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Thread: does 'нет' change endings?

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    does 'нет' change endings?

    In the image from the link given below, why do the endings of the words 'вода' and 'рис' change between the pictures on the left and the pictures on the right? Does it have to do something with the word 'нет'?

    http://screencast.com/t/qxw7BmRY

    Thanks!
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    http://imgur.com/QC32B.jpg

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    У мальчиков вода - Nominative
    У мальчиков нет воды - Genetive.
    Yes, it is normal to use a different case (namely, the Genetive) in negative sentences in Russian, hence the endings are different.

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Can you explain the Nominative and the Genitive cases? What are their purposes?

    Thanks for all your help this morning
    Resources I recommend for learning Russian:
    Berlitz Russian Compact Dictionary http://amzn.to/cSVslk
    The New Penguin Russian Course http://amzn.to/cBJLSP
    Passport to Russian http://amzn.to/d8MG1Q

    http://imgur.com/QC32B.jpg

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Russian cases are a big subject, too big for me to tackle in a single forum post. Try obtaining a good Russian grammar book. Pimsleur and Rosetta Stone may be great learning aids, but in order to master the Russian declension system, you really need a grammar book.
    But for starters, you can read these:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grammatical_case
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nominative_case
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genitive_case

    Please note that Russian has other grammatical cases as well.

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Thanks again Looks like Wikipedia is a great resource for explaining all these literary technical terms that confuse me.
    Resources I recommend for learning Russian:
    Berlitz Russian Compact Dictionary http://amzn.to/cSVslk
    The New Penguin Russian Course http://amzn.to/cBJLSP
    Passport to Russian http://amzn.to/d8MG1Q

    http://imgur.com/QC32B.jpg

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Get a book! Seriously though, get one (<new penguin russian> is a good start), you'll be completely lost without one because rosetta stone et al don't give you any details on the grammatical constructs you see, and there is a lot of grammar to learn, and it's not that simple. Ps - IMHO wikipedia sucks for beginners too.
    Пожалуйста, исправляйте мои ошибки.

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    I actually do have The New Penguin Russian course book. I like Rosetta Stone because I find that it helps me remember new words and phrases without having to think too much because it teaches through repetition, but my mind often wants to grasp the reasons behind why certain words and phrases are the way they are. That's when I turn to the Penguin book, but if I am not satisfied by what I find in there, I turn to this message board because the people here are very knowledgeably and helpful.
    Resources I recommend for learning Russian:
    Berlitz Russian Compact Dictionary http://amzn.to/cSVslk
    The New Penguin Russian Course http://amzn.to/cBJLSP
    Passport to Russian http://amzn.to/d8MG1Q

    http://imgur.com/QC32B.jpg

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Quote Originally Posted by translationsnmru
    У мальчиков вода - Nominative
    У мальчиков нет воды - Genetive.
    Yes, it is normal to use a different case (namely, the Genetive) in negative sentences in Russian, hence the endings are different.
    I found the explanation I was looking for in the book Russian For Dummies, pages 32-33:

    The main function of the nominative case is to indicate the subject of
    the sentence. It answers the question “Who or what is performing the action?”

    Genitive case (along with indicating possession) is used to indicate an absence of somebody or something
    when you combine it with the word нет.
    Resources I recommend for learning Russian:
    Berlitz Russian Compact Dictionary http://amzn.to/cSVslk
    The New Penguin Russian Course http://amzn.to/cBJLSP
    Passport to Russian http://amzn.to/d8MG1Q

    http://imgur.com/QC32B.jpg

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Well done on your research

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Probably the easiest way to think of the genitive case is to think of it as the word "of" in English. Objects of negative sentences are put in the genitive rather than the accusative. It is a bit like saying in English: We don't have any OF that. I find it easiest to use very literal translations in my mind as it helps me remember the grammatical forms, at least when they are new to me. So when you see a Russian sentence with a negated verb and a direct object (in the genitive) just translate it to yourself with the word "of" in front of the object and think "gee, those Russians sure talk funny."

    That's what worked for me.

    Then you can move on to the Russian forms where the subject of the sentence is in the dative case and the object in the nominative

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Quote Originally Posted by paulb
    Then you can move on to the Russian forms where the subject of the sentence is in the dative case and the object in the nominative
    You mean like this?
    "Ему не хотелось спать." = "It was not wanted to sleep for him."

    That's interesting. Don't you occasionally have a list of such rules?
    "Россия для русских" - это неправильно. Остальные-то чем лучше?

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Quote Originally Posted by it-ogo
    Quote Originally Posted by paulb
    Then you can move on to the Russian forms where the subject of the sentence is in the dative case and the object in the nominative
    You mean like this?
    "Ему не хотелось спать." = "It was not wanted to sleep for him."

    That's interesting. Don't you occasionally have a list of such rules?
    I don't have a list, but I was thinking about these:

    Мне нужен врач.
    I need a doctor.
    lit: To me is needed doctor.


    Мне нравится Оля.
    I like Olya.
    lit. To me is pleasant Olya.

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    Re: does 'нет' change endings?

    Quote Originally Posted by SoftPretzel
    an absence of somebody or something
    when you combine it with the word нет.

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