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"Teacher, why is this sentence so often wrong?"

Translation:Opettaja, miksi tämä lause on niin usein väärin?

July 8, 2020

14 Comments


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

This is one of the hardest sentences to get right


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/e.e.sutton

Yes, appropriate because I got it wrong three or four times before getting all of the words in there!


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

Yup, because it's longer than the Long Cat.


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

Got it right the first time


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

But we learned "niin" as "such a" and now they say it also means "so". Can someone explain further?


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

You can't use "such" in front of "often" in English, so it gets translated to "so" instead. I cannot explain what the grammatical reason is, it just is that way.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lacheron09

Why does "on" not come at the end of the question in this case?


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

It would be easier to answer that question if I knew why you assumed it ought to.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lacheron09

I thought I had noticed a pattern where "on" moved to the end of a sentence when it became a question but maybe I'm just tripping.


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

My guess is that you got tripped up by the fact that the word order in Finnish questions can be different from the word order in English questions. More specifically, English questions always do a subject-verb inversion. Finnish questions, on the other hand, do a subject-verb inversion only if there is no interrogative pronoun/adverb, which is when the question must begin with a verb. That's why a question beginning with an interrogative pronoun/adverb has what would be considered the word order of a statement in English, so for example, a word-for-word translation of "missä hän on?" would be "where (s)he is?". Keep in mind that in such questions, the verb only goes past the subject, not any other clause elements.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lacheron09

That makes a lot of sense, thank you!


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

I keep forgetting how to spell "opettaja" properly, that's why. I spell it fine when I hear it, but writing it out I always want to write "oppetaja".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/care_123

Why do we need 'on' here?


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

Because that's the translation for "is".

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