"Он умеет готовить."

Translation:He can cook.

November 24, 2015



when do you use "уметь" and when do you use "мочь"?

November 24, 2015

[deactivated user]

    Уме́ть means having a certain skill.

    • Я уме́ю гото́вить. 'I can cook.' = 'I know how to cook.'
    • Я уме́ю пла́вать. 'I can swim.'
    • Я уме́ю игра́ть в футбо́л. 'I know how to play f̶o̶o̶t̶b̶a̶l̶l̶ soccer.'
    • Я уме́ю чита́ть мы́сли. 'I can read [other people's] mind.'

    Мо́чь refers to general possibility, often the possibility to do action at the moment. When used without any context, it usually sounds as an offer:

    • Я могу́ гото́вить. 'I can cook', 'I could cook'.

    We don't say things like «я могу готовить» often, because, well, who doesn't? I think it's used with «не» much more often than in positive sentences.

    • Я не могу́ гото́вить, не́ из чего. 'I can't cook, I don't have anything to cook!'
    • Я не могу́ пла́вать без пла́вок. 'I can't swim without swimming trunks.'
    • Я не могу́ игра́ть в футбо́л без мяча́. 'I can't play soccer without a ball.'
    • Я не могу́ чита́ть его мысли, пока́ он но́сит ша́почку из фольги́. 'I can't read his mind while he wears a tinfoil hat.'
    November 24, 2015


    Oh, that last one made me laugh out loud!

    March 3, 2016


    Thank you for explaining it so clearly!

    November 24, 2015


    Foot =

    January 20, 2019


    In this option must be: "knows". Because when he sick he can't, although he knows.

    October 9, 2018


    Can you not also say: "he is able to cook"?

    January 5, 2016


    I also put "able to cook".

    January 22, 2016


    Умеет means to be able to.. and know how to. Therefore, 'He is able to cook is correct??' Oн умеет готовит?? Совет пожалуйста.

    February 1, 2017


    The way the woman is pronouncing it, it sounds like "умед". Would a Russian speaker not really pronounce the two "e"s separately?

    June 23, 2017


    Yeah the pronunciation of уметь is totally off. Should be more like "umeejet" and not "umeet" here.

    October 13, 2017


    I also think this is pronounced «уме-ет» but I can't be sure

    November 14, 2017


    We used to have a TV show here in Australia titled «Ян умеет готовить, а вы тоже умеете!». A bit catchier in English.

    June 2, 2018


    Ah... one of the few sentences that are shorter in English than in Russian!

    November 30, 2015


    I believe you can say it either way in English!

    February 8, 2017


    He is single

    September 8, 2018


    He knows how to cook – it's right too?

    October 9, 2018


    "I know how to cook" is the same thing, or not?

    April 11, 2019


    он умеет готовить.

    но что он делает?

    он вместо спит!

    April 14, 2019


    Why is "he is able to cook" wrong?

    June 23, 2019
    Learn Russian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.