Translation:A niece is the daughter of your brother or sister.
yes it is. Actually it also means nephew and grandson. It depends on which article is preceding nipote and on the context.
Yes, but this sentence clearly explains which definition of "nipote" they are looking for, because it says "is the daughter of your brother or sister". Therefore, it can only be niece here.
I've not found an Italian unique specific word for sibling; fratello/i & sorella/e are at times translated as sibling/s, when the context does not intend specific brother and or sister gender versus sibling kin.
[ sib + -ling ] ‧ [ From Middle English sib, from Old English sibb (“related, akin, sib”), from Proto-Germanic sibjaz (“related”), from Proto-Indo-European sebʰ-, *swebʰ- (“one's own”) ] ‧ [ akin to ‧ ‧ kin kindred ]
fratello ‧ fratelli / sorella ‧ sorelle ‧ sibling brother/s ‧ sibling sister/s ‧
''una nipote''... one would expect ''un nipote'' - a nephew and ''una nipota'' - a niece. Wrong?
Thanks. But how does this relate to e.g. "insegnante" and "principiante"? I thought I had encountered these both as "un" and "una", depending on whether the teacher or beginner is a he or a she. Wrong again ? :-)
Not at all; gender invariant means that the word doesn't change with gender, not that it can only have one gender. So "un insegnante" is a male teacher, and "un'insegnante" a female one. For some nouns there is actually a distinct feminine form (e.g. un leone / una leonessa), but those are the exception, like the masculine or invariant nouns in -a (e.g. un artista / un'artista).
I find it strange yet funny that nipote is gender invariant when it would make more sense to me that it should change, and colors are gender variant. Or are they? Now im not sure but I know the endings certainly change
Since the Italian voice isn't so great, I couldn't understand if they wanted me to write "Un" or "Una"!
"di tuo fratello o sorella" -- is this correct in literary Italian? I mean, "tuo" only agrees with "fratello" and not with :"sorella"? Anyone know for sure? (I would have said "di tuo fratello o di tua sorella".
How it can mean both nephew/niece and grandson/daughter?? It is two completely different characteristics. When i say "la mia nipote fa tardi" for example it is not clear to whom i am referring...to my niece or to my granddaughter??
Look at it this way: you can only unequivocally say "my nephew" or "my grandchild" when you only have one, which wasn't such a common case, as families used to be large. The Middle English "neve" had the same ambiguity as Italian and the Latin "nepos", and in current Dutch "neef" means both cousin and nephew.
P.S. You normally don't need an article before "mia nipote".
(Native Dutch speaker) I am really impressed by your Dutch example. You are absolutely right. You are really amazing.
If the first comment has to do with english, i disagree my friend..when you only have one, you use apparently the word "only"..e.g My only son/child etc..Appart from this, i still cannot understand (in Italian) how somenone can clarify to whom exactly is referring...For example, is there something else to be added before the word "nipote"?
You missed my point :) If you say "my son is coming to pick me up", the listener has to interpret it as "one of my sons" unless they know you only have one son: thus it is still not clear who you are referring to. In rural societies a family could easily have one hundred members (in China there are still many villages where everyone shares the same surname); in those times the only important relationships were those to the head of the family and first-degree relations (with their spouses). So, in many languages, English included, the rest of the family were just generically "relatives". Nephews, cousins and grandsons indicated a second-degree relationship who had some chance to inherit, and thus were somehow more noteworthy, but not enough to be picky about it. Many languages have evolved some distinction, but in Italian the only way to avoid the ambiguity is still to go the long way and say "my brother/sister/son/daughter's son".
Thanks for the immediate response! So, in Italian there is not a unique word to distinguish the relationship sometimes and you have to describe it. It sounds me a little strange but i will get used to it..;)
Impressed with your anthropological/historical knowledge. Well done.
In Maltese, we have the same issue: nephews/nieces/grandchildren are referred to with the same words: "neputi" (m) or "neputija" (f), which, I'm very sure, have been inherited from the Italian (we are neighbours after all).
And, yes, there are languages that make distinctions between nieces/nephews/grandchildren depending on which side of the family they are, that is, whether they are paternal or maternal relations. This largely depends on the lineage 'system' of the society in question.
My question is on the use of tuo rather than tua. I am pretty sure the objects are brother and sister but is the distinction of which gender to use based of of what you list first or is it when there are both genders listed you go with the masculine or is it choice? long question but I wish to understand not just memorize.
My professors have told me that if there is a question on gender, you go with masculine. Hope that helps.
As I understand English a dughter of my brother or sister is "nephew", but not "niece". Am i correct?
It's the opposite: the daughter of your brother or sister is your "niece", their son is your "nephew".
This should be accepted in the short phrases as nipote means both granddaughter and niece
I answered "A niece is the child of... " which should be accepted since figlia means both daughter and child(f) and niece makes it unambiguous that it is a female child.
In the Italian sentence I feel the suggestion that there is only one brother and one sister. So "Una nipote è la figlia di un fratello o una sorella." would sound more natural to me. Do others feel the same or I am splitting hairs? :):)
I've just checked it on Google Translate, it is written: "Una nipote è la figlia di tuo fratello o di tua sorella"
I couldn't remember which family member "nipote" was, thank goodness for context clues!
My last answer is exactly as it appears here above. I do not understand why it was announced as wrong?
I thought in this way it's a cousin, not a niece. Nieces and nephews are -as far as I know- the children of your cousins?
The children of your cousins are your 2nd cousins, and their children are 3rd cousins. Cousins remain cousins never elevated to any other category, but only change their degree. Sometimes also refered to by such terms as "My cousin once removed" or "twice removed" as the generations pass