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  5. "La colonia"

"La colonia"

Translation:The colony

April 9, 2013



Cologne? Should this be colony? I looked it up and it says both are correct, but I think that colony fits better with the theme of this section.


Here in Mexico, colonia is most commonly used to mean an area/neighbourhood of a city.


Except Duolingo marks "neighborhood" as incorrect. I did report it.


Four months later (July 2016), I also put neighborhood and it was rejected. I'll report it, but perhaps they won't accept it this time either.


My building block style exercise had me use suburb. Is that accurate? I guessed correctly only by a process of elimination (not hospital etc) Is the type of neighborhood a residential area on the outskirts or outside the city?


Yes, that was how I had heard it.


Colonia particularly in DF = neighborhood


I know I am probably being obtuse at the moment, but what is DF?


I'm sorry, I should have spelled it out.

Distrito Federal de México (Mexico City)




Oh OK. Thank you. One of the reasons I refreshed my Spanish is that I expect to retire in Mexico. And I know when I lived in Germany my major problem with listening to the news was all the acronyms in German that I didn't know. So, although I will probably live in Baja, it is information that will be very helpful.


The theme is places, but they do tend to mix in alternate answers routinely. Both should be accepted.


Yeah! The theme of the section should be respected. It also happened with the word "pista".


Duo always teaches us both meanings. I happen to think this is a good thing -- suppose you thought someone was offering to give you a colony as a present?


True. If, for example, someone asked you "Donde esta la colonia?" in a department store you'd be nonplussed if you didn't know the cologne meaning.


Fair enough, but without a sentence to give it context, neither should be marked as wrong.


¿Una colonia de hormigas?


Both are correct


http://www.cologne.de/history-of-cologne.html so both (Cologne was, like many citites in Europe, named by the Romans, with the colorful handle "Colonia Claudia Ara Aggrippinensium."


Now we Germans say Köln, which is a bit shorter than Colonia Claudia Ara Aggrippinensium.^^


In Spain we have a lot of Roman cities as well, e.g. Legio Septima Gemina, which is called "León" nowadays.


Cologne/colonia -- that's my last name! "van Keuren", formerly "van Keulen", the Dutch name for the city. My ancestors moved from Cologne to the Netherlands in the 1500s, and then to America around 1630 (to what is now Kingston, NY). I'm 9th generation in America.

"colonia" comes from Latin "colonus" ('farmer'), from verb "colo, colere, cultus" ('till, cultivate, worship') and is related to a whole slew of words like column, cycle, cult, cultivate, even wheel.


Errr... cologne, is that an English synonym for colony? Because I only know it as a type of perfume and a city in Germany, so I didn't select it. Or is that actually one of the translations?


It is a city indeed, and the reason why that specific perfume is called Cologne or Eau de Cologne (water from Cologne), because it was created there.

In Spanish it means both too and the ones listed above.


Emperor Nero's mother Agrippa established a home for Roman war veterans, to keep the border safe, and named it 'Colonia Agrippina' (the Agrippine Colony). Over a millenium later, the city became famous for its "water from Cologne", Eau de Cologne, or Koeln-Wasser, later shortened to just 'cologne'. So yes, it means both colony and perfume.

It's also my last name, from 'Keulen', the Dutch name for the city. My ancestors were the 'people from Cologne', (van Keulen), who migrated from the city to the Netherlands around the time of the Thirty Years' War.


But do you think that the translation "the cologne" is appropriate? I don't see how it could be, unless there is some obscure British use of the word, since it appears here as a common noun.


Well... it is correct, that much I can tell. Appropriate... it's out of context (there is no sentence) the global context, I do not know (which "lesson" is it in).

Regarding the value of teaching this word to learners at such an early stage, with the perfume meaning, I would say it's very low. In all European languages you can understand "cologne" in a conversation so it would be very low on my priority list... but above I listed a few words related that might be more useful, at least in my opinion... if all that was started by the word and it is useful... who can complain? ;)


Oh I see, so it does mean perfume in Spanish too! Thank you for the explanations!


Cologne means perfume in English, that's all.


Not quite all. It is also the name of the German city to English speakers


The full name of that is "Cologne Water" -- "Köln Wasser" or "Kölnwasser". "Cologne" does not just mean "perfume". With a capital "C" it means the city in Germany. With a lowercase "c", it's one type of scented fluid; real perfume is stronger in scent.


not necessarily men's. it can be a less expensive perfume


not a word much in use in British English


If you don't know a word and you click on it to show translations, at least one of the words listed should be the one they want you to select... Suburb didn't come up as a meaning, what the heck.


i'd say "suburbio" than "colonia" when it refers to poor people living in small neighborhoods


Well, none of them is very appropriate if you are looking for the equivalent of slums.

Suburbio is just a small city very close to a large one or, mostly a neighbourhood far away from the city centre.

Colonia, in Spain, was used for large developments for working class immigrants who came (mostly) from villages to the cities. These developments, though not luxurious where not slums. Normally they sported a name Colonia+ name and still bear it today, even though some have been demolished, the area retains the name.

I actually didn't think about this meaning until you mentioned it, but there you go.

The technical name for slums is "poblado/area/pueblo/barrio de infraviviendas" and commonly referred to as "poblado de chabolas o chabolista". The favelas actually are called favelas too.


It's a regional usage. Along the U.S. - Mexico border, "colonias" are used to refer to poorer subdivisions and slums. It's never translated into English, however.


the standard word in Mexico is "colonia," although it may be confusing to English speakers. The best translation for the common use of "colonia" would probably be "district." The word "pueblo" is used for undeveloped villages and "barrio" for neighborhood.


In at least parts of Mexico, colonia means "neighborhood." It seems like something Duolingo should reflect. (Right now, this is considered a wrong answer.)


Amy, What is the difference between a barrio and a colonia? Gracias


I can tell you: In Spain, barrio is a part of a big town or city. Colonia is a group of buildings built at the same time in a part of a town, a residencial group of houses or buildings.


There is no option to choose "colony" here on my tablet


Yep, they wanted Suburb, and that didn't come up when I first encountered the word and clicked on it to show the meanings.


In Andalucia, "colonia" is commonly used as a word for perfume, I'm not sure about in other parts of Spain and other Spanish-speaking countries, we also don't use "colonia" to refer to suburbs, that would just be "suburbio"


In Mexico City colonia is neighborhood. The exact phrase, "colonia Condesa" receives about half a million hits on google. Spanish does vary from region to region; however, Mexico is the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world (by population), and DF is the largest city in the country. Due to large amounts of media from DF being consumed throughout the Spanish-speaking world, this dialect is the most widely comprehended. Boroughs here are referred to as delegaciónes.


ha! I got counted wrong for putting "the colony" I think they could have let that one slide really there is no context around it. Interesting....


I don't understand. The colony is the correct answer. Sometimes network traffic slightly corrupts the answer so that a correct answer is marked wrong, but you should report it every time. What did they show you as the correct answer?


i am getting surprised every time that there are many words in turkish from spanish like "el bano" and "la colonia" only difference is we don't add "la","el","the" words in front or at bottom of words.


How do you know if you are supposed to put La or El?


It is based on the gender of the noun. All nouns in Spanish are either masculine or feminine. For the most part, those ending in o are masculine and those ending in a are feminine, but there are many exceptions to that rule. Additionally there are some suffixes that indicate gender. For example nouns ending in ción or sión are feminine as are nouns ending in dad. But essentially you have to learn the gender with the noun, although when there is a rule like the o or a ending you can just learn the exceptions like el día and la mano.


In Mexico City, the neighborhoods are called colonias.


That's interesting. It explains a lot. I have been looking for rental properties in Tijuana and saw a lot of colonias, but didn't recognize the meaning I did figure out fraccionamiento as housing development though.


DL still not accepting "neighborhood. I'm reporting it


In non-DF Mexico, colonia is more for neighborhoods and barrio is for “common folk” settlements (I.e., lower class neighborhood). Similar to “the projects” or areas of cities with associated characteristics of working classes. There is a lot of slang spoken and words/phrases that are specific to the population. It’s like the East End area in London where they speak in phases such as “what’s the lime?” or “he’s brown bread”, which mean what’s the time and he’s dead; a language within itself.

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