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  5. "Se on kellari."

"Se on kellari."

Translation:It is a basement.

July 2, 2020

13 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MehdiJavan3

I think "It is the basement" is also a valid answer.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/misscopilot1

I wrote the same but it marked as incorrect. Reported it now.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JANBOEVINK

It is a cellar!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PahaKeijukainen

Could you also translate it with the definite article, e.g. "It is the basement" or "It is the cellar"? Or would you rather use "tämä" instead of "se" in that case? (e.g. when you're showing someone around?)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanWitham1

"Tama on kellari" is "This is the basement" or "This is a basement." "Se on kellari" is "It is a basement" or "It is the basement." There is not much difference but there is a difference.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JANBOEVINK

Hi Ian, tämä = this. But I agree with your reasoning.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanWitham1

I have corrected it. I do not know how I made that mistake.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JANBOEVINK

Sometimes the hand is faster than the brain!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PahaKeijukainen

I fully understood the difference between "tämä" and "se", this is not what my question was about.

My question was about the definite vs. indefinite article. Duolingo did not accept my translation" It is THE basement", the only accepted translation was "It is A basement".

The only reason I was asking for "tämä" vs. "se" was that, in my personal understanding, "tämä" refers to one specific basement (e.g. I am standing at the top of the stairs, pointing at the basement saying "This is the basement"), whereas "se" might be more general (although I can't think of any context where I would say "It is a basement"), so I thought it might be possible that a translation with the definite article ("It is the basement") is maybe unlikely.

I hope you understand what I mean. All I'm asking for is: Can I use the definite article as well or not? I don't care about tämä vs. se. I understood that one of them means "this" and the other one means "it" (while none of them means "that", as you suggested :) )


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JANBOEVINK

A few responses, Ms Keijukainen. 1) I agree with you that tämä points at a specific basement, so This is the basement would be more likely. 2) This is only the Beta of the Finnish program. The moderators are likely to be very busy increasing the range of answers to be accepted. It provides an enormous amount of work for the moderators. 3) In russian this issue is also frequently debated, because like finnish russian does not use articles like -the- and -a-, but mostly both options are accepted in translations. 4) Your english is very good, so I would surmise you are living in an english speaking country with a finnish name.(This is not necessarily so) Why do you call yourself -Paha-?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PahaKeijukainen

Thank you, Janboevink :) I agree with you concerning the 2nd point. That's mainly why I asked. I was not sure if I should report my sentence as "My answer should be correct" to (maybe?) help out the contributors (does it help them if we report those sentences?) since I was not sure if it really is an accepted translation :)

I am a German native, but I work as an English teacher and spent half a year in Scotland to improve my English skills. The Finnish name is just an old nickname that I've been using for quite a few years now :) I've always been interested in Finland and the Finnish language & when I needed a new nickname because the English version "evil fairy" had been already taken I asked a friend for a translation :)

So I take from your response that both the definite and indefinite article would be correct (probably depending on the context the sentence is used in) :) So thanks a lot!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JANBOEVINK

Thanks for your further comments, PahaKeijukainen. I knew the Paha but not the Keijukainen!

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