November 8, 2015

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When would you use извини rather than извините or are they interchangeable


They have the same meaning, but Russian distinguishes between singular/informal and plural/formal in the 2nd person (for example with "ты" and "вы"). With 2nd person imperatives (which is what "извини" is), the plural/formal marker is the "-те" at the end. So, you'd use "извини" with someone you know in an informal setting (or with a child), and "извините" with unfamiliar persons.


The imperative is formed the same way in Latin! I wish there'd be a Latin course on Duolingo :/


I would contribute to such a course, although my Latin is sooo very rusty. It's cool to see similarities like this between Indo-European languages.


DUO polled everyone about what language they wanted. I voted for Latin and while it didn't come in dead last Latin was way down on the list-that's the story of my life. Try Memrise they have some latin although I prefer Duo's format.


Latin should be a staple


Haha on "dead last"


Your explanation is good. But in answer to the question of FizaKhab96, it means that извините should be accepted. It is in fact better for beginners to start with the formal form since it would be considered disrespectful in some situations to use the informal form. .


"Prosti" (sorry I don't have the russian alphabet on my keyboard) works too ! Could somebody explain the difference ? Is "prosti" more familiar or something like that ?


Извини can mean both sorry and excuse me, while прости means only sorry, and it is a 'softer' word for it (for example you'd use извини after you hurt or squabble with someone, and прости if you accidently pushed someone).


Thank you for your answer.


The only option I had was простите (or words like pizza and boy). But Id never heard простите before. Thanks for the explanation.


Do you have qwerty keyboard function you can add russian keyboard that toggles with your english keyboard


Sorry seems to be the hardest word. :-(


The suggested correct translation on the problem I encountered was Сожалеем! Which I looked up to mean sorry in the meaning of "pity", I think... maybe. I was under the impression that the usage is different than Извини! Could someone clarify the differences between these words. Also where does Мне жаль and Прости! fit into this "Sorry" spectrum.


You are correct about your alternate lookup Сожалеем. The more common use of that form is " сожалению" which means "it is a pity" or "it is a shame" as you suggest or, what is my preference "unfortunately," but it does not suggest an apology or request for forgiveness. Whereas Извини(те) or Прости(те) are synonyms that mean I am sorry and may request forgiveness or suggest an apology, as in "I am sorry" or "excuse me." So for example, if you are telling a story you might say сожалению, aвтобус опоздал, поэтому я опоздал на встречу. That is, "unfortunately, the bus was late, so I was late for my meeting." But if you bump into someone on the street, you should say Извините or Простите to request forgiveness.

The nuance that is most important in my example is that I used Извините or Простите, not Извини or Прости as in Duolingo. If you don't know someone well enough to use informal address, you have to use the formal conjugations of the verbs. If you don't, you are showing a lack of respect. The default in Duolingo should be the formal versions, not the informal version.

Finally, you ask about Мне жаль. It can be "I am sorry" as in Мне жаль слышать, что ты болен "I am sorry to hear you are sick," more literally, it means "I am sad to hear you are sick. But again, it does not convey are request for forgiveness or apology. It is closer to сожалению than Извините or Простите, but conveys a stronger set of regret than сожалению. You would say Мне жаль if someone died, but сожалению if the bar down the street closed and you can't go there.


Большое спасибо for the detailed and clear answer. I can now be as sorry as I need to be with confidence.


One correction to what I said: I forgot to mention that we must precede сожалению with the preposition К; so it should be "К сожалению." I should have added the preposition in my examples above. The noun is сожаление and means pity or regret. But К сожалению means unfortunately. Use of the preposition K, requires the use of the дательный падеж (dative case),


Can you give an example of using the dative case with к сожалению? What exactly becomes dative, that word or another verb and what does it mean if you have it nominative or it becomes dative??? Help please!!


I accidentally tapped the right answer. I thought it had to be " Izvinite" but somehow hit "proctite" a mile away,neat.


Простите, well never given this as Sorry! In 38 days... Whats the difference from извини?


"Жаль" was in the drop down suggestions box, which I used out of curiosity. Marked wrong. What's it mean?


"жаль" means pity in Russian, and when you want to say sorry for something that has like physically hurt someone, you say "мне жаль" to mean "I feel pity"


"Жаль" in the meaning you used was not correct although it is translated directly as "Sorry" as well. However "Жаль" means that someone is sorry for something that happened and he/she is feeling sorry for such to had happen, or said so simply being polite: eg. "I heard you missed your train! I am sorry to hear that" - "Я слышал, что ты опоздал на свой поезд! [Мне] Жаль [слышать это]"


Someone tells me прошу прощения mean I am sorry. It should be accepted here, but Duolingo doesn't.


I'm only able to type in English, so whenever I try to type a word in R ussian it tells me i have typos. how do I fix that?


Dear DrostenLap

You have various choices, but all require some setup, i.e., installation of files. The easiest is the Russian keyboard available in Windows 10. I do not like it, however. Since I am a touch typist in English, I prefer a keyboard that is phonetically as in English. This means, for example, if you want to type the Russian word for restaurant, the first letter you would type on your keyboard is the R letter--it will appear as a р since the letter p in Russian sounds like an R in English. If you will do a lot of typing in Russian, however, it may be better to learn to touch type in Russian and install the standard Russian keyboard.

Based on the recommendations of my former Russian teachers, I have used one of the keyboard choices available from the website of Paul Gorodyansky at the link: http://winrus.com/mod_e.htm. He provides detailed instructions and both standard and phonetic Russian keyboards are available as choices.

Once the Russian keyboard is installed, you can tab back and forth between English and Russian keyboards by hitting the Windows key and the Space bar simultaneously.


If you're on a phone or tablet, long press your space bar on your keyboard. You'll be able ro choose different languages. Or go to settings.

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