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  5. "Questo fu il primo scienziat…

"Questo fu il primo scienziato che si unì al gruppo."

Translation:This was the first scientist that joined the group.

October 25, 2014


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Is it ok to use "Questo" for a person in Italian? Shouldn't it be "Lui"?

What about in English?

October 25, 2014


yes, you can use it.. In high level language "questi" would be used (also in the singular)

Questi fu il primo scienziato che si unì al gruppo.

October 26, 2014


Grazie mille!!!

October 26, 2014


Questo may be OK in this context in Italian, but you would not say this in English. I am a native (UK) English speaker and it would be considered very impolite to refer to someone as 'this'. You would only say 'he was' (or she was). The translation that DL gives here is too literal. I have reported it.

January 28, 2015

  • 1294

Really? I'm also a native UK English speaker and I see no problem with using 'this' or 'that' to describe a person. Certainly not enough to confidently report it as being wrong...

Also note the use of 'that' in 'the scientist that' instead of 'who' in 'the scientist who' as an acceptable English translation.

Simply Google "this is the man..." or "that is the man" and see just how many results you get. E.g. "That's the man who stole my bag!". Perhaps you are thinking it is rude because you are imagining introducing the scientist in person... however, if you imagine that the speaker is referring to a picture in a newspaper or something, it would still be very feasible.

April 16, 2015

  • 1294

@dhunteroz - wait a second, did you actually try Googling? If you search "This was the first man" on Google, you get 380 000 results, all of which (well, of the contexts I read) seem perfectly fine to me.

October 12, 2015


Both your examples have "that" not "this". In this example "this was" is of contention because it immediately implies an object or concept. We know it sounds better with "he was" or "she was". Try googling the actual phrase you won't find it. Nor would you find "This was the first…" followed by a person.


October 12, 2015


Passato remoto tells about an action done in a very far time from now, finished, done in a very short time and which doesn t have any relation with the present

March 12, 2016


anyone can shed light on when uni is meant to be join or unite?

June 28, 2016



She/He joins a group. and She/He unites a group. are different things. - To join a group you just add yourself to it, but to unite two things (such as a group split in two) you bring them together, so She/He unites a group. means someone brings a split group back together. When two things bring themselves together, they have also united.

They joined one another. and They united. are (roughly) the same.

As such, if multiple things join themselves together, they have united.

If one thing joins a group/organisation (are there other cases when this is true?) it/she/he has joined.

(Really it (the concept) is always joined from how I think about it, but sometimes I get to write unite, and it sounds better.)

I'm guessing though, and could be wrong.

July 15, 2016


Do the tenses have to agree? So you need fu and uni or era and ha unido. Are there any circumstances under which you could mix and match?

August 22, 2018


"si fermano al negozio dopo che sono andati dal fornaio" if one clause of the sentence occurred before or after another the tenses would reflect that. if the actions are concurrent the tenses agree "she hums a tune as she walks across the sand"

August 22, 2018


While the DL translation conveys the meaning in english, it makes me (a native speaker) uneasy. You don't refer to a person as "this" unless you're referring to an event. In which case, "first scientist" should be replaced with "first time a scientist". Or, "This" should be replaced with "He/She" and "time" should be replaced with "person".

September 12, 2018


When I dictated "first", it typed 1st, which was marked WRONG!!

May 17, 2019


(English native speaker) There is another problem with the English translation: I would not use the word "that" when referring to a person, but rather "who", i.e. "This (or He/She) was the first scientist WHO joined the group."

June 30, 2019


The sentence may be appropriate in Italian, but it is not one a native English speaker would use. Also, a native English speaker would more naturally say '...the first scientist to join the group' rather than '...the first scientist that joined the group'; unless that statement opened a sentence rather than concluded it.

October 14, 2019
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