"Do alligators lay eggs?"
Translation:Ĉu aligatoroj demetas ovojn?
The hover-text gave me both metas and demetas as possible options for lay. I chose to write "Cxu aligatoroj metas ovojn?" but it marked my answer as wrong. Is there a subtle difference in meaning between metas and demetas that I'm missing?
meti is to put or lay something somewhere, but for "lay eggs", it's not so much "take an egg and put it somewhere" (the general meaning of "lay") but "bring out an egg that you are carrying and let it fall into a safe place" or so - kind of a specialised notion. Esperanto usually uses "demeti" for this.
Krause (Esperanto-German one-way -- which I'd forgotten I had) lists "demeti ovojn" as an example. I found no examples of it being used that way in the tekstaro. On the other hand, there are many examples of "meti" being used in this way. I've come to the conclusion that both are correct.
Isn't there a verb for laying eggs? Like ovas, ovoas, ovojas? (Sorry, I don't know a lot about derivation)
Aligatoroj is the subject of the verb in this sentence -- they're the ones doing the action (laying the eggs).
Subjects don't take the accusative case with the ending -n.
I got this as multiple choice, and if I had not I would have gotten it wrong. I would have chosen Cxu aligatoroj metas ovojn?
I checked Reta Vortaro on this and demeti is what I thought it was, to put away: forigi de sia loko. (To remove from one's location). The example sentences given would best be translated as : to put away a garment, to take a ring off one's finger, and willingly lay down my life.
I'm just pondering here. I still think meti ovon works best for to lay an egg but I've not really learned this vocabulary in this context.
Still I'm glad this was multiple guess for me, beause I'm testing out of this section and I want to reserve my strikes for careless errors :-)
PIV has for demeti 1: "meti flanken tion, kion oni havis sur si: demeti la ĉapelonB; ili demetis de si siajn dimanĉajn vestojnZ; demeti ringon de sia fingro; demeti la ankron; (analoge) demeti ovon." (emphasis mine).
("To put aside something which one has on oneself: take off one's hat; they took off their Sunday clothes; to take a ring off from one's finger; cast the anchor; (by analogy) to lay eggs")