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"Quanti metri di lana compriamo?"

Translation:How many meters of wool do we buy?

August 8, 2013



Although, as usual, the sentence here is given no context, it would clearly only appear in a conversation. You will be interested to learn the following from Maiden & Robustelli's A Reference Grammar of Modern Italian (Ch. 15, Sect. 4): "It is characteristic of informal and spoken Italian that future time is indicated not by 'future', 'future perfect' and 'future-in-the-past' tense forms, but by the present, passato prossimo and imperfect indicative tense forms, respectively. Indeed, in ordinary, informal, discourse, expressions such as Te lo manderò quando l'avrò finito 'I'll send you it when I've finished it', or Seppi che sarebbe arrivato dopo qualche giorno 'I learned he'd arrive in a few days' time', sound unduly elaborate. The more spontaneous expressions would be Te lo mando quando l'ho finito and Seppi che arrivava dopo qualche giorno. Poi, quando se n’è andato, gli si possono fare gli sberleffi dietro. 'Then, when he's gone, we'll be able to make faces at him behind his back.' Lasciamoli che prendano il potere. Così si smascherano al cento per cento. 'Let's let them take power. In that way they will be completely unmasked.' Mi avevi giurato che non le parlavi più. 'You had sworn to me that you would never speak to her again.' Quando mi ha detto che quei soldi me li restituiva il mese dopo, ci ho creduto. 'When he told me he would give me the money back the next month, I believed it.' In fact, in informal discourse the present tends to be used to express future time, while the future tense forms tend to be restricted to the 'conjectural' value."


This information from corbettf75 is very useful and much appreciated. The advice from a prior commenter to "stick to the present tense" when submitting translations is a wise one that I have learned to follow almost religiously...I, too, have found that it produces the best results, and you don't lose as many hearts!


For some sentences I agree with, but "Seppi che arrivava" is not correct, "seppi che sarebbe arrivato/a" is correct. "Poi, quando se n'è andato, gli si possono fare gli sberleffi dietro" is not Italian... "poi, quando se ne sarà andato, gli potremo fare gli sberleffi" or, "poi, quando se n'è andato, gli abbiamo fatto gli sberleffi". "Lasciamoli che prendano il potere", "lasciamo che prendano il potere" here, "li" doesn't work, if you want you can put "loro"... "lasciamo che loro prendano il potere". "Mi avevi giurato che non le parlavi più", acceptable talking, not writing, "mi avevi giurato che non le avresti parlato più". "Quando mi ha detto che quei soldi me li restituiva il giorno dopo, ci ho creduto", "quando mi ha detto che quei soldi me li avrebbe restituiti il giorno dopo, ci ho creduto. Please, don't say things that are not true. We don't speak like that and if you're Italian you don't speak Italian.


What's wrong with "How many meters of wool SHALL we buy?"


I've noticed that sticking to the simple present tense gives the best result. 'Shall' is regarding future, it is like 'will'. Stick to 'How many . . . do we buy'.


Besides, they maybe just want to know how much they USUALLY buy and not how much they shall buy. I think it's better to always translate such sentences 'tense by tense' since there are no other indications.


There's really nothing wrong with it. It should be accepted.


I would rather say "How much wool should we buy? Because wool is not sold by lengt but by heigh. In my country, for instance, you buy half a kilo of wool for a sweater. (sorry my English is not so good).


Your english was pretty spot on - "Length" and "Height" typos but otherwise it was very easy to understand. Don't put yourself down. :)


Biotack Here's a lingot for being a good guy.


martadibi Here's a lingot for trying so hard and doing so well.


Here is a lingot for being so encouraging. I love people like you!


Lingots...the currency in Diagon Alley. May be exchanged at Gringot's. :-) (that's what I think of every time I see Lingot)


You are very kind. Thank you.


Using "should" in the sentence changes the tense/mood (I forget which - "should" is advanced grammar). Sticking to present tense: "How much wool do we buy?"


"Should" is the condizionale of the verb "dovere"...so that would be dovremmo in the noi form. That's way beyond this simply lesson in the present tense.


You are right, wool is not bought by metres but by weight.


The new male voice seems to say "compriama". Def doesn't end with an "o" sound.


Yup, that's what I hear as well.


The recording lets this down again. without knowing the word compriamo, it sounds more like compleano at both slow and fast speeds. I must say that I am becoming disillusioned.


That's what I heard, too


in my place the wool is by the kg..


What's wrong with 'How many metres of wool do we buy?' If it's that I used the English spelling of metres rather than the American meters, I would remind you that Americans have no idea what a metre is as they still use Imperial measure. And if that really is the reason, Duolingo is being unnecessarily pedantic!


Nothing is wrong with meters vs metres. Either should work and it should be reported if not accepted


"metres" - writing from the UK


"How many metres of wool do we buy," is not one of two correct solutions. It is the only correct solution, as it uses the only correct spelling of, 'metre,' for this context. I am not here to be taught American, but, Italian, strangely.


wool is not sold by the metre rather it is sold by the kilo.


It seems that in some places it is sold by the kilo and in others by the meter or yard and other ways. It's great getting ideas from all over.


What if the owl meant not knitting wool and not crude wool but wool cloth? In that case wool is sold by the meter, isn't it?


Why is purchase wrong here? I used " How many meters of wool do we purchase"


Report it. It is right and should be included in the correct translations.


I did. Lets hope it gets included


A more literal version for that would be "acquistiamo".


Would "quanti compriamo metri di lana" be acceptable here?


No, you can't use that word order. You may hear "Quanti metri compriamo di lana?" which is used in spoken language to empasize "lana". I can't think of any other possible orders.


I wrote 'are we buying'; to my mind, that is just as correct as 'do we buy', and actually sounds better in conversational English. What do others think?


,,how many meters of wool we buy,, is wrog??


It is a question, not a statement. "Do we buy" is the way we make it a question. English does not (always) rely on just inflection and word order


How many meters of wool are we buying?


Ugh no allowance for "yarn" rather than "wool" ?


Not all yarn is wool


All dimensions must be written in singular (international SI-units). In my oppinion you must be written "metro" and meter. or is it not usually in Italy of England?


Why is it "di" lana instead of "da"? Is it because of metri? I thought the ending would be the same as the subject


Just me who spent a minute wondering what birthday wool is before realising?


what just happened to her ? is she okay


i swear that slow track sounds like she's in the midst of some badass aphasia.


I wish there were more exercises like this one and less translations from Italian to English as I find it more important to hear and write than to continuously translate.


Yarn is a correct translation for lana


I agree the recording is difficult to understand


I put how many meters of wool did we buy ? it sounds better me but is wrong. I would not say do we buy but only a native English speaker sorry it must be my accent or my poor English or both


Compriamo means to buy, as in the present sence (sence or tence? Srry, nit a native speaker). We are yet to learn the past sence, but it will be a different word. Maybe someone who knows it can show us what the translation is for: 'hiw many meters of wool DID WE BUY?'!


I believe that would be "Quanti metri di lana abbiamo comprato?"


Thanks! Is that 'how many meters did we buy' of 'how many meters have we bought'? As in; past tense or past perfect tense?


My understanding is that either translation could apply to the Italian passato prossimo.


Sorry for the typos


are wool and yarn different in italian as well? i wrote how many meters of yarn do we buy, and it was marked wrong. I just thought that if we're buying it in meters, then it must be yarn


"Lana" is used in Italian to refer to both. Yarn balls are called "gomitoli".


they really like wool here


my "how many metres of wool are we to buy", while not translitterally exact, can't really be faulted


Are we starting a sweater business?

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