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"Do they not speak any Swedish?"

Translation:Eivätkö he puhu ruotsia?

July 1, 2020



Is there a reason for having the word 'any' in the English sentence? The Finnish one doesn't have that. Full translation would be "Eivätkö he puhu yhtään/ollenkaan ruotsia".


It should have yhtään/ollenkaan for "any." There are other instances in Duolingo where additional English words are added that sre not in the translations.


Reporting as there is no option for "any" when you select the words.


Why is "Eivätkö he puhu yhtään ruotsia" wrong? Or else do not have "any" in the English perhaps.


"Eivätkö puhu ruotsia" is incorrect? doesn't "Eivätkö" already indicate "he"?


You need the personal pronoun when verbs are in the third person, both singular and plural.


"Eivätkö puhu ruotsia?" can be used if the persons in question have been referred to previously.
For example: - "He puhuvat englantia." - "Eivätkö puhu ruotsia?"


This can only be used after an immediate reference among friends or within a family, so I recommend against this kind of use.


We have had some earlier examples where "can" and "do" usages have been flexible.

So is "ovatko he eivät puhuu ruotsia" which I would translate as "can they not speak swedish" wrong here?


The negation word is a verb in Finnish, thus it inflects according to the person. Here it is 3rd person pl. eivät. In your sentence you have two main verbs, predicates, ovatko and eivät, which you cannot put together that way.

It looks to me that you have translated an English sentence "Are they not speaking Swedish?" without realising that "are speaking" is an English-specific construction that does not map to olla + puhua.

Actually if you have a question with the negation word, it pretty much always begins with that negation word + the question suffix -ko/kö (enkö, etkö, eikö, emmekö, ettekö, eivätkö) and later you have that other verb (like puhua).


Many thanks for that clarification. I think I get it now.


That translates to "are they not speaking Swedish".

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