In some cases, 'excuse me' and 'forgive me' can have similar meanings (just an uneducated guess, but it could be that in Russian this word might be used in any situation that you would use either phrase) there, but in this sentence you would use 'excuse me.' Another one you can use for this would be 'pardon me.'
I'd say you're right because "а" here is really "я" ("щя" is always spelt "ща" by convention) and "я" is reduced to "и"-like sound in unstressed syllables. Here's a nice website where you can get transcriptions of russian words in IPA or russian letters: http://easypronunciation.com/en/russian-phonetic-transcription-converter
Not really. In modern Russian it sounds like a long and hissy SH with the middle of your tongue high up. "Shch" is just a transliteration that follows the letter's historical pronunciation and the pronunciation still used in Ukrainian.
The "shch" used to be widespread in St. Petersburg dialect...but that was in the 19th century: to encounter that pronunciation nowadays you'll have to find a speaker born around the same time as Chekhov or Lenin. Another option is to find a very particular village where a very particular dialect is spoken :).
So I've noticed that the word for "square" (as in city square) and the word for "horse" are relativeoy similar. Is this a coinsidence, or is there some historical reason (like idk maybe the city square was a good place to keep horse stables back in the day)? Sorry if this is random, but it struck me as odd haha
Площадь eventually is related to, say, плоский ("planar") whereas лошадь was borrowed from some Turkic language a long time ago. So, I am afraid even their remote similarity here is random (I mean, "plosk" is not much like "losh", unless you are ready to give it a lot of leeway).
Practice will help get your ear used to the sounds of Russian, there's definitely an л in there. With regard to the second syllable - because the stress is on the first syllable, the second syllable changes. Unstressed syllables in Russian get "reduced", so they're not pronounced in full.
That's what it sounds like. Try pronouncing an Engish "T", only use the blade of your tongue instead of the tip, and try to raise your tongue (not only its blade) towards the roof of your mouth.
The woman this voice is based on uses palatalized T's a bit different from what I, as a younger speaker, use. These days T/D affricatization is more and more popular among common people as well as trained speakers. It means that "soft" Д and Т now have a slight hint of palatalazed /дз/ and /ц/— and it is not considered improper pronunciation at all! In fact, most well-paid actors pronounce it that way, too.
извини́ть (izvinítʹ) [ɪzvʲɪˈnʲitʲ] "to excuse, to pardon, to forgive": из- (iz-) + вини́ть (vinítʹ, "to accuse; to blame")
площадь (plóščadʹ) [ˈploɕːɪtʲ] "(city) square; space, living space; (geom.) area": From Old East Slavic площадь (ploščadĭ), from Proto-Slavic *ploščadь, from *ploskъ (“flat”) + *-ědь, from pre-Slavic *plak-ska-, with a root cognate in Lithuanian plãkanas (“flat”), from the Proto-Indo-European root *plek-. Cognates are found only in Germanic, such as Old Norse flagna, Icelandic flár, and perhaps Proto-Germanic *flakaz (English flake and fluke). Source: Wiktionary
The sound reminds me to Spanish plaza, of the same meaning.
Firstly, thanks for creating a Russian course - I am very excited to learn! I wanted to discuss the first lessons - I think that they're a little confusing. Perhaps if the first lessons dealt with absolute basics such as pleases, thankyous, how are you etc. the initial learning stage might be a little more suitable? Saying things like "He is this man" or similar are quite strange sentences to be using so early on (first unit early). Just my two cents.
Unfortunately, that is not how Duolingo works. We try to follow the overall structure Duolingo's courses usually have—and, personally, I would have completely excluded basic phrases had it not been for some demand for them.
Expressions like "Thanks" and "Good morning" do not make for great sentences; and it is beyond any doubt that Duolingo's built around sentences. Stock phrases would make sense in a dialogue. In the current structure, though, they make fro pretty repetitive sentences and very confusing ones at that because, as usual, set expressions do not make much sense, use all kinds of tough grammar and thus require a lot of rote memorization.
it is близко к центру or недалеко от центра / около центра and so on. Yeah, в центре is useful.
- Prepositional case ("locative" in Old East Slavic) is actually only used with 4 prepositions в, на, о, при (and rarely по). It is just that the form has no "free" uses without a preposition around.
If you are going to a large Russian city an plan on using the metro, look at typical naming patterns and also colors. Colors are handy. Our Metro lines have them :)
Well, distinguishing "ж" and "ш" shouldn't be too difficult for an anglophone. "Ш" sounds like "sh", whereas "ж" sounds like "s" in "measure". I don't think you can confuse them.
The problem is with "щ", which to most non-Russians sounds almost identical to "ш". But there's not much help anyone can give you. You need to do a lot of listening practice until you learn to hear the difference. That's pretty much the only way. I can tell you that "ш" is closer to "sh" in "sharp", and "щ" is closer to "sh" in "sheep" (did you realize you pronounce them differently?). But that's not the exact equivalent, just a starting point.
How can i know to write площадь and not плошадь or пложадь ?
You can simply remember the spelling of the word. If it's a new word, you might make a mistake at first, but then you'd know. That's the idea behind Duo's method.