"They are playing with their spoons and forks."

Translation:Mereka memainkan sendok dan garpu mereka.

November 30, 2018

This discussion is locked.


this wasn't accepted with 'dengan' - why is that?


"Memainkan" in this particular sentence is causative. One of the meanings of "memainkan" is "to mock" or "to spoil". "Memainkan" + spoons/forks = not use them for the original purpose, but use them like a toy and spoil the value as cutlery. Spoons/forks themselves are the victims of the "me-kan" action.

The suffix "-kan" bears the nuance of "with" from "to play with" in English, so you don't need "dengan".

"Memainkan sendok/garpu" = the victims are sendok/garpu themselves because they are the direct object.

"Memainkan dengan sendok/garpu" = Demonstrate a music performance etc. to someone else by collaborating with spoons/forks. -- it sounds unnatural, though. There is an unmentioned audience there, and he/she is the beneficiary of the action.


Would "Mereka bermain dengan sendok dan garpu mereka" be an acceptable alternative translation?


Not a native speaker but from what I understand, bermain is the form without a direct object. In this case the object of the sentence is the spoons and forks, therefore we use the me-kan circumfix. Google translates memainkan to play, manipulate, fiddle [with] so if there's an object involved we probably use this form.


Just remember not to use dengan with memainkan? Because there is an object?


Oh... didn't know that.. Thanks Bev!


I used 'dengan' but it wasn't accepted. why is that?

Learn Indonesian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.