Foreign female name that doesn't end in a normal Russian female name ending. If it were... Norma, then yeah, you'd decline it (У Нормы что-то). Foreign masculine names do decline as well, even if they don't have traditional Russian male name endings (for instance, У Обамы for Obama).
So for something like a name, would the pronunciation change when speaking or is it just a grammatical rule when writing? Thats really interesting if it's true!
You're asking if names are only declined in written language, but not in spoken? No – why would they?
Is the use of the definite article incorrect here? I wrote "the butter" and was wrong
It should have been accepted. Only context can tell whether the definite article should be used or not.
That's wrong, actually. There are often other indications, and this is one of those cases. The use of "есть" makes this a question about existence, rather than location - does butter exist with her, i.e. does she have (any) butter?
If this was "does Jenny have the butter?", that's a question about some specific butter, asking if Jenny has it, and would be translated as "масло у Дженни?"
So for example "Does Anna have the book?" would be: "Книга у Анны?"
confused between third person singular eat and the est meaning has. I put Jenny eats butter. Is there that little apostrophe when it's the est meaning has? Thanks.
The difference between the two is that the verb "have" has a ь at the end of it and the verb "eat" doesn't. So: "У дженни есть масло" - "Jenny has butter" "Дженни ест масло" - "Jenny is eating butter" Hope this helps!
I'm sorry if I'm nitpicking, but just for clarity's sake:
- "есть" on its own cannot mean "have". It's the construction "у X есть" that is translated as "X has/have". In this sentence it literally means "there is", so the literal meaning of "У дженни есть масло" is "At Jenny there is butter".
- the infinitive form of the verb "eat" is "есть"; "ест" (without the soft sign) is the third person singular form: (he/she/it) is eating.
I can't figure out the difference either. If you find out, please tell me.
Масло is the nominative singular of the word. It is a neuter gender word, as are most words ending in -o. Масла is the genitive singular declension of the word. You'd use it in instances where genitive is required ("a drop of oil" - капля масла / "I don't have oil" - у меня нет масла).
The translation for "масло" seems to be both "butter" and "oil", are these not two distinct concepts in russian? Can I really use the same word for both things?
Yes, you can. The context helps to figure out which is which.
Same as with vegetable oil, crude oil and motor oil in English: no confusion with which oil goes where. Add butter there to get масло - still no confusion ;)
But vegetable oil is not accepted here, despite the fact that in russian this is the same word :(
You simply have to learn that "у X есть" is a fixed phrase that translates as "X has/have", and doesn't have anything to do with "eat".