1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Italian
  4. >
  5. "Che cos'è popolare?"

"Che cos'è popolare?"

Translation:What is popular?

July 19, 2013

51 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GregHullender

From "A Reference Grammar of Modern Italian" (Maiden and Robusttelli, 2000, p. 143) "che" and "cosa" and "che cosa" all three mean "what" in English. You see "cosa" more in the north and "che" more in the south, but there's little difference between them.

So you can think of "che cosa" as a single word that means "what" and think of "che" or "cosa" as abbreviations of that. (Che actually has a few restrictions when used alone, but let's not go there.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lolologist

Wow, this is a very, very excellent thing to have stumbled upon. Thanks!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GiovanniSantucci

I still like to think of it (correctly or otherwise) as literally "what thing," and shortenings of that.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bobby_DD

And yet "what thing" is not accepted here. :/


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FrancAngelo

4 years later. . . . Thank you, my friend!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phredde1

Thank you so much that helps a lot.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JamesWalst

Grazie mille, mio amico.

This has been bothering me for a while. Thank you again!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/9HnN5

I think "che cosa" we may literally translate as "what exactly"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kalashnikitty

thank you so much! Have a lingot for a great explanation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jan177155

Vi ringrazio molto!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MarcSlatter

This is incredibly helpful. Grazie!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AubzieFarnzie

Grazie! Grazie! Grazie! Can you teach me italian? Do you reccomend that book?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LouMimzy1

Thank you this helps immensely!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jennesy

"what-d’yer-call-it" is an AWESOME translation...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kea296986

Why are che and cosa used together here?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nihou

I think it literally means "what thing is popular'. Please correct me anyone if I'm wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elmermes

I also think that, because in spanish we say "que cosa es importante"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lucaxjuan

But in Spanish "cosa" means "thing" in Italian both words "che cosa" means "what".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kurzebingo

cosa is thing in Italian as well :P


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/missyjane_t

"What thing is popular?" was incorrect to duolingo.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GiovanniSantucci

That's because it's incorrect in English. (It's not grammatically or syntactically incorrect, it's just never, ever said.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kalashnikitty

unless someone says "this such-and-such thing is popular" and someone else can't hear it very well and says "what thing is popular?" just for clarification.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SallyBrown1

It didn't accept that, though :P


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eduardo12730

That is exactly what I wrote as the translation but was marked wrong 10-28-2019


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SallyBrown1

Okay, if this isn't how you say "What thing is popular", how on earth would you say that?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Briguy84

According to google translate (not the best source to use) "cosa" as a noun means "thing". However, I think "what thing" is apart of "che cosa" and "che cos'è". Thing is omitted because it's already assumed that you're asking about a something. So in essence "che cos'è populare" should really be "what (known or unknown 'thing') is popular"

Of course I could be wrong because my command of the Italian language is between novice and intermediate at best, yet It does make sense though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/milanista1982

How come "(che) cos' e poplare" translates to "what is popular", but on the previous question of translating "what is popular now", I got marked off for "Cos' e (populare ora)" and it told me to use "cosa e"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NekoSakuraChan

Believe me, i am the WRONG person to ask


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/y0rkshire

Is this, literally, 'what thing'?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Oceanic2

Most of the discussions here are about the same "cosa" haha! So how would someone ask, "what thing is popular?" --> "Che cosa cos'e populare?"NOPE! In spanish "Que cosa es popular?" would literally translate to "what thing is popular?" and if you wanted to say "what is popular you would ask, "Que es popular o quizas qual es mas popular de todo, todo depende en que lo que quieres comunicar." Literal translation versus intended translation, I don't think it's wrong to translate things literally. Cause the goal here is not to learn english, but to learn italian, and it helps to learn it literally with the knowledge that you wouldn't use it necessarily in that form in english.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MichaelPat627632

In this context, how can you tell if the subject is singular or plural?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kurzebingo

popolare applies to singular nouns

è is singular as well

A plural form would be - che cose sono popolari?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JaceyXD

Popular: adjective Adapted to or indicative of the understanding and taste of the majority

Or

Popolare: aggetivo Adattato o indicativo della comprensione e del gusto della maggioranza


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EleanorSam2

What is the gender and number for populare? At first blush, it looks like a plural feminine, but I am guessing it is singular, either masculine or feminine?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sharkbbb

"Popolare" is one of those adjectives which are the same for masculine and feminine. The plural is always "popolari":

  • il popolare
  • la popolare
  • i popolari
  • le popolari

If you didn't know that, there's another hint in this sentence: "è" is singular, so no doubts about that. The sentence is actually asking "What does the word popolare mean?", so it has no semantic gender either. It's not about a specific thing which could be described with a word having its gender.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sthichi

The Flash tv series is popular.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Puzzle36714

You forgot "non" at the beginning of your sentence.

You should also add "ed Arrow" in there.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WilfredoMa48136

Why "What does popular mean?" Could not be accepted?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GiovanniSantucci

That would be "Che cosa vuol dire populare?" There's an old expression "to mean to say" that simply turned into "mean" in English ("What does antidisestablishmentarianism mean to say?" --> "What does antidisestablishmentarianism mean?") but in many other languages (Italian among them), they still use the full "to mean to say" (volere dire).

Another way of saying it "What does popular mean?" would be "Cosa significa populare?" or "Cosa populare significa?" which is related to the English word "signify" and may be more commonly used for inferences from known facts than for meanings of words, though I couldn't say for sure. An example might be: "Mario non vuole giocare con te." "Significa non gli piaccio?" (Translation: "Mario doesn't want to play with you." "Does that mean he doesn't like me?")


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/louiseat

I guessed "Is that what is popular" but it was marked wrong. I'm frustrated at having to guess at these sentences.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rblabella

Take heart. Getting them wrong actually makes them stand out more in your memory.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/claudio1947

CHE ? = CHE COSA ? = WHAT ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gene10111

Che cos'è popolare? - What is popular ? Сos'è popolare? - What is popular ?

Learn Italian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.