"La belaj viro kaj virino dancas malrapide."

Translation:The good-looking man and woman dance slowly.

May 28, 2015

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Wow, interesting - I was just wondering why Esperanto pluralizes adjectives, and this seems like an excellent example. Using the singular "bela" would cause the adjective to apply only to the man, which isn't possible in English without adding more words or accepting some (possibly artful, I suppose) ambiguity. Neat!

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Well, I wouldn't say that's the reason for it (or the only reason, if it is indeed a factor), but it is a nice perk.


Would singular form bela also be correct? Many languages would allow that.


Yeah, but that would mean that only the man is pretty. :-)


I think this would be translated: The beautiful man and a woman are dancing slowly


Is bela used for handsome too or is there another word for that.


I'm not sure... I hope a native Esperanto speaker can answer your question.


There are few native esperanto speakers, so that is unlikely. However, I can confirm that bela means 'handsome', 'beautiful', 'pretty'... But really, bela means bela, no need to distinguish.


Esperanto is an artificial language bro.


Here's the thing. In English, handsome means less "pretty in a masculine way" and more "clean, well put-together, neat-looking etc." Many people just use it as the former anyways. Bela means (from my understanding) good-looking. So technically, yes, you could use it for such, if you find a cleanly look to be pleasant to look upon.


I don't think this is true.

These are the first two definitions of "handsome" in dictionary dot com

  • having an attractive, well-proportioned, and imposing appearance suggestive of health and strength; good-looking:
  • having pleasing proportions, relationships, or arrangements, as of shapes, forms, or colors; attractive:

Ronaldo623 was almost certainly asking whether men can be called belaj - and the answer is yes. In English, however, calling a man "pretty" would generally not be appreciated.

And yes, I know you would underscore generally. Some men like being pretty. More power to them.


This was super helpful! :D


Why "belaj"? There is no plural noun in the sentence. Yes, I know a man and a woman = 2 person. But grammatically both are in singular numbers


Two single nouns joined by kaj/and are plural in both English and Esperanto.

This is reflected in the plural belaj and the plural "dance". (You don't say "he and she dances".)


Yes, but there are indeed two, hence plural, beautiful "things" ☺

sfuspvwf npj


Couldn't it be "the good-looking woman and man dance slowly" and still be the same thing? I know that viro is man and virino is woman, but does the order of the sentence matter?


Yes, the order does matter, not least because if you reverse the positions of "man" and "woman" in the sentence, the software that is used to mark our answers will think that you imagine "viro" means "woman" and "virino" means "man", and so will mark it incorrect.


Oh, okay! Thank you!


It said I was wrong for putting beautiful

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