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  5. "Мне нельзя есть курицу."

"Мне нельзя есть курицу."

Translation:I cannot eat chicken.

November 11, 2015

94 Comments


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

why is the subject in that case and not in nominative?


[deactivated user]

    It's not really a subject. It's a subjectless sentence (when translating these to English, we usually add a dummy subject 'it'), the literal translation would be 'to_me, [it's] forbidden/impossible to_eat chicken'.

    This construction takes a dative, but it can do without any person at all: нельзя́ убива́ть люде́й 'it's forbidden to kill people', здесь нельзя́ кури́ть 'here, it's forbidden to smoke'.

    Other words that behave this way are мо́жно (it's possible/allowed), запрещено́ (it's forbidden), ну́жно 'it's needed/neccessary', на́до 'it's needed/neccessary' (less formal), хо́лодно 'it's cold', тепло́ 'it's warm', жа́рко 'it's hot', хо́чется 'it's desirable', пло́хо 'it's bad' (about people мне пло́хо means 'I don't feel well'), хорошо́ 'well'.


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

    This should definitely go into the "Tips and notes" somewhere!


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

    Why isn't "есть курицу" the subject? As in: eating chicken is forbidden for me.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dfggh4

    Because нельзя demands accusative. Курицу is the direct object in accusative case.


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

    This has really cleared things up, thank you so so much!


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

    Thanks! That was really helpful.


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

    Duo accepted Chicken is not allowed for me which puts it in the dative case. I didn't think to put eating chicken is not allowed for me which would include the verb but I assume that would be accepted as well.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RichardKeo2

    In those English sentences "chicken" is the subject, while in the Russian it's the direct object.

    The dummy subject preserves more inflections correctly: [It is] not allowed for me (dative) to eat (infinitive) chicken (accusative).


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/flint72

    Does this mean "I am forbidden from eating chicken" (due to my religion, say), or "I am not able to eat chicken" (due to an allergic reaction, for example, or because I lack the enzymes to digest chicken, and thus am physically unable to eat it).

    Thanks.


    [deactivated user]

      It can mean either.


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

      There are some external reasons why you cannot eat chicken (religion or intolerance) that don't let you eat chicken, so you are basically forbidden from eating it in both cases and it can mean either of these two.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nahuatl1939

      the translation given by DUOLINGO is : I cannot have the chicken ! because est' is to have whilst est is to eat. So, is it EST' or EST?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      It's est' and Duo's translation is correct. In sentences where it's "to have", the Russian is u menya est' - here, est' is the present tense form of the word byt' - to be. Est' is also the infinitive of the verb "to eat", as here. This sentence with nelzya requires the infinitive of the verb.

      By the way, if you're seriously trying to learn Russian, I very strongly recommend learning the Cyrillic alphabet. If at this point you're just trying it out to see how you like it you're probably OK with transliterations for now.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nahuatl1939

      I don´t get you. you say that DUOLINGO's traduction is correct but this traduction is not EAT but HAVE. so why is everybody talking about eating _ to me , of course, the sentence makes more sense if it is "eat" but DUO says it is "have" like I translated. As to the cyrilikc alphabet, i can read russian easily because i have studied ancient Greek and 50% of the cyrilic writing is Greek. however, i don't write it because my laptop doesn't have it. I want to learn Russian because we have Russian customers coming to our city in Peru for jungle expeditions and they hardly speak anything but Russian. I am 76 years old and just supervising the business. I don't go into the jungle anymore., By the way, if I can be of help to you and/or the other students, it will be my pleasure. I am Swiss with french mother-tongue and very fluent in German, Swiss German, Spanish, Brasilian Portuguese, Italian and English, all of them languages which I speak since i was 20 and which I used for business around the world during 50 years. Latin also but this would just be for talking to the Pope !


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      Oh, I can write in Cyrillic then. Your confusion here is because "есть" is two different words.

      First, it's the present-tense form of быть, "to be", which is used in statements about possession (where the translation "to have" comes from).

      Second, it's the infinitive form of the verb "to eat". This is the word that's used in this sentence. The first word doesn't make sense in this sentence.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nahuatl1939

      I follow you but my question is : why does DUOLINGO translate the sentence with HAVE and not EAT ?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      Oh, maybe I wasn't understanding before. You mean it suggested "I cannot have chicken"? That actually makes sense. We do say in English "I can't have", just meaning "I can't eat". It's a bit confusing, especially given the multiple meanings of "есть", but "I can't have chicken" and "I can't eat chicken" are translating the same sentence and have the same meaning.


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

      Similar in German. "Er ist" means "He is", while "Er isst" means "He eats". I suspect, that it is not coincidence. The similarity of the verbs meaning to be and to eat is typical for Indo-European languages. In English itself you can sometimes mix "is" with "eats" in fluent speech.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      I know that, if you see my comment above, but I don't see the relevance to this comment.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      Really? I've never heard that. Though of course I'm not familiar with every region's informal speech. But in Scotland I would definitely notice if someone said "is" instead of "eats".


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

      No! Есть are two different forms of two different verbs! The infinitive from the one meaning «to eat», while and 3rd singular from «быть» — to be.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gemmonkey9

      Thanks for explanations, now it makes kind of sense..


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

      So glad to have this phrase - I am horribly allergic to chicken!


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      That's too bad :-( I didn't know there was such a thing as an allergy to chicken.


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

      Yes, and one of the hardest things to avoid when eating away from home.


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

      Just only go out with vegeterian/vegan friends. ;)


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jeffrey855877

      I had a friend who wasn't allergic to chicken like you, but might as well have been - he worked on a chicken farm one summer at age 16, and he got so disgusted with the entire operation, the very thought of eating chicken or any similar bird made him physically ill. He didn't get hives or have anaphylaxis or anything, he just turned this pasty-color and had to leave the room. The most curious "allergy" I've ever seen, because of the extreme degree of his - what? food-phobia, I guess.


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

      "Those who enjoy [chicken products] and the law should never watch either one being made"?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/T-Mye

      Does anyone know why 'I must not eat chicken' is unacceptable here? Thanks.


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

      must not = obligation on the part of the person. = I must not

      not allowed = something is blocking the person. = something prevents me.

      You will note that the apparent subject of this example is actually in the dative case not nominative. Me not I.

      Replacing cannot with must not is moving further away from the dative case presented in this Duo example. Not allowed puts you in the dative case.

      Eating chicken is not allowed for me.


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

      Is it correct to translate this sentence as "I must not eat chicken"?


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

      Reported again this morning, 14.05.2016, 08:55 Moscow time.


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

      Again, 18.09.2016


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

      Но я люблю курицы, эдди!


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

      Я люблю курицу. Here it is used as uncountable, and you needn't plural, but single accusative.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nahuatl1939

      Yes I understand that, it is an accusative, no problem because gramatically it answers as " I love what " the dog., so it is a direct objet, i.e. accusativ. The problems will arise with certain words need a particular case, like NET which needs a genitiv. This I will have to find out by and by , make a list and learn it by heart. Until then I will still make mistakes. I started with Russian 2 or 3 weeks ago and I'm learning it with DUOLINGO and other methods I own, including my own, I am convinced I will speak and write by the end of this year. Thanks for you comment and best regards.


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

      Even if it's talking about loving the animal in general, rather than the food?


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

      I like hens — Я люблю кур


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

      With this very word куры, кур, курам, кур, курами, о курах sounds better than курицы, куриц, курицам, куриц, курицами (especially unnatural), о курицах.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      Thanks! That's everywhere, not just a St. Petersburg thing?


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

      it works also; personally for me the both phrases sound absolutely same from the point of view of "normality" if I can put this way. I'm native


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

      Wasn't ест without ь when it means 'eat' ? And у меня есть with ь


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      "ест" is the third person singular form, "he/she eats". The infinitive "to eat" is "есть".


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

      but is there some clues to know if it's "to have" or "to eat" ? in "у вас есть пиво ?" it's not the verb "to eat" ... ?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      Usually, probably always, only one will make sense in context. In phrases like "у вас есть" - the infinitive "to eat" here makes no sense. In this sentence, "мне нельзя есть" - "мне нельзя" is used with the infinitive of the verb. "Есть" is only the infinitive of the verb "to eat", the infinitive of "to be" is "быть".


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

      спасибо мой друг !


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

      Why cant be hen?


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

      A hen refers to a live animal, whereas "chicken" in the context of eating implies the flesh thereof. Most people don't care to eat live hens so the phrase "I can't eat hen" is not used in English - unless there's some reason that one could eat the flesh of a rooster but not a hen.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FranciscoA332796

      Спасибо огромное!


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FranciscoA332796

      I am wondering the same. Hola Alejandra!


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

      Would it be possible to translate this as 'I don't eat chicken.'?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      No, I think that's simply "я не ем курицу". "Нельзя" implies that there's something preventing you, which is lost in your translation.


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

      I've got to say Theron, you always help my understanding of the Russian language and make me more comfortable in how I learn it. You're fantastic! :D


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

      Well, thank you very much! :-)


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

      So, I understand that this can translate to "I am not allowed to have chicken", as in eating the chicken, but can this also mean or translate to "I am not allowed to have a chicken" as in- OWNING a chicken?

      like if your mom will not let you have a snake as a pet, could you write that out "Мне нельзя есть змея" ? Or does that not mean the same?


      [deactivated user]

        Actually, it's unrelated to having.

        «Есть» as infinitive is 'to eat' (as correctly noted by Theron126), it's present tense forms are ем/ ешь/ ест/ едим/ едите/ едят.

        «Быть» as infinitive is 'to be', its present tense is есть (but it's often omited). When talking about having, you actually talk about 'being', and use у to specify the possessor. So, «у меня́ есть ку́рица» 'I have a hen' is literally something like 'at me {~my possession}, [there] is a hen'.

        After «нельзя́» '[it is] impossible/not allowed' you can't use a personal form, only an infinitive. You can't use «есть» 'is' here. The closest thing we can have is a subordinate clause: «нельзя́, что́бы у меня́ была́ ку́рица» 'it's impossible that at me [there] would-he a hen'. But it requires a subjunctive mood which you haven't probably learnt yet.


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

        Yeah, most likely something I haven't learned yet. This is why I'd really like to have one-on-one classes with a native Russian Speaker as a teacher, and not just Duo. So far though, Duo is all I have.

        (Luckily my one family member knows someone who is a native speaker and I asked if she'd be willing to somewhat help me along in my Duo course. By this I mean I can ask her any questions I have about the language and grammar, show her basically where I am in the language so she can better understand what I 'know'. I'm also hoping I can get a better idea of pronunciation of some words that Duo seems to make me question. Moments in which I'm not sure If I'm hearing it correctly) So I'm hoping I can have a one-on-one Q & A soon.

        And thanks for your input. It helps me understand the structure better.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

        Obviously if you have a native speaker to talk to, make the most of it. But for pronunciations you aren't sure on, it's also worth checking Forvo.com. They have pronunciations of thousands of Russian words by human native speakers.


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

        I think there is a danger in learning from one native speaker. In terms of recognizing the meaning in a speech stream, no native speaker provides an adequate sample of "correct" pronunciation. The "correct" pronunciation is what is common to the multitude of native speakers, and each individual native speaker provides a mixture of the common features and individual characteristics peculiar to that speaker (which is why we are able to distinguish which friend is speaking, or if it is not a friend, we can at least usually make good guesses about sex, age, education level, state of health or emotions, etc.). Given a large number of samples of different people speaking, the brain at a level well below conscious processing works out what is common and sets aside what is peculiar to an individual. Working with a limited sample of native speakers, that level of brain processing can easily lock onto individual peculiarities instead of common features of pronunciation.

        I experienced a small problem from this effect when I first visited Russia. I found it easy to understand people in St. Petersburg, but people in Moscow seem to be talking with a mouth full of каша, making it difficult for me to understand them. The majority of native speakers that I had been talking with before visiting Russia were from the Magadan region, and for historical reasons, the pronunciation in the Magadan region was very similar to the St. Petersburg pronunciation.


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

        Oh thank you for the tip. I'll definitely check the site out. I mainly wanted one-on-one for pronunciation, in the sense that, if I am with someone in person who is a native speaker, I can have direct feedback if I'm pronouncing things right. I want to perfect saying the words. I have trouble (i feel) pronouncing some of the words that they say on duo, because they say them so fast that I can't break the sounds down, and the duo speaker's pronunciation doesn't exactly match up with the spelling, and I want to know if that's JUST duo having issues, or if it is ACTUALLY pronounced the way I'm hearing it. This is why if I'm in person with a native speaker, I can practice saying the words, and get immediate feedback.


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

        Immediate feedback on pronunciation would kill a conversation. I certainly can't learn like that. I want to have some kind of fluency first and fix up the mistakes later.


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

        @JanF: No no, we wouldn't be having a conversation, I was talking about if I had the ability to ask a native speaker if I'm pronouncing words right, to know HOW to say the words that I'm not entirely sure if Duo is just saying too fast, or skipping over sounds. The immediate feedback would be me asking if things are right, and, in the event that Duo isn't stressing a sound that looks like it should be pronounced, a native speaker can tell me "YES, you can say it that way."

        Basically, I'm talking about Q and A, where if I have a concern about the way a word is pronounced, I can have my QUESTIONS ANSWERED, immediately, so I KNOW I'm saying it right.


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

        Couldn't we also say "мне нельзя иметь курицу" without using the subjunctive?


        [deactivated user]

          Yes, it's grammatically correct.

          As for naturalness, both phrases («нельзя́, что́бы у меня́ была́ ку́рица» and «мне нельзя́ име́ть ку́рицу») sound pretty awkward.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

          I was wondering the same thing.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

          No, "есть" as an infinitive is strictly "to eat".


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Poesia3

          "Eating chicken is not allowed to me." Is there a problem with this translation?


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theron126

          It sounds very unnatural in English.


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

          Unnatural, yes, but not incorrect. It sounds like something Yoda would say.


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

          Sorry Akuhime-sama - I didn't understand. I can't reply to your comment above for some reason - but of course it makes sense!


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

          Yeah, Duo has a max reply indent for some reason. After so many replies, you just can't go any lower.

          And it's fine. Yeah, I was talking about more of a Q&A scenario from the beginning.


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

          I also heard that there's another version, не умеет. I saw it on a Duolingo sentence


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jeffrey855877

          That seems unlikely. (Он/она) умеет is 3rd person singular of "to know how to", so while it could mean "he/she cannot", the phrase connotes a lack of ability or knowledge, and not knowing how to eat chicken seems like a really weird context for this sentence, which naturally implies that the person has a food allergy or an aversion to eating chicken, such as being a vegetarian.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nahuatl1939

          why does DUO give I CAN'T HAVE CHICKEN as the correct translation ??? when here it says I CAN'T EAT CHICKEN which is what I wrote and DUO said WRONG !!


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jeffrey855877

          "Have chicken" is much too indefinite and broad. There are many ways of having chicken, but very few of eating it.


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

          Eating chicken is not allowed for me - is it wrong? Why?


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JerryMcCarthy99

          Not really English as it would be normally spoken. "It is not allowed for me to eat chicken" would be closer to a regular English statement.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HenriqueDi454982

          Duolingo showed me that the word hen could be applied at the place of chiken. Now I say hen and it says it is wrong. Why you do that? It makes no sense


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

          "Hen" refers to a living bird. When talking about eating its meat, only "chicken" is used.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JerryMcCarthy99

          ... as explained in multiple places throughout this discussion thread. The individual hints are primarily on a word basis, rather than on a sentence basis.

          If the sentence had been about a farmer's daily life, then "hen" would have been appropriate.


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

          No. Duo showed that chicken and hen can used in place of each other when appropriate. When talking about eating chicken in English, it would distracting to say you were eating hen. All commercially available chicken meat in the English speaking world comes from hens. Despite this, chicken is always used to describe the meat.

          If you do say you are eating hen, most listeners would think you are either a foreigner or trying to draw attention to your chicken meat being different in some way from conventional chicken meat.


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

          The audio with the girl speaking is really hard to understand for me. I can understand the guy much better.


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

          My answer should be accepted, isn't it? (I cannot eat chicken.)


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

          私は鶏をたべません!!!!!!!!!!!


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

          What is the difference between 'мне нельзя' and 'я не могу'? Does one mean that 'I'm not allowed' or in some way restricted, and the other one just a temporary hindrance?


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

          In this context there's no significant difference. But in general, "мне нельзя" means "I am forbidden" and "я не могу" means "I can't". I wouldn't say that the latter is necessarily temporary. it's more about inability vs external restriction. When it comes to food one can argue both apply. "Мне нельзя есть курицу" because my doctor told me so/my body doesn't allow it and "Я не могу есть курицу" because I feel sick afterwards. Either way, the effect is the same.

          However if one means they can't eat chicken because they hate the taste "нельзя" doesn't apply.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ste92484

          why duolingo mark error .. I cannot eat hen ? ... if is курица is also hen ?

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