Actually, it's likely that his name was originally not Lev / Лев but Lyov / Лёв. The translations that were published back when he was alive use Lyoff as his name. But е/ё weren't distinguished back at that time, so nowadays everyone says Лев even though it's technically not his original name.
We don't have such a name nowadays. But it was used in the past.
In fact, the family name Медве́дев is likely to be derived from this name. Family names are often derived from the name of a famous ancestor using the -ов/-ев suffix (e.g. Ивано́в is derived from the name Ива́н, Петро́в is derived from the name Пётр, Ла́зарев is derived from the [rare] name Ла́зарь, etc.).
Is the family name, ‘Медведев’, popular in Russia today?
Regarding the formation family names, isn’t -ов/-ев also the accusative plural suffix (for animate masculine nouns) and also the genitive plural plural suffix (for all masculine nouns)? That explains why my mothers birth name was Еле́на Его́рова and my grandfather’s name (on my mother’s side) was Фёдор Его́ров, from the name Его́р, a shortened form of Гео́ргий (George). I wonder who was named Его́р in my family... Then, when she married my half brother’s father, her last name became Зенко́ва. My brothers last name is actually still Зенко́в.
popular in Russia today
I don't have statistics, but I guess everyone has heard it because of a former Russian president. :)
isn’t -ов/-ев also the accusative plural suffix (for animate masculine nouns) and also the genitive plural plural suffix (for all masculine nouns)?
Yes, that's true.
This depends on the speed of your speech. If you make a pause between «ест», then it will be /f/. But if it's pronounced together, than it stays /v/ because it's followed by a sonorant.
"Ест" begins with a consonant sound "й".
My bad. I've edited my message.
I pronounce "лев" as "леф".
I don't insist on this, but I wouldn't consider /v/ a mistake here.
To native speakers, the difference between ест /'jest/ and есть /'jestʲ/ is audible. I know it might be difficult to learn to distinguish the two, but I think it just comes with practice.
Your comment is great, but I have a little correction: when есть is a form of 'to be', it's not the infinitive.
Indeed. Actual correct translation involves using the rules of the target language. You /can/ do a word-for-word translation even if it makes no sense at all in the TL, but that is only to study the sentence. We do it a lot in linguistics research, and it is called glossing.
It would also be Лев ест. However, in English, this would be a sentence fragment (an incomplete sentence). You can say that "Lions eat" (plural subject without an article), but if you have a countable subject (in this case, "Lion"), you would need to use an article ("a lion" or "the lion"). The exception would be if it were a proper noun (someone's name, like your cat's name), then you could just say "Lion eats".
@Good1n1: In English, when talking about one of something (an animal, a physical object, a person), you have to use an article ("the" if it is a specific thing, "a" if talking about a general thing).
So "Lion eats" is not a complete sentence, because "Lion" is not a proper noun. It should either be "the" or "a" lion. Examples:
- What is the lion doing?
The lion is eating.
What does a lion do in the zoo?
A lion sleeps, eats, and plays.
What is happening behind the trees??
- There is a lion eating there.
If you use the plural, lions, then you can say it without any article - "Lions eat".