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"She eats at dad's desk."

Translation:Ella come en el escritorio de papá.

5 years ago

115 Comments
This discussion is locked.


https://www.duolingo.com/Blackout

So why does she eat "en" dad's desk vs. "al" dad's desk?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraGore

I asked a native Spanish speaker, and he couldn't explain WHY, but he said that 'come al escritorio' would make him think you were eating the desk. He does say 'come al restaurante' is correct, but if the place is an item (like a desk) instead of a location you can go to, 'a' sounds very unnatural.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

sara- voy al restaurante is correct because it means I go TO the restaurant, it implies a movement.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CoreyRobin4

She didnt say voy she said come

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

corey, you're right I had a distraction for come. But al is still correct.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/QuinsYjam

thank you for your explanation~

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jeffforever

I also used "al" - can some spanish native speaker maybe explain it? ;)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Alien-Layer-Hen

Okay, first my disclaimer: I am NOT a native Spanish speaker. However, I believe that the reason you do not use "al" is because it's a contraction of " a el," and "a" means "to." So "al" translates directly as "to the," which is not what the English sentence is supposed to be. Instead, if you look at the vocabulary dropdown menu thing, "en" means "on, at" in addition to the more familiar "in."

Like I said, I may be wrong. But I'm pretty sure this is what's going on. If a native speaker could correct/affirm my explanation, that would be awesome. :D

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/1margogram1

"a" also sometimes means 'at'...so al could also mean "at the" (desk of papa)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ImpInTraining

This is why i got it wrong.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ImpInTraining

I think you are definitely on the right track. Perhaps Spanish folk are not accustomed to eating or being at a desk, rather they see themselves as in the desk, or otherwise occupying it. Does this same grammar structure apply to someone eating at the table?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/supercalidocious

!Creo que sí! Comemos en la mesa --> we eat at the table. . . La comida está en la mesa --> the food is on the table. . . Two examples of 'en' not meaning 'in'

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Trousertroll

I reckon this is the way of it. Some of us EFL speakers are having a tough time accepting that our prepositions "in" and "at" don't translate 100% flush in other tongues (I did the "al" thing too, for the record).

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jonathanbost
jonathanbost
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the vocabulary dropdown also said that "a" could be at. and that is the way i learned it.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SraKaren1

I did the same, and was marked wrong. :( I will just keep plugging away until it starts to make sense! :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/StormG60

Same problem

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/superman091789

I said "Ella come en el escritorio del padre." That is literally the same thing.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KonstantinosV

Agree!! Moreover, there's no indication of whose father is he!!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

konstantinos- If the person says dad's desk, we can presume that he his (his or her) father.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ripleynl

"Dad's desk" sounds more like my dad than hers.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

dad's desk means the desk of the father of the person who's talking, that's exactly what I said.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ripleynl

Sorry, I misunderstood you, it seems we agree.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/amyveya

True, but konstantinos' remark was on the point because Duolingo marks the answer as wrong when you translate it "escritorio de mi papa" and not "de su papa", which in English would be "her/your dad's desk"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/emilio.cas

Padre = father Papá = dad

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/joshua6261

so padre is formal and papa is informal?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JudieElisabeth

Papa means Dad. Padre means father. Ergo, padres means parents, with mixed genders defering to the masculine. Hope this helps you.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zombiesue

That is "the father", not just "father".

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Eualb
Eualb
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No,it is not the same.

De papá=we have the same father

Del padre=it is her father

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aikobabe
aikobabe
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Before I entered my response, I was going to write "de su padre," but then re-read and it seemed to me that it was the speaker's father, so I changed it to "de papa," which it liked, but I had the "a" vs. "en" problem. Grrrr.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

eugeab- de papá could be from his dad or the dad of his brothers ang him. Del padre has nothing to do with her.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jford1485

I also put this. Though this seems to be normally correct with possesive nouns, it would translate to: "the desk (del) of the dad." Since it seems implied a sibling is asking where she is, "the" would not be necessary, and we are left with only " el escritorio de papa." At the desk OF dad.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/melkninja

I had the same problem. I´m pretty sure it´s interchangeable though....

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Akirasabine

'En el escritorio' instead of 'al escritorio'?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

akira- when we use AL, it implies a move, like voy al restaurante. But here, we just say that she eats at dad's desk, it implies, on the desk.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Akirasabine

Thank you, Mitaine. Now I get it.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sevarro

Why is "el" necessary here?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo
olimo
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It is not "some" desk, it is the desk of Dad. In English we just use another structure "Dad's desk" rather than "the desk of Dad". There is no such option in Spanish.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/adestruction

Gracias olimo

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/maryinbrasil

It was my question: papá's escritorio. Thanks.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

sevarro, most of the time in Spanish you have to put an article

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/talmy

I was marked wrong for "Ella come en el escritorio de padre." First time I've not been able to use padre and papá interchangeably.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Synesthete24

Same! Honestly, I just use it more because then I don't have to worry about the annoying accents.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Tracey9
Tracey9
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I also used "escritorio de su papá" and was corrected to "de mi papá" or "de papá".

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

tracey- the sentence didn't mention HIS dad.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sean.mullen
sean.mullen
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Su can mean "her" or "its" as well.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

sean- but in the sentence, it's clear that is the father of the person who says the sentence.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ptoro
ptoro
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It should be "Dad" with a capital "D" since it's being used as a proper noun. Otherwise, it's incorrect and confusing.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ptoro
ptoro
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To whoever downvoted this, I promise I'm not making this up.

"When you are using the word "Dad" to refer to a specific person, it's standing in place of their name, and thus, like their name, would be capitalized. When you're talking about dads in general, it's a common noun."

--http://english.stackexchange.com/questions/44846/when-should-mom-and-dad-be-capitalized

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/yair.sadeh

i wrote "ella come en el escritorio del papa" which I guess mean de el while the right one was de papa - why del is not accepted?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

yair- de papá could be correct but del means from dad

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vicki.kura

These two were given as possible solutions: • Ella come en el escritorio de mi padre. • Ella come en el escritorio de papá.

Why is "mi" only used with padre? Would one never refer to a friend's father as papá?

In my answer I just used "de padre" which was marked incorrect. Not understanding why one would use it and not the other.

Thank you in advance for any help with this.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vikulya_k

I did the same! And i didn't understand

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

vicki.kura- When someone says dad, we know that she talks about her dad, she can call her father DAD when she talks to him, it's like it it was his name. If you refer to someone's else dad, you would say SU papá. padre is a noun and needs the article or the possessive adjective.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/bg_lingo

why "del padre" and not "de padre" ??

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Hendawg82

thats what i dont get either

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

bg_lingo- del padre could be any padre, we don't know. De padre it's a specific one, it could be padre when you talk about a religious or to your father if you really talk with him, formal way.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/seelian
seelian
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why padre not accept???

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mark-in-cal

i think because padre means father and they want dad (papa). i also used father and it did not accept it.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Kelly-Rose
Kelly-Rose
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Apparently it only accepts "padre" if you put "mi" in front, though I don't understand why "padre" needs "mi" and "papá" doesn't.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vikulya_k

I don't understand too!!! I write - de padre - what's wrong with it???

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

vikulya- When you talk of your father, you say, my dad or my father. here in the sentence, he says to someone that She eats at dad's desk The father of the person who says this sentence. papá is like the noun of the father for his child, but father in English, I'm not sure you would say Hey father, but hey dad

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DrMaximus

Why is it "el escritorio" and not just "escritorio"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ImpInTraining

You might as well ask why are any articles needed, ever. It just isn't right to say "She eats at desk of dad's." 'the' is needed for proper grammar.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/EneidaK.

Does the el really matter? Tell me now!! :(

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sean.mullen
sean.mullen
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Yes, it absolutely matters. "Dad's desk" in English refers to a specific desk (the desk of Dad). Spanish has no shorthand way to express the genitive case (apostrophe-s), so the specificity has to carry over, and you have to translate it literally: THE desk of Dad = EL escritorio de Papá.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Falling_Up_3

Ella come en el escritorio de papá. Why do we need "el"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ImpInTraining

Because "She eats in desk of dad's" is an incomplete sentence.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/masongup

Why is my translation with "escritorio de su padre" wrong? It matches up more closely with what I have gone through so far.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ADPascal

it doesn't say at "her dad's desk" it says "at dad's desk". The error was using 'su.'

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Babella

Father = padre / Dad = papá. "De su papá", maybe?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/masongup

I thought they were interchangeable, like vaso y taza for glass and cup? At least Duolingo treats them that way.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Babella

Well, I am not sure myself, sometimes I do not get why something gets marked as incorrect. To me a "vaso" and a "taza" are not the same at all, by the way...

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

masongup- In the sentence, the person is saying she's eating at dad's desk, which means at the desk of the dad of the person who's saying this sentence. In your way, you say that the person who's eating, eats at her own dad's desk.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

mosongup- In this phrase, the dad belongs to the person who says the phrase, not the person who eats.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cami_kae17

I put pupitre instead of escritorio and got it wrong. I thought escritorio and pupitre were both desks.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWhatever

i know that 'pupitre' is French for desk...

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

chris- it's also pupitre in Spanish.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Kai_Nakazawa

Shouldn't "dad" be capitalized?

In this sentence "Dad" is a proper noun

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AskBell

Ella come en papá's escritorio Why isn't this correct?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vicki.kura

"papa's" is incorrect. That is the English way to show possession, not Spanish.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dsky9693

i said 'la mesa' instead of 'el escritorio' and i got wrong. what's the difference between two words?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vicki.kura

mesa = table escritorio = desk There is a huge difference in what those two objects are.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AppelBougher

Can someone please tell me why "Ella come al escrotorio de papa" is incorrect?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AppelBougher

Oh. Never mind. It literally means that she actually ate her father's desk... whoops. That's why you use "en el"... duh. Now I feel stupid. :D

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vicki.kura

That's funny! I'm giving you a lingo for your embarrassment. You can either leave your comments here for others to see...and it can help others...or you can delete them so no future people will see them. :)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AppelBougher

Aw shucks... Who knew making mistakes would be so profitable! I should make them more often... jk, lol. Thanks, dude!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hyunme
hyunme
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I wrote pupitre instead of escritorio... is there a difference?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWhatever

Isn't pupitre French rather than Spanish?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hyunme
hyunme
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I looked it up just to make sure, and pupitre means desk in French, but it also means desk in Spanish. However, in Spanish it's referring to one of those desks you find in schools with an attached chair, while escritorio is more of an office desk.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWhatever

Thank you. I didn't know that and will remember from now on. So I guess that 'pupitre' wouldn't be appropriate here, as Papa will probably have left school by now.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

chris- pupitre is also Spanish

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LilyMor26

I don't understand why it's 'en el' for 'at'? I said 'al escritorio'. I'm not trying to clutter. I've read all the explanations and I'm not sure I understand. Am I right to understand that 'al' is only used if someone is moving/has moved towards?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

lilymor- al, usually implies a movement

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnthonyByr1

Why does "at the" as "al" not work here, only "en el"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

anthony- because al, implies a movement

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SamanthaEB1479
SamanthaEB1479
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I put "ella come en el escritorio de padre", but it didn't allow it and said that I could have put in "ella come en el escritorio del padre" or "de papa". Is there a difference between "papa" and "padre"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ImpInTraining

I presume because 'papa' is a term of endearment, a pseudo-name. You wouldn't say "She ate at the papa's desk", would you? But you might say "She ate at papa's desk." Alternatively, you might say "She ate at the father's desk." Thus... why 'del padre' vs 'de papa'

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nbrannon92

Is it just me, or should "papá" be capitalized because it is a proper noun? Are the rules different in Spanish?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Hunterreag

This isnt german. So no

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/moonbeams94

I am very confused about the placement and use of 'de' not just here but in general, I never seem to get it right. Can anyone explain the general rule you use it for if there is one?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LEERICHA

Isn't al at the?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gagggy

why is it wrong to use mesa instead escritorio? tnx in advance

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sean.mullen
sean.mullen
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Mesa is a table; escritorio is a writing desk.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jlynnterrapin

Why is "de" padre wrong but "del" papá is correct?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mitaine56

magenta- de padre, you would have to specify, whose padre, mi padre, su padre? del papá isn't grammatically incorrect, but doesn't fit here in the translation you had to make.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/spykzit

I may end up sounding extremely ignorant with this comment but why can't I say "al" instead of "en el" I thought "al" meant "at"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JonasOG

Is it wrong to say "Ella come en el escritorio de su papá" For me it sounds better, but my spanish skills aren't that good.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ImpInTraining

Gotta say, 'en' makes more sense to me than 'sobre'. 'She eats on dad's desk.'. Is she sitting on top of it?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/qasimasis

Pupitre!? Color me surprised

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Idoete

I do NOT get this question!!!!!!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GBerkland

Why is it not 'ella cone en el escritorio DEL papá'? When do we use de vs del?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/reed.kelly

I sas thinking that if you just say dad's desk you are talking to a sibling about your mutual dad: nos papá. Sí?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Hunterreag

Por que no puedo poner "mesa"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Yo_soy_Alicia

i used al too instead of "en la".... so the sentence actually reads she eats at the desk of the father. this is why i cannot speak it right it is mixed up a little from english.... :((

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Doug021786

I put down "Ella come en escritorio de mi papa". I am aware of my issue with the forgetting the article but the sentence implied that "she" was eating at the speaker's father's desk. So why was "escritorio de mi papa" incorrect?

2 years ago