"These girls are sisters."
Translation:Эти девочки — сёстры.
Why does the plural suffix of "girls" add the и but the plural of sisters adds ы? Isn't a feminine noun in singular form the ones that end in а, and in the plural form end in ы? Or is this another noun declension that I do not yet understand...?
The Three Spelling rules (I do not expect anyone to memorize that, though)
There are some phonological constraints. If a noun ends in к/г/х or in ш/ж/щ/ч , only И is possible. Actually, it goes all the way to the core of the system: if you make ANY form of any word, and an Ы should follow one of these consonants, you use И instead.
If you are interested how come it works like that, it is due to the historical development of modern Russian
- ш, ж, ч (and щ, which was шч) used to be soft consonants, so И is a historical spelling
- ки, ги, хи actually come from old кы, гы, хы
- the old ки, ги, хи turned into чи, жи, ши, AFAIK
- so, кы, гы and хы have nowhere to come from. When using native Russian words, they only appear at word boundaries («мальчик и девочка»)
Is it possible to get answers using English alphabet or am I attempting to avoid the Inevitable and should learn the crylic alphabet
Is it necessary to use a dash here? It seems to me that this is unnecessary. But if you remove it, does the meaning change at all?
It is conventionally put there, though dashes might be omitted in very short sentences when rendering spoken dialogue in prose.
If you had "They" instead of "These girls", the dash would be unnesessary (but the author can still use it for emphasis).
Thanks. In the above situation how many native Russian approximately omit the dash (in percentage)?
Who knows? I would rather omit it in informal messaging in such a simple sentence. I tried my best to stick to standard punctuation in all my sentences and all other people's sentences that I had time to check. Still, I am not a writer, so in real life I get the commas and dashes mostly correct but definitely not 100% of the time.
Note that if one of these is a pronoun (not a noun!) or if you have a negation (let alone a question) rather than a declarative statement, no dash is required. Questions will almost never use it even for the sake of emphasis.
I think the site is dead, but i need to ask, is the eti(эти) a plural form of eta(это)?
этот = this (for masculine nouns) "these" is эти. And from my understanding using есть here is incorrect as all conjugations of the verb "to be" are omitted in Russian