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  5. "I want to be with you foreve…

"I want to be with you forever."

Translation:Voglio essere con te per sempre.

May 15, 2013



If you do a Google search on my answer "Voglio stare sempre con te" you will get roughly 70,000 hits. ("Voglio essere con te per sempre" gets 121,000. A reasonable conclusion would be that both are "correct".) One of these hits 70,000 hits will take to you a discussion of Italian expressions of love in the refereed forum on http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=5928. The fourth comment is from Sylvia, a "senior member". She writes: "I always want to be with you = voglio stare sempre con te".


There is a similar situation here on duolingo - http://duolingo.com/#/skill/it/Verbs:-Infinitive-1/1 The phrase is "It is because you wanted to be alone" currently correctly translated as "È perché tu non vuoi essere da solo." or "È perché tu non vuoi essere solo." Essere would have been my verb of choice but having earlier seen your post as above I thought I might challenge with "stare" and then check the Google ratings. Lost the heart, perhaps predictably, but punched the sentences into Google and got 140,000 using stare and 172,000 using essere. The biggest question is whether using Google in this way is a valid tool to draw the conclusions that you are suggesting....I look forward to further interesting discussion here!


I once wrote a comment that a context was needed for each sentence to be translated, otherwise we can't know what the sentence means. Words acquire meaning from contexts. muccapazza responded that, while she saw my point, they didn't have the staff or time to do that. But on http://blog.duolingo.com/ it says: "being able to tell you whether you formed a correct sentence is very difficult because there are many different ways of saying the same thing. For example, the Spanish sentence “Tengo una lámpara más vieja que esa en mi casa” has over 500 correct translations to English". So, they have time to sort through the over 500 versions we crowdsourcers send them, but not time to add a few words to the prompt sentence which would narrow the range of meaning. How might context control meaning in your example?: "I wanted never to marry anyone, or live with anyone; I wanted to be alone" and "I could have gone to the party but I wanted to be alone". (These may not be the best examples, but I hope they convey the basic idea. And if you can't think of a clearly distinguishing context, take it as a clue that there may not be much difference between them, and you should store both answers in your database.) Or you could download all the freely available Italian texts from Project Gutenberg and http://www.liberliber.it/libri/ into a database. If the point you want to illustrate is that volere is followed by an infinitive, a search for illustrative sentences is easy. And there's always Google Search when you get stuck for stimulating examples. Or you could crowdsource on Italian Web sites.

To begin an answer to your "biggest question", then, Google search cannot settle questions about whether "vuoi essere solo" or "vuoi stare solo" should be used unless the context makes the meaning clear. What it can tell you is that both essere and stare are widely used; so, if the duolingo context is vague, or, more typically, absent, how can either one be "wrong"?

But there is something you can learn from slightly varying the Google search. For example, "non vuoi essere solo" gets 481,000 hits, "non vuoi stare solo" gets only 48,700. Similarly, "vuoi essere solo" gets 2,350,000 hits and "vuoi stare solo" gets only 189,000. So, there seems to be a strong connection between "wanting" to "essere". Perhaps "stare" relates to a condition of aloneness, an enforced aloneness, something not often wanted. Read some of the text around the target phrase in the document, trying to test out the hypothesis. Replace "solo" with other words: a casa, tardi, sano, ricco, in città. This active exploratory approach engages the intelligence, it leads forward to a active exploration, unlike "Oops ...".

To end on a positive note, you should try the discussion forums on http://www.wordreference.com/. For example, type "stare" into the search box and scroll down to the bottom of the "stare" page where the discussion topics are listed. Click on the "Essere/stare a casa" topic to see a discussion of the kind you can't get in duolingo: a simple, clear use of examples to illustrate the distinction in meaning, plus people groping to articulate how they use their language, and sometimes disagreements whose fire sheds light. (if you just want to cut to the discussion, go to http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=144962)


Just to clarify: time and staff were never mentioned. The discussion is here for all of those with the same question ;) http://duolingo.com/#/comment/299304

There are many different ways to learn a language. Everybody has their own theory. Experimenting with as many as possible only makes the journey better.

Thank you corbettf75 for expanding on this popular topic!


I apologize for misremembering what you said. I would have looked it up before writing those words, but I could see no obvious way to find that particular comment. I don't a search tool would be used much, but it wouldn't take more than a few lines of code to write one. In rereading your original comment, I want to stress once again that what I mean by context can most often be managed with just a clause added on to a target sentence. I am prompted to say this because in doing an exercise yesterday, I was struck by the enormous improvement in the quality of target sentences for translation. (The lesson I did this morning was as bad as the earlier ones.) I thought somebody is finally doing just the kind of thing I suggested. And the sentences were just above my level of ability, which is where they should be. And this is for you Chris123456: I got two "Oops you're wrong". I did my Google search thing. My answers got 0. So, there's another use for Google search: giving definitive proof that one is indeed wrong. Which leads me to one further suggestion. Instead of "Oops you're wrong" why not "Have another try". Chris123456 could have tried his "essere" vs."stare" experimentally, which might be an even better way to learn than a comment about grammar or denotation (how "stare" often spreads to "remain" and even "to live (e.g. in a city)". It makes programming a little more complicated, but surely giving learners, say, two more tries and then ending with "We'll come back to this another time" is better than "you're wrong", which leaves you with no idea about what to try next.


both are correct, just another DL anomaly, bless 'em


Voglio stare per sempre con te is correct. Duolingo needs an update


I'm still not really getting clitics :( can anyone tell me why this has to be te instead of ti?


"Ti" is used before verbs or its attached to the verb. For example, "Ti regalo una matita" or "Voglio regalarti una matita".

"Te" can either be used as a direct object after a verb (Volevano te al telefono), after a preposition (Vado al cinema con te), or before another pronoun (Ti do il regalo, te lo do).


Can you drop the per... "Voglio essere con te sempre"?


It more or less means the same. "Sempre" is usually translated as "always", while "per sempre" is translated as "forever".


Voglio essere per sempre con te?


Most annoyingly I thought essere or stare, looked at the hints which said fare. Wrong of course!


I wrote the correct translation. What is wrong?

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