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"Ella es mi única hija."

Translation:She is my only daughter.

5 years ago

64 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/procrastinating_

When you mouse over the word 'unica', the lone suggestion is 'unique'. It does not suggest 'only'.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/bodison
bodison
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seems like that has been fixed!

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/danecot

Kinda. Now it suggests only and unique and if you put unique you're wrong.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hexthejinx

You need to think for yourself. "My only daughter" makes more sense than "my unique daughter".

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Agentmjs.lodhi

Now it doesn't say unique at all; it just says only, only one, and extraordinary.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/J.C.Fink
J.C.Fink
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"only, only one, and extraordinary" sounds like a pretty good definition of "unique".

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Damoncito

It does now.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ryansgirl41914

This happens to me a lot of times...VERY deceving

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Benzy911
Benzy911
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deep...

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/J.C.Fink
J.C.Fink
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If something is unique, it is the only one of its kind - otherwise it is NOT unique.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/stk
stk
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Is there some way in Spanish to differentiate between "my only son" and "my only child"? Also, could one interpret "mi única hija" as meaning the person has only one daughter but perhaps in addition to one or more sons?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jellonz
jellonz
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Yep, it's weird. You would think that hijo=son/child must cause problems. The conversation would go like this: "El es mi unico hijo" "?El es tu unico hijo, o el es tu unico hijo?" "El es mi unico hijo." Not helpful. As for your second question I would say absolutely there could be more male children. Which then raises the question, does "Ella es mi unica hija, pero tengo dos hijos," mean I have one daughter and two sons, or does it mean that I have one daughter and one son (two children). There must be some way to clarify, but I think a native speaker would have to help us.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mirrinias

I want to know the answer to this too, if anyone knows.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ajabrams

I'm confused here ....if you put hijo and are saying it's your only one, it means both you only child and your only son. Same thing if you put hija. Problem solved.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WarriorGwilym

yes they could be some suns as it does not specify just being one child and if you put only child it would be wrong.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jeffreylkarl

why is "my younger brother" written as "mi hermano menor", but "my only daughter" is written "mi única hija"? Why the adjective placement swap?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/megmck

How my Spanish teacher explained the the adjective placement to me is that adjective after the noun is descriptive, while adjective before the noun describes the "inherit" feature/trait of the noun. So the phrase "mi hermano menor" describes the age of the brother with respect to the age of the speaker, while the phrase "mi unica hija" describes what the daughter simply is.

Furthermore, adjective placement can change what you mean to say with the adjective. For example, "Mi viejo amigo" means "My old friend" as in a friend you have known for a long time. While "mi amigo viejo" refers to a friend who is old in age.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roger_Burke

"Mi amigo viejo es mi viejo amigo" carries clearer meaning than the English, "My old friend is my old friend."

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/michisjourdi
michisjourdi
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Qué explicación excelente. Gracias, megmck. That's a very helpful tidbit.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SusieY

Thanks for this clarification.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zombiesue

So, it's sort of like, some adjectives are actually considered PART of the noun?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jimijimmy

A native Spanish speaker explained to me that if you want the listener to pay particular attention to one quality of a person/object, you can "break the rule" and put the adjective in front, like in English, in order to emphasize one quality. Just don't do it all the time.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/iamdeman

In the phrase my old friend, the "old friend" is more like a compound noun, like black-bird. As opposed to a black bird? Maybe.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/soma.umeoz

In addition to megmck's answer, this might help explain it as well: http://www.spanishdict.com/topics/show/20

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AuntieJenny

Excelente! Gracias.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jellonz
jellonz
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This is one of those sentences that is confusing a lot of people. Rather than comment bomb this discussion I'll summarise the issues here:

Adjective placement of "única": When placed before a noun "única" means "only" or "sole." When placed after a noun it means "unique." DL offers both "only" and "unique" as possible translations because "única" can mean either. Its placement tells us which meaning we should derive.

The adverbs "sólo" and "solamente": "Sólo" (with the accent) is an adverb that means "only." As an adverb it only modifies a verb. It cannot be used to modify a noun. "Solamente" is interchangeable with "sólo." NB: The RAE no longer requires the accent mark on this form of "sólo" but DL retains it for the sake of clarity.

The adjectives "solo" and "sola": "Solo" (without the accent) is an adjective (or adverb, but let's focus on the adj. for now). As an adjective it modifies a noun, and it must match number and gender with the noun it modifies, giving the variations "sola", "solos," and "solas."

Adjective placement of "solo": Like "única" the placement of the adjective "solo/sola" alters its meaning. Before the noun it means "only" or "sole" and as such it is synonymous with "única." After the noun it means "alone" or "lonely."

I hope this helps anyone who needs it.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AuntieJenny

Gracias! I copied and saved this to my study notes.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Duomail
Duomail
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I think the adverb can modify a noun too, eg. sólo lectura, sólo clientes; it does not vary with gender or number. In English, the adverbial function seems to be shown by placing it after the noun and maybe a hyphen. Read-only, customers-only ? I wondered why not "only read file", when I was beginning to learn English.
In Spanish, sola lectura would not make much sense, maybe like 'alone reading', does it make sense?
Likewise, mi sola hija, my alone daughter, maybe my lonely daughter, but that would rather be said mi solitaria hija or mi hija solitaria. To me, mi hija única or mi única hija are interchangeable or indistinct. To dissambiguate, a different word could be used, mi singular hija.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jellonz
jellonz
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This is interesting Duo. I checked this thoroughly before summarising to ensure it was correct, but I know you are a native speaker and I value your wisdom. I'm just wondering if your "sólo lectura" example is idiomatic, for the following reason:

When you wondered why not "only read file" it was with good reason, because this is exactly what we are saying. "Only read [this type of] file" with "only" being an adverb modifying the verb "read." Of course, this is a mouthful, so to simplify someone coined an adjectival description for this type of file and called it a "read-only" file. This description is made up of a verb and an adverb. In English we can use verbs as adjectives, but we cannot use adverbs as adjectives. We can, however, use adverbs to modify adjectives. So, in effect, we get the adverb "only" modifying the verb "read" which is acting as an adjective. This is acceptable English, but fairly uncommon, which makes me wonder if your Spanish "sólo lectura" is equally idiomatic.

What you say about the placement of "sola" and "única" is also interesting. The descriptions I gave were from what I have learnt, but I did have them confirmed by several native speakers and they said they were correct (although from memory I think one agreed with you "única" differed little). Perhaps the different, or same, meanings derived from adjective placement comes down to regional variation?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/J-juice

why not "mi SÓLO hija"?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CGiattino

Use the Spanish-English dictionary here: http://www.merriam-webster.com/

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RaydePerse
RaydePerse
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Just got it wrong with 'She is my sole daughter'. Wondering whether it's correct or not. I reckon it is.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/J.C.Fink
J.C.Fink
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I think it is right. Report it.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vjmoore

I think that 'unique' does work in this context. It might not be preferred, but it's no incorrect either.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnInKeizer

I'm having a little trouble with pronunciation of the 'j' sound. It sounds like 'sh'. I've missed 'hija' or 'hijo' in the dictation several times because of this.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/michisjourdi
michisjourdi
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J is pronounced just like the letter H is in English. It is basically a substitute for H. The letter H is silent.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrew48

To be precise, it's only pronounced the same way as H in the Caribbean and Central America. Elsewhere, it's pronounced like a harsh H (the sound in "loch" in certain dialects). To pronounce the sound correctly, lift the back of your tongue up (where you pronounce K and G) without touching it to the roof of your mouth.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dakota_Marz

do you know if the spanish from mexico pronounces their "j" like that? My father is mexican and when he speaks spanish his "j"s seem to be soft rather than harsh.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrew48

I think the harshness of the sound can vary, but I'm pretty sure the air is always forced through a narrower passage than when making an H sound. It's the constriction of the airway that makes it sound harsh, so it usually is a bit less soft than an H, even if not much so. I can't tell you if it varies from dialect to dialect, though.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dakota_Marz

Was just wondering cause my father's "j"s do sound a little different than the American "h", but whenever I hear a Spaniard speaking they sound like they are either spitting or clearing their throats and he doesn't. Makes sense, though, thank you.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tuningspork

The "sh" sound for j is heard in Spanish Spanish, whereas the "h" sound for j is used in other Spanish speaking countries. :)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cam2644

Again the context is not clearly defined. Unique is possible if the daughter is different in some way. Only is obviously correct if you mean there are no other daughters.

5 years ago

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

I am confused. Mi not mia for my?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/michisjourdi
michisjourdi
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Yes, mi. Mia y Mio mean Mine.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Zchbaniel25
Zchbaniel25
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I wonder if "She is my only child" would be a correct translation? If not, how would you say that in Spanish? - "Ella es mi unico hijo"? (Sounds kind of funny to me)

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zoe.verbaa

I think for 'child' they use niña/niño (mi unico niño).. And cam2644: if "her daughter is unique", I think the sentence should be "mi hija unica" (adverd placed after noun),according to Megmck's explaination..

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Alain_Feg

why can't we translate it: "She is my only girl"

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JessicaLiu14

Hija means daughter while niña or chica means girl.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jglevesque
jglevesque
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Could anyone tell me what we collect hearts for. I have seen the 3 skills that you can buy, l took it, they substracted 20 hearts it then was marked equiped.... but then what, how do you get it. Thanks for the help.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/michisjourdi
michisjourdi
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It should be visible in your tree after being equipped.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DCIvanhoe
DCIvanhoe
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"She is my one daughter" means the same thing in EnglIsh as "She is my only daughter"

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gshergold

Thank you megmck. Hero.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/michaelmarkman

Can you say "ella es mi sola hija?"

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NevilleMit

i just looked through my text man....turns out "sola" is not recognized as a word its sólo you can use único/única = ONLY as well

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/evord91

isn't it only = solo unica = unique ? need you help. thanks

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jason_Howard

I studied Spanish years ago, and learned the word "solamente" for "only" - and have used it ever since. Do some spanish-speaking countries prefer solamente over unica?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BlackDove4

1/1/2016 - I reason as to what is correct usage. I figure the speaker/listener will clarify if I don't understand seeing I am not a native.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whollyword

It seems strange that duolingo does not accept "She is my sole daughter," given that "only" and "sole" are synonyms.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pephillips

Why not "Ella es mi solamente hija"? solamente instead of unica?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/llbraughler

I have learned that unica is like "the only" (only one), "my only knife", whereas solamente is an adverb... as in "Only if he says yes" or "Only in California can you do this"

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annabellen999736

How did she know

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ihkarahan
ihkarahan
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Why is "She is my only one daughter" not true?

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RaydePerse
RaydePerse
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Simply because you'll never hear nor read it anyhow. One could say "She is my one and only daughter" to emphasise the uniqueness of their daughter. Or could say "I have only one daughter" but "to be only one daughter" is too redundant, too clumsy to translate correctly the sentence.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dave955149

In high school Spanish (long ago) we learned "hija unica." What's different here?

2 months ago