1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Italian
  4. >
  5. "She does not fit in that car…

"She does not fit in that car."

Translation:Lei non ci sta in quella macchina.

April 13, 2013



I wrote this without using "ci", and Duolingo accepted it. However, I want to know if this really is a legit sentence, or should I use "ci".


"ci" is the pronoun used to represent he/she/it. It is also used in a context where you're trying to talk about a place. For example "ci va" would mean he/she/it goes there. In this sentence, "lei" adds an emphasis to the she and "ci sta" means stay there. Where you might ask? In that car (in qualla macchina).


How is this "ci" different from "ci" meaning "us" as in "ci siamo"?


Same word, different meaning.

"Ci" essentially means, "us," "there," "here," or "about it."


That ci made me start to hate Italian... I'm trying hard not to.


It's bloody frustrating, but every language has its own frustrating aspects.


me too, i just watched a video that sums up "ci" cases and at this moment i still can't understand this sentence belongs to which case?


Pes etmek yok Engin


I"m confused, there is the indirect/direct object pronoun "Ci" which means (to us)/(us) and then there is "Ci" which means (it) or (about it). What function does "Ci" have in "Lei non ci sta in quella macchina".... Doesn't that mean "She it doesn't fit in that car???"


Ci is part of the pronominal verb starci. Go to https://www.wordreference.com/iten/starci, then select the Collins tab, and read definition 7. Also read SeanPetrik's comment below, which nails it.


what does it mean? Is she too fat to squeeze herself in?


I think so! I am a retired doctor and once I had a patient who needed to have the suspension of the car stiffened on one side because he was so obese. Sadly dead now :(


Wow. Did he have to stop at all roadside truck weigh stations?


Sorry everyone but this comment gave me a big morning laugh. Didn't expect that.


so much for doctor-patient confidentiality :P


Interesting problem for a psychologist. This Idea of a too fat woman also came to my mind first. But why is this the first though from all of us? It could also be a tiny car, no adult would fit in or it could be full, etc.


I actually don't think it creates any type of perceptive conundrum at all. Law of averages I would say.


I think a better English translation would be, 'that car doesn't suit her'. If she was physically too big to get into a car then the sentence would include something like troppo grande.


I hardly think this is a better translation, a car is not a garment.


Should "ci" not be "si"?


There is a particular class of verbs in Italian called 'pronomial verbs', which are essentially verbs with pronouns attached. Their meaning changes, becoming somewhat different from the meaning of the individual parts that make up the verbs.

One of these verbs is the verb 'starci', a merge of 'stare' and 'ci' (it, there, here), which is being used in the sentence. It has two meanings, as far as I know, either 'to fit' or 'to agree with'.

So, 'ci sta', either means, 'he/she/it fits (in there)', or 'he/she agrees with me'.

I might not be entirely correct, so anyone who's better than me in Italian, please feel free to correct me.


So 'pronomial verbs' are essentially idiomatic, since they are not necessarily equal to the sum of their parts? I came across a strange phrase just a while ago that someone identified for me as 'andarsene'. I had assumed they were simply smashing together the words found in the phrase, but I'll assume that was a pronomial verb as well.

It would be helpful for learners if Duolingo would shed a bit of light on these things. Teaching that "Ci" is a first person plural pronoun, then introducing a situation that contradicts this without an explanation of the exception only hampers the learning process. Trial and error is an effective learning tool only if the error is understood, otherwise it is simply bumping into walls until you reach the exit.


Yep, that's pretty much the case. Think of it like how "nonetheless" or "however" mean more than simply saying "none the less" or "how ever." Or how "anymore" and "any more" mean different things.

I found these links, maybe they could help:



And, yeah, I really agree, it gets incredibly frustrating when you keep being dinged "incorrect" simply for trying to learn something that isn't at all straightforward.


You are right, Brett. There is a group of special verbs like andersene that have their one meaning. Andarsene for example can mean leaving and getting angry. There is also farcela (to succeed) and prendersela (caring about something) and fregarsene (not caring about it at all).


Thanks for this, just what I was looking for ... I can't remember ever coming across the verb 'starci' previously.


You're welcome. It's a weird one. Italians love attaching pronouns to their verbs.

You should be thankful you're not learning my mother tongue though, we have verbs that have two pronouns and even nouns can have pronouns.


Wow!!! If I ever visit Malta, do they also speal Italian? It sounds like a very special place.


A good portion of the population speaks Italian, yes. Most of everyone here speaks English though.

I think it is a very special place, but it's unfortunately losing a lot of its character.


What language is that? That sounds rediculous


thanks - I did not know of this verb before - your explanation is very helpful!!!!


You're very welcome!


I was wondering this too - in the other questions, it's "ti sta", "mi sta" etc. Why "ci sta" here"?


"ci" also means "there" or "here"


Si would mean she doesn't fit into herself, wouldn't it?


Why not lei non sta nella quella macchina?

What is the difference between in quella macchina and nella quelle macchina?


You're asking what the difference between "in " and "nella" is? "Nella" is a contraction of "in la". So nella quella macchina would be saying "in the that car" which is obviously not correct.


Thanks. Nella was for me just one variant of in. There are too many different variants of "in" in italian. I hate prepositions even if they are easier than doing all by different endings like in Polish.


This translation seems wrong. Why "ci" for the third person, singular? I'm going to check with my Italian friends.

  • 2670

"Ci" here isn't reflexive, but a clitic of place (there).


what does that mean, is that engilsh?


It took me a while to figure out what a clitic pronoun is: it is a pronoun placed immediately before a conjugated verb (but not a reflexive pronoun).


Thanks. I've struggled to know how to use the clitic 'ci'. That explanation is very useful.


From the DL notes to Clitics 1 (argh!!), is "ci" here replacing the prepositional phrase "in there"? She does not fit in there, with stare meaning "to fit"?


Pretty much, yes. I don't perfectly understand it myself, but ci seems to replace a place.


I don't understand why the translation of "fit" is "sta." Isn't sta a conjugation of the verb stare, to be (in a place)? Is this an idiom then?


Check my comment, maybe it helps.


What's the difference between quell' and quegli,I typed quell' here just because a vowel behind,but quegli anni/uomini seem to be OK as well....Confused


Quegli is used when the following noun starts with a vowel and is masculine, whereas quell' is used when the following noun starts with a vowel and is feminine.


You are wrong. Quegli is used for noun which start with a vowel and is plural and quell' is used for those in singular

Like this: quell'uomo quegli uomini


Why is "ella" wrong here. It has worked everywhere else as a subject...


why is "non vai bene in quella macchina" not acceptable?


È troppo grande o troppo grassa?


This was multiple choice for me. I was presented with:

Sta quella Sta nel quella Sta in quella

I chose "nel". Why was it wrong?? Aren't in and nel interchangeable??


Nel = in+il, or "in the." In this sentence, you need to say "in that," which is "in quella". All the prepositions are like this - nel, nella, negli, nei, and nell' = in THE, Dal, dalla, dagli, dai, and dall' = from THE, Sul, sulla, sugli, sui, and sull' = on THE, del, della, degli, dei, and dell = of THE, and al, alla agli, ai and all' = to THE. This course is very bad about getting this across, because the matching sections treat them all as if they only mean the preposition without the article


non mi piace imparare italiano cosi!


Why is automobile not accepted?


non si adatta a quella macchina.


Lei non si adatta a quella macchina


It seems to me the answer that is correct actually says: "She is not in that car," when translated. Why isn't the correct answer: "Non si adatta a quella macchina," given as a choice?


So, would 'si sta' instead of 'ci sta' work too?


Was it a Fiat 500?


So ci sta translates to fit or stay there? Very confusing!


Does she physically not fit in the car or does the style of the car not suit her? I don't understand this translation. Could someone please clarify what is meant in the Italian portion. If the translation is "fit" as in physical, how is that determined by this sentence?


I believe it's physical, yeah. As in, she's too big to fit.


I am going to do now what I always do when I get frustrated with some of these lessons - I am going to have a break for a day or two or three.

Ciao, Amici.


"I'm trying to figure out what the Determiners section consist of. I'm looking in my Italian grammar book and there's no Determiners section. So far I've figured out there are demonstrative adjectives and demonstrative pronouns" 5 years ago and no response. Duolingo forum.


I cannot pick the right sentence it wont let ne


I cannot move past this stage and finish this question even though i get it correct

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