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  5. "Вчера не было дождя."

"Вчера не было дождя."

Translation:It did not rain yesterday.

February 15, 2016



I answered, "It was not raining yesterday." Would that be written differently in Russian?


I'm curious about this, too. I would imagine that "It did not rain yesterday" would translate to "Вчера не шёл дождь" and "It was not raining yesterday" would translate to "Вчера не было дождя".


That was my answer too. I reported it.


And lo and behold, I come across this again two months later, and it still hasn't been resolved.


I shall report too (May 2018). I'm pretty sure simple past and past continuous are not differentiated in Russian. Please someone comment if we are mistaken about this.


Actually the way past continuous and simple past translate to Russian is through the perfective and imperfective aspects.

Eg if you wanted to say “Yesterday I read this book” You would say «вчера я прочитал эту книгу»

But if you wished to say “yesterday I was reading this book” You would say «вчера я читал эту книгу»

The literal translation for this exercise would be “yesterday there was no rain”, so it doesn’t actually have an action verb. There is actually a difference between “there was rain” (был дождь) and “it was raining” (шёл дождь).

But since the translation they provide is not literal, but based on context, I think they should accept both translations.


I am not native english speaker but I thought same answer like you.


I'm puzzled: what is "было" agreeing with? An implicit "оно"?


Yea, pretty sure. It's like in English when you say 'yesterday it was raining'. Who/what is the 'it'?


Some would say the deep state...


Actually, with много.


I'm by no means fluent but дождь is rain as a noun not the act of raining, so the translation can only be "yesterday there was no rain" or "yesterday it did not rain" - literally there were no rain drops present.

For you to use "was raining" I suppose it would be something like Вчера была не шел дождь as Вчера не была... seems to be like "Yesterday was not..."

Hope this was useful at all, i was wondering this too.


You never use был in Russian to convey English's "it was doing something" - all that information is contained in the Russian verb already. In your example of "Yesterday it was raining", you would just say "Вчера шел дождь". If it wasn't raining - Вчера не шел дождь / дождь не шел.


So is there a difference between Вчера не было дождя and Вчера дождь не шел?


Not really, just different ways to say the same thing.


Why is it дождя instead of just дождь?


When there is an absence of something you put it in genitive.


не было is the past tense of нет, which as you'll recall always triggers the genitive.


That's a great remark! I understood something. Нет is essentially не есть!


Thanks, yes that's a good assessment of нет.


Negation and case is a difficult topic in Russian. In the "People" module, one of Duo's exercises was "Ты мне не друг". Duo did not use the genitive "друга" - but I suspect that it would not be incorrect to use it.


It is not a negation of existence, so it can't be друга.


Why does present tense use идёт дождь but past tense uses было?


These are not just different tenses, the verb is also different. идёт дождь means "rain is going" (or rain is falling)
было дождь means "there was rain".

It's confusing because I imagine that the versions with and without идёт could both be translated as rains/is raining, since in English rain can be a verb but in Russian it's almost always used as a noun.


I know it's a different verb, I'm not questioning that. I'm asking why it's a different verb. Идти has a perfectly good past tense form, so why do we use было instead?


You can say Вчера весь день шел дождь and Вчера был дождь

So maybe your question has something to do with negative?


I love how useful the notes are for these lessons, and how much their information is used in them. For instance, the notes insist that when it comes to precipitation, Russian uses 'going' to signify the event. So, it goes raining. But nowhere on the page does it mention that on my first question, I would be introduced to a past tense form of 'to be' which, as far as I can tell, is the rarest creature in the language. So, here's my question: Is there a rule for using 'to go' or 'to be' with weather? Is one always present, and one always past? Is there a resource I could read to actually LEARN this stuff, that one of you might point out? I swear, I only learn stuff in the discussions, and never anything from the notes.


Agreed, the notes are very poor. In fact they often are deliberately and jokily opaque. What's worse, they haven't been meaningfully improved in several years.


Very annoying. Sometimes excluding the was is correct (it did not rain) and in other, similar sentences, it is not. I feel, now, I am also learning the specific database of translations as well as russian. Frustrating .


It helps to know which alternative you're trying.


There wasn't rain yesterday.


That is not good English idiom. "There wasn't any rain yesterday" is good idiom, though I don't know if Duo would accept that.


not "не бЫло" but "нЕ было"


Would "Вчера не пошёл дождь" also be acceptable?


не шёл

не пошёл - it didn't start raining yesterday


Would a direct-ish translation of this be "Yesterday, rain was not"?


I guess if you're trying to directly translate it, it would be "Yesterday there was not rain". But... yeah, sounds kind of stilted.


Would "it wasn't rainy yesterday" be translated differently?


Rainy is an adjective, right?

So maybe вчера погода не была дождливая / дождли́ва?


Apparently, since when I gave that answer, it was marked wrong.


Is there any reason why "did not" its marked correct but "didn't" is not? Or is it just that they didn't add it


No grammatical reason - Duo sometimes doesn't update it's exercises to include correct verbal contractions like yours. I never use them because I've gotten them wrong so much in the past. Duo is getting better about it. It's always a good idea to report things like that.


Why the answer is "it did not rain", with rain as a verb, but in russian it is used the noun in genitive? I understand the genitive, but i dont understand why the noun and not the verb. The sentences have a different meaning I think :/


A word "rain - дождь" is always a noun in Russian.


When do you use "дождя" and when "дождь"?


дождь is a masculine noun, so the genitive form is дождя. That's what's going on here.


More on how to use the past tense of the verb to be in Russian: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYd9rm7z6V8


Russians say this to say its raining "идёт дождь и шёл дождь(it rained). Come on duo. Get actual russian speaking people to write this stuff. Cause вчера не было дождя, means there was no rain. I've been living in russia for about a year now and have never heard "вчера не было дождя" only не шёл дождь.


Вы не правы. "Вчера нЕ было дождя" - самое обычное выражение. Но ваш вариант тоже распространен. Представьте такой диалог, например:

  • Вчера не было дождя.
  • Нет, дождь был!
  • Повторяю, вчера дождь не шел!


I've been living in russia for about a year now and have never heard "вчера не было дождя" only не шёл дождь.

I've been living in Russia for all my life and I hear and say "не было дождя" all the time.


Marked wrong for "Yesterday was not rainy." Why?


Why not была ?


It does not have a feminine subject. It means "it was", and "it" is considered neuter.

At least, that's how I understand it.


Both the pronunciation and the grammar in here is giving me a headache

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