"The boy does not have milk."

Translation:У мальчика нет молока.

November 18, 2015

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Could it also be "У мальчика не есть молоко" ? Спасибо


Не + есть = нет.

But you never use НЕ ЕСТЬ, but НЕТ.


This should be on the top of the comment list


This strangely resembles the liaisons of French...

[deactivated user]

    No, we never use «не е́сть».


    Why isn't it молоко? I thought after the verb есть we use the nominative case.

    [deactivated user]

      But this sentence doesn't really have the verb «есть». :) It has «нет», which is used with a noun in the genitive case.


      It seems strange to me how, in order for Russian translations to make sense, English people have to stick other words into the sentence.

      What I mean is, this sentence literally translates to: "this boy no milk" or even "boy no milk". We have to stick in words like " has", "or", or "and" in order for this sentence to not sound like a caveman grunt to us. Why is this?


      I mean, if all languages were the same then there... wouldn't be any different languages.


      I use to say to my students that when all languages were created people of all countries did not meet together to synchronize their grammar rules...


      It is of course true that languages ate different in many ways beyond vocabulary. The q. why here is not that odd however. I know only 3 other languages (one slavic among them) well enough to tell, how it looks like there and all 3 have sentences w/o verbs but not to the extent this seems to be prevalent in Russian. Looking at history and across languages may offer insights as to how and sometimes why things happened. This in itself may be and is a subject of a study, i am sure. So instead of making fun of thus q. those that are in the know - please offer a glimos into this matter.


      Yep. I think curiosity is a good thing in general. Sadly enough, this answer was asked 5 years ago so there's no much sense in explaining it right now. Anyway... In short: there are different ways to express relation between words. One is analytical (using word order, helping words and stuff), the other is fusional (changing the words) etc The sentence above is not "this boy no milk". First, there's a preposition "у", and noun "мальчик" is in genitive case, which in combination shows that he is a posessor of something (analytical way: 'The boy has...'). Second, we have negation 'нет' and 'молоко' in genitive case which shows absense of something (analytical way: 'there's no milk'). It's different from 'не молоко' (particle не + noun молоко in nominative case) which means 'Whatever the boy has is not milk'.

      Though... relations between words are not necessarily expressed through grammar. For example, Japanese is famous for being very contextual, and it still works. Because context.


      Well said. Where is the Nobel committee when you need them? It's not often something so profound gets tossed off by just anyone. :)


      Because your native tongue uses articles. We Spanish speakers have the same problem.


      In Spanish we could say "niño sin leche"


      One funny fact is that for us, Spanish speakers, the English language sometimes sounds like that, like a caveman grunt.


      Or rather "with boy no milk".


      in the voice acting wrong stress, you should say "net molokA", нет молокА


      Why is it that both мальчика and молока are used in genitive? Is there an accord between the two?

      [deactivated user]

        No, those are unrelated. «У» requires genitive (hence «у мальчика» 'at [the] boy's possession'), and «нет» requires genitive («нет молока» 'there is no milk). Those are completely unrelated to each other, and if you use them in other contexts, they will have other cases:

        • У ма́льчика есть молоко́. 'The boy has milk.' (literally 'at boy's [possession], there-is milk'; молоко is nominative because you use nominative with есть)
        • В холоди́льнике нет молока́. 'There is no milk in the fridge.' (холоди́льнике is prepositional because в requires either prepositional or accusative)


        Duo just accepted молоко as a typo, which it shouldn't since it's the wrong case. Reported.


        How would you say "the boy is not an apple"?


        Мальчик - не яблоко


        it is молокА not молОка!


        I must have forgotten, when do you use мальчик versus мальчика?

        [deactivated user]

          This might not be explained yet, because sometimes Duolingo introduces new words without explaining them.

          Russian nouns have several forms called cases.

          Ма́льчик is the nominative case, it's used when it's a subject of the sentence (ма́льчик ви́дит соба́ку 'the boy sees a dog'; 'the boy' does the action of 'seeing', so it's the subject of the sentence).

          Ма́льчика is either genitive or accusative case. The preposition «у», used to show the possessor, is used with the nouns in the genitive case. Note that the structure of the Russian sentence is different from the structure of the English one. In English, 'the boy' is the subject ('the boy does not have milk'), 'the boy' does (or, rather, doesn't do) the action of 'having'. In Russian, the structure is like 'at [the] boy, there-is-no milk'. This sentence doesn't even have nominative case, it uses a completely different construction.

          Aside from being used with «нет» 'there is no' to show absence, genitive can be used to show possession: молоко́ ма́льчика 'the boy's milk'.

          Ма́льчика can also be an accusative case. Accusative case is used for objects, that is, for something affected by the action. For example, in «соба́ка куса́ет ма́льчика» 'the dog bites the boy', 'the boy' is the object, he gets affected by the action of the dog (and the dog is the subject).


          He needs some milk


          I wrote this: у этого мальчика нет молока why was it incorrect?


          That would mean "This boy..." rather than "The boy..." Try to resist the urge to use something in place of "a" or "the" in Russian. Your version of the sentence gives the impression that there is a boy in the same room and you are pointing at him. :)


          Thanks. I guess four years is a long time to wait for thanks.


          молОка ? Seriously?


          It should be stressed on the last syllable: молокА


          Would the gen plural for milk be молок


          Technically yes, but generally people don't say "milks". You're far more likely to see "виды молока" or "типы молока" (both basically meaning "types of milk").


          I thought if possession was in the negative, the object is in the genitive case but the owner is not.


          @2rellik2 - The genitive case is used with the "owner" because of the preposition у. The object is in genitive because of the negation.


          i don't get it, both "мальчика" and "молока" have to be in the genitive form?


          @luisamesquita02 - Correct.

          "Мальчик" is in genitive case because it is modified by the preposition "у" (at, near, by, etc.). "У" always puts the word it is attached to in the genitive case.

          "Молоко" is in genitive case because of the "нет". When you use "нет" to show the absence of something ("there's no X"), it puts that word in genitive case.

          So, same case, just two different reasons why.


          мальчика and молока are feminine-ending (а or я) nouns. What's going on? Is grammatical gender different from the actual gender of the noun you're talking about?


          That seems like it should say the boy is not milk. Is it just the ка ending that implies possession here?

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