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"Non so cosa abbiano avuto da bere."

Translation:I do not know what they have had to drink.

October 1, 2014



In many questions duolingo injects "could", somewhat on it's own whim, yet in other questions such as this one there is no sign of the subjunctive in the English translation. Abbiano is subjunctive, implying uncertainty and in order to imply that same concept in English you need may/might/could


The English translation seems inaccurate to me. "I don't know what they may have had to drink" is how I would put it. If you use "have had" in English, that's the equivalent of the passato prossimo tense in Italian, and it's not the same thing as the subjunctive at all.


Not always the tenses translate in the same way. We tend to use the subjunctive more often than English does, in my opinion. :)


I think this is spot on. Italian often uses the present subjunctive where English uses the present. So we can expect that Italian often will use the perfect subjunctive where English will use the present perfect.


Agreed. I've gotten through the lessons more easily by thinking through the translation in Spanish, which seems to match Italian's use of the subjunctive almost perfectly. Then I just tell Duolingo what it wants to hear... which, IMHO, is still wrong. But I'll go with the flow. :-)


So perche ti ringrazio.:)


I am confused. Isn't "abbiamo" for we, not "they"?


It's "abbiano," avere's third person plural subjunctive. Reading too fast trips me up sometimes too. :)


Ah, thanks! (rubs eyes) ;)


Why does subjunctive tense need to be used here? Or rather, what isn't regular perfect tense sufficient?


Non so = you are not certain, or better you don't know it at all -> subjunctive

So = you are sure -> no subjunctive


  • Non so cosa tu abbia bevuto
  • So cosa hai bevuto


Makes sense. Thanks!


I don't understand when is this form used? Why can't it be, "non so cosa hanno avuto da bere" ?


check marziotta's reply "Non so = you are not certain, or better you don't know it at all -> subjunctive

So = you are sure -> no subjunctive


Non so cosa tu abbia bevuto So cosa hai bevuto"


What is bere vs beve? Can someone describe the difference?


"bere" = the infinitive => to drink

"beve" = conjugated form of "bere" for 3rd person singular present indicative. => "he drinks", "she drinks", or "it drinks".

Voglio qualcosa da bere. I want something to drink.
È sempre così quando beve troppo. It's always like this when he drinks too much.


Comment for the app: i knew that it was "have had to drink" but "to" was not offered


Am I supposed to respond orally in English or Italian? I have never been told my accent is incorrect, and I almost always am told I am in error.


You would never say "avere qualcosa da bere" in italian. "prendere qualcosa da bere" or simply "bere qualcosa" works better.


Shouldnt "for drinking" be accepted too?

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