Translation:The town was near but it couldn't be seen.
I have a totally different question. I translated "non si vedeva" as "it was not seen" rather than "it could not be seen." Does "non si vedeva" really imply an inability to see rather than accidently or intentionally not looking?
Il . . , paese, era , vicino, ma, non, si . . , vedeva.
The, town , was, close , but, not, itself, was seen.
~ The town was close but could not see itself.
~ The town was close but could not be seen.
According to the site: The country was near but we could not see it.. Where does the "we" come from?
Evidently it's an interpretation of the passive. You could say "it could not be seen" but someone might express it also as "we could not see it." There's no word in the original the explicitly represents "we".
Is it correct then that when "si" is in there somewhere that it's an interpretation of the passive? I remember a previous exercise in there referring to "...si comprano al centro commerciale" as "is bought at the shopping centre"...?
"si vedeva" is a passive construction, something like "it was seen". The passive is often formed with "si", but "si" also has other uses.
thanks for stressing this - it had me foxed - have a lingot - DL is great - so very often traditional grammar books aren't overly useful as they don't of course know why you opened the book. Here a puzzled but focused question can, very quickly at times, elicit a focused bit of guidance.
If this is idiomatic Italian, of course I would not argue, but I did not think that "non si vedeva" necessarily implied a lack of ability to see rather than just the act of "not seeing it" i.e. "you didn't see it." So where is the inability to see implied in this construction?
I'm also confused about the "it". To me there is no Italian word for "it" in the sentence - such as "... non lo se vedeva", but to leave it off in the English is not acceptable to Duolingo. Am I right in deducing that, where it is clear what one is speaking about, vedere does not need the "it". Also, does the omission of "it" in the English translation actually make it wrong (rather than just weird), or should I feed that back to Duolingo?
Why "town"? Is that another meaning of "paese"? I have only seen it meaning "country" before.
can anyone explain why "the town was close but one did not see it" is wrong?
How can you tell, that "non si vedeva" applies to the town? Couldn't it mean, that I didn't see much some friend who was living in that town?
In this construction, it is typically expressing the impersonal "one" person. As in "one can not see it". It is conjugated as third person singular in Italian, and translated as "one" or as "you" in English. As I understand this construction, it is not correct to translate it as "we" because that would be written differently in Italian. (In English, "one" or the ambiguous "you" of recipes and instruction manuals are both impersonal forms, and therefore are valid translations of the Italian "si" form. But "we" is only used in English by royalty and is very presumptuous, so it's rarely used in this way.)
"The town was near but 1 could not see it" is accepted. But not "I could not see it."
I put "but one could not see it". Could anyone explain why this was not accepted. Thank you