"Please pour milk into my coffee."

Translation:Bonvolu verŝi lakton en mian kafon.

May 30, 2015

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Why do we need accusative after the preposition "en"? I can't remember having done that before.


The accusative is used after some prepositions to show that something is going in a certain direction. You would say "mi estas en domo" for "I'm in the house", because you're not moving in a direction, but "mi iras en domon" for "I go into the house".

In this sentence, the milk is being poured into something else (the coffee), so you're expressing a direction.


Thank you. I've got some reading to do on the difference between in and into in English, I've never quite gotten it.


I don't know if this will help, but the -n is used in cases like this to express movement (as sheldolina said), so, for instance, "Mi marŝas en la domo" would be "I walk in the house" (I am already inside the house, and I'm walking around), but "Mi marŝas en la domon" would be "I walk into the house" (I am outside the house and go inside).

So "Verŝi lakton en mia kafo" (no -n) would imply, I guess, that you wanted the person to sit in your coffee (presumably you have either a very big cup or a very small friend) and pour the milk from there.


As others have commented, 'in' in English is stationary whereas 'into' is movement. I am in the room (stationary). But I go into the room (movement). The same with 'on' and 'onto'. The vase is on the table (stationary). But I put the vase onto the table (I am moving the vase from somewhere else onto the table (movement).


I would say that 'into' and 'onto' more describe a change of state. You can move 'in' a house as long as you remain 'in' the house, but you move 'into' a house from somewhere other than 'in' it. So 'in' doesn't necessarily imply being stationary.


"versxi" is in the infinitive form because the "pour" in English is an implied infinitive of "Please TO pour".

So, "Bonvolu" is in the imperative/request form. "versxi" is in the infinitive. And there is no verb with a temporal conjugation (ending in "as", "is", or "os").

Would the translation of "Pour milk into my coffee" (a command, instead of a request) instead be "VersxU lakton en mian kafon." ?


(The English does not imply infinitive form - pour is already the "bare infinitive". We cannot put please into imperative form in English as you can in Esperanto.- I stand corrected! Please can be an intransitive verb as well as a transitive form and the imperative form would look just like the adverb. See how the Esperanto endings are so much clearer than the English.) There is only one conjugated form and the next must be in infinitive form.

You can however also conjugate "pour" in Esperanto and leave "please" in adverbial form: "Verŝu lakton en mian kafon bonvole."

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English certainly does use the bare infinitive in this position: Please be careful.


The imperative form (does look like) does use the bare infinitive, but your example is of the imperative. (Do we still call it the bare infinitive if it is being used as the imperative? Is it still timeless? Here is why I separate it in my mind. When you give a command - it is to be done in the future, hopefully soon.) Now you could say "Do be careful!" and that "be" would be an example of the bare infinitive with "do" conjugated as the imperative. http://conjugator.reverso.net/conjugation-english-verb-to%20be.html


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I'm pretty sure the "be" of "Be careful" and "Do be careful" are the same, the only difference being the "do", which is just there as an emphatic.


"Do" is the conjugated part of the verb. "I do play." "He does play." Notice how the word "do" changes to "does". It is used emphatically, but it is considered an auxiliary verb. The verb after it is always the bare infinitive. So, why do you think this is different in the imperative? Notice you are right that the imperatives do use the bare infinitive form: "Play carefully" So of course "Be careful" and "Do be careful" has the same bare infinitive form "be" in it for different reasons: "to do" and "to be" and "to play" without "to". "Do it!" "Do what?" "Be careful!" "I won't." "Do be careful!" This is the most amazing auxiliary verb ever !

In the 1st person plural imperative we always say "Let's" which stands for "let us" plus a following bare infinitive, because again "let" is an auxiliary verb. "let" itself is the bare infinitive of "to let" which is the form used for the imperative.

Not all auxiliary verbs are followed by the bare infinitive, but all the modal verbs are followed by the bare infinitive. "I can play.", "I shall play.", "I will play.", "I should be.", "I could be.", "I must be." Then there are the auxiliary verbs which help create tenses. "I have played." "I have been playing." in which "have is the conjugated form and the rest seem to be past participles with present participles added on for continuous forms. To have and to be are used as auxiliary verbs in this way. "I am playing.", "I had been playing."

There will always be only one verb form that is conjugated. The rest will be in an unchanging form such as an infinitive, bare infinitive, a past participle or a present participle.

If I haven't forgotten any, the other verbs can take the full infinitive. "I want to play.", "I like to play."

When it is not creating tenses by using participles, even "to have" takes a full infinitive after it for a particular meaning: "I have to study." If you see "have" used as an imperative form though, it won't usually have another verb after it, but you can get around that too. "Have fun!" and "Have another cookie!", but you can say "Have fun swimming!" or "Have fun trying to swim!"

I take it back. "Do" is an awesome auxiliary verb, but "have" wins as it is even more versatile.

I guess I never considered the bare infinitive to be the same thing as the infinitive that uses "to". For me it is a separate form from the full infinitive. So, it did not make sense for someone to say that the bare infinitive implied the full infinitive. They are both forms of the infinitive each in their own right, in the sense that they are both timeless non-conjugated forms of the verb.

Now "please" can be a verb or an adverb in English. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/please Moreover, the verb comes in an intransitive form as well as a transitive form. So, I believe now that it is impossible to tell if "Please pour the milk into the coffee." is not using "please" as a verb after all since the imperative form is the bare infinitive which will look exactly like the adverb and although in archaic times Dickens had "please to enter the carriage" now we would simply say "please enter ...." Boy! It sure took me long enough to get to the same place as you! Thank you for being so patient with me!


To aid recollection that versxi means "to pour," what is its etymology?

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According to Wiktionary, "verŝi" comes from the German "verschütten".

The other "to pour", which is for non-liquids, also comes from German: "schütten"


Why can't I say "en LA mian kafon"?


I guess the short answer is that that would be like saying "in the my coffee". As for parsing that phrase to explain why that is grammatically incorrect, I'll leave that to someone else.


Why isn't is versxu?


Because "bonvolu" is already in the imperative, and you can't have both. If you wanted to use "verŝu", you could rewrite the sentence into something like, "Verŝu lakton en mian kafon, mi petas."

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