"Buy us some bread."

Translation:Купи нам какого-нибудь хлеба.

3 years ago

11 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/JimLabbe

And why exactly is "какого-нибудь хлеба" all in genitive? Because it all refers to "a portion" of bread? That's where I think I got confused.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Schattenparker

какой/ого-нибудь is not the object but an attribute to the object noun хлеб; thus its case must be congruent with хлеб/а similar to an adjective. So the grammatical idea is "buy us [from an unspecified bread quantity]" rather than "buy us whatever [of bread]".

As you say, genitive makes the object an uncountable mass or a whole rather than a countable object among several similar objects.

Купи нам какой-нибудь хлеб = Buy us some kind of bread, for there are several types, but it doesn't matter which one you choose.

Купи нам какого-нибудь хлеба = Buy us some amount of bread, for it doesn't matter how much of that "substance" you buy.

I concluded this from: https://russian.stackexchange.com/questions/13608/can-%D0%BA%D0%B0%D0%BA%D0%BE%D0%B9-%D0%BD%D0%B8%D0%B1%D1%83%D0%B4%D1%8C-be-an-object-or-just-an-adjective

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/petrenko
petrenko
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Why not just 'купи нам хлеба'? Is partitive not used like that? What if I am indifferent only to the exact quantity and not the type of the bread? e.g. you always buy me one type of bread at a certain baker, if I say "buy me some bread", I obviously want 'the usual'

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Addmande

Почему не какого-то?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ythinn
Ythinn
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The particle "-то" conveys uncertainty. Meaning that neither the speaker nor the listener knows what specific thing is being referred to.

Conversely, the particle "-нибудь" conveys indifference. Meaning that the speaker doesn't really care what specific thing the listener will consequently single out.

This implies that putting a "-то" pronoun into an imperative sentence makes it sound like the speaker doesn't have any idea what they're requesting.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/2E3S
2E3S
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To add: there is a Russian construction contained in "нибудь": ни+imperative verb. Meaning something like "whatever": какой хлеб ни купи, весь невкусный: whatever bread you buy, it's all tasteless. Same goes for где-нибудь (где ни будь, везде хорошо=wherever you are, anywhere is fine), как-нибудь etc.

P.S. I wish someone would write such comments on French and others for complex words and constructions which obviously carry certain logic.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rusca8
Rusca8
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Etymology always helps a lot. :)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rusca8
Rusca8
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Hey, that's really helpful. Thanks!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/kpagcha
kpagcha
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Why not покупай?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lauramenshikova

why not купи нам хлеба?

2 months ago
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