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When does one use "ĉu", and what exactly does it mean?

I'm struggling like hell in the questions lesson because I cannot for the life of me figure out how to use ĉu and ĉi correctly, or when they're even supposed to be used.

There's a ton of smart people on this forum, could one of you please try explaining it to me?

May 31, 2015



ĉu is for building questions when their answers are yes or no.


"do you close the door ?" can be answered by yes or no so it takes a ĉu : "ĉu vi fermas la pordon ?"

"When will he come?" can't be answered by yes or no, so it doesn't takes a "ĉu" : kiam li venos ?


What about ĉi? There's a sentence in the lesson, "Ĉi tiuj aŭtoj estas bonaj." and I can't figure out why ĉi is there or what it means. I find the sentence perfectly understandable without it, so I have no idea what it adds to the sentence.


"I copy paste the best explanation I have :


The particle ĉi can be added to give a feeling of proximity to the speaker; the particle for can also be added (though this is less often done) to show distance from the speaker. Traditionally, ĉi is usually placed immediately before the T- word to which it is attached; often, it is placed immediately after. This is not, however, absolutely necessary.


<pre> tiu libro = that book ĉi tiu libro = this book (most common usage). tiu ĉi libro = this book tiu libro ĉi = this book (unusual usage) tiu libro for = yonder book tiam = then ĉi tiam = now (synonym of ) tiam ĉi = now tiam for = distant in time (uncommon usage) </pre>


In my native language there is no difference between that and this so I was also confused at the beginning


Tre helpema klarigo, dankon!


do you know how to use that same word in portuguese ? maybe some native could explain :D


The word means “if” or “whether” in English. In German the translation is “ob” and in Russian “ли”.

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