1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Italian
  4. >
  5. "Io rispondo alla domanda imp…

"Io rispondo alla domanda impossibile."

Translation:I answer the impossible question.

December 25, 2012

53 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lucia888648

It's a Doctor who episode to me


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JaceyXD

So you mean the meaning of life? (°__°) LOL!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AbdullahIsmile

WOW! You only wrote "...42?" and got yourself 51 votes at the time of this comment. What? How? Why? How come? (Just curious).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/robcutmore

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/42_(number)

"42 (forty-two) is the natural number immediately following 41 and directly preceding 43. The number has received considerable attention in popular culture as a result of its central appearance in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy as the "Answer to The Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything"."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/naten

There's a subtle diference between "I answer the impossible question." and "I respond to the impossible question." Both are accepted answers, but only the latter makes logical sense to me. One can respond to a question without answering it. An impossible question has no answer.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/leonardicus

That may be true, but I find the concept of an "impossible question" itself impossible. One can ask any question they like, and it's perfectly valid and exists as a question. It is the answer that may be impossible to know or derive.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/naten

I took "impossible question" to mean one which has no answer, not one which cannot be asked.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Elena18

Right- and it has no answer- in which case, I cannot "answer" it. That's why I said "the impossible request", but unfortunately it made the owl unhappy.

Our discussion reminds me of one of those riddles where you have to ask the 2 guards 1 question to ascertain which is the door to heaven & which is the door to hell.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/leonardicus

Yes, this is beyond the scope of DuoLingo anyway. ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EstelleTweedie

Maybe it's hyperbolic - like when we say a child is impossible!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndrDemetr

Nice logic. The question 'seemed' impossible to everyone until someone answered it correctly. Then it proved the question was possible after all.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PennRolfs

To "answer" a question doesn't mean you have to be correct. I could "answer" an impossible question in turn with an equally impossible question.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Elena18

I said "I respond to the impossible request", which I think makes more sense (but is not yet accepted by Duo). I envision someone requesting something that is impossible. I "respond" by saying "NO.sorry!". (I am a native English speaker).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erated8

Is "Request" An Alternative Translation Of "Domanda"? I've Only Seen It As "Question".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gh0stwheel

Request would more often be: Richiesta,
but it is indeed one of the translations of Domanda.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dnovinc

"I answer TO the impossible question" is not accepted. Is it because you would use "I answer to someone (my boss)" ? (I am not a native English speaker)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/smeans2

In this case, "to answer to" means "to take orders from" or "to report to." It is a specific meaning of the word, and it is different from "to answer" a question. All languages are difficult; some say English is especially difficult. It's my native language, but I can believe it is hard to learn.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/almazen.14

finally I'm grasping the meaning, thanks to you both.this italian language course is definitelly helpful to improve my English language (I am not a native English speaker, -that's visible)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erated8

You Are Correct, "To Answer To" Means To Have In Charge Of You, Or To Take Orders From, Both "I Answer" Or "I Give An Answer To" Would Be Correct In This Situation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rondicostanzo

"alla" generally means " to the" -no? Regardless, the owl is too often splitting hairs - which is not typical of a normal owl.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gullideckel

I'm not entirely sure but couldn't impossibile mean that it is a really impolite question that should not have been asked in the first place? because it offers unbearable as translation. in german impossible means unmöglich and that could mean that it is a really rude or mean question


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erated8

No, I Do Not Believe "Impossible" Has That Double Meaning In English, If It Does I've Never Heard It, Quite Interesting That It Does Have It In German.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Charlie2014a

Having looked at the previous comments I don't think the substantive issue is whether a question is impossible or not. The primary issues in a lesson on verbs is what "io rispondo" means. The secondary issue is that taken as a whole without any underlying context "I respond to the impossible request' is not only a correct interpretation but also a correct literal translation I think it't another case where we can all help the owl to wise up a little. (see http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/domanda)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/xyphax

I agree the pertinent question here is what exactly does 'io rispondo' mean? I also believe it is fair game therefore to discuss what the difference in English is between 'answer' and 'respond'. Frankly, I cannot make up my mind whether they are exactly the same, or whether there is subtle difference in their meaning. In my opinion, the meaning of words is one of the most slippery concepts in translation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gh0stwheel

A response is not exactly the same as an answer:

Q - "Do you know how to do long division?"
A1 (answer1) - "I don't know."
A2 (answer2) - "Oh, you follow this algorithm: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_division"
R1 (first response) - "I'm not speaking with you. I am angry at you."
R2 (second response) - (non verbal) Slap!
R3 (a third response) - "Oh, this is how: ..."
(Obliviously the second response is completely inappropriate,
but it still constitutes a response. Only the third response also constitutes an answer to the question.)

So, an answer is a type of a response, but not every response is an answer...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JeannetteArnao

agree To answer is not incorrect


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnthonyDiNome0

whats wrong with" i answer to the impossible questions"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sedona2007

"alla domanda" is singular, not plural. So it can't be "demands". Also Duolingo doesn't like "I answer TO the impossible question." It's kind of subtle and I missed it myself (native English speaker).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erated8

I Think It'd Be Better To Phrase It As Just "I Answer", Or "I Give An Answer To", "I Answer To " Would Likely Be Understood As "I Take Orders From " Or "___ Is In Charge Of Me".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Elena92962

My teacher always said there are no impossible questions. No stupid questions, either. Just stupid answers.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erated8

There Are Definitely Some Stupid Questions.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/temporalthings

Perhaps impossible is just hyperbolic and isn't to be taken literally. In which case, "I answer the impossible question" makes sense, if the question in question (heh) is actually just very very difficult.

Other than that, yeah, it seems like "I respond to the impossible question" is the best translation, because one cannot answer a question that is literally impossible to answer, if there be such a kind.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ferrimed

I agree with you.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnthonyDiNome0

you can reply to an impossible question with an impossible answer


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erated8

I Interpreted "The Impossible Question" As A Question That Was Thought To Have No Answer, Although Perhaps There Is An Answer, And The Speaker Has Discovered It.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Teresinha

I am loving these comments!!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnaVrbaski

Is it not "impossible demands"? It made more sense to me.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sedona2007

"alla domanda" is singular, not plural. So it can't be "demands".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MihaiTalos

Cos'è una donna ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EdithA.Tressl

Why should " I answer to the impossible question" be wrong? After all there is "alla" and that translates to "to the" , is also top suggestion in the dropdown. ????


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PATRICKPIZ1

'rispondere' requires some form of the preposition 'a' in Italian, as 'respond' requires 'to'; but 'answer' when used as a synonym of 'respond' doesn't need the 'to'. in fact, to 'answer to' has a completely different meaning. (see below)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EdithA.Tressl

PATRICKPIZ 1 - Reading my post one year later I instantly felt that my answer --- "I answer to the impossible question" was not feeling right! It should of course be ---- "I answer the impossible question" without the "to". But using "respond" it has to have the "to" ---- "I respond to the impossible question". This is a fine difference and not quite easy for a non English native. Thanks again for your effort to enlighten me. :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sasan685581

How come "I answer to the impossible question" is marked wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PATRICKPIZ1

'to answer to' doesn't mean 'respond to' in English. it means 'to acknowledge the authority of'. "I answer to a higher power." "I only answer to the president."

also, 'answer' means 'respond' or 'reply' and, of course, is correct here even if you don't know the 'correct answer (noun)'.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Seiryuu

Does "rispondere" work on an indirect object? Does it need the "a" instead of just "la domanda impossibile?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Erated8

I Think Without The "A" It'd Mean Something More Like "My Answer Is The Impossible Question".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KJR3113

"Alla" translates to the BUT not accepted. Go DL


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KJR3113

I was marked wrong for "I rispond to the impossible question" August 28, 2020. Why?? (PS the sentence is stupid)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/joycef124

42 is the answer to the impossible question (hitch hiker guide to the galaxy)

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