"Could you slice bread and cheese?"
Translation:Можете нарезать хлеб и сыр?
- «Можете вы» is incorrect. It should be either «можете» or «можете ли вы».
- «Нарезаете» is a finite form. Just like in English, you use infinitives when stringing verbs together ("can he slice", not "can he slices").
- «Нарезаете» is actually imperfective and doesn't work in this situation since you're asking for a single action. In the infinitive, the difference is only the stress: нареза́ть (impf) — наре́зать (perf), but their conjugations are different (e.g. вы нареза́ете (impf) — вы наре́жете (perf)).
Why is the pronoun implied here, but it seems to be necessary most everywhere else?
Different meanings. Можете нарезать = polite form of asking, it means "cut the bread, please". When you say so, you already know that the person CAN do what you want (but don't know if they want and will do it). Можешь ли ты нарезать = something like "is it possible for you to slice the bread?". For example, when somebody is partially paralyzed or have less then 2 hands with 5 fingers on each (are the thumbs counted like fingers? In Russian we use only one word for thumbs, fingers and toes - пАлец for singular and пАльцы for plural).
Why don't you add -y to хлеб because isn't it (but I'm probably wrong) in the dative case?
Accusative case, as they are direct objects. Masculine and neutre inanimate nouns do not change.
I really appreciate all of the comments, my questions has already been answered. Thank you :).
Why "could" and not just "can"? I'm going through this module for the first time, so I haven't gotten to subjunctive yet. The conjugation tables I've seen also don't have a conditional tense.
I think this translation is wrong. Of course the person is capable of slicing bread and cheese. Could and can imply capability. The question surely should be, 'would' they slice it?
It is very common, in my experience, to ask someone if they "could/can" do something for you when making a request. For example "could you get the lights for me" or "can you lock the door behind me?"
But does that mean that something that is grammatically more correct should be marked wrong?
You didn't mention anything in your original comment about getting marked wrong. I was only remarking that the use of "could/can" when making such a request is not incorrect or unusual. If this sentence was asking for a ru-en translation, I would agree that "would you slice..." should be an acceptable answer.
I can think of many instances where "Can you do [something]?"is appropriate. Not everyone is capable of slicing cheese - like someone who's got a broken hand. Or someone who has to deal with another situation and can't do the task currently.