"У него нет ничего."

Translation:He does not have anything.

November 8, 2015

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This is why Duoling is beter than school. Asking the real philosophical questions! If he doesnt have nothing, does he have something?


Or maybe it's just Street-style talk. You know... "Yo dawg! He ain't got nothin'!"


The philosophers of the streets.


why is the г pronounced like a v?

[deactivated user]

    It's an exception.


    oh ok. Do you know when this exception happens?

    [deactivated user]

      According to the Lopatin's reference:

      § 92. In the Genitive singular of the adjectives, participles and pronominal words of masculine and neuter gender, -ого (-его) is traditinally written with the letter г, but pronounced with в, for example: до́брого, хоро́шего, большо́го, си́него, четвёртого, чита́вшего, его́, чего́, того́, сего́, всего́, одного́, моего́. This also happens in the adverb ничего́ ('pretty good'), in the words ничего́шеньки, ничегòнеде́лание, сего́дня (and сего́дняшний), итого́; however, the word ничево́ки (name of the writing circle) is written with the letter в.

      Note. In the word сеголе́тки (Nom. sg. сеголе́ток and сеголе́тка) г is not just written, but also pronounced.


      Italics makes everything harder in Russian


      Wait until you see Russian handwriting.


      ):-n that hurts.


      always in ЕГО ОГО . the Г sound like v .


      I had У них ничего нет earlier. Does word order change the meaning or emphasis (or anything) in any degree for У них ничего нет and У него нет ничего?


      It very rarely changes the meaning of the sentence. Because of the grammar, Russian can be very flexible with word order. However, у XX нет is a pretty set phrase.


      I once heard it said that Russians put the most important parts of the sentence first because they don't care enough to listen to the end. ;)


      How come "he ain't got jack" isn't accepted here?


      Almost certainly because it's not close enough to "standard English" for Duolingo. Even if the extremely faint possibility of accepting the much maligned "ain't" were being considered (since I think it more frequently accompanies that unusual-to-English double negative), "jack" for nothing is probably too slangy to be worth including as a translation on Duo.


      Perhaps my joke was .....lost in translation


      Right it was actually just a joke. I can see the community hasn't enjoyed it very much based on the down votes and sarcastic responses. I think I was in a particularly good mood and trying to express it but I'll be aware and try to avoid humour in future.


      Hilarious comment hahaha


      This basically mean "He doesn't have nothing" right? Does Russian work like French or Spanish, with double negations?

      [deactivated user]


        Or : He has nothing.

        Which is also accepted as a translation.


        Why does it use него rather than он?


        the у always comes with a genitive. The genitive of он is его, but after у there is an extra н. literally, the sentence says "for him is not nothing".


        Is the extra н an exception, only after the у to facilitate pronounciation or are there other cases like that ?

        [deactivated user]

          I'm not sure if it can be considered an exception. «Н-» gets appended to all pronouns beginning with е- if they are used after a pronoun and if they don't modify another word after them (so «у него», but «у его сестры»).

          This is related to the history of the language, it doesn't really facilitate anything because «его» (/jɪ'vo/) starts with a consonant (/j/) anyway.


          Not only pronouns beginning with -e but also их, им, ими etc.

          Ex: У них есть дети.


          So this is similar to consonant mutation in Irish and Welsh?

          [deactivated user]

            Well, historially it is similar to Celtic nasalisation, but it's limited only to a handful of pronouns.


            Think of it this way: If Russian didn't put the Н in front of Его/Её, then how would you know which pronoun has which object?

            Example: "У его игрушки кошки." = His toy has cats. (У takes the first visible genitive "игрушки.") "У него игрушки кошки." = He has the toys of a cat. (У takes the first visible genitive "него," which means the word after that must be a regular plural feminine noun. But wait, it's followed by another seemingly plural female noun, which must make THAT one another genitive singular feminine noun.)

            The H serves a good purpose in these situations. :)


            Why is ничего not in genitive case since this is negation?

            [deactivated user]

              It's the genitive case in this sentence.

              The nominative case is ничто, but it's a rare form that is usually replaced with genitive, at least in colloquial speech.


              That makes sense. Thanks!


              I wrote, 'he has nothing'. It was marked incorrect. It is a more natural way of saying he doesn't have anything.


              Is this a double negative (ничего = nothing)? - how to know when ничего means "anything" vs. "nothing"?


              Thanks, Henk, that actually even SOUNDS russian (at least according to the majority of russian characters speaking English on-screen!


              Couldn't it also be "It" instead of "he"?


              Yes. According to https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%D0%BD%D0%B5%D0%B3%D0%BE#Pronoun_3, " него" is genitive of both "он" and "оно́".


              He has nothing could have work I think.


              Г pronounched "v"?


              Yes. In "его" and "ого", the "г" is sounded like English "v" (or Polish "w").

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