"My mother is a secretary."
Translation:Mia madre fa la segretaria.
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Sorry Rianna, not quite true for Dutch, its African derivative, Afrikaans, or German, for that matter. Germanic languages such as these, including English, would use the indefinite article in all cases. It is accepted, however, to omit the article (definite or indefinite) if you were to say "my mom is (a / the) secretary of the / a club."
When you use a diminutive or superlative (little sister - sorellina, big brother - fratellone) then you must use the "la" in front (la mia sorellina) - so the same with "mamma" (like mommy) - "la mia mamma." But my sister and my mother (no diminutive) don't require the "la" so it's just, "mia sorella" or "mia madre."
lkamjh: One of the correct answers was "mia madre e una segretaria" so perhaps it's because you put in the 'la" and it's not needed for family members. I tried to be clever and put "fa una segretaria" but that was also wrong because it should have been "fa la segretaria", though unfortunately I don't know why!
"Mia madre è una segretaria", my answer, was marked wrong. Below are Duo's TIPS, which seem to me to say that "è" would be followed by "una", though it acceptable but not required to leave out the indefinite article.
Essere + indefinite article + profession (e.g. Sono un medico - I am a doctor): similar to the English construction, it describes the person's professional category. It can be used even if the person doesn't currently work in the profession, and the indefinite article can be dropped in informal contexts.
I remember this form from the line from Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni. Giovanni’s assistant Leporello is standing outside while he’s inside accosting a young woman. Leporello sings:
O che caro galantuomo: Voi star dentro colla bella / Ed io far la sentinella.
Note also the archaic use of “colla” (“con la” today). I believe that was considered archaic even in Mozart’s time. The use of the infinitives is interesting also. It might just be a poetic usage, not sure.