"Когда я далеко от дома, я о нём думаю."
Translation:When I am far from home, I think about it.
188 CommentsThis discussion is locked.
Yes. Theoretically «о нём» can refer to another masculine noun mentioned before (probably even to some male person), but since we don't have much context it's most likely «дом» 'home'.
In english the stuff that have genders is usally limited to people. It is not rare tho, that you can put a gender on a thing like a house or a ship and refer to it by it, like "she is fast" referring to an specific ship. But in other languages there is already a gender for all words, house дом is masculine, so you can't refer to it as she. In russian you have masculine, femenine and neutral genders.
«О» is used with prepositional when it means 'about, concerning, on, of'.
When it means 'against, (up)on' (би́ться голово́й о сте́ну 'bang one's head against the wall', опере́ться о сте́ну 'lean against the wall'), it requires accusative.
«О» can be used with both prepositional case and accusative case. The case changes the meaning:
- «О» + prepositional case means 'about, concerning, on'.
- «О» + accusative means 'against'.
Please see my comment here for examples: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/11680483$12529243
Becuase is a gendered language. All words have a gender, which in english is not the case. его, is only referring to him, but as english doesn't use gender for things the correct translation should be it, not him. But since this is meant to be educative is not wrong to also refer as to him although in English it doesn't make a lot of sense.
- о чём = about what, it's either interrogative (О чём ты думаешь? What are you thinking of?) or relative pronoun (Я думаю, о чём тебе рассказать. I'm thinking about what I should tell you.),
- о нём = about him (it not neccessarily refers to a living person, it can refer to any masculine noun).
You don't get a hint when you hover over нём with the mouse? If not that's not a problem with the course, but it's definitely a problem...
I think the way Duo introduces words is fine. With the way Duo works, it's no big deal if you get a word wrong the first time through. You just learn the first time and get it right the next time through.
Well I was on the phone app, so hovering wasn't an option - and even on a desktop it's not always, as in exercises like this that are multiple-choice. But I seem to part company with most users as I like knowing what to expect, rather than being blind-sided and then penalized for what I haven't learned yet. Kind of like getting a pop quiz at the beginning of class on material to be covered that day.
Well, when you arrive in a country with a partially learned version of its language, you can expect to run into lots of examples of hitting a new word or usage for the first time in almost every conversation. Sometimes you guess right, sometimes not. It isn't such a bad thing to get this experience sometimes in the learning process, and once you get your mind adapted to it, it is particularly less stressful when you realize it is just a computer seeing your confusion and not even a roomful of classmates. I also found it a little annoying when first starting with DuoLingo (and it does seem to happen much more often in Russian than in the Swedish which I started on earlier), but have come to think of it as actually pedagogically pretty useful.
I use a phone. I can coubt on hints being there cirrectkt at the begunning if a kessin. They mix them up or give wrong unusable ones to challenge you later. Ive used them later and git them wrong. I didnt die. Instead, u made sure to read the comments in this section by people who can explain it. You wont find thus kind of help sentence for sentence anywhere else. You get grammar tables listing an unmemorizable lists of endings. Many are irregular anyway. I have learned so much frim this section! ( no guarantee i wont forget it tomorrow). So i write it down if its tough. Russian isnt hard; its impossible . Suck it up, have fun and do your best!
Его (accusative case) refers to a direct object of a verb when the object is of masculine or neuter gender. In that case, it matches 'him' or 'it' (or even 'her' if 'she' is a ship). Его (genetive case) is a posessive adjective like 'his', 'its' or 'her', which means 'belonging to a living thing or an object of masculine or neuter gender'. Нём is the preposional case form of 'он'. It is only used after preposions 'о', 'в' and 'на'. 'о нём'= 'about him/it/her', 'в нём' mostly translates as 'in him/it/her' (less often as 'on him/it/her' or 'at it'), 'на нём' mostly translates as 'on him/it/her' (less often as 'in him/it').
Technically both are correct, but we need more context here.
Read this comment, please:
Well, they are two completely different words. «Нам» is 'to us'. «Нём» is only used about prepisitions, «о нём» is 'about him'.
http://www.russianlessons.net/grammar/pronouns.php <-- This website has a lot of useful grammar tables. This link is for Russian pronouns :)
Well, when I said it doesn't exist, I meant "думаю/мечтаю/говорю о неё" doesn't exist. Although "о неё" meaning "against it" can be used with verbs such as биться, ударяться, опираться , тереться, this usage is marginal, the standard phrase being "об неё" as you aptly pointed out. By the way, the sentence you gave example is rather poorly worded not only because of "о неё", but also because of the abmiguity it creates - it is not clear whether Klichko "ударился об икону" or "ударился о Богоматерь, изображенную на иконе".
"I think of home when I am far from it." Is this an acceptable translation?
Из means “out of” or “from within”. When it follows an adjective in the superlative degree form, из means “of”: “the easiest of all jobs” = «самое простое из всех дел». It also means “of” in «изготовлен/сделан из» (made of) and in “M of N”, e.g. “one of them”. От is used to translate “from” in most other cases. «Отскочить от»=”bounce off”.
Just to be sure:
нём is the masculine prepositional form of он, not of это, am I right? Either way, how would sound a similar sentence using the other option? Is specifying (my home, for instance) would change it from "it" to "that"?
(I wish there were some explanation in the notes beforehand.)
Нём is the prepositional case form of either он or оно. Given that there is no neuter gender noun or another masculine gender noun between от дома and о нём, the latter cannot refer back to any other thing but дом (but it can refer to a man or boy mentioned earlier on in the conversation). If you specify дом, e.g. say «от её дома» or «от Белого дома» or «от маминого дома», it would be «о нём» just the same. «Об этом» (“about that”) would refer back to the previous sentence as a whole, rather than any particular word. The English “it” can replace any noun which does not denote a human being or a particular animal with a name or a big boat. There is no such multipurpose pronoun in Russian.
If you want to say in Russian, “When I am away from home, I think about him” and make sure you don’t sound ambiguous, you must put ‘him’ before ‘home’ like this: «Я всегда думаю о нем, когда нахожусь далеко от дома». In that case, “о нем” will be automatically related to the last masculine noun you mentioned before saying that sentence, and that noun had better be the person you are referring to. If there is more than one masculine noun, than you have no choice but repeat it. For example, «Дома у меня остались маленький сын и муж. Я всегда думаю о сыне, когда нахожусь далеко от дома». Unlike English, Russian rules out the possibility of relating personal pronouns to nouns that occur later in the sentence. For example, in English, it is normal to say, “When she came home, Ann cooked dinner”, whereas, in Russian, the noun (in this case, Ann) should come before “she”: «Когда Энн пришла домой, она приготовила ужин». The best way to say it would be to do without the pronoun: «Придя домой, Энн приготовила ужин».
But DL never gives us the context.
So this exactly my sentence (rejected by DL) and this is what I've been arguing about, grammatically correct sentence should be accepted.
And I do understand the difference between these two contexts, so I know when it would be "it" and when "him" in English. I just chose the "him" context, but as DL doesn't accept it some people may think that "нём" means only "it".
And you have just answered your own question! When duo gives a sentence without complete context, choose the only one there. The only one there is home- his house. You will never go wrong. If your in a real conversation, you may have learned it's about something else, but with this sentence theres nothing except his home.
I absolutely understand that.
What I am saying is that we are talking to an algorithm, to a robot and if my grammatically correct sentence is rejected I am looking for the grammar/vocabulary errors in it.
DL doesn't explain that there is no structural or grammar error, just the context I imply is not the right one (but still possible). I want to know how to say about him, about it, about her...
But they give me a sentence with "about it" using "о нём" which I understand but I consider it not the best way to teach.
Gotcha. You obviously have learned how to use this perfectly in a conversation. Which is the important thing. But as you said, it's a robot, so if you dont want to be hit with incorrect, dont try to reason with one! You usually dont need to "imply" anything in Duo sentences. I got it wrong the first time for the same reason (over) thinking who was he thinking about. Checked the correct translation I saw it was "it." The forum said it was it, the house. I accepted it. Bam, done.
Actually the Russian sentence means both. So it depends on the context.
In this case we use "it" as there is no indication that we are talking about a person.
But if we'd say:
"I have to work for a month in another country, but my husband has to stay at home. When I am far from home, I think about him" (here given by the context "him" makes more sense, but both sentences would be the same in Russian)
In Russian you cannot say, «думаю о пить чай». The correct phrase would be «думать о том, как было бы хорошо выпить чаю». Also, ничто cannot be used as the subject of a sentence, so the correct form is «потому что мне не нужно ничего делать». As a matter of fact, «потому что у меня нет никаких дел» sounds even better.
«я о нём» is supposed to be pronounced like yāñom (I am using the ā symbol for the long /a/ vowel formed by merging two /a/‘s — one in я and the other denoted by the letter o, and the Spanish letter ñ for the lack of a better symbol for the palatalized (“soft”) Russian н’ in нём).
The two adjacent vowels are indeed fused into one, although this feature is optional: one can also pronounce them separately. The combination of letters нё stands for two sounds — the palatalized consonant /н’/ and the vowel /о/ — with no /i/ or /j/ in between. The term “palatalization” stands for raising the back of the tongue to the palate. In most languages it is only done before /i:/ or /i/ (in some languages, also before ü) whereas in Russian it can be done before any vowel except /ы/. Palatization is marked by using я instead of а for /a/, ё instead of о for /o/, ю instead of у for /u/ and е instead of э for /е/, and by ь in the final position. The silent letter ь сan also be used as a palatalization marker after any of the consonants д, т, л or р before another consonant.
No, the translation for any gendered reference is “it”, when you’re talking about inanimate objects in English. As in English inanimate objects don’t have a gender, unless you’re talking figuratively, such as maybe you named your car. Most of us talk about our home as an object, not as a person.
It is actually impossible to tell without the context whether it is the home or a male human or an animal. In fact, it is not a very good Russian sentence. We are more likely to say: «Уезжая надолго, я скучаю по дому» or «Уезжая из дома надолго, / Вдали от дома я скучаю по своему мужу/сыну/брату/коту». «думаю о нем» is also an option, but only if the object of thinking is mentioned in the previous sentence.