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"Ĉu vi povas helpi min, mi petas?"

Translation:Can you help me, please?

May 28, 2015



Is this the same as "bonvolu helpi min?"


'Bonvolu helpi min' is 'please help me.' Certainly, they could be used in similar situations. Ĉu vi povus helpi min seems slightly more polite to me, since it allows for the possibility of the person being unable to help.


Ok, thanks. So "bonvolu..." and "...mi petas" are interchangeable?


basically yes. but the meaning is slightly different. literally it says:

mi petas vin = I beg you

bonvolu = have good will (meaning please)


So then peti shares the same root as the Spanish pedir and the English "to petition"?


And usually, I think, "bonvolu" is at the beginning of a sentence and "mi petas" is at the end.


How are we supposed to know when "mi petas" translates to "I beg" vs "I ask"?


A comment above mentions that peti might better be thought of as "to petition", which seems to capture the meaning in this example more precisely than "to beg" or "to ask." If you're specifically asking a question, then you would probably want to use the verb demandi


Could i say Cxu vi povas helpi min , pardonpetas


No. "Pardonpetas" is not a complete sentence - and you're asking - not asking for someone to pardon you.


I said "can you help me please, I beg" and it was wrong... But in the previous question mi petas was "i beg" This time it means i ask!


Best to think of the phrase "mi petas" as meaning "please" - unless it's part of a larger sentence. "I beg" strikes me as an odd translation in any context.


You could use either "please" or "I beg". You have used both in your answer.


can i just drop the mi, in mi petas, it seems unnecessary. cu vi povas helpi min, petas or cu vi povas helpi min, bonvulo


Why is helpi in infinitive and not present tense?


You can only have one main verb per clause. It's the main verb that shows the tense. In this case, the main verb is "povas."

It's the same in English. You say "he helps me" - but you don't say "He can helps me" or "he is able to is helping me."


Is this wrong from being translated from English where can you help is an acceptable variation of please help


Why is Ĉu in this question? There is no "do" or "are" in the translation, as well povas is "can". So shouldn't it go more like, "Povas vi helpi min, mi petas?" ?


Ĉu does not mean "do" or "are."

What Ĉu does is form a closed question from a statement. This word does the same thing for Esperanto that changing word order does in English.

  • Vi havas pomon. You have an apple.
  • Ĉu vi havas pomon. Have you an apple?
  • Mi povas fari tion. I can do that.
  • Ĉu mi povas fari tion? Can I do that?
  • Vi estas mia amiko. You are my friend.
  • Ĉu vi estas mia amiko? Are you my friend?


I thought Esperanto would be easier ... :(


Did you need something clarified?


Thank you Salivanto,your explanation above was perfect. As I said when I start to learn Esperanto I thought it would be easier,but after reading this entire thread proved I was wrong. It´s not easy. But thanks.


I remember when I enrolled in German 101. I didn't believe that adults could learn a second language at all. Anything is easy compared to impossible. :-)

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