"Gli insetti bevono acqua."

Translation:Insects drink water.

December 19, 2012

80 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/JolaDzoku

Are you sure they're not drowning?

April 2, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/IaisSimon

LOL

August 9, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ItsNyx

Lol

May 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Kevin968039

Positive- they're water beetles.

March 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/xnorwaks

I can never tell if she says "l'acqua" or just "acqua"

May 14, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Stsmi

Could someone please tell me when to use 'gli' and when to use 'i'? I would really appreciate it and it might help others too. I had trouble hearing the 'gli' as well but I guess we are supposed to know where to expect it. It can't be 'i insetti'?

April 23, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

If it's a masculine noun that starts with a vowel and the article is contracted to l' (as in l'uomo) or if it's a masculine noun that starts with either s+another consonant or z and the article is lo (as in lo squalo or lo zucchero) then the plural form is gli. Since "insetti" is masculine and begins with a vowel, the article is "gli".

April 23, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Stsmi

Grazie fellow tardis appreciator.

April 24, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/MAMIPILY

You have a TARDIS! Do you have a Sonic Screwdriver to go with it?

March 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/DboraMoura1

Grazie, Rae!

May 31, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/MariadelCa703168

Grazie mille

July 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/vega.marle

"I"starts with consonant & "gli" with vowel

September 16, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/ColinRees2

That's a great help and easy to understand. Thank you AndersonMa604618.

June 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/naved102088

Gli will come for animals

June 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

No. It has nothing to do with the meaning of the word and everything to do with the grammatical gender, the number, and the sound the next word begins with.

gli insetti
gli ombrelli
i cani
le mucche

June 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/vivisaurus

Shouldn't it be "the" insects? (in the multiple choice question)

May 23, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/boredddd

I agree. It seems like Duolingo struggles with the usage of articles on a regular basis (exceeding the Italian course), which is quite annoying.

July 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/marcy65brown

"The insects drink water" was accepted 9/6/17. It was not a multiple choice question, though; just a straight translate activity.

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/BampaOwl

But it was not accepted in March 2019!

March 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/BampaOwl

Ignore that last comment!

March 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Sikeryali

The insects is more natural and is also accepted.

November 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

"Insects drink water" and "The insects drink water" are equally natural. They just indicate different things.

"Insects drink water" is a general statement applicable to all insects.

"The insects drink water" highlights a specific group of insects and might even suggest this is happening within a context: "After escaping their predators and finding a quiet puddle, the insects drink water."

November 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Asperganoid

I know it's early stages, but i am falling in love with this language!

November 13, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Lechow

why is it not 'the insects'? can someone explain when to omit 'gli'?

February 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Italian uses definite articles almost the inverse way English does. In English, we use "the" for a specific case and omit "the" for the general case. In Italian, they use "the" for the general case and omit "the" for a specific case.

February 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Lechow

Very informative. thank you! :)

February 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/tfcmad

Thank you for explaining

August 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/boredddd

That's actually not true.

July 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Do you have any sources to back up that claim? You're the first person who's said otherwise.

July 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MegaElsa

You can't hear the article in the soundfile

December 19, 2012

https://www.duolingo.com/Santatatiana

There wasn't an article before "insettti". I listened for 3 times!!!

February 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Carltonjane

Gli is spoken with no real G in what we use in English. It's more like and l with a y so it's very hard to hear. It is like the h in ho and ha.

March 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/lyserg173

It`s there, she just say it fast.

May 9, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/ester88bis

I'm italian and i haven't heard the article too!!

September 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/ItzGigiGamer

egg zactly

September 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/2lala2

Could someone explain me when do we use "i" for plurals? Thanks

May 2, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

i is the plural of il: il ragazzo, i ragazzi

May 2, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/2lala2

thankss

July 2, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Sasuke.Uchiha8

It should be "The insects drink water" and not "Insects drink water" right ?

March 15, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Italian uses definite articles almost the inverse way English does. In English, we use "the" for a specific case and omit "the" for the general case. In Italian, they use "the" for the general case and omit "the" for a specific case.

March 15, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Sasuke.Uchiha8

Yes but in English it is not right ...................... Sasuke Uchiha ......watashi no ai !!!!

March 17, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

What do you mean "In English it is not right"? What isn't right?

March 17, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Sasuke.Uchiha8

You don't say "Insects drink water" you say "THE insects drink water" .

March 18, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

You can say it either way, depending on what you mean. If you mean it's the general case that insects drink water, then you don't say "the". But if you're talking about specific insects, then you would say "the".

March 18, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Sasuke.Uchiha8

Ok I guess you are right .

March 18, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ItzGigiGamer

yes

September 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/trig_king87

Everything is drinking water.

June 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/dean2308

they do?

July 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Wattsin

Purpose of gli?

May 18, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Mucchi1

We some times use "Gil" as "The" and some times we skip it, why is that?

November 3, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Ilari387533

i put the incect drinks watter

November 18, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

That would be L'insetto beve acqua.

November 18, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/BintuKamar

How do you pronounce "Gli"?

April 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ItsNyx

Why can't I say 'the insects'

May 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Italian uses definite articles almost the inverse way English does. In English, we use "the" for a specific case and omit "the" for the general case. In Italian, they use "the" for the general case and omit "the" for a specific case.

General case: Insects drink water - Gli insetti bevono l'acqua.
Specific instance: The insects drink water - Insetti bevono l'acqua.

May 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ItsNyx

Thank you so much☺♥

June 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

And I just edited my previous comment because I realized I made a mistake.

June 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ToniB14

Why are our answers counted wrong without the prepositions but many sample sentences such as this one don't have them? Rules as to when needed?

June 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

I think you mean definite article, not preposition.

In contexts where you're distinguishing between the general case and a specific instance, Italian uses definite articles the opposite way English does.

General case:
Insects drink water. Gli insetti bevono l'acqua.
(As a species, insects are known to drink water.)
Specific instance:
The insects drink water. Insetti bevono l'acqua.
(Particular specified insects are known to drink water.)

It works the same way in the subject and the predicate:
I drink water. Bevo l'acqua.
(I am in the habit of drinking water.)
I drink the water. Bevo acqua.
(I drink a particular glass of water that I was given.)

Given that, it seems that Duolingo can be a little inconsistent, unless there's more nuance they're not telling us about, or it's less rigid than I've been led to believe from others who have explained it to me. Because it seems a little odd to say "Gli insetti bevono acqua" and not "Gli insetti bevono l'acqua".

June 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/BremerKatze

So its "Gli" pronounced with a silent "G"?

September 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Sort of. Think of gl as more of a digraph than having a silent letter, because gl is pronounced differently than l.

But there are some words where it is pronounced the same way you would expect it to be pronounced in English. It's like the difference between "Stephen" and "chophouse".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mcWqvCOphZo

September 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ItzGigiGamer

um... Purpose of gli? Not really understanding it completely....it should be the insects drink water so I wrote that and said it was wrong why is that ?????!!!!!

September 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Different language, different grammar rules.

In some contexts, Italian uses definite articles almost the inverse way English does. In English, we use "the" for a specific case and omit "the" for the general case. In Italian, they use "the" for the general case and omit "the" for a specific case.

Insects drink water. (Discussing insects generally)
Gli insetti bevono acqua.

The insects drink water. (Discussing some particular insects)
Insetti bevono acqua.

September 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/GurakalaSr

Is this 'the insects drink water'?

June 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Word for word, yes. But in situations like this, the Italian grammar is different than the English grammar.

In English, we use "the" for a specific case and omit "the" for the general case. In Italian, they use "the" for the general case and omit "the" for a specific case.

Insects drink water. (Discussing insects generally)
Gli insetti bevono acqua.

The insects drink water. (Discussing some particular insects)
Insetti bevono acqua.

June 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Gareth225368

Why would I need to know this!?

October 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Duolingo is not meant to be a handy phrasebook. It's meant to teach you grammar along with a bit of vocabulary so you can learn how to put your own sentences together.

Simple factual statements have been a staple of language education for a very long time. Somewhere out there is a vintage French textbook with the sentence "La plume de ma tante est sur la table de mon oncle" -- My aunt's pen is on my uncle's table.

October 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/RocketRuwan

Shouldn't it be "The insects..." since it has "Gli..."?

December 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Not necessarily. English and Italian say things differently. This has been discussed on this page before.

December 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/GiancoT

are they all not the same thing?? " gli" 'I" "L" Etc.

October 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rae.F
  • 1944

Yes and no. It's like saying "a" and "an" are the same thing.

Italian has a number of different forms of "the", and there are rules that govern when each is used.

http://www.oneworlditaliano.com/english/italian-grammar/italian-definite-articles.htm

https://www.thoughtco.com/italian-definite-articles-4055936

https://ciaoitaliablog.wordpress.com/classes/italian-definite-article/

October 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ElizabethG915266

Ummmm.......don't all creatures drink?

April 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/avava4

Im 8 and I think it's easy

February 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Medenadana

The insects drink water.

August 10, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/AlanWhitto

Wtf? Since when did insects drink water? Acqua di panna

January 4, 2016

Related Discussions

Learn Italian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.