"Lei poteva fare di tutto."

Translation:She could do anything.

May 29, 2013

42 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/chinmayhej

Why is it "di tutto" and not just "tutto"?

August 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/-Philip-

I am Italian , I don't know exactly but I THINK is that 'Di tutto' means exactly everything , instead 'tutto ' can be translated as " All ". Tutto il giorno = all day Io mangio di tutto = i eat everything . P.s : it isn't a big error if you say tutto instead of " Di tutto " ! :)

December 18, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/chinmayhej

Grazie :)

December 18, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Jeffrey855877

For what it's worth (if anything) Google Translate https://translate.google.com left the di off - (lei) poteva fare tutto

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/malcolmissimo

Tutto is everything and di tutto is anything (in Duo's sense of everything possible). Be careful translating 'anything' to Italian because it has other senses too.

I don't like Duo's "could" because it is ambiguous and translates just as well to the conditional potrebbe. "She was [or used to be] able to do anything" is unambiguous, and accepted.

October 26, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/DanMcNeill

Wow ... in English there is a huge difference between anything and everything in this context.

October 29, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/KiwiGuy

"She could make anything" should be accepted as well! Reported.

September 20, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/sbt5

Does this mean "She had many talents", "Her actions could not be predicted", or either?

November 15, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/baggiemews

Good question sbt, I'd also be interested in the answer.Can any Italians/fluent speakers help us?

December 13, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Jeffrey855877

Non-native-speaker, but your question may have answered a question (I had. I will have to apologize in advance to anyone who is doing this module for the first time, because my point involves conditional tense, a module which appears later in the sequence. My comments, however, will be clear in the context).

I plugged the English "She could make everything" into Google Translate www.translate.google.com and got the imperfect:
lei poteva fare tutto

The imperfect is a past tense, here meaning "she was able to do/make anything/everything" - "could" is the past tense of "can". This wording comes very close to the idea of "she had many talents" (Past tense, so it's "had" rather than "has".)

When I entered the English "She could do anything" into www.reverso.net I got the conditional lei potrebbe fare tutto. "Potrebbe" also means "could" but is NOT the past tense of "can" - it is a present tense which presents the possibility that she may or may not = she might/could - "do anything".

In this regard, Google translated "She might do anything" as the conditional lei potrebbe fare tutto.

So, in answer to your question, I think that the essential thought of "She has many talents" is parallel-translated by the imperfect, past-tense "could" while "Her actions could not be predicted" is parallel-translated by the conditional "could/might".

Since the words are so different, your sentences present the essence or meaning of the sentence, but are not accurate translations.

Comments on my thinking here are very welcome.

Again, sorry to those who haven't studied conditional yet, but it is so related to the question posed, I felt I had to mention it.

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/rcpjenn

What about "she can do it all?"

April 8, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/confusedbeetle

imperfect tense

April 8, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/crazy4hazy

Could you just say "lei poteva tutto fare"? Thank you.

May 29, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/confusedbeetle

I think the fare needs to be beside poteva

September 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/crazy4hazy

Ok, any particular reason? Just to help me remember for next time? And ta for replying, anyway.

September 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/confusedbeetle

nope it's just that it seems the normal to keep the handle verb together with its mate

September 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/crazy4hazy

Ah yes. I tend to rely on French too much, as they are both romance languages, and sadly it can be a trap, as with Spanish, for ex. I'm sure... Oh well.

September 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/SJKIrk

"She could do everything"? Surely "poteva" is past tense?

January 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/patschge

"she could do everything" was my translation, too, and today it was accepted by duolingo (02,12,2014)

February 12, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/confusedbeetle

Yes it is, she could, meaning she was able to, imperfect

January 7, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/involans

"Could" is also past tense - it is the past tense of "can"

October 1, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/divaluisa

I said: she was able to do it all Rejected. Anyone know why? I reported it.

January 6, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Jeffrey855877

Perhaps it's just not an answer in the database.

When I entered "She could do all of it" in an online translator, I got Duo's answer

When I entered you translation, I got "Lei era capace di fare tutto."

I don't know whether the distinction is valid, but it may be that potere is closer in meaning to "can", and, since there is no English verb "to can" applicably here, "to be able to" is a way of explaining what "can" means, rather than a direct translation. That's just a thought, so it should not be relied on to support any answers. That's a long-winded way of saying that you probably will be closer in meaning if you use "can" rather than "be able to" - but I'm completely ready to be disputed on this and told I'm 100% wrong.

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PinkledOnion

Can anybody tell me how to say 'she could have done anything?', per favore?x

March 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Lenka734784

That sentence would follow the rules of Conditional Perfect tense. She could have done anything = Lei avrebbe potuto fare niente. :)

September 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MichaelWat541241

For my excercise, i am to type the words from the audio. Since "lei" and "le" cannot be distinguished verbally, couldn't this sound like, "Le poteva fare di tutto" and still make sense?

September 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jae633849

'Lei' and 'le' actually do sound (slightly) different. 'Lei' has a diphthong (two vowels smooshed together), while 'le' has one single vowel.

February 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/RaymondWil20

"she could have done it all" wasn't accepted. Is there something grammatically incorrect in this?

April 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/confusedbeetle

Yes, I think that would need a past participle,maybe aver fatto

January 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/alallred

I think you're both right. "She could have done it all" should have been accepted; but a more correct way of saying "She could have done it all" would be "Lei avrebbe potuto fare di tutto." IMHO

March 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/RachelThom27190

Under the new form of the verb being introduced there is a pull down tab saying "conjugate" am I missing something or does this conjugate section then go on to show the present tense not the imperfect? I am assuming I am missing something here.

October 26, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Kauheeta

Is "She could do anything" conditional or imperfect ?

January 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/confusedbeetle

Imperfetto,she was able to do everything

January 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Kauheeta

So. If I could paint means that If I was (or were)able to paint. I have always thought that it means : If I would be able to paint.

January 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/confusedbeetle

In English, I would say that it could mean both,but the Italian is much clearer in that you can see the imperfect and conditional tense.

January 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisLomba

she used to be able to do it all? feel like thats a better translation

August 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jae633849

Lei poteva fare di tutto ma oggidì non può fare nulla!

February 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/adam415f

I suppose that 'fare tutto' means 'to make everything' while 'fare di tutto' - 'to make anything' in English

August 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Lilian606898

My answer is "she could have done everying". Why is it wrong?

October 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/confusedbeetle

Lilian I think this one highlights the problem of a computer answering. Poteva is clearly and simply imperfetto, a past and habitual tense. Could in English might be a past tense of can, ora present conditional. Have done opens even more possibilities including a pluperfect. There are so many permutations it is probably best to focus on the Italian and put it down to "the computer says no"

October 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/IdeanBehfo

È in un libro! Leggendo arcobalebo!

July 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Cj_Fresco

Chei sei? Kim Possible

February 14, 2019
Learn Italian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.