1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Russian
  4. >
  5. "Курица - это птица."

"Курица - это птица."

Translation:A chicken is a bird.

November 7, 2015



Why is это used here if the translation is "A chicken is a bird"? Is это redundant in this situation?

[deactivated user]

    Since Russian has dropped the verb 'to be' in Present case in most cases (although you can find it in formal documents), the sentences like «X is Y» became ambiguous. «X — Y» may be mistaken for an apposition «X-Y» (e.g. «курица-птица» might theoretically mean 'a chicken bird' or 'a bird of a hen'; in this sentence it's not a viable option, but in many sentences using «X — Y» would be abmiguous).

    So, the Russian languare has resolved ambiguity by inserting это 'it'. While it originally was a means to reduce ambiguity, now sentences with это actually sound more natural.

    Compare it with Mandarin Chinese: in Classical Chinese, 是 used to mean 'this', but now it is a verb 'is'. Unlike Mandarin, Russian hasn't gone so far as to make «это» a verb, but this sentence still sounds better with «это».

    While English, since it has never really dropped 'is', doesn't usually use 'it' in such situations, so that's why we leave «это» out in translation.


    Formal document = secreet documetz


    Simply put, "A chicken, it's a bird," as opposed to Курица - птица, "A chicken is a bird."


    "Chicken, it is a bird" is not deemed correct by duolingo, and I get that the translation is a bit too literal and unnatural, but shouldn't it be correct?


    U introducing them to eachother?

    [deactivated user]


      This is so funny


      It doesn't sound right in English, even though it is a very literal translation of the Russian.


      In this sentence construction " - это" means "like that". In conversation we insert "это" to speak clearly.

      For example "Курица, птица" and "курица - птица" sound exactly the same, but these have different meanings. That's because all punctuation marks sound like a pause.

      So we mostly say "курица и птица" when we see 2 birds (exept "курица, птица")

      We say "курица - это птица" when we speak about chickens (exept "курица - птица")

      The hyphen means hidden word or hidden some words. In this situation hidden word is "является" (to be in English).


      Reminds me of Курица не птица - Польша не заграница :)


      The whole saying is: "Курица не птица, Польша (Болгария) не заграница, баба - не человек". Sorry for potentional sexism, but as they say: "Из песни слов не выбросишь" "One can't throw away words from a song (there is no getting away from it)".


      Inteligent Russians don't say that. But drunk Russians, uneducated people, criminals, low-skilled workers and collective farmers like to say so. They are mostly divorced or unhappy spouses.


      Yep, there is mistake in that sentence. Everyone knows that куритца не птица


      I'm afraid I was told куриица не птица, и женщина не человек!


      Why sometimes they using CHICKEN and sometimes HEN?


      Why not "Chickens are birds."?


      That would be, "Курицы это птицы."


      That's how you say "A chicken is a member of the bird family."?


      No, I said, "Chickens are birds." Yours would be, «Курица - член семейства птиц». A chicken is a member of the bird family.


      I'm very confused. So, "Курица - это птица" doesn't mean a chicken is a type of bird.


      I had the same question; see above...the concept is correct but apparently you have to get the singular/plural aspect correct as well.


      In addition to the singular vs. plural thing, Russian doesn't have articles. Basically everytime there's a noun, it could be either "the" or "a/an" in English. So in this case a straightforward translation is "(a/the) chicken is (a/the) bird" and other translations are dubious/technically complicated.

      But... I would also be interested in whether the sentence can have both the literal and the abstract meaning.


      i heard курица, это пицца lol


      Why is not it зта? Курица is feminine.

      [deactivated user]

        Please see the guide to using э́то by olimo: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/11536858


        Thank you, it explains my mistake! It is a really well written article.


        This should be a whole lesson in itself. Thank you!


        Could you also say "This bird is a chicken"?


        That would be, Эта птица - курица.


        The pronunciation of 'Курица' in this one is different from a previous task. Which syllable is supposed to have the stress?


        The first syllable takes the stress. КУ-ри-ца


        Any etymological relation to "petit"?


        Neither "a hen is a bird" nor "a duck is accepted" here. There are no other options to choose


        Their pronunciation of Птица in this exercise sounded quite a bit like Пицца


        So "птица" refers to any animal in the bird family?


        птица is used in Russian exactly the same as the word "bird" is used in English


        Gave correct answer "A chicken is a bird" and correction says "correct answer would have been: A chicken is a bird"


        "Chicken - it's a bird" should be an acceptable translation :( there's a hyphen in the russian, why can't there be a hyphen in the english? It still makes sense


        Звучит как "Курица - это пицца" :D


        Why is it A chicken is a bird not a chicken this a bird


        "A chicken this a bird," is not a correct English construction. In Russian, the verb "is" is omitted in the present tense, so это is often used instead.


        Is there a distinction between ''chicken" as in the animal and "chicken" as in the meat?


        Question for English native speakers: "A chicken is a fowl". is this too archaic or should it be accepted?


        Regardless of whether it's archaic or not, a fowl is a type of bird, not any bird, so why would it possibly be accepted as a translation of "птица".


        а с каких пор HEN не является КУРИЦЕЙ???


        "a chicken is this bird"


        That would be (awkwardly) "Курица, это эта птица."


        Sounds like an intro to a good hip hop piece.


        I feel that not enough people appreciate the alliteration in this sentence


        Why was one of the choices 're? A're chicken're is're a're bird're.


        One exercise, Курица means Chicken, the next: Hen...


        Lol it sounds so funny


        No, a duck is утка. Курица is a chicken.

        I can see the English "Kyp" in your post, rather than a Russian Кур


        My answer was, "Chickens are birds," which should also be correct in this context as it conveys the same meaning.


        That would be

        Курицы - это птицы.


        I realize that my nouns were technically plural; but my point was that this is a generalized statement, thus the meanings are equivalent in English. "A chicken is a bird" means the same thing as "Chickens are birds."


        I agree with you, but for the purposes of learning Russian, the learner has to know the difference between singular and plural. These exercises shouldn't be loose translations as long as the meaning is understood but should be as precise translations as possible in order to show the learner's aptitude.


        If duoLingo tells me that "Chickens are birds." is incorrect, then I'll believe that there is a problem with my understanding of "Курица - это птица." and won't be sure if its a generalized statement because "A chicken is a bird." and "Chickens are birds." are the generalized statements in English.


        As true as that is, you would not say they are "the same" phrase in English. Distinguishing these nuances is much better for building understanding of the language.


        Either way, Курица - это птица, means, "a chicken is a bird." "Chickens are birds," would be, курицы - это птицы.


        I agree that the essence is the same, but you are not being asked to interpret the phrase or to respond to a question, you are being asked to translate the sentence. One translation is correct while the other is not, regardless of any common usage.


        Yes, nuance is everything. But there is precious little difference between "A chicken is a bird." and "Chickens are bird.". I would have to say they're the same thing. They both mean that chickens belong to the bird family or the class aves. The question is does "Курица - это птица" mean that chickens belong to the bird family? The child asks "Why do chickens lay eggs?" The adult answers "Because a chicken is a bird" or "Because chickens are birds." Same thing.

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