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  5. "Quid est California? Califor…

"Quid est California? California est civitas Americana."

Translation:What is California? California is an American state.

August 29, 2019

121 Comments


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

I rebel to this pronunciation, CIVITAS like the spanish I am.

Anyway thank you Duolingo and everyone for this course.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MamaLuigi17

Why not, "...California is a state in America"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amaryllis515864

That would be “California civitas in America est”. You can only give the closest translation because Duo is secretly a computer, not a wise owl ;)


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

a conputer that will murder your family and friends if you missed a day


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

How very true, Amaryllis515864. Here's a Lingot for having the audacity to point out the obvious.


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

The meaning is the same, but it's not what is said in Latin.

California est civitas americana.
The translation for "civitas americana" is American state.
Americana = Adj. America = country.


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

The pause between sentences was so long, I'd already entered and submitted "Quid est California" by the time they started reading the second sentence. Annoying.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MW3b71

I got it wrong because I already entered "Quid est California" and hit enter before the last part played.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AngeCI
  • 1757

The audio files are too fast in other languages, but too slow in Latin.


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

I would love if it had the grammatical rules, like in other courses


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Isaac3972

Ok, this particular course/track is kicking me in the rear.

"Where is California? California is a state in America."

I get that I mixed "quid" and "quis" up, but what about the second half? Is "Americana" a possessive adjective of "state" instead of the subject of a preposition modifying "state"? Does Latin even have prepositions?

Man, I haven't thought this hard about grammar words since high school! I feel slightly out of practice, yet oddly comfortable like an old bicycle. . .


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

California est civitas Americana = California is an American state. Americanus, -a, -um is an adjective modifying civitas. And yes, there are prepositions in Latin. :-)


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

Kate, what are you signifying when you write ”Americanus, -a, -um”? It's obviously a modifier - but for what?


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

There are masculine (-us), feminine (-a), and neuter (-um) forms of the adjective. I wrote the "dictionary entry" for the form--what you would find if you looked it up. In this case, civitas is feminine, so you use Americana. But if you wanted to modify a masculine word (like pater), you would use Americanus.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GeorgiaB148

why is is Americana and not Americanus?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kouichi-C-N

I wonder the same thing. Is it because of the gender of the word civitas? How could we know about the gender of a word in Latin?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JosephLee372290

Yes, I think civitas is a feminine noun and therefore the adjective matching it is americana. This course doesn't actually tell you the genders of nouns, but you could probably find it in a dictionary.


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

Could "state" also be "status"? Or is that only non-political meanings, like one's physical state?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amaryllis515864

Good question. In classical Latin, status means either fixed (hence ‘static’) or ‘position’ (like the modern word ‘status’). In medieval Latin, the word also gets the modern meaning of ‘state’. So yes, in medieval Latin, this translation could be understood. Don’t forget to change the adjective accordingly, though.


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

Good point, in English, "state" is also something like "a fixed position" (but figuratively), and a country.

Status -> directly from Latin -> Status.
Status > old French Estat (modern: état) (position, condition; status, stature, station) and also "country"-> State

Status -> German Staat.

https://www.etymonline.com/word/state


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

Isnt state the same as provine


[deactivated user]

    What would "civitas" denote in ancient Rome?


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

    City, state, inhabitants of a city or state, a people, citizenship. Cives means citizen, which is where civitas comes from.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/H.ello

    It seems some pronounce the "v" in "civitas" as "v" and others as "w".


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

    Why is "...a state in America" wrong?


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

    Please, read the comments on the page, it has already been explained several times by users.

    In America = In America.
    americana = adj = american (feminine)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ljiljana252926

    The pronunciation is 'kivitas'?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mechristop1

    I vaguely recall pronounciation should be key-wee-tass.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OS_59554

    yes it is kee-wee-tus


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amaryllis515864

    kee-wee-tass

    The answers above were both 2/3 correct ;) Make sure to fully pronounce every syllable.


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

    The thing that really bother me in this sentence, more than the pronunciation, is that there is no much space between the 2 clauses, that, each time, I validate my answer before the end of the sentence.


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

    C used to be pronounced like a K in Latin until it changed to the "Ka, tse, tsi, ko, ku" pronunciation, similar to the Italian pronunciation of c, so technically both would be correct.


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

    Yes, but it's "Classical Latin" pronunciation here.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kouichi-C-N

    I decided to ask that kind of question to Wiktionary. It answers with IPA symbols or sometimes with a recording: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/civitas#Pronunciation_2

    /ˈkiː.wi.taːs/, [ˈkiː.wɪ.t̪aːs]


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

    Personally, I disagree with the pronounciation taught here. I attended law school, learnt Latin, also fan of history and stuff. "C" shouldn't be always pronounced "k". Especially not before "i" or "ae". After all "Caesar" is not "Käsar". Although I know there is this kind of pronounciation but I find it sounds very weird. Erasmus one is better and more natural in my opinion. Also it was widely used in Europe until Latin disappeared.


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

    Classical Latin, which they're trying to use for this course (with very mixed results imo), exclusively uses hard consonants. C's will always make a K sound.


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

    Caesar is pronounced kaisar in Classical Latin


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

    /kae̯.sar/
    (Classical)

    ˈt͡ʃe.sar/
    [ˈt͡ʃɛː.zar]
    (Ecclesial)

    That's weird, because I hear
    Kaezar with a "z" soud like in "zebra" on Wikipedia, and they say it's classical.

    https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Caesar#Pronunciation_3

    Why?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dim-ond-dysgwr

    @ Hunniel : No, "Caesar" is not "Käsar"; it is "Kaisar" (to use German spelling -- "ai" like English "eye"). The pronunciation of legal Latin differs from that of Classical Latin even more than does the pronunciation of ecclesiastical Latin.


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

    I'd like to add something here. Both pronunciation are, more or less, correct. However, I think Duolingo teaches us Classical Latin, not Medieval/Ecclesiastical Latin. In Classical Latin, "C" and "G" is always hard, and "V" is pronounced as "W". But the pronunciation shifted to more like Italian during the Medieval Era because of the influence of Italian--therefore Medieval Latin.

    In my humble opinion, the pronunciation we should use is of Classical Latin, because it is the version that the Romans spoke.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amaryllis515864

    This course is a mess, to be frank. It teaches classical pronunciation and medieval vocabulary.

    Quomodo te habes = quid agis

    Quid nomen tibi est = quod nomen tibi est

    Cantare = canere (originally the frequentative verb)


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

    Could you elaborate about the medieval vocabulary here?

    Which one is medieval quomodo.../quid... for instance?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kate967525

    Amaryllis, I saw on the site that this course is in beta, so they're still working out the snags, as it were. I happen to like this course, even knowing that it is the beta version. I rarely study online using only one resource, that includes languages.


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

    the pronunciation we should use is of Classical Latin, because it is the version that the Romans spoke

    Quote from the Stackexchange site:

    One common argument for classical pronunciation is that it's "the way Romans spoke Latin." While I appreciate (and usually try to make) historically informed choices, this argument only tells part of the story. Yes, it's the way Romans spoke Latin—until the 2nd or 3rd century A.D. At that point Latin started to turn into Late Latin, and what we think of now as ecclesiastical pronunciation started to enter the language. (There's a good summary of the shift on Unam Sanctam Catholicam, a website run by a lay apostolate about history and tradition in the Church.)

    So yes, while classical pronunciation is indeed the way Romans spoke Latin, ecclesiastical pronunciation is also the way Romans spoke Latin. It's just that Cicero was dead by then, so people are less interested in the literature. :)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nick35497

    I humbly disagree. As most of the people who actually use Latin today are Catholic (I use it at least on a weekly basis on Sundays), I would prefer the pronunciation to be ecclesiastical. It would be nuce to at keast have the option.


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

    A quote from Quintilian "Nam k quidem in nullis verbis utendum ❤❤❤❤ nisi quae significat etiam ut sola ponatur. Hoc eo non omisi quod quidam eam quotiens a sequatur necessariam credunt, cum sit c littera, quae ad omnis vocalis vim suam perferat." or in english " As for k my view is that it should not be used at all except in such words as may be indicated by the letter standing alone as an abbreviation. I mention the fact because some hold that k should be used whenever the next letter is an a, despite the existence of the letter c which maintains its force in conjunction with all the vowels."


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

    You have been censored by black hearts.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndreyIvan653331

    It is "ts'" in German and Russian traditions and "ch" in Italian and Catholic Latin


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

    How do you pronunce "Veni, vidi, vici"?

    In your language I mean, as an expression spoken by non latinists in everyday life?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OS_59554

    yes, but this is only pronounced this way nowadays, how do you know it's not right?

    they probably would have said kay-zar for 'caesar'


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dim-ond-dysgwr

    We can only go on the arguments (based upon not only the scientific study of language change but also on what Classical Latin writers themselves had to say) expressed by historical linguists. With regard to your "probably", can you name any authorities able to back the claim that "ae" was ever pronounced /ei/ or intervocalic "s" as /z/?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OS_59554

    yes... well, latin is an old language so it's not certainly pronounced the way you've been told, and we don't really know how it was pronounced but i say 'kee-wee-tus'


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/piazza.mer

    California civitas Americana est. Is it possible? Latin grammar is SOV subject object verb....


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

    Yes, it's less common, as the verb here is a copula, but its also a valide sentence.


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

    Where in this sentence does the word "in" appear?


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

    The word isn't really anywhere in the sentence, you can recognize it by looking at the case it's in. Locative or preposition-less ablative is for the question "where?", Ablativus Seperativus - also a preposition-less Ablative - for the question "where from?" and Accusative for "where to?" I hope I didn't forget anything :| (Edit: woops I confused the sentence, look at the solution, it isn't even supposed to be in the sentence)


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

    What is the difference between quid and quod?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/clann_ainle4

    What's with all this crap about California and New York? Many ancient Romans there?


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

    People around the world coin new Latin words every day. It is used in science, religion, philosophy and law. It is an official language of the Vatican, also, and I expect they use it to talk about modern phenomena.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marty62203

    I used contractions: "What's..." and "California's..." and was marked wrong. I reported it.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vZQB703921

    I made the right answer but they said i got it wrong :(


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nelli638912

    i give the same answer, only without ? because there is no there. and i can t go


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Silvanita648297

    American states and cities sound weird in a latin course


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Simplicius2

    This Oliver Hardy pronunciation is offensive. Not even a barbarian would say "Cal'fowna'a" for California.


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

    Not to complain, but I do prefer the original audio... This speaker has a highly American accent, which can be helpful, but in my opinion it doesn't flow naturally.

    Also, probably just a glitch, but the audio goes "qUId est" with this strangely loud microphone noise. Again, most likely nobody's fault, but it's a mildly distracting bug.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kiboorg123

    My answer was: What is California? California is a state in America. Not accepted. Why, is it a site mistake?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mari596047

    CIVITAS CAN ALSO MEAN CITY!!!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mari596047

    Civitas can also mean city!!!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pierre733333

    This is crazy! Why this obsession with references to American states/cities when Latin was spoken /written within the context of the Roman civilisation !!!


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

    I really don't understand why you find that upsetting.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dim-ond-dysgwr

    It's a pity that the speaker pronounces "California" in two different ways here: CaliFORnia and CaliforNIa.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lsa123

    I left the period missing and it marked my answer wrong I'm protesting and leaving a period out of this comment


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

    I havent finished yet and it says ik wrong ):


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

    Shouldnt "california is a state of america" be accepted for the second part?


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

    Please read the other comments, it's been discussed before. To put it simply:

    • California is an American state = California civitas americana est.

    • California is a state of America = California civitas americae est.


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

    how do you say Mexico in a afirmation locative? "mexicoae"?


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

    Why is "California civitas Americana est" wrong?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MerryC11

    She reads it so slowly I always answer the question when she's actually only halfway through because I think she's done and then I get it wrong


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

    Press the speaker icon to make her read it at normal speed. There are two: one for normal speed, one for slow speed.


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

    A glottal stop between i and a in "California" doesn't strike me as credible. "Californ - ih- a" cannot be correct, sorry.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jcarty123

    I got the "typing" version of this sentence. Annoying because i know how to type California already, and now i have to do it twice for one answer? Sheesh, Latin is what i want to learn.


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

    When to use Americana and when to use americanum?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Isabella257870

    I put "Quid est California? California est civitates Americana." and it told me I had typed in English. I eventually put just "Quid" so I could go past.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EDmat_123

    What is the difference between 'Americana', 'Americanus', 'America' and so on and when/how do you use it?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Blas_de_Lezo00

    Adjectives, nouns, pronouns have declensions in Latin, that is different endings for the grammatical genders and numbers and also different endings for the function of the word in the sentence, that is, if the word is the subject, it goes in the nominative case, if it is direct object, it must go in the Accusative case, etc

    The words in Latin have a lot of different endings, and that is the base of the Latin Grammar. It is very different from English.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EDmat_123

    OK thank you for answering!


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

    why i can t use est at the end


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Morena891830

    AMERICA IS NOT ONLY UNITED STATES !!!! AMERICA IS A CONTINENT, SO THE CORRECTION IS "WHAT IS CALIFORNIA, CALIFORNIA IS A STATE OF THE UNITED STATES!!! PLEASE DUOLINGO !!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Morena891830

    America is a continet, It is not just The united States, so the correct thing to do would be put " California is a state of The United States"


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

    ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤ i miss the ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤ dot .


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gabriel517712

    I keep pronouncing it like "siVItas" and not like "KIwitas", I can't


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mechristop1

    The Latin stalls here. No matter how many times the correct answer is submitted.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OS_59554

    california is a state in america also works i mean seriouslY?


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

    It's correct, but not the grammar. Americanus/-a/-um is either the adjective in nominative or the/an American in nominative.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MSR01

    The second part of my answer was "california is a state in america" and this was marked wrong.


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

    See the answer above. "civitas Americana" means "American state"; "Americana" is an adjective. "(a) state in America" would be "civitas in America"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/c0cYAB2S

    The pronuntiation should be "ki-vit-tas", and not "Ki-wi-tas"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dim-ond-dysgwr

    That is not the opinion of historical linguists. In Classical Latin pre- and intervocalic "u/v" stood for the semi-vowel (labiovelar approximant) /w/ -- as in, for example, vir /wir/ (man), ave /'awe/ (hail) .

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