"I have already told your parents that I do not like cats."
Translation:Я уже говорила твоим родителям, что не люблю кошек.
It is a bonus of Russian being a partially pro-drop language. While in "Она уже говорила тебе, что я не люблю кошек" omitting "я" would be odd—you can do without it when both clauses refer to the same person:
- Она сказала, что придёт в восемь. = She said she would come at eight.
- Маша думает, что не успеет. = Masha thinks that she won't make it in time.
Well, in English "that" means a sort of "this", but then there are sentences like "I think that they left" where "that" does not seem to mean "this" in any way. Could you tell what "that" actually means?
As a conjunction, что appends a subordinate clause that explains the contents of what was being said, thought or something. So, is is most likely English that "that". It can also mean "what" in sentences like "I bought what you had asked me to".
As a question word it means "what" (more precisely, the noun-what).
Both meanings of English "that" can be found in sentences like "I think that that was mean". Note how the conjunction "that" is totally unstressed in such an utterance (and you can throw it out, too).
Both meanings of Russian "что" can be found is sentences like "Я знаю, что не могу понять, что они сказали" (lit. I know that I cannot understand what they said)
Is there any situation in which "кошки" в винительном падеже (in the accusative case) can be used? Maybe specifically Я не люблю эти кошки to say I do not like THESE cats?
From what I'm seeing, accusative in negative statements deals with a definite object while genitive in negative statements deals with an indefinite object - is this correct? For example, Я не ем мяса (I do not eat meat in general) and Я не ем мясо (I am not eating the meat "as in this particular meat because it has fly on it or whatever").
You are not. These are rather interchangeable in Russian (in that meaning), so we accept both.
The second half of the sentence can be "что я не люблю кошек", "что не люблю кошек", or "что мне не нравятся кошки", and the same with коты/котов and some wiggle room for different word orders.
Спасибо. Actually this is what makes learning Russian on Duolingo harder than it should be. It consumes a lot of my time compared to other languages I exercise with here, which often leads me to simply disregard it for a day or two because I don't have time to learn that way. I understand the main concepts and I can relate when I read the Russian sentence, yet typing that in English (or in reverse, typing that in Russian if the sentence was in English) gives me such a hard time to double and triple check, and often an answer would be rejected for a little mistake. The other day I typed овоши instead of овощи, and I can still remember the whole sentence was rejected for this little spelling mistake (all the sentence was correct more or less, except for that one letter mistake).
That is weird. Овоши is usually accepted as a typo. Generally, if you get 1 letter wrong, 1 letter missing or 1 extra, or two letters swapped, it gets marked as a typo as long as you do not get a different word.
So, вощи, овоши, овощии, овщои, овоищ, овощщи are all considered typos.
What definitely happens is when you get the sentence wrong, the system shows you just one of the things that differs from the closest reference translation.
Next time it happens, please take note of what your wording was. Maybe we legitimately missed some phrasing (admittedly, sentences with овощи are on the simpler side of the spectrum).
As discussed above, сказал is accepted, and here is synonymous with говорил. The difference is that сказать is perfective (the action is completed) and говорить is imperfective (the action is ongoing) think 'Said' vs 'Talked'. Usually with other words the perf/imp distinction is a little more clear, but with сказать vs говорить it is very subtle to the point that either is accepted here.
As far as нравится goes, кошки is plural, so you have to use the plural form нравятся and it will be accepted. Also, you may use любить - the distinction only comes when you are talking about a person (or perhaps a particular cat). When talking about objects or concepts or species (i.e. cats), you may use either. Only when talking about a person does любить become 'love'. Although we sort of do this in English too. "I love cats" means the same as "I like cats", just maybe a little more emphatic, whereas "I love my parents" is a bit more distinct from "I like my parents" and "I love you" is even more distinct from "I like you".