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  5. "Yuck! Why is this chicken bl…

"Yuck! Why is this chicken black?"

Translation:Hyi! Miksi tämä kana on mustaa?

July 5, 2020



A nice example of the partitive:

  • Miksi tämä kana on musta? = Why is this chicken black? (commenting on the color of the animal)
  • Miksi tämä kana on mustaa? = Why is this chicken black? (commenting on the color of the meat)


Why is in the second sentence kana not in the partitive? I understand it as a unspecified amount of chicken.


The second sentence is not partitive because it’s referring to a live animal’s color, and animals are countable while the animal’s meat is a substance and uncountable


Very helpful, I was confused why both answers were accepted!


But in the second sentence the adjective is in the partitive. Don’t the adjective and the noun need to agree


Maybe Spanish grammar is getting to you here? The answer is "no", because they occupy different "slots" in the sentence and have therefore different grammatical functions. kana is the subject (the "doer") in an existential sentence ("something is something"), so it's in the subject case: the nominative. musta/mustaa is the predicative and the way it looks depends on whether the kana is countable or not, because the purpose of the predicative is to pass on information about the qualities of the subject, to answer the question "what is it" (noun) or the question "what is it like" (adjective). The only information which can get repeated in sentences like this is about whether the subject is in plural or not. There's no need to repeat anything else because Finnish doesn't have grammatical gender, like Spanish for instance. :)

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