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  5. "Куда они идут?"

"Куда они идут?"

Translation:Where are they going?

November 25, 2015



"To where are they going" should be accepeted.


Should it? I've never heard it phrased like that before.


It's correct, though very formal, as KruzKalke explained. Thinking of it this way helps me differentiate and properly use куда (to where) and где (where).


If you wanted to be very formal in English you could construct your sentences this way.

Colloquially, people often say "Where are they going to?", which places the preposition at the end of the sentence. Using older, Latin-style preposition-use would change this sentence to "To where are they going?"


And/or "Where are they going to?", which sounds better to me


Yes. As in the nursery rhyme: "Where are you going to, my pretty maid?"


But theoretically you don't put a preposition at the end of a sentence >_>.


As KruzKalke alludes to above, that "rule" was a Latinate imposition on English, popular during the era of Classicism. Germanic-language grammar is quite comfortable with prepositions occurring at the end of clauses, particularly in cases of phrasal verbs, ellipsis, and stranding due to wh-movement:



The rule is archaic. There's a nice discussion on the subject at http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/001702.html. The discussion mentions a great quote about this rule (as the discussion points out, almost certainly misattributed to Winston Churchill): " "This is nonsense up with which I will not put." Yes, yes, a preposition is supposed to precede a noun, but English absorbs many prepositions into fixed expressions, as in "I'd ask to stay for supper, but I wouldn't want to put you out." A linguist might even argue that out was not a preposition but a particle attached to the verb put in order to form a phrasal verb, but in any case the sentence is perfectly fine English.


It's a bit more archaic, but 'whither are they going?' is the most precise translation that can be given for this.


I agree. I find mentally referring to the older English forms reminds me which word to use. Где? = "where?"; куда? = "whither?" & откуда? = "whence?"


Perhaps it might help to remember the (somewhat colloquial) English question phrases: -Where to? -Where at? -Where from? ...then just drop the preposition as necessary in the English version.


Where are they going? - Куда они идут?

Where are they going? - Где они идут?

How to distinguish?


The way I understand it is as follows (please correct me if I'm wrong, everyone):

Куда они идут? = To where are they going?

Где они идут? = In/at where are they going (to somewhere)?


I'm not a native Russian speaker, but I'm sure there is no such expression "Где они идут?". It's simply wrong. It has no meaning. If action or movement is involved, then you use the word 'куда' (Where are you going? / Where should I put this?). If you're asking the static location then use 'где'. Similarly, "To where are they going?" is simply wrong. Maybe it's an old form but it should be considered wrong. The proper equivalent English expression is simply "Where are they going?" Trying to translate word for word will cause you nothing but problems.


Где они идут? is possible, but it will mean 'At what exact place are they going now?' Can be asked about an approaching army, for example


Где они идут is somewhat colloquial but it's used in Russian.


If you're familiar with Spanish at all, it is the same difference between "donde" and "adonde".


what about "which way do they go"? I'm a native Czech speaker, these two languages have a LOT in common, especially the words that sound almost exactly the same in both languages - I'm regularly doing new exercises and skills without hovering the mouse over the new word, simply because it's the same as in my native language. So, could it be right?


Where do they go to? Seems to be a correct response to me. Opinions? Should I report it?


I was gonna say, that would be a more accurate translation of куда. - At least in this context.


This gives the impression of asking where does this group habitually go, not where are they going now. You might say "Where do they go to" if you want to know what bar they frequent.


That's perfectly good English.


US English speaker - "Where do they go to?" sounds like it's asking for a response about an habitual action ("Where do they go to every Saturday?"), which is fine in English linguistically, but the Russian is specifically asking either where they are going now, or where they plan on going in the near future.


is it typical and or acceptable to blend words together that share the beginning and ending of the words? like this sentences for example, being pronounced as one word, кудонидут?


"Where are they going to" hits the meaning of "куда" better than without the "to". Unfortunately it is marked wrong.


Does Where are they headed work?


Yeah that sounds fine! It sounds a little more colloquial/less bookish.


I gave the correct answer but appeared this solution: "they will be back in 1 hour" Bug?


Why the "To" is necessary to be used before "where"? What's the difference between " where" and "to where"?


@Nishan_Paul - It looks like they accept both ("Where are they going?" is the default answer on my screen).

But in general, it's because English lost its different "wheres". We used to have one like the Russian куда (whither), and one like откуда (from where - whence), but over time those became less popular and just replaced by the one "where". But, "where" can also refer to a general location ("Where is she standing?"), so it also became normal to attach a preposition to specify what kind of "where" you're using.


Thanks a lot.but I'm confused between где and куда.


@Nishan_Paul - Где means "where" in the sense of something's location.

  • Где Лена? (Where is Lena?)
  • Лена в парке. (Lena is in the park)

Куда is "[to] where", as in something's destination.

  • Куда ты идешь? (Where are you going [to]?)
  • Я иду в парк. (I am going to the park)
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