Ok, I can remember юг because Yugoslavia was in the South, and восток because Vladivostok is in the East. Now I just need to find places in the North and West to help me remember запад and север!
"Indo-European cognates include Latin caurus ('northwestern wind')" according to https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Reconstruction:Proto-Slavic/s%C4%9Bver%D1%8A
Never realized that's why it was called Yugoslavia. Thanks so much for that! :)
In old folklore it is common to refer to directions as part of the day so север and юг are respectively полночь and полдень (or полудень) and запад/восток can be replaced by закат/восход (the connection is obvious and thats actually how I remembered it as a kid I think). But not vice versa so you can travel due midnight (especially if you are a богатырь or at least добрый молодец) but you dont break fast in the east.
So travelling due midnight is like setting out at the thirteenth hour (the "witching hour" in English folklore)...
Severnaya Zemlya is an archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, north of Krasnoyarsk Krai. The largest island is October Revolution Island, named after its discoverer, Piotr October Revolution. Maybe it will help.
LOL, it's not real, of course. I just read that somewhere - "October Revolution Island, named after its discoverer, Piotr October Revolution." Since then I've never been able to think of anything else when I look at that island on the map, so I thought maybe it would help someone else to remember something :-)
Perhaps Сибирь (Siberia) > север (phonetically). It seems to have the same root.
While I have heard this before, I very much doubt this connection. As seen from the most populated parts of Russia, Siberia is East, not North.
Care to share an authoritative source?
How about: : ) Северодвинск [North Dvinsk, a harbor city in Russia] Западная Двина [West Dvina], the administrative center of Zapadnodvinsky District in Tver Oblast.
Severnaya Zemlya is in the north :)
This is clumsy phrase in English. We would say "that way" or "over there", with "that way" being better. That is, unless you are talking about someone named "South" ;) I am speaking of the English translation, not the Russian. I suppose it could be a situation where someone asks "Which way is South" and one answered while pointing South, might say "I think south is there." That might fit both the Russian and the English, думаю. ;) Still "that way" is much more likely.
I doubt there is any case in English where a native speaker would say the South is there. Except maybe during the American civil war if you were standing on the front line between the North and the South.
Really? Imagine yourself looking at a map which has no indication of directions. You are trying to orient it in order to make some sense of it. To me, a sentence like "I think South is there" would sound perfectly normal under the circumstances. Certainly better than "over there" -- you are looking at a piece of paper after all. "That way" would work too, but I don't find anything wrong with just "there".
Honestly, I think that would still be weird. South isn't a place, it's a direction. Even if you were pointing on a map, I think you'd still say 'that way' or something similar.
Pretty much the only way I can imagine "I think South is there" making sense is if there were a place that had been designated 'South' and you were pointing at that place.
Well, actually you could simply point at the bottom edge of the map. That would make sense, but it is quite specific; "that way" is certainly a more usable phrase.
I kept thinking that there should be "that" in the sentence - in both languages.
I think that South is there is more natural in English. Думаю, что юг - там is what I would have expected in Russian.
Or am I missing something?
I don't see any difference in using 'that' or not in English. I tend to omit 'that' in such sentences, but others may not. I don't think it's right to say one is more natural then the other. As for Russian, I would have thought the same thing, but I assume the course developers know what they're doing :) It's true though, that in other foreign languages I speak 'that' is never omitted when linking such clauses.
"Что" in Russian sentences of this sort is approximately as optional as "that" -- both can be safely omitted when they link short clauses.
Thank you both. I phrased my query that way because it was an instinctive reaction in both cases - I could not recall encountering any rules on the subject.
Re: the comments on the clumsiness of "South is there" in English because South (vs. the south) is a direction and not a place...
Is there a native Russian speaker that can tell us if it's also awkward in Russian? I.e., would it be better to say туда instead of там?
No. In Russian there is an ambiguity with юг (север, запад, восток) being being both direction and place. That said, grammatically they are treated as a place, hence "юг там" sounds much more natural that "юг туда".
A clear indication of direction would require preposition "на": I am heading South = Я иду/еду/направляюсь на юг (the choice of a verb depends on your mode of locomotion). Hence "на юг - туда" is perfectly normal while "юг туда" is clumsy in Russian.
No, you can skip "я" (I) when it's obvious that you are the subject, and the first person "Думаю" makes it absolutely unambiguous here.
Do people use that only with certain verbs or is it common to hear that with ANY first-person present verb?
I don't think there is a strict rule about it, but it is certainly more common with some verbs than others. The ones that immediately come to mind are "думаю" (like in this example), "надеюсь" (hope), "хочу" (want), "желаю" (wish).
It's interesting. I've been trying to find out to what extent Russian is a pro-drop language. Being familiar with Czech which is highly pro-drop I've dropped pronouns in some of these exercises without thinking about it and been marked wrong for it. Just out of interest does it occur in the first person singular more often than other persons?
Dropping "I" is a colloquial style, the sentence is formally incomplete. You would usually try avoiding it in writing or in formal conversations - but not always. E.g., "Хочу добавить ..." - "(I) would like to add ..." is an expression perfectly acceptable in formal speech.
I think it's about formality, but also about short sentences, if you have a three word sentence including a personal pronoun you may as well drop it, like in "чочу спать" etc
What exactly is "clefted"? If it's a participle form of "to cleave", then it's either "cleft", "cleaved" or "cloven"
It has nothing to do with cleave in the way you're trying to describe it. A cleft sentence is a linguistic concept and is very frequent in English. It has a lengthy Wikipedia article as well.
In my comment, I use "clefted" to describe a sentence rearranged into its cleft form. It would be nonsensical to describe it as cloven or cleaved... simply because those have no relation to the meaning of a cleft sentence.
I hope that clears it up for you.
Unless I misunderstand and you're picking on my use of the English language (in a forum for Russian acquisition), I suppose.
I think that sounds just as odd as the correct translation here, and as such, it should also be accepted.
The voice here clearly sounds like it's saying "думаем". These text-to-speech bots can be really hard to understand.
If only they could've gotten a few people together to create audio files like some of the other languages on Duolingo have..