"Il paese era vicino ma non si vedeva."

Translation:The town was near but it couldn't be seen.

July 26, 2013



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?

September 7, 2014


Same here - is it actually wrong to translate it "it was not seen"?

October 13, 2014


Couldn't?? why?

July 26, 2013


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.

December 12, 2018


The Italian imperfect is sometimes translated by the English conditional. Well worth looking up the conditional eg on about.com

November 19, 2018


Sadly no info

January 22, 2019


According to the site: The country was near but we could not see it.. Where does the "we" come from?

September 23, 2013


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".

September 23, 2013


I see..

September 23, 2013


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"...?

November 25, 2013


"si vedeva" is a passive construction, something like "it was seen". The passive is often formed with "si", but "si" also has other uses.

November 25, 2013


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.

November 20, 2014


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?

January 28, 2018


That sometimes happens with vedere. Lo vedi? could be Can you see it?

July 26, 2013


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?

March 14, 2014


Why "town"? Is that another meaning of "paese"? I have only seen it meaning "country" before.

February 22, 2014


yes, it also can mean town

March 12, 2014


The awkward, unusual construction of the sentences in English is irritating.

November 5, 2017


can anyone explain why "the town was close but one did not see it" is wrong?

October 20, 2018


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?

June 9, 2014


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.)

July 21, 2014


'The town was near but you did not see it', 'you' meaning 'one'. No good for Duo, but.

April 10, 2018


"The town was close by but it wasn't seen" accepted as per March 2018.

March 30, 2018


"The town was near but 1 could not see it" is accepted. But not "I could not see it."

April 6, 2018


In english passive mode is often translated with one

July 9, 2018


I put "but one could not see it". Could anyone explain why this was not accepted. Thank you

October 5, 2018


I wrote The town was near but it could not be seen. This was marked incorrect. Isn't this the same thing?? I reported it. I'm getting very frustrated with this.

December 30, 2018
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