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  5. "Posso fare una domanda?"

"Posso fare una domanda?"

Translation:Can I ask a question?

June 19, 2014



Why not 'Can I make a demand?' In English we would not ask if we could make a question, but we may ask if we could make a demand.

  • 1474

I have this same question. "Demand" is accepted as the English translation of "domanda" in language dictionaries


I still haven't seen an answer to the first question. Why is it "fare" and not "chiedere"? "Just because" isn't really an answer.


...then there isnt an answer that is going to satisfy you, as far as i can tell. Italians use "fare" for many actions which in english we would use distinct verbs for. There's not a reason hiding in some obscure rulebook somewhere; it's just the nature of the language. People who get hung up on the use of fare, among other things, are trying to transliterate, which is not the same as translating.


Ma to ask non significa domandare? Se fosse così allora non va bene. in italiano non si dice -posso domandare una domanda-


Well, that's the nature of different languages. An Englishman would be puzzled if you told him "Can I make a question?"


I had "Can I do a question?" Which is something I might ask before helping someone with a crossword or quiz.


"A" should be accepeted as well as "one"


Why can't it be "Am I able to ask a question?"

  • 1474

English differentiates between being able to do something - "CAN I do ........" - and having permission to do something - "MAY I do...... Thus far, I haven't noticed that Italian has the same distinction between "can" and "may": "potere" seems to be both "can" and "may". Could a native speaker please weigh in here?


Yes, but isn't 'CAN I do...' and 'AM I able to do...' the same thing? I understand that 'Can I' and 'May I' are different... You're right that Italian doesn't seem to distinguish between 'can, may, and able to' as possible meanings of potere, and I suppose that's why I'm confused as to why 'Can I ask a question?' is right and 'Am I able to ask a question?' is wrong. Thanks for your help!

  • 1474

You're absolutely right, ZoeCW; strictly speaking, "can" and "able to" are indeed the same and if DL accepts "can" it should also accept "able to". The problem really is that we - i.e., native English speakers - misuse "can" all the time. There is no context in this particular example, but it is highly likely that the speaker is not asking if she/he has the ability to ask a question, but rather if she/he has permission to do so, in which case the English translation should be "May I ask a question". I think I've even confused myself now! ;-)


Is "Posso farle una domanda?" also correct? I've seen that sentence on memrise.com.


I think that translates 'can I ask you (formal) a question'. If I remember correctly, 'you' is implicit in the original (it could be voi = plural you).


Is : can i do a question and not can i ask a question...


DL, what about "can i do a question"?


Sounds more like "can I do a question?". Seriously, what is with Italian grammar?


MAY I ask a question? is the correct English here


As the required answer is ask surely the correct answer should be chiedere?


'Am I able to ask a question?' (using infinitive!) was rejected Feb '19. Will report.


Can I put a question isn't accepted.


Can I pose a question was not accepted. This seems a better answer than 'ask' since chiedere was not used.

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