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  5. "Эти мужчины — актёры."

"Эти мужчины актёры."

Translation:These men are actors.

November 4, 2015



This is the weirdest russian construction, in my opinion. This "—" to replace are is so original. :D


That is also found in other languages, like Arabic.


The dash is actually used in normal Russian writing? I was under the impression that it was just something used in this course (and maybe in Russian grade schools) until the students properly understood the omission of "to be."


Of course, it is used.


One way to conceptualize it structurally is that the dash works like a colon would in English. "These men: actors" (of course this seems very strange, as you don't structure sentences like this in English, but bear with me). First you are defining an object: "These men", and then you are describing an attribute of the object: "actors". And this way of thinking makes it clearer for an English speaker how it is to be said in spoken Russian too; when there's a colon, there's a pause!


How can people tell if you're using эти or это? The lady says the words so fast that they both sound the same.


I can't seem to find the "-" on my keyboard. Would a regular hyphen be acceptable?


Press the "alt" key and the "-" key and it will make it.


Yes, it is acceptable.


I already understood that "—" is actually used in Russian writing. But i ask if "—" is ever used when "to be" verb is missing. For example: "Эти мужчины — актёры. ", is the current sentence, so what about this: "Я — актёр. " or "Иван — актёр. " Are these right? Regards.


yes, you can say or write this way. It's correct


Do Russian keyboards have a key for "—"? I'm using the Russian keyboard layout on Mac and can't find it for the life of me. —edit— Apparently you can type it with alt+shift+-. Still, you'd think it would be more accessible since it's used so much...


No, keyboards lacks of this key. Most word processors automatically replace double minus signs - followed with space with a dash when typing in.


Does - imply are?


It seems like it should actually translate into: "These are actor-men", instead of: "These men are actors". Which sounds weird. I'm Polish, so I use a language with a vocab similar to Russian and with small differences in sentence construction, and If anyone were to describe someone's vocation this way in polish, people would give them a strange look, to say the least. So can somebody, who actually is Russian, confirm that the above construction does exists and is currently used by the Russian people, and isn't just some mistake of, let's say: copying the sentence structure from a Mandarin language course?


Unfortunately I can't speak to Polish since I have never studied it, but this is a correct Russian sentence and the translation "These men are actors" is correct.

1) The symbol here, the longer hyphen, is called a тире, and it's considered a punctuation mark. Note the spaces between the noun, тире, and noun. This is the simplest way to say "X is Y" in Russian. The тире serves as sort of a half pause between the words. There is at least one verb, являться, that means "to be", but it requires instrumental case and is typically reserved for higher level speeches, technical/scientific documentation, etc.

2) The "normal" hyphen used in words, the дефис, is essentially a spelling character that combines two words into one, like you mentioned. There are no spaces between the words and the hyphen, it's essentially inserted directly between the two words. When you're describing words like that, it would be said that they are written "through" a hyphen (писаться через дефис).

3) Also please bear in mind that if the demonstrative "это" is used (in this case, эти), then the phrase would be "these ...", which would not necessarily be a complete sentence. For instance, if it were "Эти мужчины-актёры", then that would just be "These men-actors" - that by itself would only work in response to a question starting with "Кто".


Thank you for taking the time to clarify that bit for me (and probably other people with the same doubt). I appreciate it, especially at this moment in time, where I am not yet capable to read books in Russian to experience the nuances of the language for myself.


No problem! I hope it fully addressed your question!!


I thought that это unchanged to gender or number was used in situations like this one... where a noun is describing a noun such as "literature is an art"

And so, it doesn't make sense that they alter это here to fit the plural with эти... Anyone has am idea why?


How do you know it's "these men" and not "those men"?


When you see "это" decline and match the number/case of the noun it's modifying, it means "this" or "these". "Those men" would literally be "те мужчины".



When we can use ы for plural, and when use и?

Eg. Девочки (why not девочкы)?


Check out this site for some spelling rules: http://www.russianlessons.net/grammar/spelling_rules.php In this case, a ы can not come after a к.


Would it be considered incorrect to just say "Эти мужчины актёры" ? Without the dash (-), that is.

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