"На траве мяч и коробка."

Translation:A ball and a box are on the grass.

November 5, 2015

24 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Tom_Adams101

Where you've got a plural amount of things, but there's only one of each item, we tend to use "there is" rather than "there are":

http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/grammar/learnit/learnitv128.shtml

In the above article, note the section on single items being counted separately:

There is a ball. There is a box. There is a ball and a ball.

November 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

Fixed.

November 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Tom_Adams101

Wow, you guys are fast. Thanks.

November 6, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/aspencer

Another example from later in the course: Мои брат и сестра в школа. This translates as "My brother and sister are in school" (or at school). "is in school" would be incorrect here in all cases, yet it is grammatically the exact same construction as the ball and the box.

November 9, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Tom_Adams101

There difference here is that this sentence is formed around "There is...".

Where "there is" pops up, the singular/plural divide goes a bit funky for some reason, in some dialects.

Where the two things are the subject of a standard sentence, like in your example above, I completely agree that "is" would be weird and inappropriate.

November 9, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/aspencer

But there is no fundamental grammatical reason why "there is" would be different. Except, perhaps, as you say, "in some dialects".

November 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/aspencer

Actually, Tom is grammatically incorrect. Please change it back. The BBC is wrong in this case, except for certain small areas of England.

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Tom_Adams101

Oh dear. My intention was that both answers be accepted. I hope I've not caused too much trouble.

On a side note, I'd be very careful when throwing around the word "wrong"with regard to grammar. One man's wrong is another man's sociolect...

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/aspencer

Except, of course, when referring to the BBC. I suspect this issue is related to another singular plural question which varies between U.S. and U.K. English: referring to entities such as companies or teams. The U.L. tends to use the plural, "Virgin Atlantic are planning a new route", whereas in the U.S., the proper usage is singular, "United Airlines is planning a new route."

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

Hm. Desperately need a few more native speakers of English from the U.S. :)

But you do both agree that "A ball and a box are on (in) the grass." means the same and is correct regardless of you dialect, right?

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Tom_Adams101

In my opinion (which seems rather in question of late...)

  • There is a ball and a box on the grass
  • There are a ball and a box on the grass
  • A ball and a box are on the grass

I'm currently fighting over whether I'd accept: - A ball and a box is on the grass (everything I know screams "no", but it still feels oddly okay)...

My only worry with the current translation "A ball and a box are on the grass", is that it comes up in the lesson called "there is", which tends to suggest the translations should be "there is / there are" sentences.

But as an all round, catch all, grammatically sound, non-controversial sentence "A ball and a box are on the grass" is probably your best bet.

Even though I still fight for "There is a ball and a box".

On my own.

In the corner.

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shadd518

I'm with "There is a ball and a box..." and "A ball and a box are..."

Can't really explain the grammar there, but those are what sound the most natural, or "correct"

January 18, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/aspencer

Generally "on" the grass, unless it's really long / tall grass, in which case "in"; probably at least partially obscured by the grass.

To the original question "ball and box is" would be absolutely incorrect in the U.S., and apparently of some debate in the U.K.

This question, though would be more important for the Russian-->English course than this course.

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

I just don't want our main translations to sound odd when it is totally avoidable. After all, this sentence is rather simple to translate (unlike sentences like "То́ма нет до́ма").

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/KevinTeague

"The ball and box are on the grass" and "The ball and the box are on the grass" should also be correct answers for this question, no?

November 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

Extremely unlikely. This word order suggests you are telling the listener what is on the grass, not where the box and the ball are.

I admit, this course takes a simplified approach to this structure :).

November 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ColeDonnelly

Why doesn't it like, "A ball and a box are in the grass."?

March 27, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

I guess, it is not that bad.

March 27, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/ZanninaMargariti

Grass is трав... why then it's трава in the sentence на земле трава?????

August 9, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

What makes you think that?

August 9, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/detailaddict

What is мяч? I'm looking at the mobile app.

March 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/detailaddict

It sounds like she's saying каровка - whuch may not be a word but I can only spell what I hear.

March 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

It does not. Despite the heavy compression, it is pretty clear a [p] is there, not an [f], which could not be that abrupt.

The quality might become an issue if it goes lower yet.

March 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LeVinDuRosier

“the ball and the box are on the grass” “there are a ball and a box on the grass” how do you make the distinction in russian?

September 30, 2017
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