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  5. "Mi iras al la preĝejo dimanĉ…

"Mi iras al la preĝejo dimanĉe."

Translation:I go to the church on Sunday.

June 9, 2015



Would preĝejo cover all places of worship?


preĝejo literally means "pray place" (preĝ-ejo), so I would say yes! If you need to be more specific about the religion, there are words like "kirko" (a church), "moskeo" (mosque), "sinagogo" (synagogue) or you simply add an adjective: kristana preĝejo, islamana preĝejo, juda preĝejo, budhana preĝejo, hinduisma preĝejo, ...


The entry in the Vortaro.net dictionary confrims this. It's defined as "a building in which one prays and holds religious services," and it lists the following as examples of preĝejoj:

  • baziliko (basilica)
  • kapelo (chapel)
  • katedralo (cathedral)
  • kirko (church)
  • lamaejo (a type of Buddhist monastery)
  • moskeo (mosque)
  • pagodo (pagoda)
  • sinagogo (synagogue)
  • templo (temple)
  • altaĵo (apparently a word used in Biblic context for a collection of pagan shrines arranged on a mountaintop)

So basically any place of worship is a preĝejo. Although it lists a second definition of the word, which is "kristana preĝejo", implying it's sometimes also used to refer to christian churches specifically.


If one wants to get really technical about it, pregxejo would more accurately and literally translate to 'oratory' in English which can refer to places of prayer within one's home, a small chapel, or to a specific class of church frequented by Catholics.


Thank you. I really wish duolingo would consider this level of accuracy when teaching a language.


The affixes usually create a very generic word, which is often used with a customary meaning.

So "malsanulejo" (unhealthy-person-place) usually means "hospital", but it could be a field hospital, an infirmary, a sanitarium, etc.


121 likes ... and more or less "not quite right."

For one example - the word kirko is essential simply not used.


"i go to the temple on sunday" should be considered correct. a temple is a generic term for a place of worship in many religions whereas a church is generally associated with christianity.


I've reported it. In the future, click on "Report a Problem" instead of "Discuss sentence".


Shouldn't it be iros instead of iras? If it was iras then it would already be Sunday and saying dimanĉe is redundant.

[deactivated user]

    I think in this example the person is speaking in a general sense. It's the difference between "I go to church on sundays" and "I will go to church on sunday". In the former, the verb is in present tense ("go" rather than "will go") and so it's the same in Esperanto ("iras" instead of "iros")


    The issue I'm running into recurrently here is "I go to church" as a general statement versus "I am going to church" as an act that is happening in the present is not addressed by Duolingo's Esperanto course, as it seems to claim has the same wording in Esperanto: "Mi iras al preĝejo." You would be right about iros, if as you said the translation was supposed to be the general statement, but it's been shown consistently in Duolingo that there hasn't been any distinction between general vs specific statements with verbs. Thus far it has not been described in the course a clear workaround, either. So if anybody could help shed light on this, I'd be more than grateful.


    Well, I would say, then, that if you have a case where you have present tense, but still have something like dimanĉe there, it would have to be the general statement, or you would have the issue you pointed out in your original post here.

    Also, I think it's correct that there is no such distinction in Esperanto. I think most of the time you could get by with context, or by making it explicit in another way if need be (like saying "ĉiudimanĉe" versus "ĉi-dimanĉe").

    By the way, don't forget the "la" in the Esperanto sentence (not necessary in English but it is, I think, in Esperanto): "Mi iras al la preĝejo."


    Adverbs like dimanĉe unfortunately don't clarify the context, except where it is a colloquial translation from English as in this case; this specific sentence implies a general statement because of the common English phrase equivalent.

    The use of ĉi and ĉiu is partly something I was looking for, hoping a user with more familiarity with Esperanto could suggest something of the sort, some form of speaking that could clarify meaning. I don't suppose ĉi and ĉiu are very frequently used?

    I did notice I'd forgotten 'la' after posting, but thank you anyway.


    I'm not sure if I understand the first paragraph of your post. In Esperanto, wouldn't you say "iros" if it was the specific case? Unless it was already Sunday, and then you would expect the person to say "hodiaŭ" instead (and actually it still might be the -os ending depending on whether they're going right then or later on the day). Therefore given that you have "iras", it seems to be suggestive of the general case.

    Yes, you would need someone with more familiarity with Esperanto to tell you how frequently ĉi and ĉiu are used as prefixes. This sort of thing seems tricky to look up in my regular source for answering such a question (Tekstaro), as you're more likely just to find the word "ĉiu" by itself (and conjugations thereof).

    Oh, you can look for "ĉi-" and have it respect the hyphen, though. 852 hits. A lot of "ĉi-tie" and such (apparently an alternative spelling to just "ĉi tie"), but also "ĉi-lasta", "ĉi-supre", "ĉi-vespere", "ĉi-foje", "ĉi-vintre", "ĉi-parto", etc.


    Right, I understand that ambiguity (the same exists in, for example, Dutch), but I still don't quite see what you meant when you said that "dimanĉe" did not clarify the context here.

    I'll keep using Dutch as an example since it's my native language and I'm familiar with it. In Dutch, if we want to make sure it's understood as the general tense, we have to add the Dutch equivalent of a word like "always" or "typically". Or it might be clear from context, like when you said, "When I leave work, I walk home through the park". (You can't tell in English because you would say "I am walking" anyway for the specific case, but you can probably imagine that if there was such an ambiguity, the "when I leave work" part implies a general case interpretation even in a language like Dutch.) I guess the same would be true of Esperanto. Some languages (like English) do it with a difference in conjugation; others then do it just with compositional semantics and/or context.

    Maybe it's because I'm used to the Dutch language that I have no great problem with this. I don't think it really lessens Esperanto's potential, anymore than it means Dutch potential to express things is lesser than that of English.


    You are correct, in how you understand that this Esperanto sentence should imply a general case instead of specific, as if it were specific, the inclusion of 'dimanĉe' would make less sense than 'hodiaŭ'. The issue, however, is that while there are ways to modify words and include specific contexts in speech, most everyday eo language does not take the effort to make the distinction, as far as I know. Thus, "Mi kuiras kokaĵon por miaj amikoj" means either 'I cook food for my friends' or 'I am cooking food for my friends', which in English means either as a general behavior that occurs in any frequency and does not specify in-the-moment activity, and a specific behavior that is actually occurring presently and as a singular act, respectively.

    Logically, present tense verbs would equate to the latter interpretation, of something occurring at the moment of speaking, similar to how the past and future tenses behave. Yet, there seems to be no way of describing 'general tense' outside of present tense in Esperanto, which leads into the confusion at hand. I believe -ant endings describe progressive tense? Which would work as a clarification to describe specific present tense, but certainly not as a replacement for the wide use of -as endings for specific present tense. Outside of this there seems to be no precedent set for describing the 'general tense'.

    This seems to bother me more than anybody else, which I can't really explain why, as I would find it very strange if simply nobody else has noticed this concern. Aside from bringing it to light using long messages in an insignificant comment board, I am not sure what to do about it if there truly is no existing solution. I'd rather not be disillusioned through lessened faith in the potential for such a great constructed language, though; maybe a solution will come to light somewhere, at some point, and be accepted by the community.


    Dimanĉe does imply context, because we are used to it implying context from regular use in our respective languages. Technically, it shouldn't, though, because adverbs don't explicitly define this context and time-related terms are not defined separately from other words as they are not all adverbs or in their own group of some sort. In technicality, dimanĉe does not actually decide whether its containing sentence is general or specific, but we conclude that it should be the former as to us, it wouldn't make sense otherwise. Hence, if the sentence were supposed to be specific, saying 'dimanĉe' would seem redundant. That is why dimanĉe is not a good case for the discussion at hand, as it was breeding confusion, and is why I claimed that it does not (technically) clarify the context.


    I'm still not sure if I understand entirely; if you had a better example, perhaps that would make it clearer for me. At any rate, what you describe as the non-technical consideration, whereby the sentence would not make sense in the specific reading with the adverb in question, that is indeed what I had in mind.

    Wait, you were saying it wouldn't make sense in the general reading... I actually think it wouldn't work in the specific reading (with a present tense verb). Yep, definitely confused now.


    I did mix up latter and former, and general and specific in my last comment. My bad. Edited to fix.


    Eo has continuous tenses (esti+participle) but tends to avoid using compound tenses, preferring the simple tenses + adverbs when you need to be more precise. As Eo has six participles compared to the English two it can be difficult to know which to use (Kalocsay wrote a 200-page book on the compound tenses).

    The suffix "-ad-" (or adverb "ade" ) prolonged, repeated or habitual action, if that helps.

    [deactivated user]

      Can some one explain why "I go to the church on Sunday" would be rejected? I understand that "Church" is considered an entity but there are a number of ways you could be referring to the building that is a church as opposed to the organisation.


      it's correct now


      En la preĝejo Oomoto, mi preĝas al Sankta Zamenhof.


      The Oomoto affirmation of Zamenhof's godhood is stated, in Esperanto, as follows: …La spirito de Zamenhof eĉ nun daŭre agadas kiel misiisto de la anĝela regno; do, lia spirito estis apoteozita en la kapeleto Senrej-ŝa


      Is this inherently different from "I go to church on Sunday," which is what would probably be said in English? In other words, can the article be dropped?

      [deactivated user]

        I would say that it is different because in the English sentence there is an implied connection between the speaker and the church, you can make the assumption it is the church they usually go to on a Sunday. In Esperanto, that implication does not exist and so it is the difference between saying "I go to THE church" (explicit connection) and "I go to A church" (no connection; it could be any church, or indeed a different one each time).


        I would agree more or less, but I think that "Mi iras al la preĝejo" is like English "I go to church" as well, i.e. without any article. "Mi iras al preĝejo" would probably indeed be like English "I go to a church", like you said. At least, it would be like this if it's comparable to Dutch and similar languages, and I find that often times, Esperanto is.

        [deactivated user]

          Yeah, that's the point I'm making, in english the article is implied and is therefore optional, whereas in esperanto it is compulsory to confer the same meaning, without the article the meaning is different.


          Okay, cool—your comment did seem very close to how I saw it, but I guess it was exactly that way. Since you compared it to English with "the" rather than English without any article, though, I wasn't entirely sure. At any rate, good.


          I think English allows this, but as far as I know Esperanto does not.


          Cxu vi timas? Iru pregxejon!


          Mi amas Jesuon.


          Question, when using "iras," I may have been under the wrong impression, though is using "al" after iras is optional?

          • 2683

          No, I don't think so.

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