"Hanno alcuni libri."

Translation:They have a few books.

April 27, 2013

21 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/balazs_g

is there any logic when do we say "a few" and when "several"? Are these interchangeable in English? Before "Hai alcuni libri" was translated as you have several books", and now "Hanno alcuni libri" means they have a few books.

December 24, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/dgraemeb743

though it is vague, in English "a few" generally means 3 or 4, while "several" means 5-9

April 10, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/mycroft

Not in my English! "A few" means "not very many", but depending on the context that could still be a very large number! (Only a few of the stars that exist are in our galaxy, but that's a hundred billion or so...)

January 9, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/dgraemeb743

That's a good point. A few can mean a minority of a larger population as well as a small number of things.

January 9, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/bono86

"A few" is alright here i get it.How about "some"?According to duo alcuni means a few,some ... I mean not to mention the amount but to mention the kind of them.For example history book,physics book...how can an italian understand it (i mean amount or kind) when he hears this sentence? Is it another one depending on context or is there any other word meeting the meaning like the way i write above?Thanks

August 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Teresinha

I chose "some" and DL accepted...As for the other questions I can not help you because my English is very limited.

May 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/TomTorchia

Why not. They have few books?

July 16, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Chel451498

My question too. I think the answer is alcuni is 'a few' not just 'few'.

Our answer, They have few books, would be Hanno pochi libri.

October 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/David1945

Could it not also mean 'They have not got any books'?

April 27, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/f.formica
Mod
  • 2046

That would be negated (and singular): Non hanno alcun libro.

April 27, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/dillonreyna

Why singular?

October 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/f.formica
Mod
  • 2046

That's how the language works:

  • Non ho alcun libro: I don't have any books (I have none)
  • Non ho alcuni libri: I don't have some books (I might have many, but not some specific ones)

Just like "any" in English, you can't use the singular in an affirmative sentence, but contrary to English you don't normally use it in the interrogative form either:

  • Do you have any books?: Hai qualche libro? / Hai dei libri?
October 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/dillonreyna

Okay, so it can be read more as: alcun = any; alcuni = some?

October 13, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/f.formica
Mod
  • 2046

In these contexts, yes, but the are many other contexts where it doesn't work, like the interrogative example I cited above; another example could be "you can buy it in any shop" - in Italian it would be "puoi comprarlo in qualunque negozio (not alcun).

October 13, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/David1945

Ora capisco. Grazie!

April 27, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/darkpeak

I think these terms are as vague in English as in Italian. It perhaps depends not only on context but also on tone of voice.

April 21, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pogotc

Would "Hanno dei libri" another way of saying They have a few books?

July 17, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/franksk

I'm wondering this too, does anyone know the answer? Are the contractions of di + an article and the variants of "alcun_" the same?

May 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/KarenHJensen

I answered "they have quite a few books" because in a previous exercise a translated alcuni as "a few" and was corrected to quite a few. Duo said it should be "they have got a few books". I don't understand why my answer wasn't accepted.

April 8, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/carols02

It's still a bit confusing to me when "alcuni" means "several" or "a few". Is there an explanation for this or is it one of those things that you end up getting used to as you learn more of the language?

May 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ronaldsantoro243

Why does DL not accept "The have some books"? Some=a few, right?

February 24, 2019
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