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"What did the students drink?"

Translation:¿Qué bebieron los estudiantes?

5 years ago

21 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/tomgannon1

Is word order important here? I had ?Qué los estudiantes bebieron?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rspreng

yep -- I think you asked "What students drank?"

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/duolearner12345

Could you explain why it's ordered this way here?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/brawny15
brawny15
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To explain this a bit more, as a statement, both forms are grammatically correct in spanish, however, for interrogatives(questions) it is verb-->subject.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DeanG6
DeanG6
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Yes. In questions the subject often comes after the verb. Another example: "¿Cómo estás tú?"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JakeLanzarote

This implies the same, it's finished in the past just like the word 'drank'

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/iyad.elbag

Why not "cuál"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dpash
dpash
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That would be 'which', which is used when the options are limited. The students could have drunk anything, so 'what' and therefore 'qué' is the appropriate question.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/levelledout

I think it is because "cuál" is used where the question relates to a limited number of selections. Here, the answer could be any drink (even though the answer is limited to drinks) so we use "que".

Of course that means that "que" means "what" in this instance and "cuál" would be used for "which". However that's not always the case, for instance "¿Cuál es tu nombre?" translates to "What is your name?".

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/arissston
arissston
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I typed "the beer" and marked wrong! What happened with students?)))

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DeanG6
DeanG6
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They have wimpified. They probably drink umbrella drinks now.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WarriorGwilym

no what have the students come to

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WarriorGwilym

duolingo doesn't like a pint then

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CherylWagner

I typed in 'lo que hicieron los estudiantes beben' and got it wrong. Interestingly, if you ask Google to do a spanish to english translation of 'what did the students drink' - what i typed is exactly what google responds.

So are Google and I both wrong? Or should I report this?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WarriorGwilym

well google translate isn't reliable so I would say ( no offence) you might be wrong

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/brawny15
brawny15
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You need to put the question mark to have any hope of an accurate translation from google in this case. Otherwise,it's not a sentence. Even then, I doubt it would give any kind of accurate translation.

So, yea, both you and google are wrong.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CherylWagner

So Google is not to be trusted, eh? :) Thanks for your help!!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dpash
dpash
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That would be a very literal translation involving the auxiliary verb 'did' which isn't needed in Spanish.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lucky101man

Bebían vs. Bebieron...OK. I think this sentence might finally clear up my confusion as to why these two can sometimes be interchangeable. (Imperfect vs. Preterite is what you'd call it if you knew what you were talking about). What did the students drink when they were in kindergarten? Bebían jugo o leche. What did students drink last night at the pub. Bebieron cerveza y licor. So I suppose in english we can just say "They drank..." to talk about either situation. "As children they drank..." or "Last night they drank..." But the spanish language makes a stronger distinction. More like -"As children they used to drink..." Bebían Vs. "Last night they drank..." bebieron. Anyway both bebían an bebieron are accepted and that's my take on why.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/brawny15
brawny15
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You're pretty close. Imperfect implies a certain "progressiveness" about the action. Preterite implies a very definitive beginning and end to the action.

As you said, the sentence about kindergarten, that implies a certain vague sense of "this happened many times". As such, the imperfect is used. With the pub example, it's a very definitive beginning and end.

Honestly in this sentence, without context, both past forms could be accepted(though I would lean in favor of preterite). The rules surrounding impefect vs preterite are sometimes not as hard and fast as one would like. It's a distinction that one very much develops in the course of using the language and interacting with those who understand the distinction subconsciously, i.e., native speakers.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lucky101man

Great! Even clearer now, thanks.

3 years ago