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"Я ни слова не понимаю, говорите медленно."

Translation:I do not understand a word; speak slowly.

March 24, 2017

13 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chsemyonova

Is the "ни" just for emphasis? I've seen it used in situations where the word "neither" comes in to play, but never like this.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NickGeorgo1

For now, I'll just think of it as "not a" and see how useful that is


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rebecca259028

I needed this phrase much earlier in the course. Lol.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LiorZatlav

I don't understand any of the words... should also be accepted


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlexFromAus

Except слова here is singular


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndroidKanada

слова could be either genitive singular or nominative / accusative plural, which may be the source of the confusion. In this case I think it's the "genitive of negation" and thus singular.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lauramenshikova

слОва is genitive singular словА is accusative plural. Right? in the audio i hear слОва but in the slow version I hear словА. Are both versions correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndroidKanada

;) I hear the same thing.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phil_Stracchino

I couldn't tell if it was singular or plural, and guessed wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/uq.

it's because the slow version speaks word-by-word, and it assumes "слова" is nominative plural by default, since there's "no word" preceding it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ray181324

What's wrong with "the word" as opposed to "a word"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chsemyonova

I believe that «ни» followed by any genitive singular word is going to be somewhat of a set expression which means "not a _," or "any ___(plural)." To express that you do not understand a certain word in particular could probably be accomplished with the following Russian sentence:

«Я не понимаю слово.»

The «ни» here emphasises that the speaker does not understand any of the words that are being spoken.

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