"Я знаю английский."

Translation:I know English.

November 9, 2015



Would a native Russian-speaker ever say "Я знаю английский" ? Wouldn't it be "Я знаю английский язык" or "Я говорю по-английски" ?

November 9, 2015


That a [ Language ] is a topic being addressed is understood in many contexts so the word [ Language ] itself is omitted. In these [ Language ] is the understood topic contexts, including the word [ language ] is superfluous and a distraction, making the sentence tediously awkward and unnatural:

[ We speak the English Language. Do they speak the English Language? -

(In) What language is speaking?
She is speaking (in) Russian.

What languages does she speak?
She speaks Russian and Urdu.

In what language is the seminar being held?
Into what languages is the book being translated?

Have you fluency in Early Modern, Middle or Old English?

Adding the word [ language ] is useful in context where aspects of Russian is a topic in question, of emphasis of for differentiation:

We study Russian. → Russian what? → Russian Art/s, Ballet, Cinema, Culture/s, Demography, Ecology, Economy, Flora, Fauna, Geography, History, Industry, Language, Literature, Music, Pedagogy, Theater, Zoololgy ‧ ‧ итд ‧ ‧ и так далее ‧ ‧ [ and so on ]

December 20, 2018


Я знаю Kung Fu!!

December 4, 2017


Show me.

April 16, 2018


I speak english?

November 9, 2015


That would be "Я говорю по-английски".

November 9, 2015


But I believe you don't say I know English in English. Maybe you say, I am not a native speaker, I am not sure about that

November 9, 2015


It's common to say "I know [language]".

November 9, 2015


True, but "I speak Russian" is also accepted as an answer on a similar exercise...

November 12, 2015


I agree with you domhorse. I understand how the sentence translates to I know, but it means I speak too.

November 14, 2015


You are correct: in English "I speak XX" is a far more common way to say it. "I know XX" is totally valid, though.

August 5, 2017


Sometimes Duolingo looks for a literal but awkward translation, and sometimes it doesn't.

July 31, 2016


How would one distinguish between this meaning and "I know English people?"

April 17, 2017


There is an another word used to designate English people: англича́нин (Englishman, English person, nominative singular), англича́не (English people, nominative plural). Example: Я хорошо знаю англичан.

May 7, 2017


But is it also correct to say я знаю английского языка?

October 1, 2017


No, because язык is a masculine inanimate noun it doesn't decline in the accusative.

But я знаю английский язык is grammatical.

June 19, 2018


In another excersice they translate "Я знаю.." To "I speak".. why not here?

November 23, 2015


Я знаю is "I know"

If you wish to say I speak, you need to use "Я говорю".

Perhaps it was a slight error in the system?

December 28, 2015


Where is the mistake in "ya znayu anglijskij"? It was not accepted

April 4, 2018


You're mixing two different transcription systems there. It's best to just use the Russian keyboard.

November 25, 2018


If you must use an English keyboard, I think that "Ya znayu angliyskiy" might work. Perhaps...

February 26, 2019


Is it more common to say “I know English” rather than “I speak English”?

August 26, 2018
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