"Кошки здесь нет."

Translation:The cat is not here.

November 8, 2015

51 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Nate_J

Word order in Russian is very loose compared to English. Because of their case system, it is quite easy to tell what each word's function is in a sentence. In English, we don't decline words much at all, so we rely on word order to show what words do what in a sentence. For example, I could say "I am studying Russian on Duolingo" in English. "I" is in nominative, "Russian" is in accusative, and "duolingo" is in prepositional. In Russian, I could say "Russian study I on Duolingo" as long as I got my case declensions correct.

In this sentence, "нет" starts the genitive case, and "кошки" is in the genitive, so we can assume that нет and кошки go together. The verb "is" isn't really used much in Russian, but it's implied here. Здесь just means "here." You could word this sentence as нет кошки здесь too.

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

You have to know that the word order is not completely random. Sometimes you can change it without any change in the meaning, and sometimes you'll give the sentence another tone or even turn it into a nonsense.

  • Здесь нет кошки. There is no cat here.
  • Кошки здесь нет. The cat is not here.
  • Кошки нет здесь. The cat is not here. A less common word order, emphasizing "not".
  • Нет здесь кошки! There's no cat here! (I fail too see any cat here!)
  • Нет кошки здесь! The cat is not here! (I looked for it and couldn't find it, I swear!)
  • Здесь кошки нет. The cat is not here (but I'll keep looking for it elsewhere).

Note that some of these versions are pretty emotional and situational. At the beginner level, the first two orders would be enough.

Update: I wrote a post based on this example.

November 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/frpetera

I got кошки нет здесь where I had to tap words to make the translation and the answer given as correct was 'there is no cat here,' which, if I read your explanation above correctly, isn't quite right

March 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/StephieRice

It's fine. She is describing how the meanings can have slight variance. Just like in English.

Even though "There is no cat here", "Here, there is no cat." and "No cat is here" have the same basic meaning, there is nuance and different emphasis.

The rule of this is actually quite regular across many languages "The most important information goes towards the beginning of a sentence."

It's not the only rule (for instance in English we often change our tone on the word we want to emphasize like "There is no cat HERE" or "There is NO cat here" since word order is more strict). This can help guide this kind of thinking though.

June 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/legalcanada

i think Japanese usually has the important information at the end, which is why they all nod politely going mhm ahh ahh until the end lol

September 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Danieldrofo

if it were to say " there are no cats here" would it be "кошек здесь нет"

March 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jeffrey855877

or maybe "кошки не здесь"???

May 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/josephmrk

How would I say "The CATS are not here" ?

November 13, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JanisaChatte

That would be "Кошек здесь нет."

November 13, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MikeMotto

In this instance, how do native English speakers recognize this as genetive singular and not nominative plural (which both are "кошки")? "кошка черная" is not in genetive, and so you would not expect "кошка здесь" to be either. So, "кошки здесь" to me looks like "cats are here." Thanks for any help.

November 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

"Нет" requires genitive.

November 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MikeMotto

Thank you.

November 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BenjaminTh118323

Excuse me, Is there some website where I can find the rules like "Нет requires genitive"? because I know that "без" "около" etc. also use the genitive but I cannot find the general rules about the use of the genitive form. De antemano gracias

July 24, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/elsantodel90

For a given preposition, wiktionary usually lists the cases it uses (sometimes it is more than one, with the meaning changing depending on the case).

Most prepositions use the genitive.

February 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jeffrey855877

There are many prepositions which do not use genitive.

May 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Derrick.Botha

Duolingo's website includes some lessons and tips with each "module", but if you want to go more in depth with the rules, check out the menu on http://www.russianlessons.net

January 17, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/ryankoz89

I have found the best solution is to pay attention to the context of the sentence, and practice a lot. Over time, the cases become more second nature.

October 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Kats87

It is not in the chart at the beginning of the lesson. Where did you find that information? I am so confused...

April 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/YTcassadyDodson

thank you. i was confused about that too

October 31, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/sritasarah

a cat is not here = the cat is not here

December 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Steve448292

can I ask that someone looks at my thought patterns please? I made a mistake thinking that "кошки" was plural. then I thought "OK, so а ----> и because it's genitive. Then I thought why gen? And I came up with gen because it's negative. Sorry if this seems garbled but you guys only have to put up with my weird thoughts here, ha ha I have to put up with them "always" ))))))

June 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/BladeTaylor

Should "There is not a cat here" be accepted?

January 19, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/yasmine_y

I'm not 100% sure how but I think the Russian sentence would be quite different, in terms of order. You can find some explanations in the replies to the first comment.

April 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/arcusimpetus

Today I learned that you can form grammatically correct sentences in Russian without needing a subject. What is this language . . .

May 3, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/kdammers

And we also know that there are lots with no verb.

September 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Osophy

isn't the right spelling of cat(fem) with genitive : кошкы this is what my lesson card on the genitive case is saying tell me so i can edit it ! :)

February 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/elsantodel90

"кошкы" would be what you expect from just following grammar rules, however the sacred "spelling rules" take place here: you can never write кы, only ки. http://www.russianlessons.net/grammar/spelling_rules.php

October 31, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Prosek73

I wrote "here there is no cat", marked wrong. Correct solution: "there is no cat here". It's the same!! o_O

February 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/yasmine_y

"Here there is no cat" makes no sense in English.

April 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Lise.Buet

sorry to ask this, i am quite confused, but, why does кошка end with a и and not ы, it's different to what the lessons have taught me... thanks in advance

August 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/elsantodel90

"кошкы" would be what you expect from just following grammar rules, however the sacred "spelling rules" take place here: you can never write кы, only ки. http://www.russianlessons.net/grammar/spelling_rules.php

April 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/yasmine_y

Because of the к. If the last consonant is a к, the plural (and the genitive) is in и. I can't remember the name of the rule, but it works for several consonants.

April 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Robstar100

"There aren't any cats here" I'm kinda think this is correct but even if it isn't I was corrected with: "There isn't any cat here." Which implies we are now discussing eating cats and there is no cat meat around us.

May 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/jenda48

"кошки здесь нет" is wrong, Correct is " кошки здесь нет" Is it oшибка Дуолинга, думаю, да?

September 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/joe221449

Could you also say "кошки нет здесь"

October 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/yasmine_y

If I got it correctly...

I think that would put the emphasis on "here", like saying "the cats are not here, they're somewhere else". The sentence in this exercise instead emphasizes the absence of any cat in general.

November 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/JamesSanti16

Shouldn't this be the cats are not here. Plural instead of singular?

February 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/elsantodel90

No: нет always uses the genitive. Кошки is the genitive singular of кошка (plural would be кошках). It just happens that it looks exactly the same as the nominative plural (something that happens for almost all feminine words), but we know it cannot be nominative, because of нет.

February 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/yan937868

How to say: the cat does not here?

March 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/elsantodel90

I think that "does not" without a verb is incomplete English grammar: What do you mean to say with such a sentence?

March 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/chartsman

This sentence makes no sense, sorry.

March 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/flint72

I believe that

"Cats are not here"

should be accepted as a translation, as in English, the negative uses an indefinite quantity. I don't know how to call this rule correctly. There is the same thing in French "Il n'y a pas des chats ici = There are no cats here / Cats are not here". Both English sentences have the same meaning.

November 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

The meaning of the Russian sentence is that the cat (one specific cat) is not here. As if I was looking for my cat Murka and said: The cat is not here.

November 10, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/TylerCharton

How would you say "there is not a cat here" then?

January 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo

Здесь нет кошки.

January 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/chartsman

In French it would be "Il n'y a pas DE chats ici".

January 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/akincimd

My answer was there are no cats; is not t correct

December 6, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/akincimd

excuse me, It is my mistake

December 6, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/JakubSehna2

Кошки = Cats Кошки is not Cat

April 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/chartsman

It can mean both, read the thread to understand it better.

April 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Derrick.Botha

Кошки is also the genitive singular, so it depends on the sentence and context. In this case genitive singular should be used, which is кошки

April 7, 2019
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