"La viron kisas la virino."

Translation:The woman kisses the man.

3 years ago

51 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/ChristianofPeace

Oh! They're getting tricky.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Conan
Conan
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Indeed. Reminds me of the word order in German xD

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/amuzulo
amuzulo
Mod
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I just couldn't figure out a better way to illustrate this.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lazar.ljubenovic
lazar.ljubenovic
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I like it when the questions are easy but tricky and make you pay attention to details!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Svedalaren

Good example of how you can change the word order.

3 years ago

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/milodutch

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CaveatEmptor

How very German!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/milodutch

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChuckWalter

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/t0f0b0

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

Dankon!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/philhansonduo

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

3 years ago

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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.

3 years ago

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Xanderificus
Xanderificus
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I think of this as being more like "The man is kissed by the woman".

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Angeliczz

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/notquitethere

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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...").

3 years ago

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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").

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BastouXII
BastouXII
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Great! I've been studying Esperanto for less than a month and I guessed all but one word!

Thanks for your explanation!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lazar.ljubenovic
lazar.ljubenovic
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Only the word order changed, it's not passive.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JerryChandra
JerryChandra
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nope i tried that it doesnt work

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Vedney
Vedney
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I'm an idiot and lazy.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Casasduas
Casasduas
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Why is it "la viron" and not "la viro"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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:

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Casasduas
Casasduas
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Awesome answer, didn't get the image, but made me feel empowered.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CaveatEmptor

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

3 years ago

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/blessedwhitney

That was mean!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/amuzulo
amuzulo
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We course contributors work on being as mean as possible to our students. ;)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Tatonka71
Tatonka71
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is it okay to say "La virino kisas la viron"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/langlearnerZeke

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/femganger
femganger
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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.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Tatonka71
Tatonka71
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Ok, thank you. I thought so! :D

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/adromu
adromu
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In spanish we don't have problem: "A el hombre besa la mujer" or "Al hombre besa la mujer" :)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/langlearnerZeke

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

3 years ago

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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.

3 years ago

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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/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

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/worldtraveler96

This reminds me so much of latin with the accusative.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/bnbnb2
bnbnb2
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So, Esperato is second-verb language as german?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/femganger
femganger
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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.

3 years ago
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