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  5. "Я купила апельсины и яблоки."

"Я купила апельсины и яблоки."

Translation:I bought oranges and apples.

February 20, 2016



Is there any convention in Russian about which way round these usually go? In English, for some reason (though I wouldn't call it a rule), it feels more natural to say "apples and oranges". "Oranges and apples" isn't wrong, but sounds somehow clumsier. I wondered if there's a similar "feel" in Russian, for which way round things go. It's a bit like the phrase: "mother and father". For some reason, in English, we almost always put the mother first (perhaps on the principle of 'ladies first'?), but in some languages, it's the convention to put the father first.


I would put "яблоки" first, simply because "купила апельсины" has two а's one after another and it's harder to pronounce clearly.


Yes, that's a good point; sometimes it's just a matter of ease of pronunciation. I'm not sure if "apples and oranges" is any easier to pronounce in English than "oranges and apples". Although either way begins with a vowel, I think "oranges" at the beginning is very slightly harder. Not wrong, just harder.


It probably has to do with the idiom "comparing apples and oranges," when something is cemented in speakers' minds like that even a slight change can make it sound very awkward. I'd assume an American hearing "jelly and peanut butter" instead of the usual PB&J word order would react similarly.


I messed up because Oranges in Russian sound like apples. Gets me every time.

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