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"Are there three women?"

Translation:Suntne tres feminae?

September 29, 2019

8 Comments


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

I wrote "Sunt tres feminae?" and it was marked wrong. Isn't the particle "-ne" used to form a yes/no question? Why is it required here?


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

I’m no expert but think it’s just because without the question mark or inflection, your answer could be a statement (there are three women). The point of the sentence is to teach plurals and plurals within a question. Suntne makes the sentence a question without any additional inflection or punctuation. Classical Latin didn’t use punctuation much so it’s truer to the written language.


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

Thanks for the reply Jessica, I think you are correct. I also found out that "-ne" is used to give emphasis to something in the question, rather than just making it a yes/no question as I thought it would. You can see a nice discussion here, if you're interested: https://latin.stackexchange.com/questions/2781/where-to-put-the-enclitic-ne


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

Ooh brilliant thank you! It looks like there’s loads of information for me to explore!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2242

Whether they had punctuation or not when writing, that shouldn't have affected how they spoke.


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

"Suntne tres mulieres" was accepted! Woohoo!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CassandraL412974

Is word order important? Does suntne have to be at the beginning of the sentence?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2242

Yes and yes.

Just because syntax in Latin is more flexible than it is in English doesn't mean it's a chaotic free-for-all. There are still rules.

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