"Эти мужчины актёры."

Translation:These men are actors.

November 4, 2015

54 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

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

November 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/HussainBiedouh

That is also found in other languages, like Arabic.

November 13, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

"This" does not replace "to be". "To be" is totally omitted in the present tense. Literally, what you see in Russian is "These men - actors". The dash is used instead of the omitted "are".

November 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

I said "This "—" to replace to be". Sorry for the confusion. So yes, I knew that, and that's what I find so original. :D

November 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/eshellhase

I'm still confused why the dash is used at all, as if it's replacing something. It's not like the apostrophe in English contractions (right?). For Russian speakers, "are" in the sentence would never be there (I think). And we wouldn't need to indicate something missing?

November 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

It is replacing the Russian word for "is/are". Long ago, we used them.

November 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JesperEA

Is there a way to pronounce this "—" ?

November 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

You make a pause.

November 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

It's not pronounced; it's something you write, but don't say.

EDIT: And yes, you also make a pause simply.

November 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Locrio

It is similar to how the apostrophe is used in the word 'cello.

November 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shalshelet

why is the literal "These men - actors." not accepted?

November 15, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

Because it doesn't mean the same in English. The "—" is replacing the verb to be in russian. You can't do that in english, using the "—" to replace the verb to be...

November 15, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shalshelet

I guess that is true. although, i was able to understand from the context that the dash was implying the word "are". It almost corresponds to a colon in my mind, but you wouldn't translate the word 'are' in place of the colon when translating. (Maybe I should have just put a colon there instead then?)

November 15, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ElHeim

No, you don't put a colon. This is just the way to write the (absence of the) present form of "to be" in Russian. But that's a feature of Russian (and other Slavic languages), not of English. For most uses, in English you'd write the verb.

November 26, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ivucica

@Ricardo: Many Slavic languages DO use a word for "to be" in that place.

June 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ElHeim

@ivucica: I never said all of them do ;-)

June 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LingvaLupo

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."

November 21, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

Of course, it is used.

November 21, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/PyotrMikhailov

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!

December 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Mina_C_

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

November 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

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

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

Yes, it is acceptable.

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AlexMedinaPichs

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.

March 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/dennisopanasenko

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

April 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Johan483213

Does - imply are?

March 6, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/_Maria_B._

Basically, yes!

March 8, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/michael585

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...

March 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/dennisopanasenko

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

April 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Irnirnax

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?

October 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

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".

October 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Irnirnax

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.

October 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

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

October 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/GinaTonix

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

December 22, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

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".

January 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AhmadHamid10

Question:

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

Eg. Девочки (why not девочкы)?

January 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

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.

January 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Diana784124

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

March 3, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/StiII_ChiII

Thanks for telling me!!! :D

February 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Iwanttolea141119

Is it only me or the end of актёры is pronounced as "a" but not and "e" sound. Why?

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

It is only you. Ы is pronounced like "y" in a strange way, but it doesn't sound like "a" to me at all.

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Iwanttolea141119

Thanks, but maybe I am wrong with the pronunciation letters. As much as I know Ы is more like и but it is here pronounced very differently like the e in the "deliver". Maybe I should have my ears cleaned up, right :))

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

I think the text-to-speech is about 90% accurate here. Ы is the "hard" partner of и - it sounds similar, but instead of being more like "ee" in street, it's more like the "i" in "itch", but almost like... you're being punched when you pronounce it >_>.

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/john.newbe

I put These men are the actors......owl said нет

September 17, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/OlgaParr

Why doesn't it accept "these men - they're actors"?

December 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

Because there is no "they" in the sentence, which would be они; Эти мужчины... они актёры. But even then, it wouldn't really work in Russian, except if it's in a script for a movie where the actor must be dramatic.

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

Because you could say that in English, but it's not proper literary English.

January 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/habiib

I'm not a fan of the dash. I think it's important for non-speakers to dispense with what they're used to and acclimatize to the new language's idiosyncrasies. Because in common talk, there is no dash.

November 24, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

The dash is used in Russian writing, so you can't just "forget about it".

November 24, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/habiib

Good to know! Thanks, again!

November 24, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StiII_ChiII

SAME

February 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Therasis

Hm, I would translate it like: These are men - actors.

November 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

What is your native language? I ask because your translation does not make sense.

  • These are men. = Это мужчины. (a sentence)

  • these men = эти мужчины (a phrase)

  • These men are actors. = Эти мужчины - актёры.

Hope this helps.

November 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

No. Your sentence would be Это мужчины-актёры (These are men-actors) not Эти мужчины — актёры (which means These men are actors).

So you understand: Эти is a plural demonstrative (notice the и?), but Это is It (is)/These (are)/etc.

November 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Therasis

I understand now, thanks!

November 14, 2015
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