I am interested in the hyphen (—). In the very first lesson of this tree, we learn that ‘An em-dash is used instead of "the verb “to be” between the two nouns: «Мокка — кофе» ("A mocha is coffee".)’
As of my understanding, the hyphen is usually omitted when the emphasis is not on the verb ‘to be’, that is, not on the action of ‘is/are/am.’
Thus, ‘Мой дом — в городе‘ would mean ‘My home is in the city’, with an emphasis on the fact that is really is in the city or that it still is in the city, and ‘Мой дом в городе‘, without a hyphen, would mean ‘My home is in the city’, ‘My home is in the city’ or ‘My home is in the city’, with an emphasis on where the location of the home. Right?
It emphasises in the city. Without the dash, the sentence would not emphasise anything, it would be just a neutral statement. In fact, I think that the course creators shouldn't have put the dash here — after all, it’s not really necessary, but it raises extra questions which learners could do without yet…
Oh, ok. Thank you very much for responding. Большое спасибо!
Also, funny how the long hyphen (—) is used in Russian but not available on the Russian keyboard layout, only the short hyphen (-) is available. This is also the case with the quotation marks: «цитат» is used in Russian but only the simple "цитат" are available. ☺
The main cases when a dash is needed between the subject and the predicate are:
1) Both the subject and the predicate are nouns in the nominative case.
Земля́ — плане́та.
Earth is a planet.
Exception: when there is a negation with не, the dash is not needed.
Луна́ не плане́та.
The Moon is not a planet.
2) There is вот or это between the subject and the predicate.
Земляни́ка — это и вку́сно, и поле́зно.
Strawberries are both tasty and good for your health.
3) The subject, or the predicate, or both are infinitive verbs.
Жизнь прожи́ть — не по́ле перейти́.
Living a life is not as simple as crossing a field. (a proverb). Note that не here does not make the dash unnecessary.
4) The subject, or the predicate, or both are numerals.
Два́жды два — четы́ре.
Two times two is four.
Глубина́ о́зера — три ме́тра.
The depth of the lake is three meters.
Не makes the dash unnecessary if the predicate is a numeral, not a noun:
Два́жды два не пять.
Two times two is not five.
Russian has 6 "Cases" as does Latin. The Common. "Cases" are Nominative, Genitive, Dative, Accusative , then in Russian the following two are "Instrumental and Prepositional" vs Latin- the Last two are "Vocative and Ablative" depending on whether you are saying for example "to" the city, "of" the City, "in" the City, the City's, "about" the City ETC. If "City/Town" is the Main Subject-"The City is"... there is (No Hyphenated Ending). Different "Suffixes" are accordingly added to the Noun reflecting that descriptive relationship. My Russian Teacher Used to say "You Always put this ending at the end of the Noun.....EXCEPT.........". Then with a Huge Smile, and a Wink..she would hand out Pages upon Pages of the " Exceptions" to the Rule ! It became our "Inside Joke" !! :-) Hope that this Explanation isn't "TMI" and that this helps ! Blessings to All !