1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Italian
  4. >
  5. "I have nothing in my pocket."

"I have nothing in my pocket."

Translation:Non ho niente in tasca.

May 19, 2013

11 Comments


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

So, the meaning is understood from a convention about how to understand double negatives, not from exact translation? Are exact translations also acceptable?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/f.formica
Mod
  • 2549

Nope, it's not a convention, rather it's the grammar rule (negative concord) :)

It's the same in most Romance languages:


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Luigi.rodino

Interesting, I am reading a book called "Essential Italian Grammar," but I have not come across this yet. I can't wait to learn more!


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

where is the translation of 'my' in the given solution?


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

It's kind of implied. Like when there was a snake in my boot.


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

I see how it's implied, but would using "mia" here be outright wrong? Duolingo doesn't accept it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/f.formica
Mod
  • 2549

It would be fine, provided you put the article (non ho niente nella mia tasca); it's unnecessary, but it could be used to stress the possessive.


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

doesn't this mean "I do not have nothing in my pocket"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/f.formica
Mod
  • 2549

The double-negation rule doesn't apply to Italian: when a sentence is negated many words are negated as well. "Ho qualcosa" -> "Non ho niente"; "Ne ho uno" -> "Non ne ho nessuno".


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

Thanks this is helpful, so can I essentially "ignore" non at the beginning of the sentance? (I know this is not really very good practise when learning a language). Or does it serve some more complicated purpose in more complex sentances?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/usual-suspect

When do we use "in" and when "nel" for the English prepositon "for"?

Learn Italian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.