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  5. "Many kittens already know ho…

"Many kittens already know how to say meow."

Translation:Monta pentua osaa jo sanoa miau.

June 27, 2020



Definitely "Moni pentu" instead of "monta pentua"


Yes I'm really confused why the partitive is used for the subject here. Surely this must be a mistake!


"Moni pentu osaa" or alternatively "Monet pennut osaavat" sounds good, but "Monta pentua osaa" sounds bad to me, even though my bf didn't notice anything wrong when I asked him face to face (we're both native Finnish).

Let's think... "Monta pentua osaa jo maukua" sounds almost as bad, but "Monta pentua leikkii pallolla" is fine. I wonder why.


"jo osaa" should be accepted as well, shouldn't it?


I can't see why the order of jo osaa matters either, but only one way is marked right.


As a native I would comment that "jo osaa sanoa" is less common than "osaa jo sanoa". It has something to do with the natural flow of the frase. I'd say "osaa jo sanoa" without any effort or thinking, but "jo osaa sanoa" would feel like stumbling a bit. But I wouldn't say it is completely and utterly wrong. Any other native have an opinion about this?


Not a native but I noticed Finnish, while having somewhat freer word order than other SVO languages, definitely has preference to place the spatial and temporal adjectives and adverbs immediately after the verb.

Any other order places some emphasis elsewhere. Examples from this course would be e.g.:

He puhuvat usein ranskaa Hän puhuu harvoin (Compared to the English order where "they often speak French" and "S/he rarely speaks")


Well said. I love how some learners are so sovereign with all the grammatics. Respect. But I don't totally agree with the impression that Finnish has a free word order. The word order definitely makes the language either commonly spoken or weirdly spoken. It may change the emphasis of the frase and so on. When writing essays at school as a school kid, many corrections the teacher made were related to the order of words. So please ppl, don't adopt the assumption that you can put the words in any order you feel like. <3


Good point, I'll edit my reply. I meant a free word order with respect to the standard SVO.

As in, both "minä rakastan sinua", "sinua mina rakastan" are grammatically correct while the latter places emphasis on the object, but in English "you I love" is just awful.


I would say "moni pentu" instead of "monta pentua".


Yes, consider the phrase "many kittens already know Finnish" - would that then be "monta pentua osaa jo suomea", with both the subject and the object in the partivitive?


I couldn't tell you! My confusion was based entirely on learning the word many as "monta", and that (as with numbered items) one would use the partitive singular rather than the plural with that. On the other hand, if it was to use the plural, I would have expected to see "pennut" rather than "pentu". I'm not familiar with a rule that dictates whether the subject should or should not use the partitive!


I can't really think any situations when subject is partitive. Ecxept if you have a number first: "30 kittens now how to say" -> "30 pentua osaa jo sanoa". But so far that is the only situation I can think of. Otherwise: 1) Pentu osaa (a kitten can) 2) Moni pentu osaa (Many kittens can) 3) Pennut osaavat (kittens can) 4) Monet pennut osaavat (Many kittens can) There is a small difference between 2 and 4 but I cannot explain it. Anyone else, help? :)


Honestly, this might help.

Or if people would like to stay on this page: When used in the subject: moni is the plural marker and the following noun (if any) and verb are in the singular. When used in the object: both moni and the noun it qualifies follow the case dictated by the verb.

The difference between (2) and (4) seems to be a formal/informal distinction and both are correct.


Would you explain why, please? I'm quite confused! The option I had to pick (and that was marked correct) was "moni pentu", even though at the top of this screen it says "monta pentua". I came to the discussion page to ask why it wasn't "monta pentua", but this screen says it is, although you say it would be better as "moni pentu"! I don't understand!!!


I can try (I'm not the best person to explain grammatics....) - if you approach it through the singular, just one puppy: "Pentu osaa jo sanoa miau". Then add "moni" to make it more puppies. "Moni pentu osaa jo..." You wouldn't use a partitive when talking about one puppy: "Pentua osaa jo sanoa miau" is wrong. That goes for the plural too. "Monta pentua" is a partitive form. When to use "monta pentua"? For example "tuolla on monta pentua" - "There are many puppies there". "Onko sinulla monta pentua?" "Do you have many puppies". I hope this helps! :)


It does help, thanks! I won't pretend that I understand entirely, but when it comes to Finnish cases, I have come to moderate my expectations when it comes to understanding things perfectly straight away!

As a matter of interest, Google Translate - and I know that Finns are constantly amused/appalled by Google's attempts at Finnish - reckons that "monia pentuja" is the way to go!


Haha, classic Google Translate. :D

However, "monia pentuja" could of course work at the start of a sentence in passive sentences (as the object).

"Monia pentuja pidetään liian sairaina elämään" (Many puppies/kittens are considered too sick to live).

[deactivated user]

    Why does it mater if already (jo) comes at the end of the sentence???


    That is not the most common word order. I don't think many natives would use that.


    You're correct. "... osaa sanoa miau jo" sounds really awkward. Maybe it would be more ok if you'd use the specific verb instead of "say meow": ... osaa maukua jo.


    Kitten means kissan pentu. Pentu could be also a puppy.


    Moni pentu osaa jo sanoa miau. or: Monet pennut osaavat jo sanoa miau.


    reading through all the comments, it remains unclear if the duolingo translation has a mistake or not. Can a Finnish speaker/duolingo clarify? "Many kittens already know how to say meow." Monta pentua osaa jo sanoa miau.

    ie is Monta pentua correct in this sentence?


    Monta pentua osaa jo sanoa miau. This is no Finnish


    Maybe not, but it helps learners like me to understand and learn words better.

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