"Gli piace il caffè senza zucchero."

Translation:He likes coffee without sugar.

April 20, 2013

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And wouldn't it also be correct to say, "A lui piace il caffè ... " as we have done in other exercises?


Exactly. But not "agli" because it is a noun that belongs in the kitchen ;)


The drop down menu says "gli" is to be used before a word starting with a vowel. Like "piace"? Not having fun now.


That's when 'gli' is acting as the plural masculine definite article (the) before a plural masculine noun that begins with a vowel. Gli has many uses. See Chris123456 in this discussion


Why gli instead of lui? Clitics (?) are the hardest! And what exactly is the clitic in this sentence?


According to my understanding: "piacere" means "to please (to)" (French: plaire à). So the object used with "piacere" is an indirect object, because we ask the question (literally): to whom does the coffee please? for example.

Answer: The coffee pleases him/her/them, etc

That's why we use indirect object pronouns here. we say in Italian:

  • Gli piace il caffè (litteral translation: the coffee pleases him/ the coffee pleases them).

  • Le piace il caffè (lit.: the coffee pleases her).


Yes, it’s always important to remember that words like ”piacere” translate a bit differently in English (or its hard to translate) but you explained it really well, so thank you. I think (atleast for me) i just have to get used to these things


I got this right, but why doesn't "piace" take "a" before it in this sentence? Perhaps "Agli piace il caffè ... " ?


Admirable question! I think that gli, in this context, is taken to mean "to him" without the need for an additional "a" as one would usually use with a verb like piacere. Why this happens? Hope someone else can explain!

To quote mukkapazza's recent explanation of "gli" elsewhere on this site:

"Gli can be different parts of speech. Gli elefanti sono grandi/the elephants are big = determinative article. Gli vendo un elefante/I sell him an elephant = pronoun. Gli + noun = the. Gli + verb = him/to him. There are times when gli also works for plural... that has to do mostly with indirect objects. However, nowadays gli is starting to replace other pronouns (such as le and loro) in spoken Italian... but don't worry about that here, we try not to overlap :)"

Sorry I can't give you the reference to her original text on Duolingo but I found it so useful that I copied and pasted it into my own learning database. Hope this helps anyway :)


Gli means 'to him.' You could also say 'a lui' (which serves the same grammatical role and means 'gli' in the context of this sentence) if you wanted to stress that part of the sentence. In other words, you could translate the sentence two ways:

  • Gli piace il caffè senza zucchero.
  • A lui piace il caffè senza zucchero. (Emphasis on 'a lui')

Agli, which can translate to 'garlic,' 'at the,' or 'to the' never translates as 'to him.' (Agli serves a different grammatical role.) Hope this helps!


That explanation deserves a lingot, here it is :)


Reply to JoeM: "Aglio" is garlic, not "agli". We say "aglio/oglio" meaning the garlic/oil sauce for pasta.


oglio? ...... if you are going to correct someone, make sure you don't make errors yourself, it is olio!


So is there a plural form of garlic?


What do you call the red sauce on spaghetti? Bone of contention in America


bolognese sauce.


Mukkapazza knows her stuff!


i heard vi piace...


I heard "mi piace"...smh.


sounds correct to me (1 year later)


"Gli" in this case is an Indirect Object Pronoun, not and article.


The course has been easy for the most part until I reached clitics. It is whipping my butt. The hints haven't helped much but found some good stuff here. Grazie!


Would "Mi piace il caffè senza zucchero" work to mean "I like coffee without sugar"?


Hai ragione! You are indeed correct.


Yay awesome :) good to know


i heard LI piace...


Hearing the 'g' in 'gli' isn't too easy. Sometimes it's almost silent. And it can't be Li because piacere uses the indirect object then verb, then subject, and li (or Li) isn't an indirect object pronoun, it's a direct object pronoun.


Yes, you're sure. Thanks. Grazie mille!


Lui piace/gli piace? I haven't understood. :(


Piacere uses the indirect object pronoun. Which is gli. = to him. To him is pleasing the coffee without sugar. As I explained to Wichito390 earlier. And impiastro. http://italian.about.com/od/verbs/a/italian-verb-piacere.htm for information about piacere and http://italian.about.com/library/fare/blfare117a.htm for indirect object pronouns.


Is caffè really supposed to be pronounced "caff-EI"? I'm thinking not.


Yup. It's accented on the second syllable.


I know where the stress is, I'm just asking whether it should be "ei" or "eh", I've always thought it was the latter. The slow version says "caf-FAY".


I wrote "THEY likes coffee without sugar" and it was correct... Mmm... Why?


Because in the clitic dative (to him) gli can be used for both singular masculine, or plural masculine and feminine forms. While loro is more classically correct than gli for the latter, the 'gli' for for 'for/to them' is used in modern Italian. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_grammar#Pronouns

Though I can't see why 'They likes' would work. I could see why 'They like' would though (since in English like is conjugated thus I like; he likes; she likes; they like, we like, you like)


Why is gli necessary? Does not the sentence have the same meaning without it?


No. It would not. You need the indirect pronoun gli - to him - for the verb piacere. Perhaps if you had read the other comments here first? The closest to a literal translation would be "To him is pleasing the coffee without sugar". Without the 'to him' the sentence does not make sense.


It is impossible to hear what the first word is!!


Going off comments here and from before. Could someone explain why I can't say: Il caffe senza zucchero gli piace?


Nobody thought of it? It's not used in that construction very much?


Hi - I don't understand why 'gli' - plural - is used ahead of 'piace' etc., etc., IF the subject is singular and male - 'he' or lui. Please explain use of 'gli' in this sentence - how and why it is employed, say, instead of: Lui piace ... Thanks/Grazie!


It's not plural. Not in this context. It's the indirect object 'to him' = 'a lui' = 'gli'

(Yes sometimes gli is a plural, but not this gli)


I put 'they" for' gli' and it was correct.


could you use "gli" for a girl also or do you need a different pronoun. I was a bit confused by this kind of form, as someone in the comments said I am also used to the form "A lui/lei piace".

Also out of curiosity does anyone know which of these forms is more common?


could you use "gli" for a girl also[…?]

Yes, or you could use le.

…as someone in the comments said I am also used to the form "A lui/lei piace".

Also out of curiosity does anyone know which of these forms is more common?

Lui and lei carry stress.


Bleah, che schifo!


He likes his coffee without sugar is accepted. Bravo Duolingo!


I'm finding clitics So hard and we're still only on the present tense! How many more irregular/idiosyncratic idioms has my poor little old brain got to get round?!


"He likes sugarless coffee" means exactly the same! Why is it not acceptable?!


Coffee already doesn't have sugar in it? That's a bit like saying you like sugarless water.


I translated this as They like coffee without sugar. Since gli is the 3rd person indirect object - singular or plural - I think my translation should have been accepted.

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