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"Is it coffee or borsch?"

Translation:Это кофе или борщ?

November 10, 2015

39 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Little.Miss.Shy

I really wonder what this coffee must look like, if it might be confused with borsch ...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Akuhime-sama

Or what the borsch looks like to be confused with coffee...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SiblingCreature

If it was supposed to be borsch but looked like coffee I'd expect the word order to be reversed. (Is that borsch or coffee?) :-)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Akuhime-sama

yeah, I was just joking, haha.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KB_116

...Is that coffee or borsch?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eugene270367

Всё проще - нужно просто напиться как следует. Там и вода вином будет казаться))) (Translate this with google, please, I might make a mistake)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WyattStant

A question all men must ask themselves some day.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/psionicillusion

I love that this one sounds like a lot of sass. I imagine the context could be that the speaker took a sip of some really rotten coffee haha!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/psionicillusion

Disclaimer: I dislike borscht, but I do know some people love it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rainfinite

What's the difference between этот and это? And why is этот wrong in this case?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Robbadob

это - this is (introduces a subject)
этот - this (modifies a noun)

Это is a pronoun, while этот is an adjective; этот most also inflect for gender and number.

Э́то же́нщина.
This is a woman.

э́та же́нщина
this leg / this foot (f)

э́тот стул
this chair (m)

э́то де́рево
this tree (n)

э́ти дере́вья
these ears (pl)

I hope that that wasn't too confusing. For now, just know это as a pronoun, like "this is", and этот/а/о/и as an adjective, like "this thing".

[2019/04/07]


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wmv01

If I understand this correct Это means I an unspecific "a". I you ask with Этот (this specific thing) it translates to something like "Is this coffee or is the borscht.", which sounds like you ask wether any of those exists at all.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnechkaTub

Как можно было перепутать кофе и борщ?)))


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MRsFnw

It is ice cream


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bananaiana

How the hell do you confuse coffee with borsch ??????


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YoungRazm

Is this 'б' letter supposed to sound like B or V? If it's V what is difference between б and в? If it is pronounced B what is the difference between б and ь?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/deadfish79

б is a B sound however ь doesnt actually make a sound, it is meant to soften the consonant before it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mechanise

why can't you say "это кофе или боршч?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JanisaChatte

Because "борщ" is the only correct way to spell and say "borsch" in Russian.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mechanise

oh thanks, i mistakenly assumed "borsch" would be transliterated as боршч


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SiblingCreature

Where did the t come from then? My дедушка (who used to make it for when we would visit) was Russian and I'm pretty sure I was taught the word as "borscht"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/A_User

Me too. English is known for corrupting words it borrows from other languages, maybe that's all?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SiblingCreature

Except that I learned the word from my father and his first language was Russian. -ponders- How is it said in Ukrainian?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dreyeroliver

Щ in Ukrainian is SHT


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/A_User

Hm. According to Google Translate, it's exactly the same in Ukrainian, so I don't think that's it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Robbadob

Борщ → boršč → borscht


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gelfo

I tried 'он кофе или борщ?' - is that completely wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/A_User

If I'm remembering right, that would be saying "Is he coffee or borscht?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gelfo

is ОН not used for 'it' in the masculine?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ScreamingVirals

You're right in general, but it doesn't apply to this case. A lot of things in Russian are about how they sound and it just sounds wrong to a native speaker such as me. If you say "он кофе или борщ", in this case, it would sound as though you're 1) talking about a human which would make no sense, or 2) just saying something weird in general. So I recommend using "is this coffee or borsch?" in English and "это кофе или борщ" in Russian.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Random318

what is the difference between using кофе а борщ and using кофе а борщ? when i clicked on "or" it says either can be used but i got it wrong when i used "а".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gelfo

I don't think that 'а' corresponds to 'or' exactly - 'а' is like a cross between 'but' and 'and'. Maybe there is a particular instance where 'а' is more like 'or' - but I don't think it's this one.

Like you can say: это не кофе а борщ - That is not coffee, but borsch

But your version with 'а' above would be: 'Is it coffee but borsch?' - which as you can see from the English, doesn't work.

HOWEVER, I am not a native speaker and looking at our levels, my Russian is not better than yours - so I don't know that for sure you can't use a here - and we'll have to await further confirmation :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Durple_Purple

When I type in the romanized version of this sentence, it says that "borscht" is wrong. How should I spell it?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eruntalion

What is the difference between ш and щ? Because correct me if I am wrong, they don't sound that different


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NekoAngel07

What an incredibly disturbing sentence


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rexford950033

Why is it это and not эта


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NunnO.Oliver

It, are happen every time.. Café not Coffee Или--лил

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