1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Russian
  4. >
  5. "Я хочу есть."

"Я хочу есть."

Translation:I want to eat.

November 30, 2015


Sorted by top post


Doesn't this mean "I want to eat" and not "I am hungry"?

March 4, 2016

[deactivated user]

    Well, it indeed means "I want to eat", but this is also the most idiomatic way to say "I'm hungry" in Russian.

    March 4, 2016


    Я бы не сказал, что "Я хочу есть" и "Я голоден" в русском языке одно и тоже. Например:

    Я голоден, но не хочу есть. Потому, что меня тошнит.

    Я не голоден, но хочу съесть этот кусок пирога. Он так аппетитно выглядит.

    April 29, 2016


    Эта разница имеет значение только в случаях, когда одно противопоставляется другому. Но в повседневной речи "я хочу есть" используется в смысле "я голоден/голодна".

    June 6, 2017


    Would it be more common to say" есть хочетця?"_Sorry if my spelling is off.

    May 17, 2016

    [deactivated user]

      No, it's a less common way of saying this. In fact, «есть хочется» sounds somehow desperate for me: as if you don't know if you'll when you'll get to eat.

      I'm not sure if it's just me or not (maybe other Russian speakers could comment if they have the same impression), but for me, «хочется» somehow shows the desire for food as something you don't control. So, if you're hungry and will do something about it, I'd use «я хочу есть». But «есть хочется» somehow gives the impression that you're hungry and can't do anything about it.

      May 17, 2016


      "I am hungry," was not accepted 18 July 2018. Reported.

      July 18, 2018


      21 march 2019 still not accepted. Reported

      March 21, 2019


      I just got an email from Duo "I am hungry" is now accepted. I reported it a few weeks ago, so there is hope.

      July 22, 2018


      27 july 2018 : still not accepted

      July 27, 2018


      25 dec 2018. Still not accepted

      December 25, 2018


      Yes. Bad translation.

      March 10, 2016


      Not bad. Just not a literal translation

      March 12, 2016


      Okay I a bit confused with the word "есть" now. Sometimes I see "ест" and sometimes it has the soft sign.

      When do I know if it's about eating? and when I do know if it's just a different form of "to be"

      у меня есть part really confused me on this one

      July 13, 2016

      [deactivated user]

        Russian verbs have several forms. Notably, they have an infinitive (ending in -ть or -ти), and personal forms. Infinitives of the verb 'to eat' is «есть», infinitive of the verb 'to be' is «быть». Infinitive has a lot of uses, notably it's used with all kinds of modal verbs and expressions:

        • Я хочу́ есть. 'I want to eat'.
        • Я хочу́ быть там. 'I want to be there.'

        Note that infinitive is not the main verb of the sentence. The main verb is 'хочу' (its infinitive is 'хоте́ть'), and infinitive is used together with the main verb.

        The main verb is used in its personal forms. I'm saying forms, not form, because they usually change to reflect the person doing the action. Хочу́ 'want' is the 1st person singular form, it's used with the pronoun «я» ('I'). You can't use it with pronoun «ты» ('you'), for this you need 2nd person singular form.

        Ест is 3rd person singular form of the word «есть». It's used with pronouns «она́» 'she', «он» 'he', and «оно́» 'it'; and also with singular nouns. Other forms of «есть» are these: я ем 'I eat' (1st person singular), ты ешь (2nd person singular), она ест 'she eats' (3rd person singular), мы еди́м 'we eat' (1st person plural), вы еди́те 'you eat' (2nd person plural; also used instead of singular to show respect), они́ едя́т 'they eat' (3rd person plural).

        Есть is tricky because it's not just an infinitive, it's also a personal form of the word «быть» 'to be'. However, it's an irregular verb: all its personal forms are есть. So, «я есть» 'I am', «ты есть» 'you are', «она есть» 'she is', «мы есть» 'we are', «вы есть» 'you are', «они́ есть» 'they are'. (In very bookish texts, you could find a rare form «они́ су́ть» 'they are'.) However, the irregularities don't end here: есть is more often omited than used. It's normally only used in sentences when you have 'there is/are' in the English translation. In sentences like „X is Y“, есть is usually omited.

        July 13, 2016


        But why is it not я хочу ем?

        May 26, 2017


        Because хочу (want) is already conjugated (first person singular) so "to eat" is left in the infinitive. "I want to eat."

        May 26, 2017


        "I want am eating"?

        July 30, 2019

        • Есть пить? - Пить есть, есть нету.
        July 10, 2017


        What's the difference between "есть" and "кушать"?

        December 3, 2015

        [deactivated user]

          Please see the discussion here: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/11484683

          I personally never use «ку́шать», only «есть». You can safely use «есть» everywhere, and that would sound natural.

          December 4, 2015



          December 4, 2015


          I've seen elsewhere that "Я голоден" can be used for "I am hungry". Is it regional? Is one used more than the other? большое спасибо.

          January 21, 2016

          [deactivated user]

            This is correct too, and this is closer to the English sentence grammatically, but I feel it's used much less often than the English sentence. «Я хочу́ есть» sounds more like something I'd normally say. I don't know if there is a regional difference.

            Also note that feminine form is «Я голодна́». In colloquial speech, I'd normally use the full forms of the adjectives («Я голо́дный» / «Я голо́дная»).

            January 22, 2016


            Why is "I wanna eat" not accepted?

            April 28, 2017


            I wanna eat uses a word that is not really a word - wanna. While you will very frequently hear English speakers (especially Americans) say wanna, the correct words to use are want to. We use wanna from a simple wish to not put forth the effort to form the t - t sounds in want to. It is easier to run the words together, take out the t's, and convert the ooh sound of to to an uh sound. In other words, we speak quite lazily. ;)

            While generally acceptable and usually unnoticed in spoken English, you will want to use want to in written communication, since wanna is extremely informal in writing. Text messages to friends - no problem for you to use wanna. School papers or letters to people you wish to make a good impression on - not such a good idea to use wanna. Hope this helps. Cheers, dear

            June 21, 2017


            English does have its share of run together phrases. My old Russian instructor told us the story of his first encounter (1970's) with an American in Moscow. The American used a word he could never figure out. It wasn't till he emigrated to the US and a decade later he finally understood, "oliveus" wasn't an actual word but "all of us" is.

            June 21, 2017


            So I thought I had finally figured out that when ест means he/she/it eats it doesn't get a ь, whereas when it means he/she/it is, it does. But now I see that it also has one here. I may be a bit late in the game, but can someone please explain?

            July 9, 2019


            Ест: third person singular conjugation of есть. Он/она ест: “he/she is eating.”

            Есть: infinitive form, to eat. Я хочу есть, “I want to eat.” Note that “I want” is conjugated, while “to eat” remains static.

            Examples of conjugation + static infinitive: Они хотят есть. Он хочет есть: They want to eat. He wants to eat. Я хочу спать. Анна хочет спать. I want to sleep. Anna wants to sleep. Я люблю петь. Папа любит петь. I love to sing. Dad loves to sing. So when used this way, the infinitive does not change form no matter which number or person it is used with.


            Есть: conjugated, irregular form of the infinitive быть. У меня есть яблоко, literally, “By me there is an apple,” actual translation, “I have an apple.”

            Быть: infinitive, to be.

            July 9, 2019


            Could this also mean "I want to exist" in another context?

            November 30, 2015

            [deactivated user]

              No, that would be «Я хочу быть».

              After «хочу́» we use the infinitive form. «Есть» when it means existence is not an infinitive, it's a present tense form.

              Here's a table, hope it helps:

              <pre> Present tense Infinitive 'to be, to exist' есть/есть/есть/есть/есть /есть быть 'to eat' ем /ешь /ест /едим/едите/едят есть </pre>

              Есть is an unique verb because it doesn't change in the Present tense! Long ago, this used to be a normal verb (я есмь, ты еси, он(а) есть, мы есмы, вы есте, они суть), but есть has replaced all the other forms nowadays. Most other forms disappeared. Only суть is sometimes used, but it's used in very formal texts (and even there it can be safely replaced by есть).

              However, after хочу you use not the present tense, but infinitive.

              November 30, 2015


              Wow! Very informative, thank you!

              In English we certainly have homophones, homonyms, and homographs, but it seems odd to me that two verbs that are so key to the human experience (to be and to eat) would share the same word, one in the present and one in the infinitive.

              Is there an interesting story behind this or is it "just one of those things"?

              March 11, 2016


              The closeness is of Indoeuropean origin, but in some languages they have become closer than in others, due to changes in pronunciation system. In German f.ex., they are impossible to distinguish in present 3rd singular: ist and isst (when spoken, that is).

              April 15, 2016

              [deactivated user]

                It's just a coincidence. In fact, before 1917, they were written differently, ѣсть 'to eat' and есть 'is'. And in XVIII century they were pronounced differently.

                March 11, 2016


                Why does it not mean "I want to be"?

                May 23, 2016

                [deactivated user]

                  Because есть is a personal form 'am, are, is', while after 'want' you use infinitive бы́ть 'to be'.

                  Just like 'I want am' is wrong in English, so is «я хочу́ есть» 'I want to be' is wrong in Russian. It can only mean 'I want to eat' because «есть» is an infinitive meaning 'to eat'.

                  May 24, 2016


                  it has a ь at the end so it's saying I want to have

                  January 25, 2017


                  In this context, no, that's incorrect. Here, Есть means "to eat"

                  You're thinking of the phrase "У [noun/pronoun] есть...." In that context, есть is 3rd person singular and plural of the verb/infinitive быть (to exist, to be)

                  In the exercise sentence, есть is the infinitive meaning "to eat".

                  They are spelled the same, but mean entirely different things. That sort of thing happens in English, too.

                  July 10, 2018


                  The translation is "I want to eat."

                  October 6, 2017


                  "I am hungry" is also accepted now as a translation.

                  July 22, 2018


                  Я голоден = I am hungry

                  June 20, 2018


                  <<Я голоден>> translates closer to "I am starving" and to my ears is more desperate than "I am hungry."

                  July 10, 2018


                  In other exercises, that's certainly what Duo says it means, along with хотеть пить meaning "to be thirsty/to want to drink". Reported 10 July 2018

                  July 10, 2018


                  Тогда у вас есть мое разрешение.

                  October 24, 2018


                  Я тоже

                  January 22, 2019


                  But do you wamt to COOK? (-_-)

                  February 21, 2019


                  I want to eat on 19 april. 2019

                  April 18, 2019


                  Why does есть need multiple uses

                  July 9, 2019


                  хочу bless you

                  September 6, 2019


                  Doesn't the sentence currently say 'I want to have'? I thought 'to eat' is 'ест'.

                  September 19, 2019


                  Please review responses to this query already on this thread. Thanks,

                  September 19, 2019


                  Of all the comments I make, you choose to answer me in one that already has answers...and only to point it out (((

                  September 19, 2019


                  Sorry friend, I meant no offense.

                  September 20, 2019


                  Yeah! But sometimes one may want to eat without being hungry...

                  April 18, 2017


                  Update: just got an email from Duo saying that "I am hungry" is now accepted. Reporting does work, so there's hope.

                  ORIGINAL COMMENT: True, but Duo has consistently - until now - translated this phrase as "being hungry".

                  July 10, 2018


                  Why is there a soft sign? Doesn't it mean 'to have'?

                  June 10, 2017


                  No. Here есть is the infinitive for "to eat".

                  And есть doesn't mean "to have". The phrase у [noun/pronoun] есть literally means "by/near [noun/pronoun] (there) is/exists", which is translated idiomatically into "[noun/pronoun] has".

                  July 10, 2018


                  Я тоже

                  April 13, 2019


                  still don't know how and why you guys learn all of these languages.

                  September 29, 2017


                  how: persistence, consistency, and a fluctuating mixture of motivation and discipline

                  why: different for everyone. some people have to because they've immigrated, some because they are dating someone who speaks the language, and some, like me, just do it out of interest like any other hobby. :)

                  September 6, 2019
                  Learn Russian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.