"De oude vrouw heeft tenminste duizend katten."
Translation:The old woman has at least a thousand cats.
I'm confused - my answer of "The old woman has at least a thousand cats" was accepted, but that's not the same as "At least the old woman has a thousand cats." They have very different meanings in English. Are they both legitimate translations? If not, which is correct?
This is indeed very confusing. Looking at the Dutch phrase I would expect 'The old woman has at least a thousand cats' to be the translation.
I asked my Flemish husband, and while he at first said the only translation was "The old woman has at least a thousand cats", he thought about it for a while and said that he thinks it could also mean "At least the old woman has a thousand cats." So even though they are written differently in English, it might be that the phrase has two distinct meanings in Dutch.
Actually it can only mean At least the old woman has a thousand cats. For the sentence to mean The old woman has at least a thousand cats a space has to be used, so it becomes …heeft ten minste duizend katten.
The reason for the confusion is that there is no difference pronouncing ten minste and tenminste. (When writing them, lots of native Dutch speakers mix the two up for that reason.) And even though they mean something different, they can both be translated to at least.
In a sentence like the example there is a difference in emphasis. Tenminste in the example. And ten minste for the similar one with the space.
For the Dutch speakers: Ten minste is the one that can be replaced by minstens. Tenminste can be replaced by althans. See onzetaal.nl
So if it doesn't mean "the old woman has at least a thousand cats," then why is that listed as an acceptable translation? Is the Dutch DuoLingo mistaken, falling victim to the mix-up you're referring to? I'm confused ;)
Also, the current automated pronunciation has the stress on the -minste syllable of "tenminste." According to your above explanation, I'd expect the stress to be on "ten-". Is the audio actually pronouncing "ten minste" and not "tenminste"? I'm further confused!