Thanks! Those two are confusing considering how often they are interchanged in English. (Also, isn't that Slarta?)
Yeah. (And yes, those two letters look too similar :P)
For anyone reading this in the future, I originally typed сларта instead of спарта. I have since edited it.
"Russia is here" was marked as wrong. I am not sure if the difference with "Here is Russia" (correct) is all that important, but I thought I'd point it out.
edit: reading other threads in this discussion tells me there is a difference. Good to know.
It's just the style of translation. Some people think it's best to keep the word order as correct as possible.
There is a sticky topic about that.
Long story short, in "Here is" (Here are) sentences, Вот is used. It is also used in "вот здесь" (over here).
Words здесь and там just mean "here" and "there" in their usual sense ("this place" and "that place").
Вот is used for showing something. Imgine pointing at something/someone or showing someone an object you hold in your hand.
Здесь and тут are just "here" in its spatial meaning ("this place"), similarly to how "now" means "this time".
I have a question about the pronunciation of the word Россия. The tips at the beginning of this section mention that the letters "o" and "a" get reduced to a schwa when a syllable containing either of them is unstressed (if you don't know what a "schwa" is, that is simply the name for the sound to which these letters reduce in their articulation). But in the audio, it strongly seems like the "o" in the first syllable is being reduced despite the fact that it's also stressed. What's going on here? Are some stressed syllables still reduced, or is the audio wrong, or is there something else going on here? In some music I've heard (Танцуй Россия by Глюкоза comes to mind), it certainly seems like the stressed syllable is on "си", but in the audio here on Duolingo, it seems pretty distinctly to be on "Рос". Any insight would be appreciated.
The audio isn't infallible. That said, I think you're also mistaking inflection/intonation for stress. Her voice rises in pitch on Рос but that isn't where the stress is - in fact, you can tell this by the way it sounds like rass not ross.
The stress in Россия is definitely not on the о but the и. You'll hear it in lots of later sentences in the course, too.
Firstly, inflection and intonation are two completely different things. "Inflection" is a word changing form to accommodate its role in a sentence (ie; это этот; ем ест; declension and conjugation are forms of inflection). This has nothing to do with intonation, which is more related to prosody. Secondly, I'm a linguist; I don't just get such things confused. If the stress really is on the си here, then I'm simply hearing it wrong. I don't have to misunderstand what syllable stress is in order to hear it wrong.
Even if I am hearing it wrong, the fact that it sounds like "rass" [rəsː] instead of "ross" [rɔsː] does not mean that the audio representation of this syllable has to not be stressed, because - as you say - the audio is not infallible. I understand that that's the way it's supposed to be (stress and vowel articulation dictating one another), but that doesn't mean that the audio representation is necessarily accurate (however, I'll take your word for it that it is).
That being said, given that there are two of you here saying that the stress really is on the си, my guess is that I probably am just mishearing it. It's not like my ear is exactly tuned to Russian prosody, after all. This will take a little bit of getting used to, no doubt. So I thank you both for your input on that. I'll just have to try to listen harder, so to speak, in the future.
Actually, inflection can refer to tone of voice. It's not just a technical linguistics term for grammatical inflection.. (And I did say that the audible isn't infallible.)
You also might not be aware that intonation in Russian can sometimes seem weird to an English speaker, because where the rises and falls go is not always the same or even similar to English, and can be counter intuitive. Also rise in pitch can sound like a stress when it's not supposed to be - I'm not sure that would happen with a real person (I've long since forgotten my intonation rules in Russian, and I don't remember if intonation ever rises on an unstressed syllable), but a computer voice? Very possible. They aren't perfect.
I think the intonation in some of the sentences in the course is a bit weird, potentially misleading, although I'm not in practice enough with Russian to necessarily put my finger on when/what sounds off or to say for sure if this is the case on this sentence. It does make some of the stress/intonation sound odd to my ear, again, I'm out of practice.
I can assure you the stress isn't on the О of Россия, though. Whether a vowel is reduced or not is probably a way better clue to which syllables are stressed, in many sentences, than attempting to figure it out from a computerised voice (which was kinda my point - I was just trying to be helpful. I don't have any idea what your language experience is, you know). If you see an о and hear an а, then that's much more reliable indicator.
Odd how you seem to be acting as though I never acknowledged any of that already. With the exception of that point about inflection being another word for intonation in addition to a linguistics term (about which, after directly looking into it, I'm a bit embarrassed to say you were correct, and I was mistaken), I already acknowledged all the rest of that being true.
I did acknowledge that you said that the audio is not infallible ("... because - as you say - the audio is not infallible").
I did acknowledge that Russian intonation can be weird to an English speaker ("It's not like my ear is exactly tuned to Russian prosody, after all. This will take a little bit of getting used to, no doubt").
I did acknowledge that the stress is not on the "o" of Россия ("given that there are two of you here saying that the stress really is on the си, my guess is that I probably am just mishearing it").
I did acknowledge that the reduction of a vowel is a very good clue (" I understand that that's the way it's supposed to be (stress and vowel articulation dictating one another)"). However, that doesn't change the fact that when I seem to be hearing both reduction and stress occurring simultaneously, I might get a little confused. There was little need for the whole spiel. All that was really needed here was "No, the two never occur together; either you're hearing it wrong or the audio is wrong, and I think it's the former," as that's all I actually asked about.
I did acknowledge that you were trying to be helpful ("So I thank you both for your input on that").
And lastly, I would be a pretty oblivious fool to not even be aware that Russian intonation is different from English, and I do find it a little bit insulting that you would just assume that I might be such a fool. All languages have differing intonations from one another; that much ought to be obvious to anyone who's ever heard any other language besides their mother tongue, ever.
So again, I thank you for your input in answering the question, though I don't much care for the thinly veiled (and wholly unnecessary) patronization that came along with it (and I really do appreciate the former, despite my evident annoyance with the latter).
I think the best thing to do is simply to go to high quality human productions of the word. If you don't have a live Russian available, there are plenty of recordings online, e.g., Russian news).
What is the difference between saying "вот россия" and saying "это россия"
please refer to the sticky Shady_Arc has referred to. It should clear up this and more of the difference between это / здесь & там
Wrongly made exercise. The question is to repeat spoken words in Russian and not to translate into English. The comment about the wrong answer suggests that the words should have been translated in stead of repeated..