


On Windows, you just have to add the language in Settings -> Time & Language -> Language. You can then switch your language by pressing Win key+Space. (It takes a while to learn which key gives which letter though.)

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