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  5. "O café tem pouco açúcar."

"O café tem pouco açúcar."

Translation:The coffee has little sugar.

May 9, 2013



There is a subtle difference between "little" and "a little", just as there is between "few" and "a few". Without the "a" there is a negative connotation. Eg "The coffee has a little sugar" can be interpreted literally, but "The coffee has little sugar" suggests it does not have enough sugar. Similarly "she has few friends" suggests she is not well liked, which is different from "she has a few friends".


(for those who are afraid to click on links):

Few - A few - Little - A little Danmoller

Here is how they relate to each other:

<pre>Few = poucos/poucas (plural because it's for countable quantities) A few = some = alguns, algumas Little = pouco/pouca (there is no plural because it's used for uncountable quantities) A little = um pouco de </pre>

. Examples:

<pre>Tenho poucos brinquedos = I have few toys. Tenho alguns brinquedos = I have a few toys = I have some toys. O copo tem pouca água = The glass has little water. O copo tem um pouco de água = The glass has a little water. </pre>

Go back to the Portuguese Help Index: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/6331998


Yes, I wonder which one this sentence means?


I wager that it means it does not have enough sugar. The same difference described by r_i_l_e_y exists in Spanish as well as English, so I bet it does in Portuguese as well.


Follow the link posted above.


I don´t get it. Then why is not "a Little" =um pouco, and "Little"=pouco, in this sentence?


To have "a" few/little, is to have some (the glass is half full) ... to have few, is imply there is not enough (glass is half empty).


This should accept the negative construction in English "the coffee doesn't have much sugar", as nobody says "the coffee has little sugar", which is what pouco açúcar means!


As a native English speaker, I agree - the most natural way to say this would be "The coffee doesn't have much sugar"


I am an Australian native and you would never say in English "The coffee has bit sugar"


This is similar to the English word, 'paucity', with the same meaning.


The translation given by Duolingo is "The coffee has bit sugar." Reported.


How does Portuguese distinguish between café, the drink, and café, the place where coffee is served?


In Brazil we call the place "cafeteria", or just "café".


I was wandering if "the coffee has a lack of sugar" could be right as well... does it?


So... "pouco" is modifying "tem" and not "acucar"? As in (I) (a little have) (sugar) vs (I) (have) (a little bit of sugar)?


No, it modifies "açucar", but as the people above mentioned, it has a negative meaning (not enough sugar), just like when we say in english, "the coffee has little sugar" or more naturally, "the coffee doesn't have very much sugar"/"the coffee has only a little sugar"... one of these phrases should be the translation given by duolingo, not "the coffee has a little sugar."


Considering how a Café is also a place, "The cafe has little sugar" should also be accepted. Unless the hover hints are wrong, and the world wide lessons teaching that another short form word for cafetaria is "café" are false.

Reported December 22, 2020!


The coffee has not much sugar. Marked wrong even though "not much" is a hover hint and much more likely to be phrased thusly.


the coffee is singular, although, because the context is negative, the third person form of the verb is generally used. “The coffee does not have much sugar” would be more correct. However, it would still be first person if you use a positive form like “has little.”

I would look at the hover hints are more universal meanings for the words, not necessarily for the context.


A little or too little but never just little in my experience (UK English)

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