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  5. "– Anteeksi, missä rahkat ova…

" Anteeksi, missä rahkat ovat? Ne ovat tuolla."

Translation:– Excuse me, where are the quarks? – They are over there.

July 7, 2020

98 Comments


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

If this is cheese, it should be, "Where is the quark?" although there are several varieties of quark, we do not usually use the plural in English.

I imagine a physicist saying, "Where are the quarks?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nimporte-qui

Both should be accepted. Also the suggested translation should probably be "is" because that would be the correct translation in the most common contexts.

However, in the poem that lead to humans naming the fundamental building blocks of matter after curdled milk, "Three quarks" appears as a countable noun. So there is famous precedent for such treatment.


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

It is true that mass nouns usually don't use plurals, but when it's about several different kinds of that mass noun, a plural can actually be used. Though I don't know for sure whether there are some dialects where this is not the case.


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

Perhaps the quarks have been served into multiple bowls or something? Would be my only guess lol.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

Even if you distributed the quark into multiple bowls it would remain quark. Not quarks. Unless there were multiple different types (e.g flavoured strawberry, lemon etc.)


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

Thank you! I was so confused!


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

They are everywhere.


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

What is a quark?


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

It is a type of fresh dairy product made by warming soured milk until the desired amount of curdling is met, and then straining it. It can be classified as fresh acid-set cheese.


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

Something like cottage cheese?


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

Exactly, Nihver! I speculate it becomes plural when different fruits are added. There are many types of -piimä- in Finland, but that is buttermilk, clearly a different product. I just wonder whether there are different kinds of quarks too, without fruit additives.


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

I first saw quark in Waltham Abbey Market. She had three kinds of quark. They did not have fruit, herbs, or spices in them. They had different amounts of fat in them.

She could have said she sold quarks and nobody would have reported her to the grammar police but the singular is more common.


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

Not exactly. A closer equivalent is what we call "farmer cheese" in New York or "faisselle" in French. "Quark" is a German word. I never heard it in English, but from the comments I guess it is used in some places.


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

Farmer cheese is just not very common in the US. Since it is a central and eastern European thing, it is sold in cities like New York with large communities. I never saw it in Washington DC, where I grew up and also lived later. But then, in the 1950s, yogurt was pretty much unknown in the hinterland, as were bagels. I went looking for bagels in a deli in a DC suburb back in 1960, and the owner had never heard of them.


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

Yep, quark is readily available in supermarkets in the UK these days, often touted for its high protein content. Interesting the word isn't used so much in the US.


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

Interesting. In the UK, supermarket options for dairy products were much fewer in the past too. Now things like quark and kefir are booming for their supposed health benefits. I think in Finland dairy products are an even bigger thing again.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

you are clearly not a quantum physicist...


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

It's subatomic particle, comes in 6 flavours.


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

A subatomic particle. Or, apparently, a type of soft cheese.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/qLfdk96J

Incorrect english. I don't know any English person who would say that. It should be where is the quark? Even if there is more that one quark. The same error is on the jam question.


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

It works OK for jam though in some contexts, in British English at least.


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

US too. But we would probably say "different kinds of jam" rather than "different jams."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jean-LoupR

This sounds like a conversation someone is having at the large hadron collider. I'm not sure "Quark" works in plural. It's like milk, you wouldn't say "milks"


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

There are six types of quarks in the large Hadron collider. From the Wikipedia: up, down, strange, charm, bottom, and top. Much more choice than in a Finnish supermarket.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sarah803697

Ah! So that's where the Hawkwind song title "Quark, Strangeness and Charm" derives from. Love these random penny-drop moments :)


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

Yes! I remember reading that one particle physicist in the 70s once said that Hawkwind had managed to generate more public interest in Quantum Theory with that one song than he had managed in his whole career!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

Yeah sarah. Lots of really nice DL moments. I agree.


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

Don't underestimate Finnish supermarkets. :D Many (most) people eat quark, so there's lots of different types and flavours.


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

I might say, "Where are the milks?" because there is almond milk, hazelnut milk, soya milk, cows milk, goats milk, and sheep milk.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sarah803697

But no one ever really says "milks", do they? Other than "The farmer milks the cow" ... and that's because it's a verb not a plural noun. "Where is the dairy milk?" and "Where is the plant milk?" is most likely.


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

I might, related to a drinks order.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlexS900

You can also have a selection of different wines and cheeses.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RobEdwards512061

Yeah the only quarks I've ever hear of are the subatomic particles...


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

Yeah, this is a strange quark for me.


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

Aye, they have their ups and downs.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

...so many colourful replies


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

I guess the point is that in this question in Finnish the plural is normal. How do you put that across by being idiomatically fastidious in English? Suppose Duo asked you to translate "Where is the quark?" as a food store question? How would you know the plural is preferred? That's the conundrum in Duo's two-way system. Maybe they should just avoid quark altogether. "Cheese" works better.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JamesRitch14

Very rarely would we use a plural for mass nouns. No one would ask are are the milks? The butters? The salts? Especially in a grocery store. They'd look at you sideways.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HenryMarti421584

This is not plural in English


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

Just over there, next to the mesons and the gluons. We have them in strangeness and charm flavours.


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

Well, after all, you have lots of quarks in every food!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mpre53

330,000,000 Americans have never heard the word quark used outside of a physics class, lol. Including me.


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

Thus learning languages increases your knowledge


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

Even about your own!


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

I assure you, 330,000,000 Americans have not taken physics. :)


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

There you are mistaken - a lot of Americans are originally from countries where they have quark as traditional everyday food! So please don’t try to talk for the whole nation when the nation is diverse as American!


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

A lot of Americans come from countries where English is not the main language and so they don't call them quarks...


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

I'm not surprised. It seems to be mostly exclusive to Nordic, Germanic, Baltic, and Slavic cuisines.


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

UK quark gang rise up


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

I'm Slavic but we don't call this 'quark'...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Howard860606

We have it in Canada though, even in quite remote places - in one supermarket, sometimes! Personally, I first came across in a St Petersburg (Russia) produce market, but minun vaimoni knew what it was.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/B-Ryan4

This is very unusual phrasing. It could be correct if it was referring to different kinds of quark, but it would still be odd.


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

In Finland there is a plethora of them in the grocery stores. The amount of dairy products in general is pretty massive.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

... there are a plethora of strange and charming quarks everywhere, but only one quark. Plural noun. It's like asking where are the sheeps


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

I used the keyboard to use the AMERICAN food translation ...

"Excuse me, where are the curds? They are over there."

and DL marked it wrong.

Will I be ruled incorrect elsewhere if I use "lift" instead of "elevator" or "trunk" (of a car) instead of "boot"? You need to address the UK-USA word equivalents!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sarah803697

I ditched the keyboard and haven't missed it. Sounds like you wouldn't, either, especially if it wrongfoots people like that.


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

That's what Finnish scientists at the LHC use to say.


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

I'm a native English speaker, and I've never heard or seen the term "quark" used in this sense. I expect physicists, not cooks, to deal with quarks.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nimporte-qui

The color charged fermions (quarks) are named after the cottage cheese-like milk product (quark). The name was given by English speaking scientists, particularly Gell-Mann.


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

nimporte-qui is wrong. There is no connection between the cheese and the sub-atomic particles. Apart from the obvious one that there are quarks in everything.

Murray Gellman invented the word "quork". It was changed to "quark" because of the line, "Three quarks for Muster Mark" in "Finegans Wake" by James Joyce.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nimporte-qui

Yes, that is the story. Three quarks in that poem refers to three servings of cheese-liquid. Having been calling them quorks/quirks/squeeks/squawks he settled on quark because muster mark got 3 and baryons have 3 so: color charged fermions are rahka.


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

The Oxford English Dictionary disagrees with you:

In view of the context (a grotesque chorus of various seabirds; ‘Muster Mark’ is King Marke, Tristan's uncle), quark here probably represents quawk n. (compare the β. forms at quawk n.).

Quawk has two meanings, neither of them dairy. 2. The harsh call of a night heron, duck, or other bird. 1. Chiefly U.S. regional. The black-crowned night heron, Nycticorax nycticorax, which has a deep, hoarse call.


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

Though knowing Joyce, I wouldn't necessarily assume he only had one meaning in mind.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nimporte-qui

Oh very interesting. I've heard multiple experts in QCD repeating the claim that the line was referring to cheese, but this could easily be a common misconception.


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

OK, thanks for clearing that up. 8|


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Martha94435

Unless you're talking about subatomic particles, "quark" is a mass noun. It makes as much sense to ask "where are the quarks" as to say "please hand me some of those airs." Yes, you can talk about different kinds of quark, but in order to do so, you have to (imagine this!) talk about different kinds of quark.


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

Should be "Where is the quark? It is over there"


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

So is quark the same as curd or are those different dairy products?


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

They're certainly sold as different things here in the UK, I'd imagine so in Finland too, where dairy products are a bigger thing. Terms differ from place to place and sometimes overlap, which makes things a bit more confusing, but as far as I'm aware...

rahka "quark" is like has the smooth texture of thick Greek yogurt:

whereas raejuusto "cottage cheese, curd cheese" is like hard lumps (curds) suspended in liquid (whey):


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

Thanks for the photos. That helps explain it what quark is. Do you know, what is the difference between quark and greek yogurt, if any?


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

At first sight, to me anyway, they seem like very similar products, especially quark and fat-free Greek yogurt. Apparently though, quark is technically a kind of cheese made by warming soured milk to curdle it, which is then strained. Greek yogurt on the other hand is milk fermented with bacteria (to make yogurt), which is then strained. From what I've read, quark doesn't contain the lactic acid of Greek yogurt and is higher in protein.


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

The logic in this course is contradictory. Why has rahka been translated simply because a (barely-used) equivalent happens to exist, while in other cases where an approximate also exists, the argument has been made that the course aims to teach Finnish words and expressions.

Making this choice on a word where the Finnish is countable and the English is not only adds to the confusion. I think the only value of this sentence is to demonstrate that cultural disparity between what is and isn't countable.


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

Cheeses and jams can be countable if one is not a purist, so why not quarks, if there is a significant variety of them in Finland? (And even in some Tescos, perhaps)


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

Right, it should just stay rahka, the same way they treat kissel or mämmi.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bieke306

Interesting! Thank you shwma. In Dutch rahka and raejuusto exist too. Rahka is kwark. Pretty simular to quark. Or platte kaas. That you can translate literally as flat cheese.


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

The only answer to "where are the quarks", is inside the atomic nucleus. Even if the quark is in individual pots, it would still be "where is the quark", like "where is the milk"


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

Uncountable nouns in English (like milk, quark, bread) can be pluralised when you want to mean "different kinds of" e.g. if you're looking for the section of the supermarket that has the different kinds of soya/almond/coconut milk, it's possible to ask Where are all the different milks? or just Where are the milks?. It may not be as common as other ways of phrasing it in some places, but it's still grammatical.

This particular example about quarks is unusal to English ears because shops in English-speaking countries don't generally offer a large range of different kinds of quark, unlike in Finland. For this reason, "Where is the quark?" should be an acceptable answer along with "Where are the quarks?", although the latter helps the learner understand the Finnish construction more easily.


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

I thought about this after posting, and nearly deleted the comment, but couldn't find it - "where are the yoghurts" would be more understandable to english ears (as there are lots of different pots of yougurt), so agree with you


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

That's a good point. Interesting how the culture (not a yoghurt pun!) helps condition what sounds good or bad to our ears.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Howard860606

It's definitely not Yoghurt, that's fermented. Quark (rahka) is more like a smooth, low-fat, cottage cheese. I've only come across it in making some kinds of pastry, for e.g. Joulutähtiä (Christmas stars) and that makes a good substitute.


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

I think @AndrewSmallbone was making a point about what sounds grammatical in English, not what quark is.

Good to know there's a recipe sub for those without access to it. What are joulutähdet? When I looked them up I got pictures of poinsettias.


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

In English, at least where I live, we would say "where IS the quark," even though it is more than one, or more than one kind.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

Unless your name is Murray Gell-Mann, or work at CERN, this is an odd question, due to the plural of quark. I guess you could refer to several different flavours of quark, but still it is odd.


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

Is rahka a countable word or does this sentence imply multiple types of rahka?

And while I have no intention to join the debate what "quark" is commonly used enough to refer to such a thing in English, I sincerely hope for this type of sentence, not translating "rahka" can be considered correct. Not translating it does not impede the learning process, just like mämmi and lortsy.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Antti546484

It's countable, when it's sold in jars.

So, one can say: "tuo kaksi rahkaa", meaning "bring two jars of quark" (or "bring two jars of rahka" as you suggested).


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

I strongly disagree with the idea that "not translating rahka can be considered correct". Rahka is not anything specifically Finnish, unlike mämmi or salmiakki.

It would be exactly the same like not translating juusto or olut.

The fact that you do not know quark does not change anything :) We use quark several time a week as a basis of cheese spread(s), we put it into cheese cakes, we mix it with sugar and milk and cream or with jam - and we would never thought of calling it rahka. Believe me that it is nor Finnish specific! It is absolutely normal in e.g. Slavic cuisine, for which I can speak.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quark_(dairy_product)


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

i had no idea quark was Finnish.


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

I just looked up Quark on Wikipedia. The article compares it to strained greek yogurt, which is from a thermophilic culture. Quark, though, strained from milk fermented with mesophile bacteria. Since I keep a batch of Finnish viili growing I could make quark at home.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Linda406150

Is quark Cheese curds.? Lots of that product sold in mt home town and state. I’ve never heard of quarks apart from science.


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

Not quite, its a cheese alright but one very early in its life also made from sourmilk. Cream cheese would be closest substitute although quark is more neutral tasting while cream cheese is more savory imo. Here is a link if you want to know more https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quark_(dairy_product)


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

This will probably get buried, but, since most of the response based questions seem to have somewhat shortened answers, wouldn't "Over there" simply be acceptable, instead of the somewhat clunky "they are over there"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nimporte-qui

In Finnish, that would just be "Tuolla".


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

The question is, do the Finns use the same word for the dairy quark as the subatomic particle? If not, then this question is wrong to require 'where are the quarks'. The dairy product quark is definitely singular in English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

Yeah sarah. Lots of really nice DL moments. I agree.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

Well, they are eveywhere


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/simon486678

...but, yes, they have definitely eaten lots and lots and lots of quarks

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