1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Russian
  4. >
  5. "стакан чая"

"стакан чая"

Translation:a glass of tea

November 6, 2015



Can't this also mean cup of tea


No, this is a glass, not a cup. Like this:

FYI: the silver thing is called подстаканник - a glass holder.


To my mind the tumbler by itself is a glass, but as soon as you put it in a holder with a handle it effectively becomes a cup. :-)


Sometimes Russians drink hot tea from glasses without any holders. This is still popular in Soviet-style canteens, e.g. in schools.


That's bizarre... Though I would consider that a "glass" of tea in that situation. :-)


Here's an example of a typical lunch served in a Soviet-style canteen:


Щи, винегрет (salad with beetroots and sauerkraut), гороховое или картофельное пюре (mashed peas or potatoes - I'm not sure, the color suggests peas), a sausage, some bread, and... a glass of tea!


Mine looks like this

a glass of tea in flesh


They drink tea from glasses across the whole Magreb, and in other places. Not as bizarre as you may think.


This is probably another of those regional things that's different all over the world, and therefore will never have complete agreement from all parties involved. :) Since I never heard of anyone doing that anywhere except Russia, I would use Russian "glass of tea", and in English I would probably continue to use "cup of tea", except in cases of iced tea.


The name винегрет sounds like vinaigrette salad dressing. Any relation?


@Olimo Ooh.. That beetroot salad looks familiar, I think my дедушка used to serve me something similar when I was a child. I think he put egg in it too though it's been many years so my memory is fuzzy.


@Chloemarie128 That's fine with me, but I think I personally would do better using "glass", as that is the literal translation, and sometimes is the only good one. But that's just me, and others can do it differently, as far as I'm concerned. If it works for you, and Duo doesn't mind, go ahead and do it. :)


@SiblingCreature: The most common ingredients are beetroots, carrots and potatoes (all boiled, cooled and peeled), pickled cucumbers, sauerkraut and onions. Wikipedia says classic винегрет has eggs, too, but I've never eaten винегрет with eggs. Weird.


@ A_User, That wouldn't surprise me, The polish have борщ as well.
Actually, that reminds me, the nearest Polish restaurant is apparently a lot closer than the nearest Russian restaurant, I may have to check that out.


Oh, I remember the name винегрет now that I think on it.... Methinks I need to find a Russian restaurant.. All this talk of the foods my дедушка would make is making me crave them...


It might be a Polish dish as well or something, and that's why it looks familiar. Is it all pickled?


Small glasses like those are everyday stuff all over India. Particularly in restaurants and on the streets.


Now I need to go Wikipedia Polish foods. I know there's a salad that has something to do with shredded vegetables.


Looks vaguely familiar to me as well.


@ElHeim Maybe not, but it seems really strange to a Brit. :-)


@A-user (sorry I can't reply to your comment, so I'll reply to the other one) This was my point all along - I just think duo lingo should accept that IN ENGLISH, we would say cup of tea and it is okay, I don't care what is specifically glass and what is specifically cup in the exact translation - the point is you should feel that in russian you should say стакан чая, and in English both are okay. Just because Russians use the word for glass doesn't mean we must use "glass" in English. I actually live in Russia, and if we used this logic for every word and situation, we would have huge huge problems.


@Shady_arc That looks like American iced tea or a fizzy drink or something. I'm going to persist in my opinion that hot tea belongs in cups and that anyone who drinks tea out of a glass is crazy, but I won't hold it against you. :-)


Here, too (Algiers, Algeria - North Africa / Mediterranean)


Czech (school-)canteens as well.


I do too! I'm not Russian


Then why is стакан риса a cup of rice?


Because whoever wrote that sentence took into account that English (presumably) uses cups as a measuring unit in cooking, whereas Russian uses glasses. Unfortunately that only served to confuse learners, judging by the questions in this tread.


And yet the translation of "стакан риса" is "a CUP of rice"?


Exactly what you get on the train from Moscow to Saint Pete's.


But стакан риса is translated to 'a cup of rice' in Duolingo. So it seems that стакан could mean both glass and cup.


Then why is стакан риса a cup of rice in the same lesson?


Where I am from, glass and cup are synonymous. What you show is a glass, and it is also a cup. Only the word "mug" describes the type of cup that should be rejected here.


yes, indeed …a glass for tea and a cup for coffee :-)


But there is a problem, that in English the sentence "a glass of tea" does NOT make any sense. Therefore even though it is a glass in English you say, you call, this glass CUP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


A cup has a handle. Don't worry about weird places for liquids. It is russian language.


As a native American English speaker, I would sooner call that a cup than a glass


The Russian to English translation should be 'cup of tea' No English speaker would ever ask for a 'glass of tea', unless he was in Russia, and speaking Russian, in which case he wouldn't be an English speaker anymore rather a Russian speaker. Stop being stubborn and allow the cup translation and then make a note about the glass.


The point is that normally the "cup of tea" is "чашка чая". That's how we call it most of the time. If a Russian says "стакан чая" they do it to specify the fact that the tea is in the glass as opposed to the more usual cup. So, I believe in English it would also make sense to say "glass" in order to point out that this is not at all a common occurrence.

I mean, I am Russian, and I won't ask for a "стакан чая" either. But if I see a glass, I won't call it "чашка" just because it happened to contain tea.


I am a native English teacher and this photo is EITHER a glass OR a cup. My natural reaction is to call anything with tea - a cup.


Well... You just have to know that in Russian it is "стакан". For Russians, a glass is a glass, whatever you pour into it.

Thanks for the information about English, though!


My point is just that, when it says стакан чая, and I translate is as a cup of tea -- it tells me I am wrong, but I am not :)



If someone handed that to me and asked me what it was called - filled with tea or not, hot or not - I can't imagine calling it anything other than a glass. And that is a fairly average example of what is referred to as a стакан. I'd say someone calling that a cup is wrong, yes.


I believe you should translate it as a "glass of tea" - just to remember it is so in Russian. For the purpose of literary translation, of course, you'd use a more natural English phrase.

This is my opinion, though, and it is up to the course developers to include "cup of tea" or not.


@aspencer: If you translate "cup of tea" into Russian, it will most likely be "чашка чая". Cups or mugs (чашки или кружки) are more common for tea than glasses - even in Russian :-)


You hold it by the uppermost part of the rim and sip :) it's quite doable. (Or at least, that's what I do, not having asbestos fingers. Then again, I usually find the average pot or China 'cup of tea' too hot to handle except by rim and/or handle anyway.)


At this point, I now agree with both of you. :)


If you're translating into English, it should be "cup of tea"; if you're translating into Russian, it should be "glass of tea (стакан чая)"


@flootzavut, I agree, though if someone were to hand me such a glass filled with hot tea I'd wonder if they'd taken leave of their senses... I suppose it might be workable if you were wearing gloves...


Thank you, aspencer! That was my point


@olimo, I think we all understand your point very well. Regardless of what this is served in, you can translate стакан чая as cup of tea. Cup is a catch-all phrase for a container for liquid. It is about the English, and accepting the English. We understand that it is стакан. We were just commenting for the developers to accept cup as a proper translation because it is.


If I had iced tea in a glass, I would call it a glass of tea, and I've never heard anyone else say otherwise (although the Brits here don't generally drink iced tea). I've never heard of anyone putting any other kind of tea in a glass, so I don't know about that case, but my natural reaction is to call a glass a glass, no matter what's put in it. A glass is one thing, a cup is another, and putting tea in one doesn't change it to the other.


I had no idea whether they called them cups or glasses - I'd definitely call them glasses, but I didn't know where I'd got that from - so I did a search.

This Wikipedia article talks about it being served in glasses, a quick scan of it suggests the word 'cup' doesn't appear once, though I didn't read it closely: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maghrebi_mint_tea

Also, if you do a google image search for "Arab tea", it will come up with a LOT of examples, both with and without handles. for anyone who's curious what the Arab version looks like.

I have been trying to figure out how to know what the glasses are called in Arabic, but my usual trick of reading a given Wiki page in the relevant language falls down somewhat when I switch to Arabic.. However, the proverb quoted suggests that, at least in French, they're definitely called glasses.


Well spotted, A_User!



I did Ctrl + F and then searched for cup. :) And it only came up once, which is how I know there's only one time it's used.


Okay, I can't decide whether that's cheating or just very smart ;) probably the latter!


You can call it whichever you like. I think I would prefer you calling it very smart, though! :-)


Thanks! The word cup shows up once: "Fresh mint leaves can be added to the teapot, or directly to the cup."


Yes, I was about to note that the exception to the "cup" rule in English would be iced tea. One aspect: if it has a handle, it can be called a cup in English, or if it's made out of anything other than glass, or if it's small. (Even a shot glass might be called a cup if used for something other that alcohol…)


Is it really an exception to the rule when that's about the only time people put tea in a glass? It's possible that there are places where they put tea in a glass and call it a cup, but I've never heard of it before.

You are right that it would be called a cup if it had a handle. So how the combination of glass and glass holder shown above works, I have no idea...


I know in the Middle East (and maybe Arab parts of N. Africa, I think? I went to Tunisia once and it was years ago so my memory is hazy) they drink tea/mint tea hot from glasses, with or without handles.


Interesting, thanks! (did they call them cups or glasses? this is important)


To me, tea is only in a glass if it is iced tea. Otherwise, it's always a cup.


But that's because there's no other reason to put tea in a glass.


The purveyor states the name based on size and liquid there in. Their profit is based on traffic. We would only relate to sedate glass or grunge cup.


Nevertheless, in English, the proper phrase is "cup of tea". Nobody ever says "glass of tea"


That's not quite how languages work. People would say "glass of tea" if they had to. No grammatical error, you're just not used to it.


If someone handed me a glass of tea, I'd call it a glass - regardless if said tea was hot or not. (British English native)

Your sweeping assumption is faulty.


And as was said somewhere else, if someone handed me a glass with hot tea in it, I'd think they were crazy, unless it was in Russia, when I would call it a glass regardless. :)


Then you haven't been to Turkey.


Egypt too! We drink hot tea in glasses, so don't call us crazy :)


OK, I wouldn't call you Egyptians crazy. Or maybe I would, for living in a place as hot as Egypt. :-)


Have I permission to call you crazy as well, then?


Well I left Egypt because it is actually crazy :D


But I left Egypt because I am not crazy, or at least this is what I try to convince myself with :) sorry for the very late reply, was having an argument with my Russian wife about стакан vs чашки чай and she said to me that стакан чай sounds bizarre for her and that's why I reopened this discussion.


For nine months? :-D I'm not sure I believe you, I rarely do believe claims of not being crazy.... :-P Might it be different in different areas of Russia?


Well... We only had this discussion yesterday when we were talking about cultural differences ;)


That's subjective. In the south, we drink tea by the glass at home and at restaurants. Here, drinking only cups of tea seems a little pretentious.


That's iced tea.…


English speakers expect tea to come in a cup. When possible it is served in a comparatively delicate cup to reflect the delicate nature of tea. Coffee is usually served in a larger, sturdier cup.

Serving tea in what is considered to be a coffee cup when tea cups are actually available is regarded as being informal to the point of being at least inelegant.

Apparently Russians expect tea to be served in a glass, albeit accompanied by an ornamental holder with a handle for comfort and convenience.

Duo has adopted the practice of insisting Duo users recognize the different behavior patterns by insisting on a faithful translation of the Russian word for glass into the English word for glass. .

I imagine there is a Russian student taking an English course somewhere expressing his frustration by saying.....but Russians always drink tea in a glass so why can't I translate English cup of tea into Russian glass of tea since that is the way everybody I know drinks it. Who cares what those crazy Anglos do?........


Russians usually drink tea from cups. However, you can also use a glass, a bucket, a bowl or a frying pan.



If that is true, then Duo should not correct English students who convert it into cup to conform to English usage. The whole notion that Russians typically drink tea in glasses instead of cups was introduced by Duo's choice of introducing the Russian word for glass when discussing Russians drinking tea.

It was reinforced by several posters here, including you, which appeared to show the typical nature of Russians using glasses for tea. Some of those included helpful pictures of supposedly Russian instruments that serve only to facilitate drinking hot liquids from glasses. Something rarely seen in the English speaking world. (of course they do exist)

When I reached the point in my comment just posted where I talked about Russian tea habits, I started it with the word apparently. That is because I was a little surprised to read the Russians typically use glasses to drink hot tea. One reason I accepted that probability is because you yourself supported that idea in your comments on this page.

Why someone who is designated as a moderator would watch a discussion unfold for a year, wandering off on to what you say is a false premise, is surprising. Especially, since it is one your posts that lends authority to it.

In response to a post showing a picture of what is claimed is a typical meal served in a cafeteria complete with a glass of tea, you posted a picture of your own glass of tea.

After approximately a hundred posts at least half of which continue on with your apparent support of glasses of tea rather than cups of tea, you suddenly say ...of course Russians use cups for tea just like English speaking culture. Even that is laid on with a little bit of snark instead of helpful information about how the misconception, that you now say is the case, could have come about.

If you are going to mark your comments as coming from a moderator, you might want to direct them to being as helpful as possible. Other types of comments you make, without the designation displayed, could then be taken as just another posting from a just another user, like I am. Therefore taken as having having only the weight attached to them as their contents deserve.

For the benefit of the down voters, Shady Arc still has a picture up near the beginning of this page two years on from when this was posted, which shows his glass of tea. His comment there was part of a thread which described the Russian habit of drinking tea in glasses and he provided a helpful picture of his own tea instrument which was a glass.


Someone did state that Russians also drink tea out of cups quite a long time ago. I'm sure you can find it if you look through the thread.

Frankly (in retrospect) I find it baffling why "how people normally drink tea in Location X" is considered relevant. The point is to teach the words Стакан (Glass) and Чая (Теа). Granted given that cultural difference this sentence was probably poorly chosen, and should probably be replaced with other sentences that don't combine the two words. but to suggest that a glass should be called a cup because English speakers don't normally drink tea out of glasses is ludicrous.


Of course who drinks what out of what has nothing to do with this directly. However, in English, due to the fact that tea is normally drunk from cups, the phrase "a cup of tea" is a fixed phrase, almost idiomatic. Were it the case (and it seems it isn't, but were it) that Russians usually drank tea from glasses, the phrase "стакан чая" might have carried the same idiomatic meaning, and then the correct translation to it (indeed, I would say, the only correct translation) would have been "a cup of tea".

Apparently, this isn't the case, so the literal translation of "a glass of tea" is the correct one, but I think that at least some of this thread is an attempt to figure out whether this phrase is fixed in Russian or not. I speculate that, since this phrase is so strongly fixed in English, some English speakers found it hard to grasp that this is not the case in Russian. It seems to me that shady_arc's somewhat blunt comments are trying to get this point across.

Edit: so many receptibles here that I got confused. Of course I meant to discuss стакан чая. Now this comment makes sense.



Shady Arc has reinforced the notion that Russians typically drink tea from glasses early on in the thread. Later he scoffs at that notion.

To your point about it being ludicrous: If Russians say glass but mean cup when talking about tea then it is highly relevant what should be the acceptable English translation based on how the words are normally used in English and Russian. If so, it is a disservice to the students to reject an answer which reflects that.

If Russians say glass in tea circumstances because that is what they mean and that is what the example was intended to show, then fifty or more comments expressing confusion about the point should have prompted at least a clarifying comment on the page.

Had someone simply posted that the choice of using glass of tea was simply to force students to learn that cup and glass are separate words in Russian and using a slightly confusing image seemed like a good way to draw attention to it just in case English speakers find the concept hard to grasp, there would be no difficulty.

Russian speakers here because they are doing a reverse course should not be confused about the English usage. Just like Russian, glass and cup are easily understood but different words. I can state definitively that in the English speaking culture hot tea will always be served in a cup, if one is available, unless you specify otherwise. If you do request a glass of hot tea, it will be met with some surprise and a request to confirm you actually want it in a glass. Most situations will not have a handy little device available to make it easy to manage hot tea in a glass.

On the other hand, if you ask for iced tea, it will usually come in a glass. If you ask for it in a cup instead it will not be as confusing as hot tea in a glass since discomfort is not an issue.


I am pretty sure I said we normally use cups or coffee cups. This is a long thread, though. It is completely understandable if someone did not actually read it (which, naturally, would be advisable to discuss its contents in any detail).

As to different drinking vessels in Russian, here are ча́шка, кру́жка, стака́н, рю́мка, бока́л, фуже́р, and сто́пка.


In theory, a person may pour some tea, milk, or juice into any of the above (I just checked: it works!) However, using anything except 1,2, and 3 would be a fairly odd thing to do, since the whole bottom row is for alcohol. Mostly we use "cups"(1) and "mugs"(2), both of which are cups in English and might be чашка in Russian (кружка is often called чашка IRL). I use a Soviet glass (3) at home, which is not as common but would not raise any eyebrows.


When speaking in English, if I am offered a "cup of tea", I would expect it to arrive in a cup. (A mug is never a cup in British English.) To offer someone a "mug of tea" is rarer, but does happen. But "would you like some tea?" is also common. "Some tea" or "a tea" (i.e. a single serving of tea) is what I would ask for if I don't care what it arrives in.

Does Russian also have this neutral option, for not specifying the receptacle?

Caveat: It's true that the English vernacular "a cuppa" always refers to tea, and is independent of actual receptacle, but that is similar to "let's go for a drink" implying alcohol not water. It's a special case, not indicative of the general meaning.


If you want some tea, you just ask for it ("Можно чай?"/"Можно чая(чаю)?", for example), without specifying the receptacle.

This makes sense because restaurants have their designated containers which they would use anyway (do you often ask to serve pasta in a bowl or a frying pan, not on a plate? do they comply?)—and when at someone's house you rarely care about the exact vessel.


The only confusion is that the words do not map one to one. A glass-shaped vessel made of plastic becomes a plastic cup in English, even though it is still стакан in Russian; to be more precise, «пластиковый стаканчик» is what you would usually hear in speech (but a large plastic cup for beer is стакан). In English, a teacup made of glass is still a cup, though. A beer mug made of glass is 100% кружка in Russian—I am not sure if you can call it a "glass" in English.

A measuring cup used in cooking by oh so unprofessional cooks is "стакан" in Russian but a "cup" in English. In this sense, стакан чая is indeed equivalent to "a cup of tea", especially if said tea is not liquid (i.e. a standard cup full of tea leaves).

A large glass for alcoholic beverages is бокал but a smaller one shaped similarly to a wineglass is рюмка. Then, you have a huge "cup" no one drinks from—a sports reward. This is кубок, and, just like in English, is associated with large medieval cups ("cup", "goblet", "chalice") that are not in use today.

UPDATE: Oh...as for a glass holder (подстаканник)—that thing screams retro to me. I am sure many native speakers saw them (at least, on pictures), I even used one on a train myself. I guess if a train uses glasses to serve tea, a glass holder will also be there. Me, I do not drink boiling water anyway, so it never even occured to me that I need something to hold my glass.


@Shady_arc: A beer mug in British English is made of glass and has a handle (also glass). Beer is also served in a glass (more often, nowadays) which does not have a handle.
Both a "mug of beer" or a "glass of beer" are possible, but they will arrive in different receptacles.

The only time I have been served a drink in a подстаканник was to drink punch at a formal occasion - and I was offered "a glass of punch".


That's what I thought. I don't get why this whole thread is making out that we are so different that "a cup of tea" = стакан чая..
Вы пьёте чай; we drink tea.
У Вас есть чашка чая; I have a cup of.tea.
Sometimes you may also have a glass of tea; here we generally don't.
It's as simple as that, isn't it?

  • 1793

"When speaking in English, if I am offered a "cup of tea", I would expect it to arrive in a cup. (A mug is never a cup in British English.)"

No, nowadays it really depends on the setting:

  • More formal (whether in someone's home or formal restaurant) = expect a cup and saucer.

  • Less formal (visiting friends or family, or casual restaurant/diner) = expect a mug.

Some pub or diner-style eateries will still go for cup and saucer, especially if they actually bring a teapot to the table. But they're very likely to be very thick, heavy cups, built primarily for durability (basically cup-shaped mugs) -- not traditional, delicate teacups.

But, honestly, most times you're offered "a cup of tea" in the UK are when visiting people's homes. And in those cases, unless you're visiting someone of an older generation who still appreciates the full formality and tradition of teapot + cups + saucers, I'd always, always expect to get a mug despite the offer of "a cup".


Really? I may serve tea in a mug, but if so, I would offer "some tea" or "tea", never "a cup of tea".

If I am offered a cup, I would still expect a cup - even if it a nasty styrofoam/plastic thing.


The distinction between 1, 2, and 3 is important. Thanks for posting this. I was getting the impression that "стака́н" was used for all 3 and the same word.

It would be helpful if they used "ча́шка" for tea to help make the distinction that they aren't the same word for the different vessels...even if, culturally, Russians use glasses more for their tea. That or maybe an accompanying image to show that it is, in fact, a glass and not cup or mug.


Well around where I live, people do say “glass of tea” when referring to iced sweet tea, but yeah I see how Brits would have trouble with this one.


Technically, yes


So we have a logic problem here Duolingo. When you say glass of rice, it marks you wrong and says that стакан риса means Cup of rice. However when I say cup of tea here, it says its wrong. Please fix or do a much better job explaining.


I think you'll find it's an issue of different senses of the word. "Стакан чая" refers to what you are drinking the tea out of - A glass. This doesn't change between languages. I think the "стакан риса" you mentioned refers to the amount of rice, but in English we don't have "glass" as a unit of measurement, we have "cups" so that is the word used to translate that sense of the word "стакан".


In the case of "cup" as a unit of measurement, this makes sense; but in the case of "cup" as a drinking vessel, one can consume tea from a cup or a glass. I think I understand the subtlety that Duo is attempting to enforce; but a brief mention of it in the lesson notes would be welcomed.


One can consume tea from either a cup or a glass, but whichever you are drinking from you don't call it by the other name. A glass is a glass, a cup is a cup and a spade is a spade.


Fair enough. It's стакан чая vs чашка чая perhaps. Still unresolved is the use of стакан as a unit of volumetric measurement. I have not found any references about this despite its implied meaning in Duo, as in стакан писа.


I am fairly sure it accepts "glass of rice", article or not, even though English speakers do not put rice or flour into "glasses". Still, you theoretically could.


Nope, it marked it wrong. This is why I complained. If its an issue of context, then they need more context. For situations like this that can be confusing to a learner, they should do a better job of explaining the exceptions.


This is a perfect storm of miscommunication. In English a cup is a vessel and unit of measurement and in Russian стакан is a vessel and a unit of measurement. But a glass is not formally a unit and neither is чашка. The two units/words are switched! And the only reason tea is in this lesson is because it's perfect for Partitive. Too good.

In English ask for a "cup of tea," even if the vessel is made of glass, or doesn't have a handle, and in Russian don't ask for a "чашка чая" when you want 250ml of tea.

(I think the other piece of confusion comes from English's third meaning for cup - any small drinking container. The glasses shown in the pictures of Russian tea are also cups in English. If it fits in your one hand you can call it a cup, with or without a handle. Grammatically a "glass of tea" does work and there might be a situation when you need to use it, but it would be super rare. However, without this glass/cup miscommunication I wouldn't have found out about the cultural difference and it's way, that's the most important lesson.)


As a native English speaker I find it bizarre that one of the longest discourses on Duo in about a cup of tea ! Or a glass..... ! Very English to worry about tea.....


I'd swear I remember learning "стакан чаю" and a quick internet search seems to indicate that this is a point of some discussion or confusion ("Стакан чаю" or "стакан чая"). Can someone explain a little more?


It's known as the Partitive case. It is sometimes used with a limited set of nouns (typically food or drinks) and carries the meaning of "some". If the noun has a special partitive form, it will be identical to Dative, otherwise you would use Genitive. The whole thing can be viewed as a special case of Genitive or as a yet another case in addition to the "normal" six you know (if you want). If you look it up on Wiktionary, you'll see that it gives «чаю» below the standard declension paradigm.


You can use both versions. Moreover, without special articulation you won't hear any difference between чая and чаю, the last sound is reduced.


Are we striving for strict literal translation? Or to convey the actual meaning? Most professional translators would vote for the latter.


I have trouble hearing how "чая" is pronounced. Seems like "tchaè", but that doesn"t make much sense :l


Should sound like [t͡ɕˈæjə]. Try Forvo.


Thanks ! Make more sense !


I should also note, that in five+ years of living in Russia (Moscow, Urals, and Siberia), and countless чай питие, I've never heard стакан or чашка mentioned like that. "Будешь чай" or "Можно чай". Sometimes "какой чашка хошешь" if they've got a variety of mugs, but I'm pretty sure I've never heard "xyz OF tea / … чая". Take it for what it's worth.


Guys, why it is чая not чай ?


Just a couple notes: The definition of Partitive: "(of a grammatical construction or case) referring to only a part of a whole, for example a slice of bacon, a series of accidents, some of the children."

From Duo's Tips and Notes: Чаю is an optional form of Чая for the partitive

"Partitive" apparently is the same a genitive, in the case of expressing a quantity of something, like a glass of tea. Genitive/Partitive is also used to express an unspecified amount of something instead of using Accusative (for a direct object), e.g., "Я хочу воды = I want (some) water."


There is literally in the offered translation on стакан that it means, glass, glass of, and cup. But still it won't accept the "cup of tea", though it's in the offered translation given by duo. DUDE, SET YOUR MIND FINALLY.


why is стакан риса a cup of rice but стакан чая is a glass of tea

[deactivated user]

    i'm just a bit confused because correct me if i'm wrong but they said "стакан риса" = a cup of rice, so i thought "a cup of tea" would be a correct translation to this, especially since it's used more often than "a glass of tea". no?


    When I answered 'glass of rice' for стакан риса it told me an alternative would have been 'cup of rice', so couldn't cup of tea be a viable alternative? Maybe all the glasses were dirty and there were only cups left?


    If "стакан риса" is a cup of rice, then why isn't the translation of this "cup of tea??


    In english you would not say a glass of tea. Regardless of a unique russian option of drinking out of a glass


    Where I am from, the words glass and cup are synonymous. A glass is also a cup. And a mug is another type of cup. Even if Russians only drink tea from glasses, these can also referred to as cups.


    "A cup of tea" should be accepted as a valid answer. If I go to Russia and read стакан чая and my brain pictures a cup of tea, the meaning has been communicated. I'm finding these sort of nit picky, illogical mistakes much more frequently here in the Russian course than I did in the Spanish course.


    If I go to Russia and read стакан чая

    You won't. We don't drink tea in "стакан". We drink it in "чашка", which is what you'd read on the menu. The thing is that this sentence is just as unusual in Russian as it is in English.


    Is the Russian word чая where the English "chai tea" comes from?


    No, both come from the Chinese word cha, by way of India, where it became chai, to Europe. In some languages, including Russian, chai is still the word for tea in general, while in English it now only refers to Masala Chai.


    The London vernacular used to be "a cup of char", for tea in general. I have not heard that for quite a while (but then again, I haven't been in that part of the UK for awhile).


    Interesting info, thanks! For some reason I thought there was more than one kind of chai.


    Yes, there are different versions of it. Basically chai is tea with spices, and there is variation in the spices. If you're interested, Wikipedia will tell you more about it than I remember: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masala_chai


    I actually have yet to come across a language where tea isn't either some form of tea tee or similar or of cha chai or similar. Anyone? It used to surprise me, and now I'd be surprised if I came across a language which didn't use a word related to one or other of those.

    Anyone know of an example? Even tea that isn't camellia sinensis almost always seems to be tea or chai or some variation thereupon...


    Polish: herbata or podwieczorek. So Google Translate says, anyway.


    if you read Arabic, "shaax" is pronounced like "شاح", or /ʃɑːħ/ if you cannot lol


    a bit late here, but: - "podwieczorek" is a meal (also "herbatka"), - "herbata" is a drink (old people might use "czaj" because of russian influence), - "tea leaf" is "liść herbaty" and "leaf tea" is "herbata liściasta", - "teja"? NEVER heard of it. i'm native and pretty sure i'm right ;)


    No success yet. Here's a moderately extensive list - everything's tea or chai.



    Somali was Shaax, but how that's pronounced I have no idea.


    A_User had more success than I did :-)

    Note that in Polish, teapot is still czajnik, as in Russian.


    And the site I found gives tēja as the Polish name.


    According to that list, tea is teja in Polish. I wonder which I trust more, that or Google Translate... In Bulgarian the word is supposed to be Swahili, so it might be Google Translate. :)


    The accent on the "e" wouldn't be there in proper Polish, I know that. Polish doesn't have that accent.


    Quite likely both teja and herbata are used. Podwieczorek to me sounds like it might be a translation of the English meal called tea.


    It might be. I can go ask a native speaker. :)


    Oh, you're right about herbata - I'm pretty sure that comes up in the Polish/English course here which I've dabbled in. I seem to remember hearing it called something like chai when I was actually in Poland, but that was a long time ago so things may have changed/I may be misremembering.

    I agree podwieczorek sounds more like tea the meal not tea the drink.

    Shaax I'd honestly guess came from chai at some point! Or at least, there's enough similarity there I'd be surprised if it was a coincidence.


    Do we have any Somali speakers to ask about pronunciation?


    Apparently podwieczorek is "tea leaf", not the meal. :-)


    @moniasto Thank you! Apparently you can't believe everything you read on the internet. :-)

    • "Podwieczorek" comes from "pod wieczór"-"around evening, time just before the evening starts". It's usually a light meal, which often includes tea; ie. a sandwich + tea. It's not synonymous with just having tea - even if the time may be appropriate when in England (5 o'clock tea time ;) ). You can have "herbatka" with friends at any time, though.

    • "Tea" is "herbata" - I've never seen thing such as "teja", even in literary works written in old-fashioned style! :P

    • "Kettle" is "czajnik", though nowadays mostly electrical kettle ("czajnik elektryczny") is used, but "teapot" would be "imbryk" or "czajniczek" (diminutive) - a smaller version, usually with long neck or a "beak" to pour the tea, a handle and a lid.

    • "Czaj" (pronounced just like чай) is more often than not used:

    1) in outdated manner (elder people talking or literary works from over a century ago)

    2) if it's used, it's probably when referring to undiluted tea, to be diluted to drink later (think of a very strong, condensed black tea, which would taste horrible and be undrinkable without diluting it a bit).

    I'm just a random Polish speaker passing by ;))


    Duo: In this case, you do not accept "cup" for "стакан" but in other instances in this same lesson, you do. What's up?


    I think there is a question of common meaning here. If I wanted to drink tea, and didn't care much in what container it came, I would ask for a cup of tea, and I wouldn't be upset if it came in a glass.

    The question is, if I wanted some tea in Russian, what would I ask for. If the answer is стакан чай, then I think that means a cup of tea is an acceptable translation. If the answer is чашки чай, then it seems that a cup of tea is incorrect after all. Of course, if the answer is something different, then I would also say that a cup of tea is incorrect.


    You would ask for tea. If you try asking for a стакан чая, you'd be presented with a cylindrical / truncated cone shaped vessel without handles (usually made of glass). If you ask for a bucket of tea (ведро чая), you'll also get you tea in a vessel shaped as a truncated cone, only it will be much larger, it will have a bail handle (the material is likely to be metal or plastic this time). Кувшин (jug) is also a thing. All that assumes that people actually care enough to provide the requested liquid in a specific vessel you asked for.

    The line between чашка (cup) and кружка (mug) is rather blurry: although they are formally distinguished, it is not a crime to use the "wrong" word—even less so these days, when a lot of people use cylindrical "mugs" to drink their tea or coffee).

    Sometimes words mean just what it says on the tin.


    В некоторых языках слово стакан произносится как истакан (у Даргинцев к пр.). Например в азербайджанском оно пишется как stəkan но читается как istəkan. Это похоже на слово iskola в венгерском языке означающий школа. Присутствие двух согласных в начале слова делает произношение трудным. Поэтому добавляется гласный звук "и". По крайней мере так это объясняют некоторые лингвисты. Есть ли что то похожее в русском языке?


    Can any one tell me the defference between чая--чай


    They both mean tea but are in different cases. Чай is in the nominative case. Чая is in the genitive case, which turns it into "of tea" rather than just "tea".


    Soooo стакан риса is a cup of rice but a cup of tea is wrong...?


    Yeah, came in here to say the same thing. Figured they were interchangeable based on vocabulary offered.


    "Стакан риса" is said to mean "a cup of rice so... that's kinda confusing to me :/


    "a glass of rice" made duo suggest that "cup" would be also okay so why cannot I use "a cup of tea" when it's " стакан" as well?


    The first time i typed "a glass of tea" and it said it could also mean "a cup of tea", but now that i type it in nooo "стакан only means glass now"


    Когда речю идет о конкретном количестве несчитаемых предметов, слова должаны заканчиваться на букву ю. Много чая, стакан чаю. Нет супа, тарелка супу. И так далее.


    Hmmm....I typed "A glass of tea" and my answer is not accepted stating that the correct one is "A glass of tea" ;-)


    so it's a cup of rice and a glass of tea. when do you know which one to use when?


    @A_User the polish raw veg "salad" would be surówka (literally translated a raw-y)


    why isn't it чаи


    This is how I say it in Arabic too


    As an englishman, this offends me.


    In some cases стакан is on Duolingo translated also as a bowl.


    It is not. A bowl is a bowl—a deep, usually round dish.


    I know. But at least in one case for translation стакан риса Duolingo gives you only one possibility: a bowl of rice.


    A cup of rice? If you mean 250 ml, стакан is indeed equivalent to the English "cup" (as an approximate unit of measurement used in cooking). I am not sure it can be a bowl .



    In persian we call it estekan too!


    Why not чаю? When we use чай... чая... чаю?


    Чаю also works.


    Чаю is an alternative partitive form for чай.

    Another noun that has a widely used Partitive-II is народ ("people, nation")–when you mean huge crowds, народу is often used ("много народу" is even more common than "много народа")


    This should be a cup of tea in English if you ask me


    So...relating to the grammar of it all. What makes the partitive different from the genitive. They appear to be the same. Й->Я is a male noun declension to genitive, no?


    It is the partitive use of the Genitive that we are addressing here. The Genitive has a lot of uses in modern Russian, some of which can be grouped.

    A few short masculing nouns have an optional -у-ending partitive, though: чашка чаю, много народу are pretty common (arguably, много народу much more common than много народа).


    So the Persian word Estekan meaning a small glass is actually a Russian word. :|


    I would assume they both come from some other, common origin, say Turkish. Russian has many words from Turkish origin, a common cause for vocabulary differences with other Slavic languages. Someone above said Azerbaijani also has istakan, which might also point in the same direction, though I guess that could also be a Russian influence. Anyone with center-European Slavic language?


    According to the etymology in wiktionary, the word was acquired already on Old East Slavic (достаканъ), from Turkic origin, taken itself from Persian دوستگان ‎(dustgân).

    But the modern Persian استکان ‎(estekân) would be a borrowing from the modern стакан


    The Russian to English translation should be 'cup of tea' No English speaker would ever ask for a 'glass of tea', unless he was in Russia, and speaking Russian, in which case he wouldn't be an English speaker anymore rather a Russian speaker. Stop being stubborn and allow the cup translation and then make a note about the glass.


    Yes, native English speakers often ask for a "glass of tea" in restaurants (versus soda). I always ask for "a glass of unsweetened tea - no lemon."


    There are way too many comments.


    Is чая pronounced chai-yah? sound is a bit distorted


    I don't even care about the cup vs glass controversy. I got it wrong with "glass of tea" for not having the "a" at the beginning. :/


    In English you would always say cup of tea. I think you should accept the translation even if you drink tea from glasses in Russia.


    We normally drink tea from cups.


    They accept cup as a translation in the other instances but not here. It is the lack of consistency that geta me.


    Just a simple question,, when does стакан change from A glass to A cup? Стакан чая, A glass of tea. Стакан риса, A cup of rice. Is that not чашка or чашечка? or any other kind of measurement container?


    its always been a cup of tea , never a glass of tea , even if it is a glass of team with a holder , it practically becomes very similar to mug , so its a cup of tea ... please add this to the answers options


    While I understand that Russians may drink tea from a "glass," rather than a "cup," but for the English translation, "cup" should be accepted. One could argue that semantically it's not correct in Russian. But I counter argue that in English it's also arguably incorrect, as we drink tea from mugs most of the time. Regardless, stating that you'd want a "glass of tea" anywhere in America would sound awkward and too specific.


    Russians usually drink tea from cups. cuppatea


    If you teach people that стакан чая means "Cup of tea", then when they go to Russia and ask for one they'll be in for rather a nasty shock. :-) Better to teach the correct terms for glass and cup so that when one goes to use the language they can properly express that the want a cup of tea, not a glass of it.


    I completely agree, but in learning a language, some cultural understanding must occur. Just like when Russian is translated to English, some cultural disparity happens. Someone reading "Ivan sat upon the stove..." in a Russian story would have absolutely no clue to the meaning without some cultural context, because a Russian stove is different to an American one. It's splitting hairs, I know, but for the English translation from Russian, a "cup" should be accepted, but not so if translating English to Russian, as obviously "glass" should be used. I hope this rant makes sense!


    see here: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/11523914$comment_id=11799835

    It usually pays to read the thread before asking a question in these sentence discussions. :-)

    Learn Russian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.