Translation:Why do you have breakfast after twelve?
@benograph Hi there. I myself am in the states and have never heard it used either. But it does appear to be used verbally as well:
" eat breakfast. "she breakfasted on French toast and bacon" "
I wouldn't say "have" is redundant. I suspect this is another issue with regional variants. It is extremely rare for me to hear "breakfast" used as a standalone verb without an auxiliary. It's acceptable but in my experience sounds very awkward -- I know that is not true everywhere.
Each preposition has its own case requirements. Some prepositions combine with a number of cases depending on the meaning.
While there might have been some deeper meaning behind the case assignment in the past, nowadays there does not seem to be any solid explanation why перед ("before, in front") is used with the Instrumental, whereas "до" ("before, until") and "после" (after) are used with the Genitive.
- apart from the fact that a lot of prepositions require the Genitive.
The exact list should be memorized eventually.
For prepositions this website may be helpful : http://www.study-languages-online.com/grammar/tables/prepositions-by-case
The case/gender/number qualities of cardinal numbers is presented in an extremely murky way. It would be nice if there were a concise Tips and Notes section on how to deal with numbers.
Simple counting is not a problem - that much has been explained clearly. There are instances, however, where, as here, the case/gender/number of cardinal numbers is an issue, and the only handy references for looking them up is the ever-unreliable online translator.
For example, "a book about twenty-one boys" in Google Translate produced «книга о двадцати одном мальчике»
Since objects of «о» are in prepositional case, assuming the translation is correct (a big assumption), that appears to be:
двадцати: feminine singular prepositional or masculine & feminine nominative plural
одном: masculine or neuter singular instrumental
мальчике: masculine singular prepositional
I get the same result at https: //translate.yandex.ru/?lang=en-ru&text=a%20book%20about%20twenty-one%20boys
If you change "boys" to "girls", then the result is «двадцати одной девочке», with одном changing to одной, the instrumental case singular.
Needless to say, this is very confusing.
But rather than a long explanation, I'd simply like to know if there are any references or resources which explain clearly and concisely how Russian numbers function.