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  5. "La viron kisas la virino."

"La viron kisas la virino."

Translation:The woman kisses the man.

May 28, 2015

52 Comments


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

Oh! They're getting tricky.

May 28, 2015

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

Indeed. Reminds me of the word order in German xD

June 1, 2015

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

I just couldn't figure out a better way to illustrate this.

July 6, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lazar.ljubenovic

I like it when the questions are easy but tricky and make you pay attention to details!

May 28, 2015

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

Good example of how you can change the word order.

May 29, 2015

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

Indeed

July 19, 2015

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

Shouldn't this be the other way around? "The man kisses the woman."

May 28, 2015

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

Word order in Esperanto generally follows a certain pattern, but it doesn't actually matter because you can tell what's the actual subject, verb, etc. based off what the endings are. So this is "the woman kisses the man" and not the other way around because "viron" has the accusative ending on it (the -n), showing it's the object and not the subject. Virino has an -o at the end, showing that it's the subject of the sentence.

May 28, 2015

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

How very German!

May 30, 2015

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

You're everywhere

October 10, 2019

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

Ooooh, I didn't know that. Thank you for the explanation!

May 28, 2015

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

There are notes on every lesson, you can see them on a computer. They are very helpful!

June 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/t0f0b0

Thank you for your explanation! Here's a lingot!

Dankon!

June 22, 2015

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

Even if the word order doesn't matter, it would read better as, "La virino kisas la viron." Right?

June 8, 2015

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

You're right that "La viro kisas la virinon." is the more natural word order. We just wanted to be sure to demonstrate Esperanto's free word order with at least one example sentence.

July 6, 2015

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

It would read better to a native English speaker, but perhaps not to a native German speaker. This is why the accusative -n was added, so that those with different native tongues can still use the same word order.

June 11, 2015

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

Actually, some Esperanto courses put much more emphasis on non-Anglo word order.

Lernu.com starts moving the subject and object around right after they introduce sufficient vocabulary to construct a sentence. Lernu makes it seem like it is strictly a matter of preference in Esperanto. For them, one form is as common as another. I was surprised to see so much subject/verb/object structure in Duo lessons.

It certainly makes it a lot easier for this Anglo to deal with.

July 6, 2015

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

I think of this as being more like "The man is kissed by the woman".

June 13, 2015

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

"The man is kissed by the woman" does not work because that would be using the passive voice, in which the man would become the subject, and the woman would become the "prepositional object." However, in the sentence "la viron kisas la virino" the woman is the subject, and she is actively kissing the man, who is the direct object.

"The woman kisses the man."

  • Woman = subject
  • Man = direct object

"The man is kissed [by the woman]."

  • Man = subject
  • Woman = prepositional object

It might seem like hair-splitting right now, but its importance will be clearer later on.

June 13, 2015

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

So, is this how you do passive voice, or are they just screwing with us?

May 29, 2015

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

Yeah I'd say so. It's effectively "the man is kissed by the woman".

May 30, 2015

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

It is not passive.

The word order changed, but the woman (the subject) is still actively kissing the man (the direct object). The instance of the direct object taking the "n" ending (e.g. viron) serves to make the word order of a sentence more free-form without confusing anyone as to which is the subject and which is the direct object.

If it were passive, the man would become the subject (e.g. "The man is kissed...").

June 2, 2015

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

How would you make it passive to mean "the man is kissed by the woman" then? Would it be La viro estas kisado da la virino?

June 9, 2015

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

Passive version would be thus:

"La viro estas kisita de la virino."

"The man is kissed by the woman."

NOTE for this passive construction:

  • Both the subject (man) and the prepositional object (woman) are in nominative case (i.e. both take the "O" ending: viro, virino).

  • Action is in the present, and is completed (i.e. "is kissed," as opposed to "is being kissed").

June 14, 2015

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

Great! I've been studying Esperanto for less than a month and I guessed all but one word!

Thanks for your explanation!

June 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lazar.ljubenovic

Only the word order changed, it's not passive.

June 2, 2015

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

nope i tried that it doesnt work

June 3, 2015

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

I'm an idiot and lazy.

June 1, 2015

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

Why is it "la viron" and not "la viro"?

June 3, 2015

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

Because when a noun becomes the direct object (the object which receives the action of the verb), you add an "n" to the end of it.

One reason this is done is that it allows you to change the word order of a sentence without confusing the subject with the direct object.

This sentence can therefore be written either of two ways:

  • La virino kisas la viron.

  • La viron kisas la virino.

Both of them translate to "The woman kisses the man.

In the future, please browse the thread for answers to your question before asking, since it is likely to have already been answered.

One last thing:

June 4, 2015

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

Awesome answer, didn't get the image, but made me feel empowered.

June 5, 2015

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

That, my friend, is Leslie Nielsen in the movie Airplane.

June 10, 2015

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

Casasduas

This has already been answered on this page. It is an important feature of Esperanto so you should probably read the explanations provided here.

June 3, 2015

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

That was mean!

June 4, 2015

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

We course contributors work on being as mean as possible to our students. ;)

July 6, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tatonka71

is it okay to say "La virino kisas la viron"?

May 29, 2015

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

Yes. La virino kisas la viron is also correct. Word order is often changed from what we think of as correct in English to give emphasis, or for effect. Also to aid the meaning or rhythm of poetry.

May 29, 2015

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

So it's kind of like saying "it's the MAN that the woman kisses" in English? That's what I'm understanding.

May 30, 2015

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

Yes, kind of. I assume that this is influenced by Germanic languages. In German, you can theoratically put any object at the beginning, since their ending describes the case (Nominative, Accusative, Genitive or Dative), the role they play in the sentence. Be happy Esperanto only has 2, AFAIK.

May 30, 2015

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

Seems inefficient because you have to read the entire sentence to know what is happening to the subject at the very beginning. Like you say, "Oh snap" the man is the subject, what's going on with him?

June 8, 2015

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

Whether it feels inefficient or not depends which language you come from. What's more important, object or subject? It's subjective, no pun intended.

July 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cbooze1017

That may not technically be a perfect translation but I think that's a good way of thinking about it, at least for us English speakers.

June 23, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tatonka71

Ok, thank you. I thought so! :D

May 29, 2015

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

In spanish we don't have problem: "A el hombre besa la mujer" or "Al hombre besa la mujer" :)

May 29, 2015

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

You can say that in Spanish? Does it sound weird to Spanish speakers?

May 30, 2015

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

Is weird, but grammatically it's correct. it is more usual in poetry, proverbs, etc. http://www.refranerocastellano.com/index.html

May 30, 2015

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

In English, for example Shakespear, you see all sorts of weird word orders used, like "Killed I the bear, your house to save" for "I killed the bear to save your house" Poetic language can be really weird sometimes in a lot of languages.

May 31, 2015

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

Some poetic licence but also a reflection of the closeness to the Teutonic roots of English. As time passed and Latinate structures became dominant, such arrangements now seem very unusual.

In Shakespear's time such patterns were not as attention grabbing as they are now. Not typical speech, but with more gravitas because of it's invocation of tradition.

June 3, 2015

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

Yeah. Like how in most Germanic languages you would say "If I eat it, then must you tell him" rather than the Modern English "If I eat it, then you must tell him" Kinda weird that we modern English speakers think old language sounds "fancy" but to them it sounded normal

June 3, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/worldtraveler96

This reminds me so much of latin with the accusative.

June 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bnbnb2

So, Esperato is second-verb language as german?

June 12, 2015

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

You can do it in the order that feels most comfortable to you. The point of having an accusative case in Esperanto is so that the word order is flexible, making is more accessible for people with different native languages.

July 5, 2015
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