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  5. "She does not have a sister."

"She does not have a sister."

Translation:У неё нет сестры.

November 12, 2015



It sounds "сёстры", it must be "сестры"


That's what I heard too.


Why is it сестры and not сестра?


Because the word after нет must be genitive.


What is the difference between "неё" and "её" anyway? Do we use "неё" if the sentence is negative?


Nope, it is easier than that.

Third person pronouns are он, она, оно, они (he, she, it, they).

In all of their oblique forms they use an initial Н aften all (almost all) simple prepositions:

  • У неё нет кошки. = She does not have a cat.
  • Я думаю о ней. = I think about her.
  • Я думаю о нём. = I think about him.

Possessive её, его, их (her, his, their) are, quite obviously, derived from Genitive forms of она, он, они. However, they NEVER get an initial Н and do not change at all:

  • У её брата нет кошки. = Her brother does not have a cat.
  • Я думаю о её брате. = I think about her brother.


That was not "easier". ;-)


Does "oblique" mean "genitive when it's not being used as possessive"? I don't see н- forms or the word "oblique" in any pronoun charts I can find.

[deactivated user]

    'Oblique case' (ко́свенный паде́ж) means 'any case except nominative'. (Nominative, on the other hand, is 'direct case', although this term is used much less often.)

    This is related to the idea that all nouns are inherently nominative, while the others are somehow slanted.


    Aha! Thank you so much.


    That was really useful. Thanks!


    Thanks, now it is clear to me. :)


    So you're saying it's неё and not её because it's not nominative ?


    To be more exact, because of the preposition. The Genitive of она is её or неё depending on whether you have a proposition:

    • Извините, её пока нет. = Sorry, she is not here yet (lit. "there is no her").
    • У неё температура. = She is running a fever.

    Pretty much all simple prepositions trigger the initinal н in non-Nominative forms of он, она, оно, они.


    I just read another Duolingo discussion that said this sentencr should use сестры becausr it is the genitive singular. However the audio pronounces it as сёстры, which is nom. pl. This is wrong right?

    [deactivated user]

      It should be «сестр́ы». If the audio has «сёстры», it's a bug.


      One of the many...


      What case does usually come after У and which one at the end? I can't understand so far which one to use when


      It's always genitive after у.


      'Нет сестрЫ" but not "нет сЕстры"


      No mother, no sister, but at least she has a cat!


      Неправильное произношение. Надо "сестрЫ" -ударение на последний слог


      Да русский и так очень сложен... А тут ещё и такие грандиозные ошибки


      can I use also "У неё сестры нет" ?

      [deactivated user]

        This is not the neutral word order.

        You could use «У неё сестры нет» to emphasise the word «нет», for example when someone claims that she has a sister and you refute the claim (therefore, «нет» sounds good emphasised because it's the most important word). However, in most contexts (i.e. when you don't have a reason for emphasis) this word order would sound strange.


        Thank you for your answer. For me does not matter if this sentence would be accepted or not. It was just interesting for me to know if it is possible to use this word order.


        so it is not incorrect


        It is, but it sounds strange.

        [deactivated user]

          This sentence falls into a grey area between 'correct' and 'incorrect'. It's not strictly incorrect (it can be used in some contexts), but it's not strictly correct either (in most common contexts, it wouldn't be used).


          Either way, it should be accepted because Duo does not give us any context.

          [deactivated user]

            I don't think it should be accepted. Duo doesn't accept non-neutral word order in most sentences too, so this is consistent with the way word order is treated in other sentences.


            Так можно сказать... Но обычно так не говорят


            Why is у она не есть сестра wrong?


            To express possession, Russian typically uses "At X, there is an Y". Yep, the possessor is turned into "where". The possessed object is the grammatical subject of the sentence.

            У requires the Genitive form of noun (or pronoun), so you have неё instead of она, него instead of он, меня instead of я and so on (in English, you also have a lot of roles where you just cannot put "she" instead of "her").

            For statements of non-existence we use нет. The combination не есть has its uses in some particularly bookish contexts but it is not used in this meaning.


            I keep getting this wrong as the key for' umlaut e' isn't working. I bought stickers which indicate that this should be put to the left of 2....which I did.... ! I have tried shift and both capital and lower case . when I try report' alphabet/typing' problem isn't there on the list........ Help


            If you're using the standard Windows Russian keyboard then the ё should be the ` key (left of 1).


            I tried that too....I hit all keys nearby to see if ANY worked. In fact the sticker is there at the moment. I get' | ' or '+'


            That is why I suggest people trying a phonetic keyboard where the letters are mostly mapped to their Latin counterparts (e.g., k=к, l=л, а = а, u=у, t=т). If you are only mildly interested in Russian and are unlikely to work in a Russian-speaking environment any time soon... Any layout may work.

            Or you can use a tablet/phone where every layout you could dream of is available in a few clicks.


            сёстры is accepted, even though this is plural nominative and not singular genitive


            Yes, singular genitive of 'female' words which end with "а" is "ы".


            Is saying "у неё есть нет сестры" really wrong ? I thought we could always use есть :(


            Yes it's wrong. нет is the negative version of есть so you would never use both.


            I heard сёстры but it was сестры. Shouldn't it be сестра for it was singular? And also,when should I use её and when should I use неё? I'm confused. PLEASE HELP!


            Yes, TTS engines are sometimes being smarty-boots and fail. It should indeed be сестры (the voice just assumed the text didn't explicitly spell Ё's and tried to guess).

            The Genitive singular ending in nouns like мама, сестра, рука, пицца, кошка (e.g., У меня нет кошки) is the same as the Nom. pl. ending (e.g., Кошки сидят на стуле). Provided the stress is the same, not only are the forms spelt the same—they also sound indentical.

            Some nouns have a more complicated stress pattern, which lets you dinstinguish the forms (e.g., сестрыёстры, руки / руки).

            Её, его, их (her/him/them) are the Genitive forms of она, он(оно), они. They get an initial н after simple prepositions (у неё, у него, от них, с него, из неё, около них, возле неё etc.)

            Её, его, их are also used as the possessive her/his/their. They never get an initial н, even if they happen to follow a preposition (около кошки "near a cat"→около её кошки "near her cat" / около неё "near her")


            I think "у неё есть не сестра" should be accepted


            Sorry but that's incorrect.


            Ударение не там! У неё нет сестрЫ!


            When do we know to use нет vs. не?


            не = not, нет = no or "there is no".


            Isn't У неё есть нет сестры correct?


            I thought that you always can put есть when you mean that someone has something/someone?


            This is not quite true, and нет replaces есть anyway if you mean that someone DOES NOT have something or someone.


            Except from that situation with нет, where can't you use есть?

            [deactivated user]

              Yes. See this sentence, for example: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/11648544 (it would sound very strange with «есть»)


              That was a misinterpretation.


              I read the rule that explains your sentence, but I thought that you were allowed to put есть no matter what, even if it is not common/normal.


              Why do we use "y" at all in the sentence?


              у is what means "have".

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