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  5. "Their monkey drinks milk."

"Their monkey drinks milk."

Translation:O macaco deles bebe leite.

August 6, 2013

This discussion is locked.


Why is "O macaco deles bebe leite" wrong? Should I go for the female "deals" when the gender is not specified (in the English translation)?


Because the exercise was probably asking you to mark all correct answers, so choosing both rather than just one is the way to go.


It is not wrong. I gave this answer and it was accepted.


You could use both. In this case, you know, if they where only women always "delas", if there was at least one man it would be "deles" (or all men, no woman)


dele, delas, deles. Doesn't that all mean their?


Dele is singular for "his". Deles is a general "their" and delas is a "their" specifically referring to women.


The plural form when there are at least one man it's "deles", doesn't matter how many women there is.


You think they should start changing how we speak now.. It's 2020..not 1800


I put "macaco deles bebe leite", it was marked incorrect and it said I need "o macaco...", why is o required here?


Well, "o macaco" and "macaco" are not interchangeable. The form "macaco" (monkey) is simply a label and a specific instance is "o macaco" (the monkey). Because this sentence refers to a specific monkey (their monkey) you need the definite article "o" and should write "o macaco deles" (literally: the monkey of - meaning belonging to - them). (An alternative way to write "their monkey" using "seu" is discussed in earlier comments.)


Doesn't make sense macaco is the male form, no? Shouldn't it be macaca if it is female?


The pron. possessive in Portuguese agrees with the person who possesses the thing, not with the name as in French. So, in this case, (o macaco delas bebe leite), could be deles depending on who gender we are talking about. besides, as you can see, DELAS is femmale form and plural, what was that? __our friend DUO put it to you to know that the pron does not agree with the noum, but with the person. I hope you can get it! _o/


Other possibility shown to me by duolingo : "Seu macaco bebe leite" I wrote "Seus" but got wrong ; i thought "Seus" would mean "their" as "seu" means his/her/your. Was I thinking correctly?


"Seu" agrees with "macaco" = both are singular masculine

Seu macaco = Can mean "his monkey", "her monkey", "their monkey" or "your monkey).

Seus macacos = Can mean "his monkeys", "her monkeys" , "their monkeys" or "your monkeys"

To make it clear, you can say instead the following:

O macaco dele = His monkey

O macaco dela = Her monkey

O macaco deles = Their monkey (either all males or males+females)

O macaco delas = Their monkey (just females)

O macaco de você = Your monkey

Os macacos dele = His monkeys

Os macacos dela = Her monkeys

Os macacos deles/delas = Their monkeys

Os macacos de você = Your monkeys

I hope that what I told you is correct. I'm not a native Portuguese speaker. But I'm pretty sure that's correct.

Edit: Reference what Davu said and linked to


The "de você" versions are probably not good (although "de vocês" versions would be OK). See Danmoller's comment here: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/1290485

Some other possibilities then:

(O) teu macaco = Your monkey
(Os) teus macacos = Your monkeys
(O) macaco de vocês = Your (plural) monkey
(Os) macacos de vocês = Your (plural) monkeys


Thank you soooo much Davu!! Much appreciated! :-)


As you can see from that discussion, it's certainly possible to find some sources that say "de você" can be used as a possessive, but Paulenrique and Danmoller have made it clear it's a no-no here in Duolingo-land.


One can certainly use it in any other case that is not a possession case:

  • Por causa de você (because of you)
  • Eles gostam de você (they like you)
  • Isto veio de você (this came from you)

But it's simply never heard as a possessive, even outside Duoland.


Very good explanation


"Seu" refers to the monkey, which is singular. If it's plural (monkeys) you would use "seus". The number of owners doesn't matter.. :)


With possesive pronouns (seu,tuas...etc which look like they form from (vo)se+(o)/u, tu+as..etc ), The number and gender depends on THE WORD it modifies.(so with this , i consider who the owner is and let the number and gender accord to the thing being owned.)

On the otherhand with contracted prepositional phrases (dela,delas...etc. Which look like they form from de+ela, de+elas...etc), the number and gender on THE OWNER ( so with this, I consider only the owner regardless of the thing being owned). Note: This is just how I see it. Please correct me if I am wrong. I have much to learn. Obrigado!


I don't know why that's wrong either.


Mate-2xo, and ktkee-EnglishENG look at this:

''SEUS'' is your(plural), and ''DELES'' means their. the only difference is that in Portuguese we have genders for this pronoms too. (so MEU/MINHA TEU/TUA(SEU/SUA) DELE/DELA NOSSO/NOSSA VOSSO/VOSSA(SEUS/SUAS) DELES/DELAS)__

***''SEU/SUA(s)" is an informal way of say "TU/TUAS" wich means exacly the same as YOUR in English. ___ Hope u enjoy! :) (if Yes, pls give me lingots) thks!!


My English sentence was "The monkey drinks milk", so I selected " O macaco bebe leite" and was marked wrong. This has happened with quite a few of these exercises (the word selection type).


Idk,are you sure you read the sentence correctly? MY sentence was-THEIR monkey :/


That's odd. Please report those issues as errors whenever you find them; if you're in your computer (vs. mobile phone), you can also print screen your red answer and sent it as an attachment to this bug report form: https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/requests/new


why is it "seu" instead of deles


It can be both. "Seu macaco / O seu macaco" works, but since "seu" is used for all pronouns conjugated in the 3rd person, people wouldn't know whether you're referring to "Você"/"Ele"/"Ela"/"Eles"/"Elas" as the possessor.

"O macaco dele(s)/dela(s)" is the alternative used to clarify the possessor. When you place these special pronouns, the definite article is always necessary (never just "macaco deles").


eles macaco bebe leite?


"Eles" is a personal pronoun (They). "Deles" (lit. of them) is a possessive pronoun (Their).


Is Dele macaco bebe leite an accurate sentence


No. "Dele/s" and "dela/s" have to be used after nouns.


No, this sentence is wrong. I mean You won't be understood speaking this way. By the other hand "O macaco deles bebe leite" sounds good. Pay attention on the word order.

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