"I do not know who he is."

Translation:Mi ne scias, kiu li estas.

May 30, 2015

11 Comments

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

Surely this is dependant on context, whether one uses scias or konas. Scias would mean that I know him, but not from personal experience, whereas konas means that I know him personally, from personal experience, ĉu ne?

May 30, 2015

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

No, you're not actually talking about him, but about your knowledge about him.

Or more linguistically speaking: The object of the sentence is not 'li' but the whole subordinate clauses. C.f.:

"Mi (ne) konas lin." or "Mi (ne) scias, kiu li estas.

July 20, 2015

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

In a previous question, it asked to translate "you don't know what to say" and accepted the translation "vi ne scias kion diri".

Why is it "kiu li estas" in this sentence instead of "kiun li estas"?

I thought if the kio/kiu are the object of "scias", then they should be in the accusative case. One works, and the other doesn't. Why not?

July 24, 2015

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

The object of "scias" are the whole subordinate clauses "kiu li estas" and "kion diri" respectively.

In the clause "kiu li estas" 'kiu' and 'li' are both nominative since they are linked via the copula 'estas'. In "kion diri" 'kion' is in the accusative because it is the object of 'diri'.

I hope that explanation helps!?

July 24, 2015

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

Thanks Tareberon. I don't know what a "nominative" or "copula" are, but I think I've got my answer when you said that "Kion" is the object of "diri".

Thanks again!

July 24, 2015

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

Generally speaking, the nominative is the case of the subject, and the accusative is the case of the direct object.

In Esperanto the nominative isn't marked, while the accusative is marked with an -n

Nominative: viro, knabo, patroj, domoj
Accusative: viron, knabon, patrojn, domojn

Copula comes from Latin and means 'tie' or 'belt'. It's called that, because it ties two nouns (or a noun and an adjective) together. In Esperanto the verb 'estas' ist the copula.

Long story short: Never use the accusative with the verb 'estas'.

July 24, 2015

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

Great, I get it fully now! Thanks for the clarifications!

July 25, 2015

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

Is the comma obligatory here? I see sentences with dependent clauses like this without commas all the time in other languages but only exclusively written like this in Esperanto.

July 23, 2015

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

As far as I can tell, it is like in German: All clauses are separated with commas:

" Mi ne scias, kiu li estas."
"Ich weiß nicht, wer er ist."

July 23, 2015

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

I agree. with ActualGoat. It could be scias or konas

May 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN

No, this is about knowing facts about him. "who he is" not about knowing "him". See Tareberon above.

October 31, 2015
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