"El policía encuentra la cartera."

Translation:The police officer finds the purse.

June 29, 2015



Why not "The police finds the wallet"?

January 17, 2017


Yes I said "the police find the wallet" and it wasn't accepted.

April 17, 2018


Yes, I did the same thing. Then I realised that it was "el policía" (single masculine person), not "la policía" (the group as a single unit). I need to focus more. :-\

May 30, 2018


Good point Vanessa, your explanation is spot on...good eye..

June 10, 2018


Thanks, I wouldn't have thought of that myself

July 30, 2018


Whose side are you on? :)

October 11, 2018


¡ Good on you Vanessa !

December 31, 2018

  • 1887

el policia = the officer. But DL didn't accept wallet = cartera, and it is strange because it is correct

June 6, 2019


Why is it el policía and not la policía?

June 29, 2015


El policía = the policeman/male police officer

La policía = the policewoman/female police officer

Not all nouns ending in -a are automatically feminine, there's a ton of exceptions. El cura = priest, el planeta = planet, el problema = problem, etc.

June 29, 2015


La policia can also mean 'police force'

June 29, 2015


Or just "The police."

June 28, 2018


How come it's "the policeman" and not "the police?"

September 15, 2018


i must agree. 'the police find the wallet' is equally correct as 'the policeman finds the wallet'. it seems that duolingo intentionally misconstrue or finds an erroneous answer to frustrate the test test taker or to generate interest on this post column. i really don't like it and at times it makes me question the legitimacy of this program.

April 16, 2018


It can be frustrating when we don't understand and there is no explanation, but Duolingo is correct in this case. Sometimes the same word in Spanish can have different meanings depending on the gender. That's what they are trying to teach with this sentence.

El policía = One single police officer that is male (It doesn't mean the police in general)


However, la policía has two potential meanings:

  • The police

  • One single police officer that is female.

For more information, see:


June 28, 2018


Some of the best lessons on the site are learned when we make mistakes.

January 3, 2019


As I've said before to moderators, these types of problems would crop up less frequently if more context were supplied, e.g. by having a second sentence precede or follow the test sentence. Language is always embedded in context, and sometimes one sentence is not enough, just as an isolated word is often not enough without a sentence.

December 25, 2018


Why is policeman not the right answer?

April 29, 2018


It is, assuming you wrote "the policeman"

June 7, 2018


The police officer encounters the purse.....wrong :(

May 1, 2018


Isn't "to encounter" more like "happens to come across" whereas the meaning of "encontrar" is more like "to find"? The latter seems more appropriate to me in this context.

July 30, 2018


I think it should be accepted. Report it.

June 28, 2018


Why not "The police found the wallet"?

July 13, 2018


Because it's present

October 11, 2018


You are asking why your answer is not correct (?) Because you made two mistakes.

  • Firstly, your answer is in the past tense. Your answer must be in the present tense.

  • Secondly, the Duolingo Spanish sentence specified "el policía" (single masculine person), ― not "la policía" (the group as a single unit).

October 12, 2018


Why not police force

April 25, 2018


Because that would be la policía , not el policía. El policía is a single male police officer. La policía is police force or a single female officer

July 16, 2018


DL did not accept the word POLICE but accepted POLICE OFFICER. Is that ridiculous or not?

May 21, 2018


It's because of the gender here. El policía always means a male police officer. Police is a collective noun but el policía indicates one person.

June 28, 2018


I said the police find the purse. The correction I was give was "policeman" so police officer is an improvement. I think my original answer should be ok.

August 17, 2018


Why not, The officer finds the purse?????????????????????

October 16, 2018


The best answer is "the police officer". But you are asking Duolingo to accept "the officer". You are being vague because you did not describe the kind of officer that finds the purse.

Maybe your audience can interpret you correctly because they are aware of contextual clues that support the correct interpretation. On the hand, without contextual clues, the ambiguity of your sentence can cause your audience to misinterpret you. Someone might think you are referring to a military officer.

October 16, 2018


policeman was accepted .. me pregunto policewoman ?

December 31, 2018



La policía has two potential meanings:

  • the female police officer (policewoman)

  • the police force = the police

March 15, 2019


So, Where does "officer" come into play. If one says. "The police finds the purse," why is that not an acceptable answer?

January 19, 2019


My answer the police finds the wallet not accepted either

February 17, 2019



See the post by elizadeux in reply to MickeyAtkinson.

The Duolingo Spanish sentence specified "el policía" (single masculine person), ― not "la policía" (the group as a single unit).

February 28, 2019


can also mean a wallet

September 16, 2019


Police is the same as policeman ,

April 23, 2018


Police means the entire police force or police department. Policeman is one single member of the police force.

June 28, 2018


police, police officer are interchangeable

March 2, 2019


Why not , el cerdo encuentra la carta?

June 9, 2018


Sick of Duolingo's random ass translations. 800 days of this nonsense.

May 2, 2018


But we keep going because we are learning.....I am at over 1,000 - better than Candy Crush.

August 17, 2018
Learn Spanish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.