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  5. "Какого цвета эта вещь?"

"Какого цвета эта вещь?"

Translation:What color is that thing?

November 12, 2015



Could somebody tell me why the genitive case is used here?

[deactivated user]

    Genitive can be used for nouns denoting qualities, then it means 'having this quality'. For example:

    • челове́к че́сти (a person of honour = a person having the quality 'honour' = a honourable person),
    • слёзы ра́дости (tears of hapiness = happy tears).

    It's also used with a phrase 'adjective + noun':

    • ве́щь кра́сного цве́та (a thing of red colour; thing having the quality 'red colour'),
    • же́нщина высо́кого ро́ста (a woman of tall stature = woman having the quality 'tall stature')
    • цвето́к необыча́йной красоты́ (a flower of outstanding beauty = a very beautiful flower),
    • челове́к огро́много профессионали́зма (a person of huge professionalism = a very professional person).

    In this sentence, there's a nominal phrase 'adjective-like question word + noun' in genitive: «како́го цве́та». It's similar to «ве́щь кра́сного цве́та», but instead of «кра́сного» we have a question word «како́го». «Како́го» grammatically behaves like an adjective. So, we have a question about a quality, and that's why we use genitive.


    Oh, it's a great explanation! Now I understand. Thank you very much :)

    By the way, is there any difference or nuance between «вещь красного цвета» and «красная вещь»? It seems to me that the former expression is somewhat more formal.

    [deactivated user]

      Yes, you're right. Using genitive definitely sounds more formal (or poetic).


      Ah, just as I thought. So I can write a poem in Russian! Thanks again :)


      By the way, the genitive construction follows the Spanish grammar perfectly:

      "¿De qué color es ... ?", which would be "Of what colour is ...?".

      Since we have "of", genitive kicks in.


      I think is poetic style is preparing us to eventually appreciate the likes of Pushkin, Gogol and Tolstoy! ;)


      just noticed how these questions work... какого цвета? = "of what color?" because какого is genitive (the case of posession, belonging; being "of" someone or something), so "of" is part of it. hope this helps


      Yes. It helps! Thank you.


      I got tired of forgetting the word for thing, so I decided to make a sentence (hope this helps): If you wish, you can get whatever thing you want.


      Why not " what color is this thing"?


      "Of what colour is this thing" was not accepted. Any idea why?


      In English, 'what color is that item' is equivalent to saying 'what color is that thing;' please correct your acceptable answers.


      Are there any other ways of saying "thing" besides вещь?


      You can use штука in most contexts.


      Maybe "дело"? Warning: I said "'Maybe". It's just a wild guess.

      [deactivated user]

        Дело is used about things people do, actions, business. You can't use де́ло when asking about colour because actions don't really have colours.


        Thank you. Всё панятно. Everything (гм гм) is clear now.


        Why can't it be "what is the colour of that thing?"?

        I'm not native...


        Different sentence structure + this vs. that. Your sentence would translate as: Какой цвет у той вещи?


        I have a declension table for то = "that". Supposedly, it functions in the same was as это, but simply means "that" while это supposedly means "this" - but we never see то or any of it's declensions at Duo.

        Does Это really means "that" in colloquial Russian?


        I thought какого , како is which. Like to this day i thought it is which colour?


        why is the male voice mispronouncing щ as ж when saying вещь


        can we use та instead of эта if the corresponding word is "that"?


        If y'all get confused, think of Russian grammar as similar to King James Bible language: Of which color is that thing?


        In italian it corresponds: "di che colore è questa cosa?".

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