"У него ничего нет."

Translation:He does not have anything.

November 11, 2015

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Why is this phrase not У его нет ничего? Thanks


I cant find "него" anywhere is the pronoun tables

[deactivated user]

    Него is the form of 'его' that is used after prepositions. Н also appears before other similar pronouns as well (у + её = у неё, за + им = за ним).

    (However, when его or её means 'his' or 'her', and modify some other noun, then you don't put Н. For example: у его дочери ничего нет 'his daughter doesn't have anything'.)




    if "ничего" means "nothing", then shouldn't this mean "he doesn't have nothing" ?


    "He doesn't have nothing" is a double negative sentence and therefore wrong in English.

    Double negatives are very common in Russian. View it as more as "At him, there is noting at all"


    Is it like a rule, or just one of the styles of language ?

    Like in English, you can say "I ain't got nothing", and maybe even a triple negative "I ain't got no nothing". You can understand it from the context. But "I have nothing" is also correct.

    Is "I have nothing" INCORRECT in Russian ?



    "У меня ничего" is an incomplete sentense, so yes, it is incorrect.


    у меня ничего, sounds goofy and incomplete. You will sound kinda like a Russian Tarzan. (which if you are a beginner, it isn't really a big deal really)

    Maybe a Russian speaker that knows that you are learning might be able to understand you out of context, but it would be grammatically incorrect.


    I find Russian translated sounds like Tarzan too


    Expressions like "I ain't got nothing" and similar are wrong. (Some) People say that, but it's slang. Unofficial.


    Don't know who voted you down but you are right. Double negatives are incorrect in English and Duo is trying to teach the language correctly. There are a few idioms like "I ain't got nothing" but they are only slang and you cannot extrapolate from them to general language rules.


    Yeah, if you read the notes it says not using double negatives is incorrect. In Russian the sentence "no one anywhere ever did anything" would be said "no one nowhere never did nothing".

    [deactivated user]

      I believe "He doesn't have nothing" is considered incorrect in standard English. While some dialects might allow it, Duolingo expects you to stick to more-or-less standard English.

      Please note that the translations are mostly entered by Duolingo contributors by hand, so allowing non-standard dialects would require singificantly much more work to prepare a course, because there's a wide variety of different forms. E.g. if we allow "He doesn't have nothing", should we allow "He ain't have nothing"? Maybe "He ain't got nothing"? Maybe "He ain't got no jack", as was suggested in the comments elsewhere?

      Given the number of English dialects and varieties, creating a course that allows constructions from all of them would be a very daunting task. That's why this course only allows more-or-less standard varieties, the English that is taught at schools.


      That's not what I meant. My problem is with the russian phrase itself. Shouldn't it just be "У него ничего", meaning "he has nothing".

      "he doesn't have nothing", although its used in many languages, but is technically incorrect don't you think ?

      So why are technically incorrect phrases which should come later on being taught at beginner level here ?

      [deactivated user]

        «У него ничего нет» is the correct equivalent of "He doesn't have anything". English considers double negatives incorrect, Russian requires them.

        In negative sentences (sentences that use «нет» 'there is no' or «не» 'not'), we also need to use negative pronouns («ничего» 'nothing', «никто» 'nobody') and negative adverbs («никогда» 'never', «нигде» 'nowhere').

        In English, you use only one negative word (e.g. "I've never been there" or "I haven't event been there"). In Russian, all the words that can be negative become negative in negative sentences (e.g. «Я никогда не был там»).


        Thanks I get it. But there should have been direct translation and mention of these things in the lesson. I'm well aware of the fact that double negatives are used quite often. English also uses double negatives in informal-ish settings, sort of.

        So, but my question now is, that does it always have to be a double negative ? "I don't have a house" will always be "I don't have no house" in Russian ?


        [deactivated user]

          "I don't have a house" will always be "I don't have no house" in Russian ?

          Almost. Since we don't have a direct equivalent of the English negation «no» (just like an article «a»), we only use one negation in this sentence: «У меня нет дома» (literally, "At me (=at my possession) there-is-no house").

          However, "I will never tell anybody" will be "I won't never tell nobody": «Я никогда́ никому́ не расскажу́» (I never to-nobody won't tell).

          If you don't use negative pronouns, the sentence would just make no sense in Russian. «Я когда́-либо кому́-то не расскажу́» sounds very strange.


          "I don't have a house" will be "У меня нет дома". The double negative will be used where it is possible to put two negative words, for example "I don't have any house" will be "У меня нет никакого дома".


          double negatives are common in English too.


          Of course "He has nothing." is correct English. But one can't have nothing, because nothing doesn't exist. "But one can't have nothing." is a double negative and correct English. The take away? Sometimes a double negative is correct English.

          [deactivated user]

            Modal verbs are a different can of worms.

            Basically, in sentences with modal verbs we can negate two things: the modal verb (can expresses possibility, can't expresses imposibility) and the main verb (have expresses possession, have not expresses absence). And 'it's impossible for one to have anything' (=one can't have anything) is in fact very different thing from 'it's possible for one not to have anything' (=one can have nothing)!

            So, this is not really a double negation because different things are negated: -n't negates the modal verb, and 'nothing' negates 'have'. (For the same reason, 'I don't like unnatural sentences' is not a double negation: both don't and un- are negations, but they negate different things.)

            In Russian translation of "One can't have nothing", both 'can't' and 'have' will be negated: Ты не мо́жешь ничего́ не име́ть (you NEG can nothing NEG have).

            (I've replaced 'one' with 'you', because 'one' would be translated impersonally, without a verb at all: «Нельзя́ ничего́ не име́ть» 'it-is-not-possible nothing not to-have', so it makes a bad example.)


            It seems Duolingo is spying on me again


            Why does the г in него have a v sound and not a g?

            [deactivated user]

              It's an exception. -его is often pronounced as -ево in the end of the word (in rare cases, not just in the end, as in сего́дня).


              Why is “у него нет нечего“ wrong?


              I think it's supposed to be ничего


              This is an interesting and informative thread. Спасибо!


              It accepted "He has nothing" but gave back "He does not have anything" Would my answer be a better translation to "У него есть ничего"?


              Why isn't "The boy has nothing" accepted?


              The boy has nothing = у мальчика ничего нет.

              He has nothing= у него ничего нет.

              He implies only the gender, whereas the boy implies a more specific person.


              Can anybody explain why it is correct to have нет at the end of this sentence?


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              umm, what is the difference between него and его, неё and её? when we need the Н


              From what I gleaned from other threads that tackled this question:

              We always add н to the pronouns его and её whenever they are preceded by prepositions such as 'у' in у...есть

              у него есть, у него нет у неё есть, у неё нет


              Ничего is in genitive or nominative case? Since it's linked to Нет i would expect it to be in genitive as the rule requires, but I'm not sure about that


              why not " У него нет ничего"


              He has nothing is wrong?

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