"В чём дело?"

Translation:What's the matter?

November 7, 2015

53 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

In what affair? as a litteral translation seems so weird. I guess it's another translation to remember by heart... :p

Is there an alternate translation for What's the matter?? Is this one the most common?

November 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/HartzHandia

You can also say "что случилось?" или "что не так?"

November 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rekty

Is В чём дело? common or formal or fancy?

November 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/HartzHandia

It is very common. I think it can be used regardless of the speech register.

November 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/elsantodel90

The literal translation is not "In what matter", but "In what is the matter" (дело is nomitative, not prepositional, so it is subject, not part of the "in"). Instead of asking "what" the matter is, or "where" the matter is, Russian asks "in what" it is: what is it, that "contains" the matter.

December 10, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jeffrey855877

People should read the above comment because it is not just an excellent explanation of the meaning of this exercise, it also sets out a framework for interpreting a lot of other Russian sentences. This is an extremely useful bit of grammatical description/definition. I'm copying and pasting it into my study notes in red, so that I can find it easily.

August 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/GuidoSassi

I think "What is the business in/to?" Could be a literal translation

February 4, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/DavidG430

I agree with GuidoSassi. "In what matter" or "In what business" should be an accepted translation. I will report it as a problem. As was mentioned above, and also in an earlier lesson in Duolingo, they translated "что не так" аs "what is wrong." So there is an alternate way of saying what is wrong.

March 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

"In what matter" or "In what business" has a different meaning than "What's the matter?" In what matter" would be каким образом или в каком деле; "in what business" would be в какой отрасле или в какой сфере. They don't mean the same thing as В чем дело which basically means "What's wrong".

March 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/RussophiliaSux

Sure, but we don't say that in English. So if you memorize it this way, be careful...

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/excelsaga

I think of the sentence as 'wherein (lies) the issue?'.

September 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/mosfet07

what's up?

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/lannjenks

That's how I translated it but it didn't like it

November 13, 2015

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

Wassup

January 7, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Yuri-Isaenko

обыно это переводится "как дела?"

November 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Nico353184

I think it has both meanings. In GB it's "what's the matter?". In US, and especially what they call BEV (Black English Vernacular) it seems to be like "what's the news?"

March 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/preparat12

I see a striking similarity between the words "deal" and "дело" ("what's the deal?" - "в чём дело?")

February 10, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/athalaberhtaz

they are etymologically unrelated

December 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Damiano.Ba3

How this differ from как дело?

July 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/va-diim

Как дело is more like, "How is this thing that you're doing?"

July 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Ema439209

I have read all the previous comments and I am still confused. What is the intended meaning of В чём Дело.
-- "What is the matter?" as in What is wrong? (what the most common interpretation of the English sentence is) -- or "what is the matter at hand" as in What are we talking about? What is the agenda?" -- or something else?

March 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/EmmaDulcie

See keinemeinung's previous reply above. This only means "What is wrong?"

March 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Ema439209

Thank you for clarifying. There are many different opinions to what the meaning was in this tread, so I did not know what the conclusion was. Это в чем дело. (?)

March 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/va-diim

Yes, all of these, you are right

June 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/emononen

Why the accusative rule for в (https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Russian/Grammar/Accusative_case) does not apply here? I.e. why is it "в чëм" instead of "в что"?

December 26, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Rewm
  • 375

В takes accusative case when it means direction. When it means location, it takes prepositional case: в Москву / в Москве = to Moscow / in Moscow

March 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/wizwisdom

It is used in the prepositional case to denote something like "What is the matter (in/at this place)". But, I guess we just have to learn this by heart.

December 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/LivingLifeform

What's the Russian word for "Problem" and can it be used here instead?

May 7, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Denise-Joe

The russian word is simply проблема. But I have no idea if you can use it in this context :P I suppose you'd be understood if you did.

December 22, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

You can, and it's fine, but you're specifying a negative situation when you say problem, whereas with delo it has a slightly more neutral connotation.

January 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/eRcU936226

Famous line from EUGENE ONEGIN--Pushkin and Tchaikovsky

September 3, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/___Jake___

Could I use Что не так instead?

October 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/va-diim

That has a negative connotation, like "What's wrong." В чём дело is neutral.

October 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sagie

How about "what's the issue"?

February 5, 2016

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

I guess so. It's a little less common but should still be accepted. Remember, DL is still in beta, so report anything that you think should be accepted.

May 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/peterviuz

Are we sure this means " What's the matter?" i.e. What's the problem?, or does it mean "What about?" i.e. On what subject?

February 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/BorjaSalaz

Can you say "what the heck?"

May 28, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Joker-62

Зачем нужен the?

November 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/keinemeinung

English requires an article, because you're discussing/identifying a specific matter/deal.

January 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/brittney738636

I don't hear the "в" at the beginning of the Vocalization am I missing something?

December 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/va-diim

It sounds clear although a bit garbled. It sounds like "фчём" ("fchyom")

December 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Butterflys_Dust

What does чём mean exactly? As in, would "в чём" also be a valid phrase? How could i use в чём with other words?

Thanks!

March 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/va-diim

"in what"

В чём спишь? "In what [clothes] do you sleep?"

March 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/peachtree2

Could "what's the situation?" be considered a good translation of this also?

January 21, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Russo_learn

В чём дело? I know that you can use the чём to mean a guy and/or an object, but if I was asking a woman what was the matter could I say в чей дело?

February 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/va-diim

No, чём can't mean a guy. You're thinking of нём. Also, в чей дело means "in whose business/issues/affairs," having nothing to do with a female person in particular. I think you're thinking of "ней," not "чей"

June 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Andres756730

Some Spanish native with good knowledge of Russian could tell me if I could use the above sentence as: "Qué pasa contigo, tio?"

April 22, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Nico353184

another vote for "What's up?"

March 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AndrewMat85

What's up? is not accepted? Why?

May 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/JTDo5

Just to understand.. В чём as a literal translation is "in what"? So it works in cases like" in what the problem is"?

June 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/va-diim

"In what is the problem?" Yes.

June 7, 2017
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