"Few people need to know Czech."

Translation:Češtinu potřebuje znát málo lidí.

August 30, 2018

13 Comments
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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chessnecof

I expected umět to be correct but not znát, za jazyky. Why is it different here?


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

Here you have a direct noun object - čeština = the Czech language. So znát works here. Umět does too.

When you use an adverb - česky - then umět is much more common. Znát would be bookish or archaic. At least for me.


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

Could someone help me with the word order? What's the difference between the suggested meaning and "Češtinu málo lidí potřebuje znát." ?


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

This is strange. This would be usable if you want to say that they do not need to KNOW it bet they nedd to ... instead. But what would be those ...? It should be some verb.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BrianG1941

I am also stumped by word order. Could someone answer previous question please.


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

What about ¨Málo lidí potřebuje umět česky¨ ?


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

Would work something like "málokdo musí umět česky" too?


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

It works, yes. But there's a certain difference between "muset" and "potřebovat".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Juggler69

I wrote "Málo lidi potřebujou umět češtinu".
I used potřebujou because I thought 'few people' would require the 'they' conjugation. Are 'few people' considered a single unit for purposes of conjugating the verb?


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

All expressions of quantity other than 2-4 take the singular form of verbs (with the noun in genitive instead of nominative):

  • Dva, tři nebo čtyři lidé potřebujou (or potřebují)
  • Pět, šest, deset, málo, několik, hodně, dost (etc.) lidí potřebuje

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Juggler69

Thank you. I know that I have previously read this about the nouns, but I don't remember reading about the verbs.


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

Yes, from the point of view of Czech, the logic is the same as in "A group of people is doing something". Things like five, ten, few, several, many, etc. are all treated as "group", followed by "of people" (genitive) and a singular verb.

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