https://www.duolingo.com/Alexander183999

why don't Russians say "is"?

Why don't Russians say "is" in Sentences? For example, Дима-медик. This sentence translates to Dima is a medic. BUT if you notice that it reads Dima-medic. Or Дима-моя внучка. This translates to Dima is my granddaughter. BUT it reads only Dima-my granddaughter. Why is that?

April 19, 2018

37 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/imira13

Дима is a boy's name, short form of Дмитрий.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98

that wasn't the question though was it?

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/nimogene

No, but Dima is unlikely to be someone's grand daughter (per the example), because it's a boy's name. Bonus fact.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Alexander183999

woops!

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/NicroNR

Так для справки: http://boyan.narod.ru/slav_name.html СПИСОК СЛАВЯНСКИХ ИМЁН

Женские - Дима

Так что норм :)

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/dmitriy-kalmykov

славянских но не русских... так что ваша шутка вводит иностранцев в заблуждение... в русском языке женского имени производного от греческой богини Деметры нет... в русском языке имя Дмитрий только мужское и только мужское в любом историческом разрезе

April 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Alexander183999

имеет смысл

April 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Alexander183999

Спасибо!

April 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Alexander183999

woops! :)

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Anno-Domini

Agree with flootzavut. I would add that in old Russian there was the verb есть. And it is still used but in the meaning "находиться". Он есть сегодня в школе? Is he at school today. На столе есть ручка? Is there a pen on the table? But in such sentences like "I am a student" Я - студент the verb "to be" is replaced by dash. P.S. Дима can't be a granddaughter, only a grandson.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Jane-German

Every language is different. For example, all German nouns have different genders (the = der, die, das, den, dem, etc.). There is no point asking why this is - it just is. If you want to learn another language you need to accept new vocabulary and also new grammar. There are hundreds of languages, and every one has its own rules. You could equally ask, why does English have the word 'is' - because it does.

April 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/VladaFu

Well, in this case you can point to the history and three genders is rather a typical thing, not a quirk, dating back to at least Proto-Germanic, but probably all the way back to Proto-Indo-European. Why English lost these is perhaps more interesting than why Standard German kept them.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/JoaquinMur14

I'm no linguist but a professor (who was) gave me a short explanation of deflexion in languages, the process by which languages lose their inflections (according to gender, number, case, etc.). English is a classic case of deflexion from more highly inflected germanic languages. I once tried to learn Attic Greek (and failed) and was exposed to the horrors of a highly inflected language!

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/sfonor

Gender is only indicated by der, die, das. Den & Dem are just a different "versions", because they are changed by the cases der, die, das use.

April 22, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Alex_Morkova

Ну в древнерусском такое было, потом исчезло. Так устроен наш язык.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/JoaquinMur14

I think people who have studied romance or germanic languages are used to starting with "to have" and "to be", as in "I have a pencil" or "she is a student". These are often used words and are irregularly conjugated so you have to study them right away ("Ich habe ein bleistift" or "Ella es una estudiante".) In Russian not only do they not often use verbs of being, they don't express possession with "to have": "У меня есть карандаш" = "At me there is pencil". What I found really disorienting is the lack of definite or indefinite articles. In German getting the article endings right is an endless nightmare, while in Russian you are completely absolved. This is also why Boris and Natasha don't use articles in their comic broken Russian/English.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/kara.tahta

It happens in Turkish as well. Bende kalem var. = At me there is a pencil. or you can say it another way (Benim) kalemim var. = My pencil exists.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Sever326371

Why do Americans say "am" and "is" (for example I am, he is...) ? :))

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Dinova7

For a sentence to be complete it needs to have at least one verb. (Even if there is no action described in a sentence) E.g. He is a teacher. It doesn't describe any action rather explains what he does. Yet there should be a verb. So we have "to be (am/is/are) ", an auxiliary verb that helps us to create grammatically correct and complete sentences.

You can use "to be":

  1. Name. What is her name? Her name is Jane.
  2. Age. How old are you? I am 15.
  3. Nationality. Where are you from? I am from Madrid.
  4. Jobs/professions/ what someone is. They are students.
  5. Emotions. He is tired. I am hungry. We are sleepy.
April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Sever326371

Спасибо за подробный ответ. (Право, не стоило, мой вопрос был риторически-саркастический). В русском языке, однако, устроено по-иному. Предложение может состоять из одного-единственного слова. Кроме того, чтобы предложение было полным - ни одного глагола не надо. Чтобы Alexander183999 узнал ответ на вопрос, ему всего лишь достаточно изучить такое понятие/правило в русском, как "координация". Координация подлежащего и сказуемого имеет место в формах рода, числа и падежа - в двусоставных предложениях без спрягаемой формы глагола, при подлежащем -существительном в форме единственного числа или местоимении 3-го лица единственного числа и сказуемом - полном прилагательном, местоимении-прилагательном или причастии (Карандаш мой - Книга моя; он добрый - она добрая.). http://russkiyyazik.ru/432/

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Jane-German

@Dinova7 Many languages do not have to have a verb in a sentence. It is worth doing the first Duolingo Russian lesson to see an example.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/flootzavut

Oh? Really?

(Yes, I'm being facetious. It's a little simplistic even for English. Most of the time you're right, of course.

The verbs in one word sentences are implied in English, but they don't necessarily appear. Also think of interrogatives: Who? Why? Or replies to questions: Yes. No.)

April 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/flootzavut

Russian doesn't use the verb "to be" in the present tense, something it has in common with a number of languages including Hebrew, Ukrainian and (afaik) Turkish and at least some sign languages. It's called zero copula, and it's just how the language works. All languages have little quirks; this is one of Russian's.

We even do this occasionally in English. Perhaps most commonly in informal language: "You okay?" "You coming?" "How you doing?" There are other phrases that have zero copula too, for example, "the more, the merrier."

As to why? Because it developed that way. That's how it works.

April 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/zirkul
Mod
  • 1428

Russian doesn't use the verb "to be" in the present tense

Russian does use the verb "to be" in the present tense, but its use is restricted to the situations when you need to express the existence (or availability) of something, not merely to describe something that is known to exists/to be present.
So:
There are tall mountains in Mexico = В Мексике есть высокие горы.
I have a car = У меня есть машина.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ClarkStephen

What a great answer.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/flootzavut

Thanks :D

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Alexander183999

thank you!

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/kara.tahta

Yes, Turkish doesn't have the verb to be. We don't have the verb 'to have' either.

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/nikon144

It's interesting. How do you say that you have some thing in your possession?

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/nikon144

Oh, I already see the answer)

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AlexeyAZ.

У русских есть аналог to be - являться, но используется этот глагол, как правило, в официальных и научных документах. В разговорной речи его использование исчезающе мало.

April 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Dare3966

Similar in Spanish also, for example, "I was a teacher", in Spanish it is, I was teacher. Yo era maestro, no un (a).

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Guillaume201712

In Spanish it is even harder. “To be” has two different verbs for it: “Ser” and “Estar”. Using the correct one is pretty difficult to learn. I am a boy (ser). I am here(estar). There are some simple rules but every non Hispanic guy will at a certain moment use the wrong verb for “to be”. I am sure (soy seguro o estoy seguro? ). I am married : soy o Estoy Casado ? :-)

April 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/HE9jMCAs

Interresting

April 22, 2018
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