Είναι προτιμότερο να μην το κάνετε αυτό

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dukaine

Senior Member
English - American
I was wondering why both το and αυτό are in the sentence. It seems redundant. Is it just for emphasis?


Αν ξυπνάτε με τον ήχο του ρολογιού σας και ειδικά με τον ήχο που μοιάζει σαν συναγερμός, θα μπείτε σίγουρα στον πειρασμό να πατήσετε το κουμπί για να κλείσει αυτός ο εκνευριστικός ήχος από το ξυπνητήρι.

Είναι προτιμότερο να μην το κάνετε αυτό.

Thanks!
 
  • Tr05

    Senior Member
    Greek - Greece
    Hello.
    Please remember that demonstrative pronouns in Greek are formed by obligatorily combining the respective 3rd person pronoun with the respective article of the noun that follows/is implied: "Αυτός ο...", "Αυτή η..." etc

    Essentially, it's the difference between

    Don't do it. (=Μην το κάνετε)
    -and-
    Don't do that.* (=Μην το κάνετε αυτό)



    *Keep in mind that the literal translation in Greek is "Don't do this". The thing is that English uses "that" more often than Greek does. In Greek, "that" (=εκείν@) is usually reserved for those cases where either
    1) something from the past is mentioned ("Remember that day/time/thing...) or
    2) for pointing to something in the distance

    The main difference is that English speakers may use "that" to refer to things that have been mentioned/revealed even half a second ago ("Why do you say that", "Don't do that")

    Not in Greek. In your sentence, "αυτό" refers to the thing that has just been mentioned in the sentence above, so it would be incorrect to use the Greek word for "that" (=εκείν@). That's why the literal translation in Greek would be "Don't do this" .
     
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    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    Hi,
    Είναι προτιμότερο να μην το κάνετε αυτό. I was wondering why both το and αυτό are in the sentence. It seems redundant. Is it just for emphasis?
    Trying to eliminate your puzzlement why both το and αυτό are used in the same sentence, let me say that, of course, αυτό is adding a sort of emphasis, but it is an absolutely normal structure, as the phrase Είναι προτιμότερο να μην το κάνετε alone would sound rather somewhat tailless. Το is the third person neuter of the personal pronoun (the weak form) and is the object of the verb να μην κάνετε, whereas αυτό is the neuter of the demonstrative pronoun αυτός, αυτή, αυτό used to show either a person or thing close to us or something which we mentioned a few moments / minutes ago. In our case, the period Αν ξυπνάτε με τον ήχο του ρολογιού σας και ειδικά με τον ήχο που μοιάζει σαν συναγερμός, θα μπείτε σίγουρα στον πειρασμό να πατήσετε το κουμπί για να κλείσει αυτός ο εκνευριστικός ήχος από το ξυπνητήρι is what the speaker, while going on with their message / narration, referred to a moment / a few moments ago. A perfectly normal structure in Greek, with the personal pronoun-object preceding the verb and the demonstrative pronoun following.
     

    amiramir

    Senior Member
    English-USA
    Σημαίνει αυτό ότι , αν η πρόταση ήταν 'Είναι προτιμότερο να μην κάνετε αυτό', θα ήτανε λάθος (ή τουλάχτιστών αφύσικη);
     

    Tr05

    Senior Member
    Greek - Greece
    Σημαίνει αυτό ότι , αν η πρόταση ήταν 'Είναι προτιμότερο να μην κάνετε αυτό', θα ήτανε λάθος (ή τουλάχτιστών αφύσικη);
    Ναι και όχι.

    Δε θα ήταν λάθος αν συνέχιζες* την πρόταση (με κάποια αντίθεση), για παράδειγμα:

    "Είναι προτιμότερο να μην κάνετε αυτό, αλλά το άλλο/αλλά εκείνο." [=Don't do this, (but) rather (do) the other one/that.]

    *Δεν εννοώ ότι χρειάζεται να γράψεις ρητώς (explicitly) τη συνέχεια της πρότασης. Αν η αντίθεση έχει ήδη αναφερθεί πιο πριν, τότε μπορείς να σταματήσεις την πρόταση εκεί. Αλλά, το άλλο άτομο πρέπει να μπορεί να καταλάβει ότι υπάρχει μια αντίθεση.

    Κατά τη δική μου γνώμη, αν θες να είσαι σίγουρος, είναι πιο ασφαλές να γράφεις και το άρθρο. Ένα άρθρο, το οποίο δε χρειάζεται, είναι, συχνά, πολύ καλύτερο από ένα άρθρο που είναι απαραίτητο, αλλά δεν το έχεις γράψει.
     
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    διαφορετικός

    Senior Member
    Swiss German - Switzerland
    αν θες να είσαι σίγουρος, είναι πιο ασφαλές να γράφεις και το άρθρο
    "το" is a pronoun in the example discussed, not an article. But aside from this I agree - it is very usual in Greek, sometimes even mandatory, to insert a redundant weak pronoun, especially before a verb.

    If the pronoun is inserted before the thing it refers to (in the same part of the sentence), it is called "προληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία".
    Example from the grammar book: "Να τη η δικηγόρος."
    Example in this discussion: "Είναι προτιμότερο να μην το κάνετε αυτό."

    If the pronoun is inserted after the thing it refers to (in the same part of the sentence), it is called "επαναληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία".
    Examples from the grammar book: "Το βιβλίο σου το έχω διαβάσει δυο φορές.", "Eσένα θα σε καλέσουν αργότερα."

    Mandatory case: If the strong form of a personal pronoun in genitive or accusative is inserted before the verb, it has to be repeated in its weak form. Example: "Εμένα δε μου δίνει το βιβλίο." (Source (in German): Pronomina - Neugriechische Grammatik - Michael Neuhold Homepage )
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    before the thing it refers to ... "Να τη η δικηγόρος."
    Perhaps, it would be more proper to be written "before [or after] the person or thing it refers to.

    Mandatory case: If the strong form of a personal pronoun in genitive or accusative is inserted before the verb, it has to be repeated in its weak form. Example: "Εμένα δε μου δίνει το βιβλίο."
    True, but this applies only when the strong form is the indirect object of the verb. When the strong form of the personal pronoun (in accusative) is the only object of the verb, then no weak form is repeated. For instance, look at this situation: The phone is ringing, the little boy is answering. While on the phone, the father is asking: Who(m) are they asking for? The little boy says: Εσένα [θέλουν], μπαμπά. (No need for a weak form of the pronoun here).
    Please, notice also this: If you use just the επαναληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία (from your source>) "Εμένα δε μου δίνει το βιβλίο", this should be implicitly followed by a sentence like "αλλά μου δίνει κάτι άλλο, π.χ. το τετράδιο", [possibly with displeasure, but regarding solely me as a receiver], whereas, if you say (using at the same time επαναληπτική and προληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία) "Εμένα δε μου [επαναλ.] το [προλ.] δίνει το βιβλίο", then a sentence like "αλλά το δίνει σε κάποιον άλλον, π.χ. σ' εσένα" could by implied [regarding another person as receiver and denoting a possible complaint for discrimination].
     

    διαφορετικός

    Senior Member
    Swiss German - Switzerland
    Perhaps, it would be more proper to be written "before [or after] the person or thing it refers to.
    :thumbsup: (I did not want to exclude anything ... or anybody ;) )

    True, but this applies only when the strong form is the indirect object of the verb. [...] The little boy says: Εσένα [θέλουν], μπαμπά. (No need for a weak form of the pronoun here).
    Thank you for the correction.
    Could the little boy also say "Εσένα δε θέλουν, μπαμπά." ? Or should he insert the additional pronoun in this case?

    If you use just the επαναληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία (from your source>) "Εμένα δε μου δίνει το βιβλίο", this should be implicitly followed by a sentence like "αλλά μου δίνει κάτι άλλο, π.χ. το τετράδιο", [possibly with displeasure, but regarding solely me as a receiver], whereas, if you say (using at the same time επαναληπτική and προληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία) "Εμένα δε μου [επαναλ.] το [προλ.] δίνει το βιβλίο", then a sentence like "αλλά το δίνει σε κάποιον άλλον, π.χ. σ' εσένα" could by implied [regarding another person as receiver and denoting a possible complaint for discrimination].
    This reminds me of
    αν η πρόταση ήταν 'Είναι προτιμότερο να μην κάνετε αυτό'
    "Είναι προτιμότερο να μην κάνετε αυτό, αλλά το άλλο/αλλά εκείνο." [=Don't do this, (but) rather (do) the other one/that.]
    Is my following interpretation of the examples correct?

    The "προληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία" ("το" in the examples) suggests that the thing (or person) referenced is the only one in question, there is no choice in this respect, it is constant, as in the following examples:
    • Εμένα δε μου το δίνει το βιβλίο: The book is given, but not to me.
    • Είναι προτιμότερο να μην το κάνετε αυτό: This is done (maybe), but it is preferable that you do not do it.
    If the "προληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία" is not present, this means that the thing (or person) can be chosen, there is a choice regarding it, as in the following examples:
    • Εμένα δε μου δίνει το βιβλίο: Something is given to me, but not the book.
    • Είναι προτιμότερο να μην κάνετε αυτό: It is preferable that you do something else than this.
     
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    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    Could the little boy also say "Εσένα δε θέλουν, μπαμπά." ? Or should he insert the additional pronoun in this case?
    "Εσένα δε θέλουν, μπαμπά.". This (with δε) is unnatural structure in Greek. I guess you wanted to write "Εσένα σε θέλουν, μπαμπά". This is unnatural as well. No weak form of the pronoun in this situation, but only "Εσένα θέλουν, μπαμπά". But in another situation with contradistinction, where emphasis is needed, that is OK, e.g Εμένα δε με θέλουν, αλλά εσένα σε θέλουν, μπαμπά".

    Είναι προτιμότερο να μην το κάνετε αυτό: This is done (maybe), but it is preferable that you do not do it. :tick:
    Εμένα δε μου το δίνει το βιβλίο: The book is given, but not to me.
    :tick:
    As long as there is the strong form of the pronoun at the beginning, this means the speaker wants to contradistinguish him/her with somebody else; we are only talking about the book, which is not given to him/her, but to someone else, someone else will be the receiver. The sentence "αλλά το δίνει π.χ. σ' αυτόν" could be added, or left to be implied. This bears a sort of complaint.

    Είναι προτιμότερο να μην κάνετε αυτό: It is preferable that you do something else than this. :tick: Even if you want to go on with a sentence "αλλά να ...", the structure with the προληπτική προσωπική αντωνυμία [να μην το κάνετε αυτό] is preferable.
    Εμένα δε μου δίνει το βιβλίο:Something is given to me, but not the book. :tick:
    Here, the speaker wants to contradistinguish what he/she probably wants with what the giver chooses to give him/her. The receiver will be the same, but the thing-object will be different. The sentence "αλλά π.χ. το τετράδιο" could be added or left to be implied.
     
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    διαφορετικός

    Senior Member
    Swiss German - Switzerland
    "Εσένα δε θέλουν, μπαμπά.". This (with δε) is unnatural structure in Greek. I guess you wanted to write "Εσένα σε θέλουν, μπαμπά".
    No, I wanted to write "They do not want you (but somebody else)" in Greek.

    Here you wrote something similar:
    Εμένα δε με θέλουν, αλλά εσένα σε θέλουν, μπαμπά
    Can you also write / say the same without "με" (and "σε"), "Εμένα δε θέλουν, αλλά εσένα θέλουν, μπαμπά."?
     

    Perseas

    Senior Member
    No, I wanted to write "They do not want you (but somebody else)" in Greek.
    It's not the usual structure but it's grammatical and I can imagine a context where it fits. A father talks with his kid.
    Father: Τα νεογέννητα θέλουν εμένα, όχι τη μαμά. (The newborns like me, not mom).
    Kid: Εσένα δε θέλουν(=like), μπαμπά (, τη μαμά τη θέλουν)! (It's you that they don't like, ...)
    Here the intonation rises when pronouncing "Εσένα" and then falls.
    Here you wrote something similar:

    Can you also write / say the same without "με" (and "σε"), "Εμένα δε θέλουν, αλλά εσένα θέλουν, μπαμπά."?
    It doesn't sound natural.

    In a similar context as before:
    Εμένα δε θέλουν (=like), (αλλά) εσένα σε θέλουν. (Rising intοnation on "Εμένα") (It's me that they don't like, but they like you) .
     
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    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    No, I wanted to write "They do not want you (but somebody else)" in Greek.
    A first normal answer of the little boy to his father's question "Who(m) are they asking for?" would be just e.g. "Τη μαμά [θέλουν]"; and perhaps [translating here your query] he would go on by saying "Δε θέλουν εσένα". An alternative verb (but not as usual as "θέλουν", especially with children) would be "ζητούν/ζητάνε".

    Εμένα δε με θέλουν, αλλά εσένα σε θέλουν, μπαμπά
    Can you also write / say the same without "με" (and "σε"), "Εμένα δε θέλουν, αλλά εσένα θέλουν, μπαμπά."?
    Εμένα δε με θέλουν, αλλά εσένα σε θέλουν, μπαμπά", e.g. as a player in a football team. By writing this above in #10, I pointed out that this structure is used when there is a contradistinction with emphasis. When the contradistinction isn't so strong as in the previous example, for instance if the father tells his son to go on with the phone conversation, then the little boy could just say: "Δε θέλουν εμένα, [no need for αλλά here] εσένα θέλουν, μπαμπά".
     

    διαφορετικός

    Senior Member
    Swiss German - Switzerland
    Can you please confirm or correct the following statements?
    • "Θέλουν εσένα." means the same as "Εσένα θέλουν." (Or Έκανα αυτό = Αυτό έκανα)
    • "Σε θέλουν εσένα." means the same as "Εσένα σε θέλουν." (Το έκανα αυτό = Αυτό το έκανα)
    • "Δε θέλουν εσένα." means something different from "Εσένα δε θέλουν." (because negation is understood differently) (Δεν έκανα αυτό / Αυτό δεν έκανα)
    • "Δε σε θέλουν εσένα." means the same as "Εσένα δε σε θέλουν." (Δεν το έκανα αυτό = Αυτό δεν το έκανα)
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    As a rule the strong forms of the personal pronoun are used when emphasis on the pronoun should be put or a contrast should be stressed. If the strong form is placed at the beginning of the sentence (or clause), the emphasis is bigger. In oral speech, the place of the pronoun is combined with the proper (rising) intonation to give the required emphasis. In all other cases, the weak forms are used.
    • "Θέλουν εσένα." means the same as "Εσένα θέλουν." :tick: (Or Έκανα αυτό = Αυτό έκανα/the latter is stronger) demonstrative pronoun
    • "Σε θέλουν εσένα." means the same as "Εσένα σε θέλουν." :tick:(Το έκανα αυτό = Αυτό το έκανα/the latter is stronger) demonstrative pronoun+weak form of personal pronoun
    • "Δε θέλουν εσένα." means something different from "Εσένα δε θέλουν." :cross:(because negation is understood differently) (Δεν έκανα αυτό, [έκανα άλλο] / Αυτό [μόνο] δεν έκανα, [όλα τα άλλα τα έκανα]) demonstrative pronoun
    • "Δε σε θέλουν εσένα." means the same as "Εσένα δε σε θέλουν." :tick:(Δεν το έκανα αυτό = Αυτό δεν το έκανα/the latter is stronger) demonstrative pronoun+weak form of personal pronoun
     

    διαφορετικός

    Senior Member
    Swiss German - Switzerland
    "Δε θέλουν εσένα." means something different from "Εσένα δε θέλουν." :cross:(because negation is understood differently) (Δεν έκανα αυτό, [έκανα άλλο] / Αυτό [μόνο] δεν έκανα, [όλα τα άλλα τα έκανα]) demonstrative pronoun
    When I read your remarks about the example with "αυτό" in the quoted part, it seems that you agree with my statement ("means something different"), but you made a ":cross:". Did you miss the words "means something different"? Or is there another reason for the ":cross:"?
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    When I read your remarks about the example with "αυτό" in the quoted part, it seems that you agree with my statement ("means something different")
    It means the same. E.g. "Δε θέλουν εσένα, ([αλλά] θέλουν π.χ. τον Γιώργο)" means the same as "Εσένα δε θέλουν, ([αλλά] θέλουν π.χ. τον Γιώργο)" with the latter showing stronger contradistinction due to the place of the pronoun in combination with the proper (rising) intonation, as we said above.
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    Why is it emena and not se emena/s'emena?
    Εμένα δε μου το δίνει το βιβλίο: Here εμένα is the genitive of the strong form of the pronoun, as in genitive is also the weak form μου, which is the indirect object of δίνει. If you have strong and weak form in succession, they must be both in the same case (genitive), but the strong form can't be in the prepositional form (σ' εμένα). Alternatively, you could only use the prepositional form Σ' εμένα and in this case no weak form can be used in the sentence, e.g. Σ' εμένα δεν [μου] το δίνει το βιβλίο, αλλά το δίνει π.χ. στον Γιώργο. Consequently, there are two options: either "Εμένα δε μου το δίνει το βιβλίο, αλλά το δίνει σε κάποιον άλλον, π.χ. στον (<σε τον) Γιώργο" or "Σ' εμένα δεν το δίνει το βιβλίο, αλλά το δίνει σε κάποιον άλλον, π.χ. στον (<σε τον) Γιώργο". Of course, this structure is only used when emphasis is sought, otherwise the structure would be just: "Δε μου δίνει το βιβλίο", when there's no need for continuation with: "αλλά το δίνει...".
     
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    διαφορετικός

    Senior Member
    Swiss German - Switzerland
    It means the same. E.g. "Δε θέλουν εσένα, ([αλλά] θέλουν π.χ. τον Γιώργο)" means the same as "Εσένα δε θέλουν, ([αλλά] θέλουν π.χ. τον Γιώργο)" with the latter showing stronger contradistinction [...]
    Thank you.

    What about the following example? Do the two phrases also mean the same (aside from the differing strength of the contradistinction)?
    Δεν έκανα αυτό / Αυτό δεν έκανα
    From your following interpretation, I got the impression that the meaning is different. Are there perhaps other interpretations possible?
    Δεν έκανα αυτό, [έκανα άλλο] / Αυτό [μόνο] δεν έκανα, [όλα τα άλλα τα έκανα]
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    The above are just possible examples.
    The preschool teacher is asking little John: "Γιαννάκη, αυτό το σχέδιο (=ζωγραφιά) έκανες;" and little John, showing the kid-sketch, says: "Δεν [το] έκανα [εγώ] αυτό, αυτό το έκανε ο Γιώργος, εγώ έκανα εκείνο". Suppose you are being accused of something very bad. You deny the grave accusation, but admit having committed some other minor offenses for which you are also being accused: "Αυτό [μόνο] δεν έκανα, όλα τα άλλα τα έκανα" or "Αυτό δεν [το] έκανα, όλα τα άλλα τα έκανα". These are possible examples using the demonstrative pronoun with a negative verb.
     

    διαφορετικός

    Senior Member
    Swiss German - Switzerland
    The ordinary interpretation of "Αυτό δεν έκανα" seems to be "Αυτό [μόνο] δεν έκανα, [όλα τα άλλα τα έκανα]", or more clearly "This is the thing I did not make.".
    Is it also possible to interpret it as "Αυτό δεν έκανα, [έκανα άλλο]", or in English "This is one of the things, and I did not make it."

    I am asking this question because in the case of "Εσένα δε θέλουν", two similarly different interpretations seem possible:
    Εμένα δε θέλουν (=like), (αλλά) εσένα σε θέλουν. (Rising intοnation on "Εμένα") (It's me that they don't like, but they like you) .
    My interpretation: "I am the person they do not like."
    "Εσένα δε θέλουν, ([αλλά] θέλουν π.χ. τον Γιώργο)"
    My interpretation: "I am one of the persons, but they do not want me."
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    Is it also possible to interpret it as "Αυτό δεν έκανα, [έκανα άλλο]", or in English "This is one of the things, and I did not make it."
    In English, just: I didn't do this! or more emphatically: This is something I didn't do! The clause [έκανα άλλο] is just an optional exemplary continuation in case you would like to go on.
    Perseas said:
    Εμένα δε θέλουν (=like), (αλλά) εσένα σε θέλουν. (Rising intοnation on "Εμένα") (It's me that they don't like, but they like you) .
    My interpretation: "I am the person they do not like." :tick:
    ioanell said:
    "Εσένα δε θέλουν, ([αλλά] θέλουν π.χ. τον Γιώργο)"
    My interpretation: " I am one of the persons, but they do not want me." :cross: Please, don't be confused. The sentence Εσένα δε θέλουν has nothing to do with 'I/me'. It only has to do with 'You (εσένα)'. It's you that they don't like, but they like e.g. George).

    Anyway, as I think it might be considered that certain persons have been hogging this discussion, other friends are also welcome to weigh in.
     

    διαφορετικός

    Senior Member
    Swiss German - Switzerland
    Thank you for your reply, ioanell.

    Since I am aware that I have asked many questions in this discussion and progress is slow, I am retreating from this thread for a while, hoping that others contribute more fruitful questions or remarks.
     

    Αγγελος

    Senior Member
    Greek
    In conclusion: the whole thing is very complicated.
    To add another example: Εσένα θέλουμε, with the proper intonation - sometimes chanted rhythmically, as έ-σένα-θέλου-μέ, e.g. to acclaim a politician - means "it's you we want, you are our man". Εσένα σε θέλουμε, with a different intonation, means "as for you, we want you" (it's your wife we can't stand). A child answering the phone would tell his father "εσένα θέλουν, μπαμπά", meaning "it's for you, daddy", i.e. (as before) "it's you the caller wants to talk to".
    I tried to record the sentences quoted above, but our forum does not allow sending sound files.
     
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